Chinese Navy Type 052D Missile Destroyer Changsha

Published on
February 3, 2020
Review Author(s)
Product / Stock #
Company: Bronco Models - Website: Visit Site
Provided by: Dragon Models USA - Website: Visit Site
Box art

The Type 052D is a Chinese designed and built missile destroyer. It features an active electronically scanned array radar system and it is refer by the Chinese media as the “Chinese Aegis”. There are two ships in the class completed and several more under construction. This kit represents the second ship of the class, “Changsha”.

Upon opening the box you find 13 sprues, 2 photo-etch frets (one of them for the nameplate), one clear sprue for the helicopter and a small decal sheet. The superstructure is packed on its individual box –inside the main box-. Despite the precautions my sample got slightly warped during transit (see photo).

This is a nice sized kit, with the hull being almost 18.5 inches long. There is no option for waterline hull, however there is an flat internal piece –that provides strength to the hull assembly- and some modeler might feel courageous enough to convert the full hull into a waterline model.

The instruction booklet includes multicolor line drawing instructions (CAD-style) in 16 steps. The first 3 steps relates to the boats/rafts, helicopters and bow details, including the main deck gun.

The next 3 steps (4 to 6) relates to subassemblies that sits on top of the superstructure, like the bridge and funnel. Step 7 is when you put the hull together. An internal piece is provided to provide strength to the large empty hull. In the next step you put together the hull, forward deck, flight deck and superstructure.

Step 9 is where you have your first (over)dose of photo-etch, with a very complex antenna that sits on its own platform in the superstructure. You do have the option to use plastic parts. Nice touch Bronco!

Starting in the next steps (the next 6 actually) is where you have your second (over)dose of photo-etch: the railings. Something really nicely done is to have each railing to be numbered and designed to match the length of railing needed, so no guess work there. However there are no spares, be careful when you are working with it.

Along the way, besides adding all the railings you also have to add the inflatable rafts, secondary antennas, and vertical launchers (you get the option to display some of them open)

Finally in step 15 you fit the bridge, funnels and main antenna array to the superstructure and step 16 you assemble the base (including the photo-etch nameplate)

Full color painting instructions are provided indicating FS color codes for some colors, but not for all colors. I was surprised by that, but maybe some colors used by the Chinese Navy does not have an FS equivalent?

If you are into modern ships, this kit is in your list. The overall surface detail, combined with the photo-etch fret would makes this kit a small jewel in your collection.

Given the large number of small parts and lots and lots of photo etch pieces, this kit is recommended to experienced modelers.

I would like to thank Bronco Models, Dragon Models USA and IPMS/USA for the review kit.


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