by: Timothy Powell [ ]
The latest offering from Flyhawk is the super update set for the WWII USS Missouri. Like the HMS Repulse, this kit offers a wealth of extra detail from stem to stern. The box alone weighs almost one pound and contains 30 sheets of photo etch, three boxes of resin replacement parts, 10 resin five inch gun turrets with brass barrels and 9 brass barrels for the 16” guns. A comprehensive 4 page instruction sheet is included.
Flyhawk as shown a propensity to use smaller frets of PE as opposed to large, cumbersome sheets, hence 30 sheets. That’s not to say there is a shortage of detail. Upon inspection of the kit, it’s safe to say every major and most minor detail of the Tamiya kit are replaced with either PE or resin. Along with the typical PE rails, cranes, platforms and funnel detail, you get an extensive set of resin which replaces large and small vents, gas bottles, practice guns, Mk 51 directors, Mk 57 directors, paravanes, boat controller, crane controller, crane base, 5” gun turrets, radar base and various catapult details. All of these parts are supplied in three separate mini boxes within the kit.
A very welcomed addition to the set are the PE bulkheads which have intricate detail already etched on to the walls such as eye brows over the port holes, conduits, screens and ladders. All the main deck side walls are represented. Another nice surprise is seeing the hollowed out port holes and doorways. Coupled with the separate watertight doors, this makes for a more realistic appearance when one chooses to open the doors and hatches. There is one entire fret dedicated to watertight doors and hatches and the detail is quite impressive. Each door has the hinges, latches and turn wheels etched into them.
Resin main turrets are not included in the kit, but upper turret armor and plenty of detail make up for this short coming. The kit also does not include blast bags for the brass barrels. The 10 resin 5” gun turrets will need to have the pour bases removed, a lengthy process.
The rest of the kit contains the standard radar parts, cranes, rails, anchors, screws, canopy frames for the sea planes, ammunition boxes, funnel platforms, life raft floors, yard arms and davits. Also included are replacement catapults and water breaks. Four entire frets replace the 20mm Bofors guns as well as the deck machine guns. Two USS Missouri name plates are also included.
A very impressive detail set for a very popular subject. It is safe to say that one will spend more time on the PE and resin from this kit than the kit itself, which is not necessarily a bad thing. Definitely not for the novice builder due to the sheer magnitude of PE contained in the kit as well as the small resin parts. The extreme detail contained in this kit is sure to transform the Missouri into a real show stopper. Still, the instructions leave some room for improvement and the kit is not cheap. Flyhawk does not give details on placement of deck rails and supports, so research material will be required to determine the correct location of the parts. This kit, however is highly recommended.