Zhengdefu USS Ticonderoga


DF 043






Scott Van Aken


Full hull with electric motor


The USS Ticonderoga is the lead ship is one of a number of similarly designed and built ships that are Aegis missile cruisers. Built on the same hull as the Spruance class destroyer, the Tico and her sister ships are a bit more heavily armed and are able to carry  a larger  number of weapons. Ships of this class are still being built and form the backbone of the US Navy's surface warfare fleet.


  Zhengdefu kits have been filling the shelves at the local Hobby Lobby in the past six months. Their aircraft kits are basically copies of the models from other companies such as Academy and Italeri. Their ship kits, however, seem to be ones that they have developed themselves. I have not seen models of the Aegis cruisers like this before. They are basically full hulled models with an electric motor and space for a battery. A single shaft is used to propel the finished mode in the water body of your choice.

Parts are fairly well molded with sufficient detail to please those that are not heavily into ship building. One of the problems of a powered model is that you have to make room for things like a switch to run the motor and this one is located on the helo pad at the rear of the ship. For the detail freak, you'll have to look elsewhere as there are no provisions for even the correct screw and rudder installation on the hull. You do have a display stand provided for those times when the ship is out of the tub....err....ocean and in drydock on your display shelf.

Were I a ship freak, I could probably nit-pick the kit to death. However, my ignorance of the subject keeps me from doing that. To me it looks like it is fairly well detailed and, especially considering the price, appears that it will make into a very nice model. One thing that is missing from the kit are any form of decal. Judging from the aircraft kits that Zhengdefu has produced (since when was the F-14 a USAF trainer), the decal quality is poor so perhaps it is better off. I know not what the scale of it is. The box only states that it is 30cm and leaves it at that.

Each Zhengdefu kit box has a glitch and this one is no exception, showing a Royal Navy Sea king in flight above the bows. I also doubt if two of these ships would be underway so close together, regardless of how slow they are moving. The #71 ship is really just a photo copy of the Tico! This exact same photo (with a different number) is used for the USS Bunker Hill kit! You pays your money and takes your chance!

Review kit courtesy of my kit collection.

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