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The Great LSP Twins Group Build Starts Jan 24, 2024 - End July 3, 2024 ×

A Model Remembered


GazzaS

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I did some digging around and discovered that I returned to the hobby back in 2014...   June 2014.  And the kit I chose was Dragon's Z-39 in 1/350 scale.  I hadn't learned much about the hobby since I left it in 1984.

Z-39 wasn't a very famous, or lucky ship.  It spent more time in dockyard hands than it did out of it.  It didn't take part in any famous sea battles...   it just ended up in US hands at the war's end.  So the kit came with a US-flagged option.

I bought the kit when I saw it online.  I can't even remember who I bought it from.  But since it was a Type 36A (mob.) Destroyer, I knew I had to have it even before I knew the history of the ship.  Once I knew the history of the ship, I decided to kitbash her into Z-32, another Type 36A (mob.) which was destroyed at the battle of Ushant, 1944.

The main differences between the kit Z-39 and Z-32 the ship were the AA outfits.  All of the German destroyers were meant to have the "Barbara" outfit where the number of AA weapons was heavily augmented, with one of the after deck main guns removed.  But Z-32 never got the refit.

This is one of the pics I took at the end of the build.  I downloaded a picture of cloudy skies to set the mood.

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There were a bazillion firsts for this build...   and I knew so little when I started it.  First water base.  First photos.  and many others.  Some I'll mention as we go along.

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There are 86 men at their action stations on the deck.  And the flag is made from cigarette paper which was taped to copy paper, then ran through a printer, cut out and then crumpled into a tiny ball before being glued to stretched sprue...   another new thing...    to me, anyway. It's looks much more realistic than a decal, with some light passing though it, and a wind-whipped appearance.

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Finding crew members wasn't easy, especially as I wanted guys to look like they were actually in a battle.  Luckily I found three sets by Northstar models.  Two sets were German, and one set was an American set of a boxing match.  But they are so tiny..;  once you paint them, they can belong to any navy.  I used bits of clipped brass rod to depict empty shell casings.

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Nothing looks good in macro.  Especially when your crew is falling over the railing,  and dust filaments are taking over.

 

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Three men operated the gun directors.  the middle guy...   who looks like he is busy at his job, is actually from the American set who is cheering the boxers on.

 

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The main battery gun on the right was my first ever resin casting.  The curved rails were for ammunition and weren't part of the kit.  I scratchbuilt one, and cast the rest.  I tried to cast shells, too...   but it didn't work.  I didn't know anything about using a pressure pot.

The enemy are out of range of the vierling gunners...  So they aren't aimed at anything.

 

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This area behind the main gun had to be reconfigured.  And i kept knocking it over and re-gluing it...  so it looks really rough up close. 

One of the attractive features of this class of ship is the forward turret.

 

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Here on the bridge there are many visual instruments as well as the signal flag station.  You can see that my stretched sprue signal lines are looking a bit shabby.

 

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During this build, I wanted to settle the riddle of the railings.  When you buy generic railings, they only come with one distance between stanchions.  So, your stanchions end up in weird places, instead of at the corners where they belong.  And I tried to find a decent way, with my limited knowledge, to get stanchions in the corners where they belonged.  In the end, I couldn't find a material that would do the job cleanly with an easy measure of control.  For there to be a measure of control, the part had to be long enough to hold long enough for the glue to set.  But another piece of railing is too short to control.  In the end, I gave up and just did what most other people do.

 

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Nothing is pretty in macro.

 

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My first solder was the star at the top of this mast.  It was a huge soft weld which I filed and sanded down.  I'm amazed it's still holding together.

 

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I don't remember the top spar tilting at that angle.  Two men in the Crow's nest... 

 

But the rot has set in...

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The base was made of acrylic medium, acrylic paints, and cotton balls .  But now it looks like a sea of sewage...

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My once clean white foam and wave action is turning yellow and brown.  She won't be long for the bin, I reckon.  But she's kinda been one of the favorite things in my display cabinet.

 

 

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Interesting first project Gary, I reentered the hobby at about the same time like you, but I chose a Tamiya Birdgcage Corsair with the full galore of AM for my debut.
I like how your Zerstörer came out. On the pics, it looks living and not only because of the nice figures. The water doesn't look to bad either, the sea is not always blue and white.
I have the same Zerstörer kit in my stash, with some extras and it urged me sometimes in the past to build it.
Some days ago, I learned that NorthStar closed business, at least temporary. That's a bummer, because they seem to be the only company offering 1/144 British sailors for my Flower Class Corvette.

Cheers Rob
 

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Gary, great to hear about your first model returning to the hobby. Even better that you still have it. Z-32 still looks to be an impressive build. 

For me, I never really left the hobby.  Even when I went overseas to study for a year, I somehow managed to find a hobby shop and build (and buy) kits. Still have some of them in the stash. The longest break was maybe a few months around when I got married. Or when our first son was born. Probably the latter. 

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8 hours ago, DocRob said:

Interesting first project Gary, I reentered the hobby at about the same time like you, but I chose a Tamiya Birdgcage Corsair with the full galore of AM for my debut.
I like how your Zerstörer came out. On the pics, it looks living and not only because of the nice figures. The water doesn't look to bad either, the sea is not always blue and white.
I have the same Zerstörer kit in my stash, with some extras and it urged me sometimes in the past to build it.
Some days ago, I learned that NorthStar closed business, at least temporary. That's a bummer, because they seem to be the only company offering 1/144 British sailors for my Flower Class Corvette.

Cheers Rob
 

Thank you, Rob.  For the Grosser Kurfurst I needed more figures.  I couldn't find any from Northstar.  even a few years ago...   so I went to Shapeways.  I still have to separate the figures from their computer printed casings.  So I'm not certain they are as nice as the Northstar figures.  But at 1/350...   it won't matter too much.  And unlike a destroyer, most of the battleship guys are at work enclosed in turrets, barbettes, and other armored structures.

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8 hours ago, Bomber_County said:

It looks like 2014 was a good year to return, I was late 2014, just found a picture of the bench being assembled. Gaz you did a lot better than I did for first one back. 

Thank you, Phil!  I still don't know that my current ship would be any better.

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7 hours ago, BlrwestSiR said:

Gary, great to hear about your first model returning to the hobby. Even better that you still have it. Z-32 still looks to be an impressive build. 

For me, I never really left the hobby.  Even when I went overseas to study for a year, I somehow managed to find a hobby shop and build (and buy) kits. Still have some of them in the stash. The longest break was maybe a few months around when I got married. Or when our first son was born. Probably the latter. 

Thank you, Carl.  Sometimes I'm glad I had the break, and sometimes I don't.  On the positive side, so much is new.  But on the minus side, I wonder just how much I have missed as AM providers retire or quit producing...   like Northstar mentioned to DocRob above.

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