Dragon 1/350 USS Chevalier DD-805 (1945)
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
USS Chevalier (DD/DDR-805) was a Gearing-class destroyer of the United States Navy, the second Navy ship named for Lieutenant Commander Godfrey DeC. Chevalier (1889–1922), a pioneer of naval aviation.
Chevalier was launched 29 October 1944 by Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine; sponsored by Mrs. G. DeC. Chevalier; and commissioned 9 January 1945, Commander F. Wolsieffer in command.
Chevalier cleared Guantanamo Bay 18 June 1945, and reached Pearl Harbor 9 July. On the 24th, she sailed to join in the bombardment of Wake on 1 August, arriving at Eniwetok next day. She joined Task Force 38 (TF 38) off Honshū 18 August, and with her force entered Tokyo Bay 26 August. After patrol and escort assignments supporting occupation activities in the Marianas and Philippines, Chevalier sailed from Saipan 25 March 1946 for San Diego, arriving 11 April.
Before the Korean War, Chevalier completed tours of duty in the western Pacific in 1946–7, and 1948–9, and maintained her readiness through local operations from San Diego. On 18 March 1949, she was reclassified DDR-805, a radar picket destroyer, and during the summer and fall of 1949 operated in the Hawaiian Islands. During the Korean War, she served actively in the Far East between 6 July 1950 and 25 March 1951; 15 October 1951 and 31 May 1952: and 2 January 1953 and 22 August 1953. Her duty during the major portion of each tour was to join the protective screen of TF 77, the carrier force which launched almost continuous raids on North Korea. She also sailed on protective patrol in the Taiwan Straits.
Chevalier's post-war operating schedule has alternated tours of duty with the guardian 7th Fleet with necessary overhaul and training activities along the west coast. In 1954, 1955, 1956–57, 1957–58, 1958-59, and 1960, she sailed for the visits to Far Eastern and Australian ports, patrol duty in the Taiwan Straits, and exercises off Japan, Okinawa, and in the Philippines which are a part of Far Eastern deployment.
Chevalier's classification reverted to DD-805 13 July 1962.
Chevalier was transferred to South Korea on 5 July 1972. She served in the Republic of Korea Navy as ROKS Chung Buk. She was sold for scrap and dismantled in December 2000.
It is only natural that Dragon would want to continue with its successful Gearing Class destroyer kits by providing another. This one is in WWII fit from 1945. As noted there are new bits from the previous kit, though most of what is offered is the same. This includes the ability to do waterline or full hull and a couple of nicely done photo etch sets. All you may need, if so inclined, is a set of 1/350 railings, but I'll bet an aftermarket railing set is in the offing.
So here are the features:
- Newly tooled radar tower is produced
- Newly tooled platform produced
- One-piece slide-molded upper hull w/undercut details newly represented
- Newly designed bilge keels w/removable sonar dome are represented on lower hull by slide-mold technology
- Finely detailed and newly designed quadruple 40mm Mk4 mount
- Whalers w/photo-etched parts newly designed
- Waterline or full-hull version can be assembled
- Finely represented in either plastic or photo-etched versions
- Deck has realistic camber
- Rudder is movable
- True-to-scale ultra-thin propellers
- Fine photo-etched propeller guards
- Mk37 gun director w/highly detailed Mk12 radar antenna assembly
- Photo-etched parts finely reproduced for radar and antennas
- Twin 40mm Mk4 guns reproduced w/delicate detail
- Twin 20mm guns finely reproduced w/photo-etched shields
- 3-directional slide-molded twin 5-inch gun turret
- Every detail present, right down to access ladder and rivet head
- Realistically detailed slide-molded gun barrels w/hollow ends
- Side doors in plastic or photo-etched are available
- Side door can assembled open/closed
- Extremely fine parts like davits for whalers
- Finely represented Mk51 gun director
- 5-inch practice loading machine in great detail
- Shield wall on superstructure and bonus captain's chair both w/full detail
- Detail like hose and ladder patterns on superstructure walls delicately reproduced
- Extra-thin shield walls on superstructure reproduced for accurate 1/350 scale appearance
- Front and rear funnels w/DBM antennas
- Funnels provided w/option of molded-on ladders or add-on photo-etched ladders
- Platforms on funnels finely modeled by photo-etched parts
- 12-inch and 36-inch searchlights provided
- Movable mount for 36-inch searchlight w/clear part included
- Oval- and square-shaped rafts look authentic
- Depth charges molded w/extra-fine detail
- Extra-fine detailed superstructure
- Passageway for crew access realistically presented w/interior detail
- Bridge supports portrayed w/photo-etched parts
Another superb 1/350 destroyer kit and really, this is the perfect scale for these ships. They are large enough for good detail, yet won't overwhelm your display space. Well worth seeking out.
As a note, I found it interesting that just over the bow on the box art is what seems to be a Japanese aircraft carrier.
Thanks to www.dragonmodelsusa.com for the review kit. Get yours at your local shop or on-line retailer
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