by: Frederick Boucher [ ]
Ahoy!Long before I was born, Revell was making injection-molded models. In 1953 they issued this kit, 42' Chris Craft Cabin Cruiser. They made at least two versions, Sportfishing Boat, item H387 - the subject of this review - and Flying Bridge Cruiser (item H302). These were part of their Coastal Series models.
This model was re-released for Revell's 50th anniversary. That special boxart is the header image, courtesy of Old Model Kits.com.
I don't recall the date nor order of acquisition but this model was probably one of the first five (5) models I ever built. I still have a couple of pieces in my parts bins.
Revell ceased releasing it sometime after 1968 and I have always wanted another. Recently, I acquired another one, which I intend to build sometime "soon." But first, I'll show you this old model!
The ModelRevell molded these models in two colors, white and brown. The white plastic is white but the brown is that curious swirly patterned plastic of the olden days. Sportfishing Boat is molded in white.
This model is advertised as a misfit 1/56 scale. That is what is known as "box scale," when manufacturers bought many standard boxes and engineered their models to fit into the box with no though to a uniform scale. The kit has a little over 50 parts, including two metal rods and a sheet of clear plastic. Rigging is left for the modeler to supply the thread for.
The parts are not as rough as I expected them to be and yet suffer from the state of the art of the day: flash, visible ejector marks, some sink holes, and seam lines. Many details are molded on, such as the life preservers.
Assembly consists of left and right hull halves, crew decking and weather decking, the top of the cabin, and the screws and shafts and rudder. A bow extension fishing platform, seats, and various masts and outriggers are included. What few stanchions there are for the deck are individually molded.
No interior is provided. Clear sheet is provided for windows, and blinds are printed on the instruction sheet for to be glued on the inside of the clear "windows."
Common for maritime vessels, a stand is provided.
DetailSurface detail consists of raised and recessed designs. Life preservers are molded onto the sides of the cabin. There are several separate items like chairs and benches, masts, spotlight, and a ensign mast, that are not molded onto a main part. Both shafts and screws are separate assemblies.
The fisherman and the captain are poorly molded.
Placing the hull onto blueprints, it appears that the overall shape of the vessel is accurate.
Instructions and DecalsA single page instruction sheet is printed with line art. It is clearly designed. Each piece is numbered and keyed with a part description. Painting guidance is simple and basic.
Simple decals are provided. The void of the interior can be masked with the paper blinds printed on the instruction sheet.
ConclusionBy no means is this model up to today's standards. It suffers from the state of the art of the early 1950s: flash, visible ejector marks, some sink holes, and seam lines. Many details are molded on. Still, Revell put effort into the model and with minor effort it may build into a good looking model.
I look forward to reviving this old friend of mine.
Please remember to mention to vendors and retailers that you saw this model here - on Model Shipwrights.