By Zeljko Segin
The Katana appeared for the first time in 1980 at the German Cologne Show, named for the famous Samurai sword - the Katana. With its large engine, it can easily reach 237 km/h. Many owners have added special options like a 4 to 1 exhaust system, stronger front and rear brakes, stronger rear suspension and many more.
The kit's parts are excellent, like on all Tamiya models. There are a few chromed parts, some thick and thin tubing for brakes, radiator lines, etc., clear parts for windshield and turn signals, metal springs for suspension, screws for wheels, and vinyl tires.
The instruction sheet is very nice and everything is very clear about assembling.
The engine is very nicely detailed, including spark plugs, radiator, carburetor, air filter, etc. I removed the chrome plating from the chromed parts and repainted them with Model Master chrome-silver. I left the plated chrome on mirrors only.
You must install the hoses first before you assemble the frame because it will be very difficult to do later. I used CA glue to install these hoses.
All of the parts fit nicely (one of reasons why I like Tamiya) and there wasn't much trouble in assembling it. The only area that required filler was the gas tank and front mask (where headlight is).
You can stand the bike on one side kick stand or on a two-legged stand which is under the bike.
You can choose your bike in one of two color schemes, an all gloss aluminum or red/aluminum combination. Tamiya recommends their Gloss Aluminum color that you can find only in spray cans, and this is the only gloss aluminum color that I know of, though I transferred the color from spray cans in bottles and used it with my airbrush. That way I had more control in spraying.
You have decals for both versions of colors. There are decals for muffler so you can also make the version with the carbon silencer.
On the end I only can say excellent! I bought the new Tamiya bike right away and it is even better and with more details than the first look gave it credit for.