KIT: Trumpeter 1/700 USS The Sullivans
KIT #: 05731
PRICE: $18.95 MSRP
DECALS: One option
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Can be built waterline or full hull


Destroyers are named for naval heroes and leaders. Thus the Navy decided to honor the five Sullivan brothers by naming a new destroyerThe Sullivans. This name has caused some confusion because the Navy does not use the article "the" in front of the names of its ships. In this particular instance "the" is part of the ship's name.

On 10 February 1943, the Navy officially canceled the name Putnam (DD-537) and assigned the name The Sullivans to a destroyer under construction. Previously laid down on 10 October 1942 at San Francisco, California, by the Bethlehem Steel Co., the destroyer was sponsored by Mrs. Alleta Sullivan, mother of the five Sullivan brothers, and commissioned 30 September 1943. USSThe Sullivans (DD-537) served the Navy until final decommissioning on 7 January 1965. In 1977 the destroyer was donated to the city of Buffalo, New York, as a memorial in the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Servicemen's Park.

The above link will take you to more info on USS The Sullivans than I could put here.


Trumpeter's 1/700 Fletcher destroyer kit The Sullivans is in many ways a reduced version of its 1/350 kit. It has several of the same features, such as very nice detailing and the ability to build the kit as either a waterline or full hull.

The info sheet states there are 121 parts along with two full sprues and four hull parts. As you might expect, the vast majority of the parts are small and consist of guns or depth charge equipment. Even in this scale Trumpeter continues to provide the weatherdeck bulkheads as separate parts, which can make painting a lot easier as you can pre-paint the vertical and horizontal surfaces separately if so desired.

Probably the only complaint one would have would be with the usual problems with 1/700 ships and that would be some slightly over-scale parts like AA gun barrels or the 'solid' radar antennas, but I'm sure that there is an aftermarket set being developed to overcome that.

The instructions are the usual Trumpeter fare with large, well drawn construction steps and a nice parts guide. The painting and decalling section are in full color and reference Gunze paints. This particular ship is in a two tone grey with the lower part of the hull sides in Navy Blue and the upper section in Haze Grey. Decks are in Deck Blue. A rather simple scheme, but one that adds interest to the model. A small decal sheet (not shown) provides ship numbers and flags. There is no rigging diagram per se, but one can always use the box art as a reference.


Overall this is a very nice kit. It will be interesting to hear how this compares to the older Skywave kit of the Fletcher, but I'd bet that if anything else, this one is better in terms of detailing and price.


The Internet is full of them, including a website dedicated to the USS The Sullivans. Just do a google.

August 2006

My thanks to Stevens International, the importer of Trumpeter and other fine kits.

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