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TopDrawings 62 Japanese Destroyer Shimakaze

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TopDrawings 62

Japanese Destroyer Shimakaze (9788366148024)

Kagero Publishing via Casemate UK



Shimakaze was a one-off super-destroyer built for the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. She was armed with six 5 inch dual-purpose guns and conventional anti-aircraft and anti-submarine weaponry. More importantly, she was the only Japanese destroyer to be armed with 15 torpedo tubes, each capable of firing the deadly 24 in Type 93 "Long Lance" torpedo. The ship was a test bed for an enormously powerful, high-temperature; high-pressure steam turbine that was able to develop 79,240 shp, this made her one of the fastest destroyers in the world: her designed speed was 39 kn but on trials she made 40.9 kn.


Ordered in 1939 under the 4th Naval Armaments Supplement Programme, Shimakaze was laid down in Maizuru Naval Arsenal in August 1941 and completed on 10 May 1943. Japan had intended to lay down 16 similar destroyers, with long-term plans the 5th Naval Armaments Supplement Programme for a total of 32 to equip four destroyer squadrons, but a lack of industrial capacity prevented them from being built.


In June 1943, Shimakaze participated in the evacuation of Japanese troops from Kiska Island towards the end of the Aleutian Islands campaign. She was present in June 1944 at the Battle of the Philippine Sea. In October 1944, the destroyer was present at the Battle of Leyte Gulf, although she played no role in the battle except for picking up survivors from the sunken battleship Musashi. While serving as the flagship of Destroyer Squadron 2 under the command of Rear Admiral Mikio Hayakawa, she was attacked and sunk by American aircraft from Task Force 38 on 11 November 1944 during the Battle of Ormoc Bay. Shimakaze was discovered by a Paul Allen-led expedition aboard RV Petrel in Ormoc Bay on December 1st, 2017. She was a mangled wreck but the three quintuple torpedo tube launchers confirmed her identity. Photographs from the wreck also debunked the assertion that she had one of her turrets removed in an early 1944 refit.






This softback book, in their Topdrawing series is a mine of information for the maritime modeller.  Although only consisting of twenty two pages this is very similar to the 3D Drawing series but without the range of colourful renderings, but the book is filled with line drawings.  This actually makes it easier to see what’s what as you’re not distracted by the colour schemes.  Each line drawing is very nicely done, concentrating on different sections of the ship. Interspersed between the larger drawings there are numerous smaller diagrams of individual pieces of equipment, such as the turrets, torpedo tubes, depth charge positions, ships boats, and light AA weaponry.  The foldout A2 sheet opens up to reveal three view line drawings of the ship on one side and detail line drawings of various parts of ship and equipment, all of which are in 1:200 scale.





These books, while not as visually exciting as the Super Drawings in 3D, they do give the modeller an enhanced view of the ships structure and equipment. If used in conjunction with the associated 3D book on the Shimakaze you will be able to make your models as accurate as possible. Whether you're building the 1:350 kits from Hasegawa or Fujimi, or the 1:700 kits from Pit-Road or Tamiya.




Review sample courtesy of




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