WSW 1/700 DKM Karlsruhe




54.00 for EC, 49.50 outside the EC from 7th Company




Scott Van Aken


Full resin waterline ship kit with brass rod.


Laid down in 1926, a year later she was launched. Fitting her out took  a bit more time and she was finally commissioned on November 6, 1929. Karlsruhe was  part of a class of light cruisers carrying 9 150mm guns in three triple turrets, the rear ones staggered, making for a most unusual appearance. Unlike her sister ships, she was never outfitted with floatplanes. She was capable of speeds up to 32 knots.   During a world cruise in 1936, she suffered structural weakness. Pulling into San Diego, she was repaired and refitted before returning to European waters.

When war broke out, she was again being refitted in Germany and was recommissioned in November of 1939. Her war sorties were few and I don't believe she actually sank any shipping. The Karlsruhe was involved in the invasion of Norway and was torpedoed by the HMS Truant during the Kristianland operation on 9 April 1940. Thanks to the damage done to the ship she was scuttled by the DKM Gbeif a little less than three hours after the initial torpedo attack.


This is the first I've ever seen of a WSW kit and I'm quite impressed. I've built a few resin ships, but none with the detail level and cleanliness that this one shows. Chastise me if you will, but I left all the smaller resin pieces in their protective bags to help keep them from damage before I start on the kit.  While some of the small parts are on resin sprues, the vast majority are either on wafers or removed from wafers. For example, the main turrets are slightly rough on the bottom and lower edges where they were molded. This will require just a tiny bit of clean-up prior to use. Surely a lot better than hacking on some large resin pour stub! Even the tiniest pieces are superbly molded, not amorphous blobs of resin as I've seen with other kits. One is provided with brass rod of two diameters with which to make the masts.

The instructions provide a parts diagram and number guide, a brief explanation that this kit is shown in her last configuration (1940), and a detailed overhead and side view of the full ship with smaller inset drawings for the bridge area and aft tripod mast. There are dimensions given for the various bits of brass rod in metric units so Americans will have to break out the metric rule for this one! These detailed drawings also show the parts placement. With a ship that is this simple (comparatively), these types of instructions are more than adequate. Painting information is also supplied. This is basically light grey with wooden decks. 1940 was before the German Navy got all involved with complicated splinter patterns for its surface ships. A small decal sheet for flags (with the swastikas) is included.


I've not seen a quality 1/700 resin ship kit like this before and I'm sure it will be a pure joy to build. Now all I have to do is to figure out how to do water!


A good Google of the Internet

Thanks to 7th Kompany for the review kit.

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