|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||New tool kit with LCACs and aircraft|
USS New York (LPD-21), the fifth San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock, is the seventh ship of the United States Navy to be named after the state of New York. The New York has a crew of 360, and can also carry up to 700 Marines. The ship is notable for using steel that was salvaged from the World Trade Center, after it was destroyed in the September 11 attacks.
The ship was launched in December 2007 and commissioned in November 2009. Two more in this class are planned.
An amphibious transport dock, also called a landing platform/dock (LPD), is an amphibious warfare ship, a warship that embarks, transports, and lands elements of a landing force for expeditionary warfare missions. Several navies currently operate this kind of ship. The ships are generally designed to transport troops into a war zone by sea, primarily using landing craft, although invariably they also have the capability to operate transport helicopters.
Amphibious transport docks perform the mission of amphibious transports, amphibious cargo ships, and the older LPDs by incorporating both a flight deck and a well deck that can be ballasted and deballasted to support landing craft or amphibious vehicles. The USS New York is the first designed specifically for the V-22 Osprey and for LCACs.
Hobby Boss' new USS New York kit is very nicely molded and is quite a complete kit. The lower hull section is a single piece into which the flotation well is installed. It appears that the ship can be build with the rear door lowered if one so wishes. There is also a hangar bay on the upper deck section, though that is shown as being constructed with the door closed, which is kind of odd given that a full hangar is provided.
The upper deck with flight deck is a very large single piece with only a smaller forecastle section to be added to the hull. While the ship provides a clean appearance, there are a great number of small items to be attached to it. This is where much of the photo etch comes into play, with the major bits being used as the nets around the aft of the flight deck. Modern ships of this size are festooned with antennas of various sizes and smaller weapons as well. This one is no exception.
This is a full hull ship so you are provided with props, prop shafts and rudders. The front has a large bulge which is separate and consists of two parts. A display stand is provided for the ship. Of course it has a considerable number of accessory bits like some LCU's LCACs MV-22, CH-46, CH-53, AH-1, UH-1N and AAVPs. It would have been nice to have some M1 tanks as well, but in this scale, they would be quite small. Except for the LCU, the kit includes two of each of these.
Instructions are well done with the usual full color painting guide including a variety of paint choices, the only one being complete being the Gunze list. Decals are nicely done and provide markings for the ship and the accessory vehicles.
Those wanting to build this kit in 1/700 now have an excellent offering. It will take a bit to build this one, but the end result will be an outstanding representation and one that will not overwhelm your display space.
Thanks to Squadron Products for the preview kit. You can find this kit at your favorite hobby shop or on-line retailer.
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