Table Top Navy - Zuikaku and Yamato
Round Two revival of the Lindberg Line of table top ships offers an opportunity along a couple of different fronts. The first of these, and this is mentioned on the box, is the in-expensive way for table-top gamers to get their hands on a couple of ships that they might not be able to get their hands on. The kits are easy to build with minimal parts and while many-a-modeler will probably turn their nose up at such a prospect (as many do with Lindberg) these are perfect for handling and moving around a large map without too much worry of breakage.
Another, more accessible avenue for these kits is for many of our more seasoned modelers to introduce modeling to our youth - whether they be our own family or youth at an organized event - in a cheap and quick manner. I also think it goes without saying that many of our seasoned modelers in IPMS had once tackled a Lindberg kit in their own youth...this modeler certainly did. In a way, these kits bring back some long-lost and very positive memories.
- Parts: Molded gray styrene: 42
- Molded in green styrene: 35
- Decal sheet: 1
- Other: Cardboard simulated sea surface
The kits are very simple with minimal parts. The Yamato, molded in gray, contains 42 parts and the Zuikaku, molded in light green) contains 35 parts. Flash is aplenty on most of the parts but makes a great training ground for beginning modelers who wish to practice the tedious yet required art of part cleaning. The instructions are minimal with each ship taking up a single side of a two-sided instruction sheet. The parts on the sprues do not contain numbers but the instruction sheet does. One must cross reference the shape of the part with that of the instruction sheet to make sure they are cutting and placing the right part. This really isn't an issue except for the carrier as there are two types of gun turrets: ensure you are placing the right turrets on the right spot on the ship.
Construction was quick...just a couple of hours for each ship. After a coat of primer on both I chose the colors for each: Tamiya XF-77, IJN Gray (Saesbo Arsenal) along with XF-55, Deck Tan for the Yamato while the Zuikaku received and overall coat of XF-76, IJN Gray Green. I called out specific details on the carrier such as the island, smoke stacks, and gun barrels with the Saesbo Arsenal Gray. According to the instructions the entire ship was painted in this color...I am assuming for low-visibility purposes. The Yamato does not come with any decals but the carrier does. In fact, it comes with a good number or larger, easy-to-place decals that provide good practice for a new modeler's decaling techniques. The decals are easy to place and with a healthy lathering of setting solution they settle down nicely into surface details and relief.
Both ships can be built as either full-hull or waterline models. The waterline versions offer the opportunity to employ in table-top gaming or for use in an at-sea diorama. The full-hull versions (with the addition of a lower-hull to the waterline model) come with stands that allow the ships to be displayed and give the builder/observer a sense of the size of the hulls on these capital ships. Details such as the rudder and screws are present on the lower hulls of each ship. I painted these parts with Tamiya Hull Red (XF-9).
All in all, I actually enjoyed my foray into the world of ship-building. The fact that the kits were a quick build is a positive and helped contribute to my enjoyment of this weekend project. As long as you are not looking for something too complicated or detailed these are the kits for you...especially if you are new to the hobby or if someone under your guidance is. A big thanks to Round 2 Models and IPMS USA for the chance to review this great little kit.