The Japanese Light Cruiser Yubari

Published on
August 20, 2022
Review Author(s)
Book Author(s)
Aliaksandr Sukhanevich
Other Publication Information
Softbound, A4 (8.25” x 11.75”), 80 pages [Including Covers]
Product / Stock #
Super Drawings in 3D Volume 16086
Company: Kagero Publishing - Website: Visit Site
Provided by: Casemate Publishers - Website: Visit Site

Based in Central Europe, Kagero Publishing House is the biggest publisher and exporter of English-written publications about military history, releasing nearly 60 titles every year. Founded by Damian Majsak in 1995, Kagero expanded in 1998 to release new publications in English. Illustrator Aliaksandr Sukhanevich is one of many Kagero contributors, whose previous volume in this series was on the Russian Cruiser Askold (16085).

The Japanese Light Cruiser Yubari is one of the latest in their Super Drawings in 3D series. This edition is in their standard 8.25” x 11.75” format softbound publication that is 80 pages (including covers). This volume starts off with four pages of historical text followed by 68 pages of color 3D illustrations. As is sometimes available in other volumes of this series, there is a centerfold that folds out with line drawings. This line drawings features 1/250th Starboard, Top, and Port profiles of the IJN Yubari. There are nineteen 1/125th drawings of the Yubari’s superstructure. There are no black and white period or color photographs. I did count 137 color 3D illustrations, 22 line drawings, and two tables.

Named after the Yubari river in Hokkaido, Japan, the Japanese Light Cruiser was funded in October 1921. Sasebo Naval Arsenal laid down the Yubari on June 5, 1922 and launched on March 5, 1923. Yubari, at 2,890 tons, was an experimental cruiser designed to battle 5,000 ton cruisers. Designed by Lieutenant Commander Kikuo Fujimoto (under the supervision of Captain Yuzuru Hiraga), the IJN Yubari introduced new technology that would be used in future Japanese heavy cruisers. One design feature was integrating the ship’s armor belt into the hull structure (discussed on Page 5), thus reducing weight without compromising rigidity. Setting the tone for general arrangement of future ships, the superstructure enclosed the bridge, communications, and the control center. Power came from eight oil fired boilers that exhausted to a single armored stack. IJN Yubari, being a experimental ship, had several minor adjustments to improve performance, before a major refit in 1944. IJN Yubari finished her career on April 27, 1944 near Palau when she was hit by two (of six) torpedoes from the US submarine, Bluegill (SS-242). The Yubari’s number 1 boiler room was flooded from the explosion, and soon, boiler room number 2 was flooded. IJN Yubari sank the following day, April 28, 1944. The sections include:

  • Design and Construction
  • Design Characteristics
  • Armament
  • Armor Protection [Page 05]
  • Propulsion
  • Refits
  • Wartime Service
  • Summary
  • Key Particulars
  • Construction Timeline [Table 1]
  • Key Characteristics of Ship’s Artillery [Table 2]
  • Askold 3D Color Illustrations [Page 13, 30, 51, 69]
  • Scale Drawings
    • 1/250th : Starboard, Top, Port
    • 1/150th : Forward, Middle, and Aft Superstructures

The 3D illustrations are the bread and butter of this series. Page 13 shows the fourth page detailing a top view of the IJN Yubari from bow to stern with the last illustration showing off the depth charge racks. Page 30 shows two views of the bow superstructure from the starboard side. Notable is the exhaust stack collective that was introduced on the IJN Yubari, just one of many illustrations of the exhaust stack included. The three propellers are displayed from a starboard view on Page 51 and again on Page 69 from the port side. Model-wise, I am not aware of any kits in 1/350th scale. There is a 1963 release of the Yubari in 1/560th scale if you can find it. Otherwise, the game is in 1/700th scale. Tamiya and Pit Road have released kits in 1/700 and there are photoetch sets available from BigBlueBoy, Flyhawk, and Tetra Model Works.

I consider the Kagero Super Drawings in 3D an essential reference for model building. You get angles you can’t really see in other references and they are in full color. This being the eighty-sixth volume, they have managed to cover quite a few ships. You do get a history of the development and service of the Yubari, but it would have been nice to have had more information. Nevertheless, the raison d’etre for the 3D series is the artwork, and that alone is worth the price of admission. If you have any of their previous books in the Super Drawings in 3D series, you know how great a value this book is. Highly Recommended!

My thanks to Casemate, Kagero, and IPMS/USA for the chance to review this great book.

Highly recommended!


Submitted by Dan G. (not verified) on Thu, 2024-02-08 23:12


Do any of the drawing show hull frames/bulkheads? 

Add new comment

All comments are moderated to prevent spam

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.