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HMS Iron Duke was Admiral Jellicoe's flagship at the Battle of Jutland on 31st May 1916. Her gunnery during the battle was reportedly very accurate, hitting her adversary several times. This model is my only WWI vintage warship (to date) and depicts the ship at the time of the battle. The kit is Airfix 04210 in 1/600, and highly modified by me to depict the ship as at the Battle of Jutland. I did this model five years ago but have not posted it here before. I have decided to do so now as others intending to do this kit might wish to know a couple of the pitfalls and inaccuracies with it. Despite that last comment I think it is a good kit that I enjoyed doing. The modifications I did were very numerous, including rebuilt (scratch) tripod mast, spotting top and top mast, lowered the bridge structure, scratch building new searchlight platforms on the second funnel, replacing twelve 6-inch and two 3-inch guns with scratch built, omitting those guns and boats provided but not carried in May 1916, removal of the chin plate at the forefoot, removal of the external range finders on the turrets. This was the last model I did in 2017, only 101 years late! I thoroughly enjoyed it, and although it is not perfect I think I came close and am quite happy with the result. This was also before I'd joined modeling forums such as Britmodeller (or even heard of them) so I was totally on my own when I did this. As I said I did this kit five years ago so my comments here are from memory. A few issues with the kit:- 1. I think the locating pins between the two hull halves are out by 0.5mm. This is not a major issue and easily rectified but I thought I'd mention it. 2. I don't think the chinplate was fitted to the forefoot in May 1916 so I filed it off. 3. When complete the bridge was too high. This is easily fixed before assembly if you reduce the heights of parts 49, 50, 54 and 55. Unfortunately for me I didn't know this at the beginning but I had a second kit and hence raided it for the replacement parts. (The parts I'd originally used I refurbished for a later model of HMS Benbow if memory serves). 4. There are fourteen secondary 6-inch guns supplied but the ship only carried twelve. Originally the ships of the class had a pair of casemate 6-inch guns below the quarterdeck abreast of 'Y' turret (one either side, kit parts 1 & 4) but they proved to be too wet in a seaway so they were repositioned at the rear of the foc'sle deck (kit parts 133 & 134) but the kit has guns in BOTH locations. The new position of the gun had the same firing arcs as in it's original position (ie aft) but the kit allows it to fire directly fwd. I simply added a working chamber fwd of the casemate. And in actual fact I replaced the kit guns and casemates with some I scratch built from styrene tube and rod anyway. 5. The heavy spotting top above the tripod starfish wasn't added until later so I made my own smaller spotting top. Neither did I use parts 62 and 64 (above the bridge/compass platform). I also scratch built my own tripod mast, and the topmast above it with four yards, not three. According to photos I think I'm correct. 6. The searchlight platforms attached to the second funnel weren't that type in May 1916 so I scratch built my own. 7. The main turrets didn't have those external rangefinders in 1916. I again raided the other kit for some of the turrets but the holes and slots in the kit turrets could be plugged, filled and sanded if required, if you don't have a second kit. 8. All the extra small guns weren't fitted in 1916 AFAIK except two 3-inch AA guns on the aft superstructure. I made my own using two of the unused kit 6-inch guns. 9. I altered or omitted some boats, davits and booms as per photos I was able to find on the net. In particular I omitted the boats on davits abreast the aft superstructure. A well known photo of Adm Jellicoe about to ascend a ladder shows that part of the ship in the background - no boats were there. I also added funnels to the steam pinnaces with styrene rod. 10. Another source of info regarding the area around 'Q' turret is a photo I found of Lord Kitchener with Adm Jellicoe just before he boarded HMS Hampshire. Anyway, enough of me rattling on. Here's my efforts at HMS Iron Duke as at the Battle of Jutland, 31st May 1916. Some of the photos are a little blurred in places. I was still getting used to the camera, with lighting and depth-of-field issues. Thank you for your interest. Stay safe, and regards, Jeff.
Gidday All, I've decided to commence another ship build. Although I have HMS Glamorgan on the go here for the Falklands Anniversary GB this model is for a GB on the ATF. Their GBs usually run for two months and as it's already started I can't wait any longer. As the title suggests, this class of ship, known as the Minotaur class had it's design started in 1947 I think but all ships of the class were cancelled before construction began. They would have been large light cruisers armed with ten automatic 6-inch DP guns in five twin turrets, disposed three forward and two aft, IJN Mogami style. In addition sixteen automatic 3-inch guns would be shipped in eight twin turrets, all on the beam. A heavy torpedo armament of sixteen tubes was to be carried in four quad mountings. AFAIK no smaller weapons, depth charges or aircraft were to be carried. A requirement of the design was improved crew habitability. The previous Colony and Dido classes were cramped and overcrowded. To achieve this, and to carry the weight of the heavy armament a large ship was required. She had a stated length of 645 feet PP, which would have resulted in a length oa of about 660-670 feet I think. The beam was 68 feet. To build the model I'll be using a stretched Airfix HMS Suffolk hull, plus the guns and much of the superstructure from two Tiger kits I have. This won't give me enough guns so I plan on building the ship as she might have appeared after a midlife refit, with some of the guns replaced with missiles. The ship will probably look like a larger version of HMS Tiger hence the box art is appropriate I think. The parts above include the hull, deck and midships shelterdeck of HMS Suffolk and the superstructure and guns (both sets) of HMS Tiger. The instructions are somewhat superfluous I think. This'll do for now. I've started lengthening the hull, and will make another post when it's done. So stay safe, and regards to all, Jeff.