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Revell 400 something Arizona WIP

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About 3 years ago, life stole my model area and I have recently aquired a new one. I started an old Revell USS Arizona because I wanted something simple to break back into modeling as the other project has gotten boged down (Revell 1/32 F-4E).


Anyway I was cruising along on this project when I discovered that building the USS Arizona is not so simple in any scale.....

First, there's that whole paint issue.

Then I discovered that the 5"/51 cal gun mounts on the gun deck are actually open bay mountings and that Revell's little turret things were probably due to misinterpreting the steel weather shields as a an armored turret.

Hmmmmm so even though this was supposed to be an OOB build, I could not live with those little turret thingies so I acquired a second kit to rob the boat deck large AA guns to use in the casements. Fortunately I discovered that there were only 8 of these guns before I opened up the casements by removing the molded in turret pegs. I will be using two of the little turrets but will doctor them up to replicate the canvas shields.

Here is where I'm at now. Note the decks have not been glued to the hull and the superstructure and stack are not glued to the boat deck yet.


Working the casement issue. And Oh yeah have to modify the stack to remove search lights and add .50 cal machine guns.


Removed the turret pegs and filled in holes. Will be using 1.5mm strip to create the bottom casement opening & 4mm strip to build interior walls behind the guns


Now the questions:

1) I have not been able to locate any Tamiya Hull Red for the hull bottom. Any suggestions as to what else could be used? I am open to just about anything that comes out of a can...

2) Any ideas on what the gun deck was wood, steel? If it is wood would there have been a steel plate to mount the guns on?

TIA for any and all suggestions.


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A little more progress

Got the anti fouling paint on the hull bottom. Next will be the upper parts and then the boot line.


Added the bottom Shields to four of the 5"/51 gun casements on each side:


Added walls behind the gun casements. Not sure why I did this.....


Any comments are welcome.

Edited by BrockyTaz
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Thanks guys,

Nice looking build so far. I can't wait to see more. I would love to see what you use to build before you lost your work space if you consider the Arizona a simple build. :woot.gif:

Nothing all that elaborate. I have built mostly 1/32 scale fighters, Tamiya F-4J, Revell P-51B, P-40E, P-47D, F4F-4, F4U-1D, Typhoon Mk I, Hasegawa F6F-5, Spitfire Vb. All are OOB builds except the Tamiya F-4J which was my first use of PE.

I was going to to the kit OOB, but when I began to look at other builds I went out and got the TMW PE set for the cranes, catapults and yard arms. I just couldn't see using the kits parts for these.

Good work so far - I have the MHM 1/350 kit in my stash - and I really have to clear some of my half-built kits so I can start in on it...

Yeah I have a Hobby Boss 1/350 kit in the stash as well. That's kind of what prompted me to pick up the Revell one to use a primer test case.

We are going to Washington DC this weekend to watch my daughter graduate from her Army MOS class at Ft. Meade Maryland next week so it might be a while before I can continue. :D

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi again.

Hmmm :huh: Go away for a couple of weeks and everything changes.

But it looks like good changes.

Anyway life got hectic again. My dad had a full revision of his right hip replacement so I have been spending a lot of time at the nursing/therapy facility. I haven't had much time to work on the AZ but I did get started on the linoleum floors of the secondary 5"/51 caliber gun casements.


And I got the "half floors" into the main turrets. This model will be on a shelf at eye level so I had to do something about the holes Revell left so the turrets can be rotated


So this is where she stands now. I hope to be able to work on the hull some more and start the 5"/51 guns this weekend.



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Whoo Hoo!!!

I was able to get some dark gray on the hull today. I am waiting on it to dry for a couple of days to add the boot line. I hope to start the 5"/51 guns in the next few days. Once they are done I'll be able to glue all the decks together and get the superstructure on. Then it's off to the PE set for the cranes, masts, battle tops and catapults.....


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Ok. I got the boot line on.

Here is where she stands now. The decks have not been glued together I am still working on the 5"/51 secondary guns. I just sort or stacked it all together as an inspiration to keep moving, if and when life allows. And thanks Grey Ghost 531 for the boot line info and tips.



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  • 1 month later...

Finlay got somewhere with the 5"/51 caliber casement guns. I have been pondering on this for some time but I think I have it worked out.

Gun bases and breaches waiting for barrels:


Guns with barrels:


Guns waiting for final paint. Note the hazards of using brass barrels.


Due to the fact that the base parts I used (NIKO 1/400 15 cm Tbts KC/36s) only came in packs of 4 I decided to make 8 guns for the open casements and sort of fake two of the casements using canvas covers by replacing the barrels on the kit 5"/51 cal "turrets" and painting a white strip on them. See the first casement emplacement in the picture below.


Now I need to get some more time in to install the 5"/51s and glue the decks and superstructure together so I can start on the masts, fighting tops, cranes and catapults. Also need to work out what to do about the 5"/25 Cal dual purpose guns on the upper deck. Not sure yet how I am going to go after those.....

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Well the decks have been glued down and I've finally modified the stack and 1" gun tubs to her late 1941 fit.



At this point I got out the Tom's Model Works PE set and managed to figure out most of it except these little triangular bracing pieces see parts circled in red in the attached picture. These are not mentioned in the instructions that came with the fret. Then again neither were the little sailors or .50 cal machine guns. I think they are for the undersides of the platforms on the fore and main masts but I was wondering if there is a second sheet to the instructions that shows which go where or is it more or less artistic license using whatever reference sources I can find?



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This is coming along really nicely! :thumbsup: I built this kit as a kid, and I seem to remember that it didn't have the greatest fit ever... :bandhead2:

Could those PE parts be support braces for portions of the superstructure?

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  • 1 month later...

Nice to see a tribute to the Zona. So far, so good!

1) You are correct to paint the gun deck wood, even though Revell didn't mold it with planking.

2) The PE parts in question are braces for the various decks/levels of the mainmast (rear mast). You can *kind of* see them here: http://www.elvisinhawaii.com/uss-arizona/ship/after-attack3.jpg

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  • 1 year later...

OK. Well it's been a long time. Hard to believe it's now July of 2013 and the the last time I worked on this was December of 2011. Man where did the time go? Got busy with a wayward daughter and grand child, work and oh yes a couple of other side projects on the the house, jeep and AR.... Any way I now have time to work on the Zona and I have gotten the 5/25s sorted out. As popular as this kit is, you'd think some one would have come up with some resin replacements in this scale... Got to wonder about that and how come no one has come up with some 5 inch mounts for Revel's Pine Island? Anyway here is what I have managed to get done in the past few days. I hope to get the upper works done this month as well.








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  • 1 month later...

Thanks to the sequester and the resulting furlough (I had every Monday off for 6 weeks) I got some more work done. I have been working on the ships boats and the masts and fighting tops. The masts are almost done. I will complete them by adding the 50 cal machine guns and yard arms once I have the boats done and installed. The masts are not permanently glued in yet. I did not want to run the risk of bending/breaking the yard arms while I'm trying to add the boats.




That's all for now. Hope to get the boats done this weekend.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 3 months later...

SNOW DAY!!! The Glacial pace continues:

It's been a long dry spell but the NAS Pensacola was closed this past Wednesday and Thursday due to the ice storm here NW Florida so I got to work on the Arizona a little. I was able to get the catapult on turret no 3 finished. It is from the Tom's Model Works Arizona set. Here are couple of shots to show the overall status



Here is a closer shot of the catapult.


Hopefully I will get some more time between work and house projects to get the stern cat, & the cranes done soon...

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  • 5 months later...

Well it's been another long dry spell. Hard to believe 5 months have gone by and all I have managed to get done is two boat cranes. Well ok still have to finish the painting but at least the hard parts over. Used Tom's Model works PE for the booms and the top part of the kit's cranes.

Major sub-assemblies:


Finished cranes prior to painting. I was pleasantly surprised by the robustness of the cranes once they were bent and glued to the masts.BB39AZ_Boat_Cranes_4.jpg

Here we have the first coats of paint on them.



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  • 2 years later...

Well I actually finished this back in 2016.  I apologize for not posting the finished project sooner..

At any rate (glacial in my case) here are the finished boat cranes installed on the boat.




Here we have the completed catapult on turret #3



And the stern catapult





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Some close ups:


Superstructure and foremast




Boat deck


Stern with Kingfishers and AC crane



All in all a fun build. 


Comments and questions welcomed.


Thanks for having a look and have a great day.


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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

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