Shelf Oddity
1/700 British 2pdr Pom-Pom Mk VII Quadruple


 

Reviewed July 2022
by Timothy Choi
Shelf Oddity has released an upgrade set, which contains six Mk VII quardruple "Pom Pom" antiaircraft guns. A common sight on British and Commonwealth destroyers, it also makes regular appearances on larger vessels like the Colossus class aircraft carriers. With kits of both in 1/700 becoming more readily available in recent years, this upgrade set is a welcomed addition.

Packaging is simple: a clear box with a flap on one end contains a plastic tube where the 3D printed resin parts are placed snuggly. A small PE fret is taped to a piece of cardboard with the PE facing the plastic to prevent scratching and damage from the plastic tube. No instructions are included (see bottom of review). All parts in my copy came undamaged.

Resin Parts
The set includes enough parts to make six complete mountings. There are two resin parts, manufactured via direct 3D printing: one part for the guns, and one part for the base. Both are excellently produced in terms of consistency: there are no bent barrels or incomplete prints between all six copies. There are a great number of details on all sides of the breech, which a wash will help emphasize. There are no clear patterns for the individual shells on the external ammunition belts' horizontal sides, though they are clearly visible on the shorter vertical sides. This may or may not change after a bit of paint and dark wash, for better or worse.

The only oddities would be dust-like printing strands or dark spots on the grey resin. Due to the layer-by-layer process of 3D printing, there are the inevitable "steps" on these parts, though they are only visible when using a macro lens as in this review - they are otherwise invisible to the naked eye even up close and a layer of paint should help smooth over the steps.

A particularly pleasant surprise are the hollow barrel tips - it is something one wouldn't notice except in the right light angle, and even then only under high magnification.

For the sake of comparison, an equivalent Pom Pom from a late 1990s/early 2000s resin kit is shown in two of the photos. One can see how much 3D printing has improved the level of detailing of such parts in the intervening twenty years. Although the conical flash suppressors on the tips of the barrels could use a gentler slope towards the barrel, that would likely require thinner barrels than what could be achieved in this scale using current printers. Regardless, just the resin parts alone in this upgrade set would be a tremendous improvement to many kit parts, nevermind after incorporating the PE parts.

PHOTO-ETCH
The small photo-etch fret contains the platforms and sights. It is relief-etched on both sides. The perforations on the platforms do not go all the way through except for one spot, as seen in the third photo where it was taken against a window. It is uncertain whether the lack of a complete perforation was intentional. This means a wash would be necessary to bring out the details of the perforations (and the relief etching on the underside of the platforms would be invisible). The sighting rings are impressive in ambition, trying to create a crosshair within the sighting circle - however, the etching is inconsistent between all the copies, though this is nigh-invisible under anything but the most optimal viewing conditions and one would be challenged to keep the gaps clear of paint.
Instructions
Instructions are not included within the package. However, they can be downloaded via Shelf Oddity's webpage for the item in PDF format here. For readers' convenience and redundancy, I have taken the liberty of reproducing them below in JPG form as this item requires a bit more assembly than some other Shelf Oddity products. The last page provides some tips for removing the parts from their "sprue", though the much thicker supports in this particular accessory prevents a straightforward application of the #11 blade approach suggested on that page. Some combination of a side-cutter and #11 blade would likely be necessary.
CONCLUSIONS
If you are looking to upgrade the weapons system on your Second World War (and a bit after) RN and Commonwealth ships, these should do the trick. They are well detailed and look easy enough to assemble with the right tools. With the increasing numbers of plastic RN subjects coming out in recent years, these will fill a vital niche.

This is Shelf Oddity set SO700147, 1/700 Royal Navy 2-pdr Mk.VII quadruple AA gun "Pom-Pom". It retails for around 8.55 EUR direct from Shelf Oddity, and is probably available from many of our sponsors as well. Thanks to Shelf Oddity for the review sample. Recommended.




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