Pit-Road 1/700
IJN Escort Type C Hei
Box Art
Reviewed by Timothy Dike
During WW2 the need for ships to escort transports and auxiliary ships was tying up many destroyers. These larger ships were desperately needed to fight off Allied Navy surface forces. The Hei was a new class of escort designed to protect the supply lines and free up the larger ships. The Hei was a type C Escort armed to fight off the submarines that were picking off the Japanese merchant ships.
There are two ships in this kit. The hull is well detailed with raised tread plate and lots of sharp well defined features. Other parts are well molded though not as nice as some of the latest offerings. 
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The weapons included in this kit are from the standard Skywave IJN weapons set that I usually recommend for replacing on other kits. So you already have the best weapons available on the market. The main guns are molded with a separate shield, a vast improvement over other kits.

The decal sheet is pretty well done, with numbers to build several ships in this class. This is the same decal set used for other kits so you also get some B-24 and Gato class subs.

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The instructions are good, consisting of a little history and several exploded views showing the various subassemblies. It is straight forward and easy to follow. Parts are included for an early or late version of the ship but are not noted in the instructions.
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Typical of the water line series of kits this one has a painting guide on the back of the box with color numbers for the Pitroad and Guze Sangyo line of paints. The art work is pretty detailed and includes rigging.

This kit has been on the market for a few years, but is a pretty nice kit with sharp detailing and plenty of potential. If you Japanese supply ships are all by themselves, you will need a couple of these to provide escort. It can be built out of the box with good results. But add a some PE rails and rigging and you have a real nice representation of one of Japan's WW 2 escorts. This is kit #W49 and has a current retail of about $14.95 US.

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