by: Jim Adams [ ]
When you hear this you this phrase you might think about Michael Jordon hitting a jumper from the corner against Georgetown in the NCAA Finals. Or you might think about the 400 foot shot by Wild Bill Hickok with one of his Navy Colts through his opponents heart.
Still other will think about the HMS Warspite. During World War II she was able to hit an Italian warship at approximately 26,000 yards, or 14.8 miles. Call it luck, call it skill, or call it determination, but it was a hit and it was just another small part to add to the ships legend.
By the time World War II started the "The Grand Old Lady" was already 24 years old, she was a war veteran, a survivor of the Battle of Jutland, and rebuilt to serve her country. Damaged at Jutland she suffered from steering problems for the remainder of her career.
During World War II she saw service in nearly every theater of the war. She was present at Narvik in 1940. Her aircraft sank a U-boat and she help in the destruction of three German destroyers. During the summer of 1940 she fired the "Shot" against the Italian warship Giulio Cesare during the Battle of Calabria. She then took part in shelling Tripoli and was damaged by German bombs at Crete.
She was under going repairs in Washington state when Pearl Harbor was bombed. She then headed to the Indian Ocean, 41-43. In late 43 she headed back to the Mediterranean. During operations here she was struck three times by German Ftirz guided bombs.
After making it back to England for repairs she took part on the Normandy landings by shelling Gold Beach. Finally in February 1945 she was placed in reserve.
The Grand Old Lady fell to the scrappers torch after failing to be saved as a museum ship.
First World War
Second World War
Narvik 1940,Norway 1940;
Calabria 1940, Mediterranean 1940-41-43,;
Malta Convoys 1941, Matapan 1941, Crete 1941:
Sicily 1943, Salerno 1943:
English Channel 1944, Normandy 1944, Walcheren 1944, Biscay 1944.
31 October 1912
26 November 1913
8 March 1915
Fate: Scrapped 1950
As built: 33,410 tons deep
639 ft 5 in (194.89 m) (overall)600 ft 0 in (182.88 m) (waterline)
Beam: 90 ft 6 in (27.58 m)
Draft: 30 ft 6 in (9.30 m) –30 ft 11.5 in (9.436 m)
24 × boilers at 285 psi maximum pressure
4 × direct drive turbines
4 × shafts
75,000 shp at 300 rpm
2 × oil driven 450 kW dynamos2 × turbine driven 200 Kw dynamos
1 × reciprocating engine driven 200 kW dynamo added shortly after commissioning as built
24 knots (design)
8,600 nmi (16,000 km) at 12.5 knots (23 km/h)
3,900 nmi (7,200 km) at 21 knots (39 km/h)
3,300 tons of oil and 100 tons of coal
Complement: 925 to 1,220 Officer and men
8 × Mk I 15-inch/42 guns (4 x 2)
16 (Queen Elizabeth) or 14 (other ships) × single Mk XII 6-inch guns
2 × single 3-inch anti-aircraft guns
4 × single 3-pdr (47 mm) saluting guns
4 × 21-inch (530 mm) submerged torpedo tubes
Late 1916 change :
2 × 6-inch guns on forecastle deck removed
8 × 15 in (381 mm) guns (4 × 2)
8 × 6 in (152 mm) guns
8 × 4 inch Mk XVI anti-aircraft guns (4×2)
32 × 2 pounder anti-aircraft guns (4×8)
4 × quadruple 0.5 cal machine guns
belt: 14 in max.
turrets: 13 in max.
conning tower: 12 in max.
1 catapult and 1 spotter aircraft after 1920s
The kit comes on a large lidded box with a picture of the Warspite on the front. Inside you will find 6 sealed bags with sprues, a painting guide, and instruction booklet.
The hull halves are split right down the middle. It is molded as a full hull, but has a nice heavy crease on the inside if you wish to make her as a waterline version. Underwater details are molded onto the halves. The torpedo bulges and bilge keel are present. The kit does a good job of reflecting the bulges as being added on. The torpedo bulge access hatches are even molded into the forward section. The sides have rows of portholes with molded on rain guards. There are also the chin guard which has to do with paravane operations. All in all the shape of the hull is very good.
The door located at the stern of the ship are rather plain. There is also a minor seam on the lower edge of the torpedo bulges. Something else that is nice to see is the hawse pipes are open.
Here you find the three deck sections, interior hull supports, shafts, Admirals walk, break water, and name plate. The deck is broken into three different sections. The deck has its wooden planking molded into the top side. When assembling there will be one seam about midway aft where the bridge sits.
The foc'sle actually has a built in slant instead of a rounded camber. The wood planking looks a little too regular for me. Not sure how it was on the real ship, but the kits is just too uniform. But, there is already a wooden replacement deck available.
The breakwater is molded separately. It is a little thin, so be careful when removing it.
Now we get to some of the ships superstructure. The exterior details include molded on watertight doors. The superstructure sections are built of multiple parts and will require clean up around the seams. This is where lacking slide mold technology hurts some of the smaller companies. So, just take your time and this will lessen the time needed on clean up. One other item I noticed, the hangars have interior details, yet the doors can only be built in the closed position. It is possible to review some photos of the real ship so you can craft something to replicate the doors.
One very unique item is the plastic anchor chains. They are actually very nice and should look great when painted and added to the deck. The funnel cap is decent for being plastic, but is still over scale.
More portions of the ships superstructure. This sprue helps you build up the massive forward structure of the bridge. Again you will have to be careful when assembling the different sections. The exteriors again have molded on watertight doors and portholes with rain guards.
Sprue E x2
Weapons! The ships main weapons are present here. The barrels and blast bags are molded separately. This will make adding the eventual brass barrels easier. The barrels are hollow, but their shape looks to be off compared to the real ship. The kit barrels seem to flair more at the end than does the real ships.
Gun tubs do look to have rather thick walls, but then again sometimes thin walls are difficult in plastic. Some of the other smaller items are rather finely done. Some will need care when removing them from the sprue. The crane is here as well, but trust me, use the PE replacement.
The 6 in MK.XII guns have the blast bags molded on with hole for the barrels. There were small shrink marks on my sample, so check yours.
Sprue F x 2
Now we have all those really small parts for the ship. Lets look at the walrus first. The plane is molded in 16 separate parts. That sounds impressive, but overall it still looks a little flat. There are three different sizes of boats and two sizes of life rafts. The life rafts look rather nicely done.
Then we get to the Pom-pom guns and other small caliber weapons. These too look nicely done. The small splinter shields do look a little over scale, but that happens when you mold some parts in plastic. The ammo lockers provided are little better than rectangular boxes.
There is one small sheet of decals for your kit. Roundels for the aircraft along with the Union Jack and White Ensign. There are different styles of the flags, straight and wavy. They all look to be very nicely done.
One small fret of PE is also included. The only part to be included in both plastic and PE is the cranes. These will for sure benefit from the switch from plastic to the replacement brass. The parts look nicely done and finely etched.
The display stand is very basic. It does have a nice routed edge. Something odd it there is a hole in the middle of the base. But, when you are ready to add a finish you should be able to really make it look good.
The instructions and painting instructions are two separate parts. Painting instructions are on a single sheet printed in black and white. I have never been a fan of black and white painting guides and I am still not. A color guide is so much better and easier to read.
The instructions are printed on a single large folded sheet of paper. They follow the construction from beginning to end in a logical stepped procedure. They are easy to follow and should not cause any confusion. I like the clean appearance and easy to follow steps. As I have mentioned in the past a great kit can fall flat if the instructions are sub par. These are above average.
Over the years how many times have we seen this ships name on the list of wanted subjects in 1/350? Well, that wait is almost over and I have a feeling this will be a big hit. While the kit is not perfect it is a great starting point for anyone wishing to model the Grand Old Lady. She can only be built as she appeared in World War II, so that is a drawback to some.
Warspite will benefit greatly from a dedicated set of PE, brass barrels, and a wooden deck. As a matter of fact a wooden deck is already being made and PE makers have moved her to the tops of their lists.
While this is not a super detailed over engineered kit, it will be in many stashes shortly after it hits the shelves.
The kits are due to hit store shelves any time now. This review sample it from production and is what you will see when you open yours.