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RMS Titanic Easy-Click System with 3D backdrop (05599) 1:600


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RMS Titanic Easy-Click System with 3D backdrop (05599)

1:600 Revell

 

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There can’t be many people that have not heard of the awful loss of life that occurred when the Titanic’s maiden voyage intersected with an iceberg, causing huge rips in the side of the vessel and overwhelming the watertight doors, and confounding the belief that she was unsinkable.  At the end of the day on 14th April 1912 she hit the iceberg and began taking on water.  Less than three hours later she broke up and slipped beneath the surface with many of the passengers still aboard, and many more forced to jump into the almost freezing water.  Over 1,500 souls were lost that day, but many lessons were learned from this tragedy that are still applicable today, and many lives have been saved as a result.

 

The 1997 release of the film The Titanic brought the story to the public consciousness after the wreck had been found deep in the Atlantic but over 13 miles from her expected location in the 1980s.  She was found upright and in two parts, both of which had hit the sea bed at a substantial speed, buckling the underside.  She has since been thoroughly inspected, and some of the knowledge gleaned from those expeditions were incorporated into the fictional plot of the film. Which itself has become part of modern vernacular, with phrases such as “paint me like one of your French girls” raising the occasional titter.

 

 

The Kit

This is a reboxing of the 2018 tool from Revell’s Easy-Click line, and includes the original 156 parts, plus a 3D diorama puzzle backdrop printed on thin double-sided foamcore sheets.  It arrives in a top-opening box reusing the same box art as the original, with the addition of a bubble showing the completed diorama base in the upper right corner of the lid.  Inside are four sprues in white styrene, two in pale deck tan, one in yellow, and a final sprue in black.  In addition there are two hull halves in black and anti-fouling red, plus two small parts on another red sprue.  The diorama consists of ten A4 sheets of foamcore that is shrink-wrapped with separate instructions, with the package rounded off by the decals, a small sheet of alternative stickers aimed at the younger modeller, and the instruction booklet.  The detail is good, but the heritage of this kit is a simple model that can be made without glue or many tools, including paint, which is why everything is self-coloured.  There’s nothing to stop you from turning it into a proper model by applying your advanced modelling skills (you did remember to pack those, didn’t you?), and turning it into something special though.  My initial reaction on opening the box was surprise at the large size of it at this scale, and the box tells us that it is 44.8cm from stem to stern.

 

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Construction begins with the hull, linking the two halves together with the aid of two H-shaped black inserts, and placing it on the black stand that is included.  The two outboard prop shafts are clipped in place at the rear to the sides of the rudder fin, then the two white superstructure upstands are snapped into position flush with each side of the hull, then joined by the bow and stern decks with small sections of white hull and other steps added along with other deck equipment around the bulwarks at the bow, and the flying walkway that I often refer to as the "spoiler" at the stern.  More small superstructure elements are added at the rear, with davits pushed into cylindrical pedestals.  The next layer of superstructure is pushed together trapping a front wall in place, while the rear is slotted straight into the deck.  It is topped by another length of deck, which itself has a number of additional layers clipped to its top, with the roof being painted grey if you’re going for more realism.  After the bridge and its superstructure are added, fitting out begins with the various ventilation horns - some with exposed dorade boxes, lifeboats and watch towers.  The four funnels have yellow exteriors with a black core and top grating, all of which are subtly different and should be fitted as per instructions to avoid inaccuracies.

 

The masts with ladders, bow post where Jack & Rose stood in the movie, with another mast toward the rear and an angled flag pole at the rear, plus the three yellow screws underneath at the rear, standing in for the bronze screws that each output 10,000hp, but had only one rudder, giving poor authority that played a part in the ship’s demise after the iceberg was spotted.

 

3D Diorama base

 

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Made of foam cored cardboard parts that are spread over ten sheets, this base is made over a series of six steps, and includes a wood-effect base, sea surface with cut-out for insertion of the ship, with supports under the “waves” at each side, a backdrop of the frigid night sky with more icebergs in the background, and a large 3D chunk of ice in the bow area of the diorama, playing the part of the ‘berg that resulted in her demise.  Due to its size it is two panels long, and has small “staples” that clip the halves together.  These would benefit from some tape or hot glue to hold them together better in the longterm.  It is quite effective, as you can see from the photo below.

 

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Markings

As it sank on its maiden voyage there was only ever one scheme, and one decal/sticker option.  The main colours can be left unpainted if you wish, and a long length of gold pinstriping is included on the sheet to detail the demarcation between the black and white parts on the hull sides.  The name plates at the bow, stern and bow sides are all printed in gold, and three flags are supplied to be folded over on the masts.  The name plaque for the base is common to both decals and stickers, with just the names and flags supplied on the sticker sheet, again tailored toward the younger modeller.

 

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Decals are by Zanetti, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt carrier film cut close to the printed areas.

 

 

Conclusion

It’s an interesting introduction to modelling as well as to the story of the ship itself.  When finished, whether you paint it or not it will look good on your shelves.  The inclusion of the 3D base will appeal more to the casual builder, but it is still quite impressive.

 

Highly recommended.

 

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Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit

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Having built one of these for my children (they were learning about the Titanic at school) when the kit was initially released, it can be made to look pretty smart with just some minor detail painting.  From memory, all I did was pick out some of the detail moulded into the tan decks in the correct colours (mainly white), and also light grey to differentiate the covers on the lifeboats.  Other than that, it was all left as moulded, and my daughters were very pleased with it - it even survived one of them taking it in to school (the other took in my copy of Ballard's book on the discovery).

 

How long is the diorama stand?  Given the size of the model itself, I'm guessing that it must be at least 600mm?

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