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HMS Westminster 1/350 Trumpeter with White Ensign photo etch


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I have finally start on a 1/350 HMS Westminster, that I first threatened to do back in 2009. Don't believe me here is the comment 

Since then I've got married, had a little one, and become old enough to build "toys", as my wife puts it, again. This will be my first historical vehicle build since I was a kid, I've done a couple of Games Workshop figures since getting back into miniatures, but nothing anywhere near this fiddly. My dad has obviously retired from the Navy since I posted that comment, but I'm hoping to have this wrapped up by December for his Christmas present.

 

I'm trying to get the build as close to the 1996, which is when my dad served, fit as possible. The out of the box kit seems to be some time after she got a merlin and least a few upgrades, and before the Kryten turrent upgrade. There are very very few reference pictures from this time, and the couple that I have found don't have very much detail that I can make out. The only differences I am aware I need to make are swapping out the Merlin for a Lynx, and removing what ever contraption is below the bridge just in front of where the ship's crest is. If any one has any comments or criticisms to help make her as accurate as possible I would truly appreciate them.

Here is the first of hopefully many progress pics.

 

IMG_1791.jpg

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2 hours ago, phildagreek said:

the small bits were sending my eyes funny

It is so detailed, I dunno if this is normal for a kit these days or this is just a particularly detailed one?

 

My magnifying lamp has come in handy a number of times.

The lynx kits is even worse, I'm glad it came with 6 in the box cause I've lost several pieces of under carriage so far.

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A very good friend of mine was CO of WESTMINSTER in 96/97.  I'll ping him an email to see if he has any photos of her from that time which might help.

 

Good luck with it

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23 hours ago, Matthew Spence said:

Here is the first of hopefully many progress pics.

 

IMG_1791.jpg

The detail on that Bridge looks very good indeed.

 

Terry

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Hi Matthew, you are off to a good start. That open door is nicely done and your PE bending is crisp without anything bent/stretched/mangled.

 

Since you have asked, I will ask - from the position of not know the subject very well - if the railings are correct on that little platform forward/starboard below the bridge? From a position of ignorance on the detail I would have expected them to follow the deck edges - but a) that may not be the case and Peter Hall's research into the PE design is excellent and b) it may be a Trumpeterism giving a square platform that wasn't :D

 

I can tell you - in the interests of accuracy - that later down the line the official paint code for the vertical surfaces is BS381C-676 Light Weatherwork Grey and usually decks of RN ships are supposed to be BS381C-638 Dark Sea Grey but observation of any RN deck shows an inconsistent, patchy appearance.

 

I will look forward to your next update :)

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Nice start to your Westminster. I think it might be worth your while visiting my build log for HMS Somerset. It will give you some guidance to how Type 23s looked in that timeframe. Also it will help you with the number of inaccuracies in the kit.

https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234979406-hms-somerset-f82/

 

 

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10 hours ago, Paul E said:

Nice start to your Westminster. I think it might be worth your while visiting my build log for HMS Somerset. It will give you some guidance to how Type 23s looked in that timeframe. Also it will help you with the number of inaccuracies in the kit.

Thanks Paul this is super helpful, I will pour over this in detail later.

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On 9/7/2018 at 7:31 PM, Chewbacca said:

A very good friend of mine was CO of WESTMINSTER in 96/97.  I'll ping him an email to see if he has any photos of her from that time which might help.

This would be very much much appreciated thank you. 

CO as in Commanding Officer? If so I would think that he knew my Dad personally since he was the XO.

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On 9/8/2018 at 3:44 PM, Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies said:

Since you have asked, I will ask - from the position of not know the subject very well - if the railings are correct on that little platform forward/starboard below the bridge? From a position of ignorance on the detail I would have expected them to follow the deck edges - but a) that may not be the case and Peter Hall's research into the PE design is excellent and b) it may be a Trumpeterism giving a square platform that wasn't :D

No this is (semi) accurate, the railings wrap around in-front of the radar at that, there should be railings across the front between the two pieces from what I can tell but for some reason this is excluded from the PE kit, I will attempt to build this out of left over photo etch.

 

On 9/8/2018 at 3:44 PM, Jamie @ Sovereign Hobbies said:

I can tell you - in the interests of accuracy - that later down the line the official paint code for the vertical surfaces is BS381C-676 Light Weatherwork Grey and usually decks of RN ships are supposed to be BS381C-638 Dark Sea Grey but observation of any RN deck shows an inconsistent, patchy appearance.


I've gone with Vallejo Wolf Grey for the vertical surfaces and Dark Sea Grey for the decks, as close enough matches that were easy to find in acrylic. Weathering, especially the decks should split the difference.
 

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Little progress update. Since looking over @Paul E's build post Ive been inspired by the level of detail and consequently a bit overwhelmed by it so have been focusing on the main structures. Which gives the added benefit of being able to see a rough shape come together.

 

IMG_1832.jpg

 

Some anchor chain detail.

 

IMG_1833.jpg

 

Any one know what these are (J29)? And whether the are appropriate for an HMS Westminster 1996 fit? The instructions marked them as optional.

 

IMG_1830.jpg

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Thanks for the mention. To answer your question about part 29. Yes they are relevant to your model timeframe. They are the ammunition davits to bring up 30mm boxes to the ready use magazines near the guns port and starboard. It is optional if you have them rigged or not. However the base is a permanent fixture and so you either need to fit them whole or cut the arm off and fit the base. I hope this helps. 

 

Not wishing to upset you, but the decoy launchers between the mast and forward tracker were not in service in 1996 neither was the DLF2 launcher on the sponson under the bridge. Which is why I referenced my build. The two boxes between the Forward tracker and the Forward radar fence are also later additions. I also have a nagging feeling that the tall Sea Gnat decoy locker on the bridge wings were fitted later (I spent some time on Montrose in 1995 and she still had the short Sea Gnat lockers). Finally the little platform close to the high RAS high point is a later addition. The first ship to get those was Somerset. 

 

Please don't be put off by all that. Your model is very good and I only know these things because I serving on these ships in the late 90s.

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12 hours ago, Paul E said:

Not wishing to upset you, but the decoy launchers between the mast and forward tracker were not in service in 1996 neither was the DLF2 launcher on the sponson under the bridge. Which is why I referenced my build. The two boxes between the Forward tracker and the Forward radar fence are also later additions. I also have a nagging feeling that the tall Sea Gnat decoy locker on the bridge wings were fitted later (I spent some time on Montrose in 1995 and she still had the short Sea Gnat lockers). Finally the little platform close to the high RAS high point is a later addition. The first ship to get those was Somerset. 

Not upset at all, this is exactly the kind of feedback I was hoping for. However being a land lubber I'm not entirely sure what all of those things are, these are the bits I have some idea of, if you wouldn't mind confirming:

 

IMG_17912.jpg

 

Is this a DFL1 Launcher?

 

17210993075_a7b66e0f49_o.jpg&key=a835b74

 

I have no idea where the RAS high point is so not sure which platform you are referring to? Is the the one just behind the life raft platform?

 

 

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Yes you have correctly identified most of the items although the smaller Sea Gnat locker needs to come forward a little bit. The RAS high point is on the aft part of your superstructure below the flag lockers. There is a small platform fitted port and starboard between the high point and the life rafts this is a later addition and should be removed. 

 

I know that you are advancing on nicely with the kit but it might be worth giving you a heads up on the boat davits too. You need to fit the same style as my model of Somerset. Also the sponsons on the hangar superstructure need to be configured the same as my model of Somerset. Land lubber or not you are producing a fine model and I look forward to seeing it completed. :thumbsup:

 

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Lots of hacking up what was already done based on feedback to get her closer to the time period I'm aiming for. Will post some more pics of the bridge structure soon with the improvements. In the mean time here is the finished lynx in a folded configuration.

IMG_1875.jpg

Easily the fiddliest building I've ever done. It took 3 lynx sprues to finish this one as many small parts were lost during construction. Luckily the pack came with 6 in it. I'll probably knock up a unfolded version too, but I'm not sure which one I'll use.

I do have this idea of stowing this one in the hanger (with the hanger door open) and having an unfolded one on the flight deck with HMS Lancaster's markings "just visiting". Lancaster was my Dad's ship before Westminster, he was part of the first crew and in fact escorted the Queen around the ship and for parade during her commissioning. I was 6 and this is also the story of the time I met the Queen. I don't know if that is a good idea, what do people think?

 

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Matt,

 

If you do that, don't forget that the hangar door is only 1/3 open during flying operations so there won't be much to see inside the hangar.  There's a really good photo here (scroll down about halfway): https://www.savetheroyalnavy.org/hms-queen-elizabeth-sails-for-the-united-states-heres-the-plan/

 

I had an email last night from my colleague who was WESTMINSTER's CO (shortly after this period I found out) and apparently he's taking the photos to work today to scan.  He didn't think there were many significant differences between her upperdeck configuration between 1996 and when he took command in 1998; the main difference was they had fitted her command system!

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That is a nice little detail to know thanks, interesting to know what the reasoning for this is if you know? Or what purpose the vertical bar that seems to slide out into the centre of the opening is for?

Wow thank you, that is so good of him, I had forgotten that digital cameras weren't a thing back then and he would have to scan them. What is the command system?

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The vertical bar was to strengthen the hangar door when it was shut - Type 22s had it too.  The hangar door is big (double Lynx or single Merlin size, depending on which ship you’re talking about), and in the early days of Broadsword they found that it was prone to flexing in bad weather, sometimes to the point of collapsing altogether.  The centre vertical bar (which was moved to one side during flying ops) braced the door.  A simple but practical fix

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The Command System is the computer which fuses sensor information, ie radar, sonar and electronic warfare in to a tactical picture which enables the commanding officer and his principal warfare officers to fight the ship. It was also the system that I was the maintainer for when I served on Somerset.

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I just noticed the post about the strengthening bar on the hangar door. That is a later fit than your model and was fitted due to the down draft of the Merlin shoving in the door. Also you should know although Lynx Mk8 were just coming into service in 1996 they were not assigned to ships flights until later. There is a website called hello database or something similar which provides details of which cabs were assigned to which ship.

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Some work in progress shots of the funnel structure.

 

IMG_1886.jpg

 

IMG_1887.jpg

 

I had to scratch build the "doodas" (I'm guessing they are some kind of ranging device?) on the ends of these "wings"? as the originals had been knocked off the sprue. Pretty happy with the result along with detail I added to the "whatchamaflip" panels in the middle.

IMG_1888.jpg

 

Had to scratch build one of these out boards, as it flew off the tweezers to god knows where. Carved it out of sprue as I didn't have any plasticard at the time, but now I do I might give it another go.

Edited by Matthew Spence
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OK here is a history/fit question for you guys that has me stumped since although I've found reference pics from around that time I can't date any of them precisely. (Except the one of the crew, which I know is just after her commissioning, but that doesn't help me too much).

Here are some photos of Westminster with out the "Balconies" for the DFL1 Launchers: 

IMG_1882.jpgIMG_1881.jpgIMG_1879.jpg

Would these have been added by 1996 or were they done in the 1998 refit?

Edited by Matthew Spence
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10 hours ago, Paul E said:

Also you should know although Lynx Mk8 were just coming into service in 1996 they were not assigned to ships flights until later

I was going to ask about this. The Mk8? As in the HMA8? Is a HAS3 with the upgraded nose? So I just need to take off the sensors from the nose and sculpt an "original" Lynx pointy nose? Judging from the helis DB they also had a slightly smaller tail rotor and maybe didn't have BERP rotors? But I can find lots of HAS3 pics with and without the BERP rotors.

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