|KIT:||Trumpeter 1/350 USS San Francisco|
|NOTES:||Gold Medal Models Photo Etch used.|
This is the first 1/350 scale US WWII cruiser in plastic that I know of. Unlike many Trumpeter and Dragon kits of late- it comes with no photo-etched parts. I had this on the shelf for months patiently waiting for Loren Perry of Gold Medal Models, my PE maker of choice, to produce a specific set for this kit. It arrived end of May and was all I had hoped for.
The kit is good and typical of Trumpeter ships lately. Of course some areas are compromised and thatís what PE is for. I try not to get into the minutiae of whatís accurate or not. Frankly, I build to relax and appreciate historical machines- I donít have the drive or time to research and correct everything- I do what I can!
Anyway, the PE set is superb and addresses the following areas: aircraft catapults, railing, ladders, radars, cranes, and a very nice searchlight platform that looks very nice.
I picked up
a beautiful display case at MosquitoCon in April.
It was $30.00 and I marked it for the
I do not follow Trumpeterís directions. I build with an eye towards painting which I will try to show below.
So to start, the lower hull has to go first- I cannot imagine attaching the hull as the last step as the directions indicate. After that was cleaned up and dry, I attached the 2 deck pieces. I lose the moving turret feature but to me, having a solid hull to work with is better. I set the hull aside for now.
I then proceed to build modules and set them aside as well:
1. Main gun turrets
2. Bridge deck levels- I do not put them all together because I need to get in there to touch up the deck blueÖPE ladders added where I can. Many are left off until after painting.
replaced with very easy to fold
4. PE catapults
5. PE cranes and pulleys
7. Catapult columns
8. Secondary armament- with some PE additions
All these sub-assemblies are stuck on a piece of cardboard with double sided tape. Then I prime all pieces with el cheapo Walmart light grey primer.
All the smaller pieces are left aside to be added later: 20 mm, boats, winches, reels, ready use ammo lockers, etc.
|COLORS & MARKINGS|
I have been a fan of the Model Master Acrylic Marine line- you have to get them direct from Testorís website- but they work great. I just use regular water to thin them down. This fit calls for the Navy Blue system: Navy Blue 5-N on all vertical surfaces and Deck blue 20-B on all horizontal decks. It looks boring but I will try to drybrush some life into it later on.
After the main hull was all painted, I mounted to an old Trumpeter base with wooden thingies from craft store. I drilled up through the base and the wood and went right into the hull. It allows you to move the model around without touching it while completing the build.
Note: I primed all the PE and then airbrushed Navy Blue- but no matter what, flaking off occurs so I have to go back over all the PE and touch up with a brush after it is installed.
After all painting was done on the sub-assemblies, they were added to the model in stages. Then the various PE railings and ladders were installed.
Last step was to drybrush. I used a medium grey and went over pretty much the whole ship. I tried to focus on edges and other protruding objects. This is a skill I have a lot to learn. In some areas, when I did it right, it does have a very nice effect and you can easily see the detail pop out. I certainly makes the monotone color look a bit better.
I just have a few things left to add: boats, the spotter plane and rigging.
RIGGING: I am leaving it alone for now- There is a lot of rigging to do on this model and I do not want to screw it up now. So can anyone give me a good recommendation on what to use? Since the length between masts is very long, I do not think stretching sprue is an option- it will sag to much. So what is a good material to use and where can I get it?
The kit fit well, is a
very good size for 1/350 and with the always superb Gold Medal Models
photo-etched brass set, it turns into a very nice display.
As usual, the PE is tricky in some parts and very delicate but it sure
adds a lot to the look of the model.
The monotone scheme is a little boring but remember that the model
represents the ship during the
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