Airfix 1/600 HMS Warspite








Len Roberto


Full Hull


One of the most appropriately named battleships with a service record to match, the Warspite had a storied career:

From the excellent Warships of the World (see reference section below for url):

Queen Elizabeth Class Battleships

Quite possibly one of the best British battleship classes built. These ships saw service through two world wars and performed admirably in both. They were extensively modernized before WWII and were quite handsome in appearance.


Builder- Devonport Naval Dockyards

Laid Down- Oct.31/12

Launched- Nov.26/13

Commissioned- Mar./1915

Operational History:

minor collision with HMS Barham Dec.1/15

took part in Battle of Jutland May.31/16

rudder jammed during fight and received 15 major caliber hits

repaired at Rosyth by Jul./1916

major collision with HMS Valiant Aug.24/16

repaired by Sep.28/16

minor collision with HMS destroyer Jun./17

partial modernization Nov./1924-Apr./1926

drydocked and paid off Mar./1934 at Portsmouth for complete modernization

completed by Mar./1937

RECOM Jun./1937 in Mediterranean Fleet as Flagship

narrowly missed shelling a passenger liner 1937

accidently fired into city of Valetta with pompoms 1937

supported Norweigian campaign Apr./1940

took part in Narvik Fjord Battle, shelling German destroyers

returned to Medittereanean Fleet after campaign

took part in Battle of Calabria Jul.9/40 hitting Italian battleship Giulio Cesare at a range of 26,400 yards

took part in Battle of Matapan

with force of Valiant, Barhama and HMS destroyers destroyed 3 Italian cruisers Mar.28/41

severely damaged May.22/41 by 500lb bomb at Crete

remained in action and returned to Alexandria May.24/41 for temporary repairs

near missed by 1,000lb bomb at Alexandria

left for USA May.25/41

repaired at Bremerton Aug.11/41-Dec.28/41

joined Eastern Fleet Jan./1942

returned to Mediterranean Fleet Jun.17/43

took part in Operation Husky at Sicily

escorted surrendered Italian warships to Malta Sep.10/43

took part in Salerno landings and was severely damaged by 3 German guided bombs Sep.16/43

temporarily repaired at Malta

partially repaired at Rosyth Mar./44

participated in landing at Normandy

sent to Rosyth for regunning after landing

hit magnetic mine after repairs at Portsmouth Jun.13/45

patched up once more at Rosyth

carried out bombardments against Brest, Le Havre andf finally Walcheren in Nov./1944

placed in Category C Reserve Feb.1/45

sold for scrap Mar.12/47

left Portsmouth Mar.12/47 but broke tow Apr.23/47 on way to breakers

ran aground in Prussia Cove off Cornish coast

scrapped where she lay 1947-1956


I have only built the Airfix 1/600 Bismarck years ago and found it lacking in the detail I expected from a kit of this size. I also have the Hood. The detail is moderate but for the price and the wide selection of subjects, the 1/600 Airfix collection asks the modeler to supply the extra details to make the model an eye-catcher. Airfix's instructions and painting call-outs are fair but references will be needed.

The Warspite is a full hull kit, being split into left and right halves. The deck is one piece and will require a bit of filler to clean up the seams. Armament looks nice enough and the ship's boats appear to be very well done. Overall detail seems to be a notch above the Bismarck kit. I know that White Ensign Models offer a PE set and I believe GMM also make a set to supply the needed details to make the model into a contest entry. I think well done and thin railings, cranes, radars, etc in 1/600 scale make a huge difference over a kit without these added highlights.


An inexpensive and nicely sized kit of not only an excellent class of ship but of one in particular with a history spanning both World Wars. Fair detail and a great price make these kits an attractive alternative to the Japanese kits. IT will require a PE set and a modeler's ingenuity to do the Warspite proper justice.



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