Reviewed by Timothy Dike
One of the most sought after reference items for ship modelers are the long out of print Plan Books from the Floating Drydock. Many of us have been bugging owner Tom Walkowiak about reprinting these. Well Tom has done one better, he has complied these books on CD-ROM so you can view them on your computer. If you need to you can print them out as well. This CD features the Sumner and Gearing class destroyers and it literally has just about every thing you would need to build or superdetail the ship the right way. On the CD is a 75 meg Adobe PDF file that preserves the drawings in their intended format. If you don't have Adobe on your system, you can download it for free at There are 311 pages of plans, photos, and illustrations showing everything from the whole ship, to the individual fittings used on them. The photos are from the vast library of the Floating Drydock and most are available separately as well. The sample images below are all low resolution screen captures of various pages on the CD. I had a hard time picking which ones to show, as their are so many great image and illustrations to chose from.
One of the nice features of having all these drawings in PDF format, is the ability to zoom in on any page. For instance I have overlaid a zoomed portion of the hull lines in the image on the right. This allows you to read the details without reaching for the reading glasses. Some of the plans are based on the excellent 1/96 scale USS WALKE DD723 (#TFW-DD723/8) which I also have. But as you probably know, working with large plans is awkward, unless you have a lot of empty table space to unroll them. Now I can just scroll to that page and view it on screen!

If you have any interest at all in Gearings and Sumners, you have to have this CD. It is the most extensive single source of info on this class that I have seen anywhere! Highly recommended. Check the Floating Drydock's website for the other eBook's on CD,  and an extensive line of plans, building supplies, kits, and reference material for the ship modeler. Not all their sets are online so make sure you get a catalog or call for items you don't see. This is set #DD692PB-CD for $25.95, an excellent price for the vast amount of info on this CD!