Flip Through Nitto’s Second S.F.3.D Original Catalogue

After premiering in the pages of Hobby Japan in 1982, SF3D Original made waves throughout the model-making world. With original scratch-built kits by illustrator Kow Yokoyama and background material penned by Hobby Japan editor Hiroshi Ichimura, SF3D became a monthly fixture in the venerable magazine until some behind-the-scenes conflict saw SF3D canceled and Ichimura fired.

But for a few years, it was incredibly popular. When Yokoyama and Ichimura solicited a resin kit based on the Super AFS power armor, the response was overwhelming with nearly 2,000 requests. Model kit manufacturer Nitto Kagaku Co. Ltd. stepped up to the plate instead, offering a range of plastic kits based on Yokoyama’s designs. These kits boasted an assortment of mixed-media, like rubber hoses and photo-etched brass. Without a doubt, they were a step above the mecha kits released by contemporary companies like Bandai, Takara, and Imai. After a few years, however, the cancellation of the serialized column in Hobby Japan signaled the end of Nitto’s model kit line. It would be almost 15 years until the kits resurfaced under a new name: Maschinen Krieger.

I’ve got a real affinity for vintage marketing material produced during SF3D’s original run, having collected a few posters distributed to model shops and a stack of foil stickers. This catalog (which, according to the cover is the second one released) doesn’t offer anything groundbreaking, as it’s mostly the same photos and orthographic art you’d see in each kit’s packaging. That said, it’s a nicely presented little pamphlet and it isn’t hard to imagine someone flipping through this to get an idea of all the kits out there in a pre-Internet era.

S.F.3.D Original Catalogue 2

Further Reading

  • “Maschinen Krieger” by Jason Eaton, Super 7 Magazine Vol. 2 Issue 4 [Archived Here]