L’Arsenal 1/350
Mk 51 Anti Aircraft Gun Directors
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Reviewed by Felix Bustelo
L’Arsenal has been delighting ship modelers with beautifully crafted 1/350 scale resin and photoetch replacements for a variety of fittings found on United States naval ships.  Largely, this line has focused on aircraft and armament.  Well L’Arsenal now gives you the directors you need to guide your resin guns.
Accurate and effective anti-aircraft armament became vital for the United States Navy, especially towards the latter days in the Pacific Theater of Operations.  The threat of deadly Kamikaze attacks led to upgrades of AA weapon systems on ships of all sizes – battleships down to destroyer escorts.   An important piece to the AA weapon systems was the visually operated Mk 51 director, which help gunners to concentrate fire on a particular target with a withering rain of shells.

The L’Arsenal set comes with parts to make a total of ten Mk 51 directors.  Each director is comprised of a resin main body and a pair of photoetch parts for each side that have the handlebars and the counterbalance weights.  Assembly is very simple and clearly illustrated with the exploded-view diagrams.  You may wish to fatten up the counterbalance weights to give them a more 3-D effect.

The Mk 51 directors were used on many ships, so there are a lot of possible applications for this upgrade set.  These detailed upgrades will very nicely compliment L’Arsenal’s twin and quad 40mm Bofors, since they were fitted together on many ships.

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to enlarge
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With each set, the quality of the resin casting and the photoetch parts are excellent and meet the standard that I expect from L’Arsenal’s product line.  The instructions are also very well done and will guide you through building each style of director.   If you would like to add that extra bit of detail and realism to your 1/350 scale USN model, these directors will make an excellent addition to your project.

I would like to extend my thanks to L’Arsenal for providing me with these review samples. Click the logo on the right to visit their website.

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