Reviewed by Sean Hert
August 2013
The USS West Virginia (BB-44) was a Colorado class battleship. The Colorado's were similar to the previous Tennessee class but had eight 16" guns in twin turrets as opposed to the fifteen 14" guns in triple turrets.The West Virginia was present at Pearl Harbor moored on battleship row on December 7th. Like her sisterships, she was repair and extensively rebuilt and returned to fight on.

More of the West Virgina's history can be viewed on DANFS's website

This new kit from Blue Ridge is a evolutionary upgrade of the MidShip kit, which was upgrade of the old Classic Warships kit!. This kit from Blue Ridge has elements from seven different manufacturers, and is very complete- the only items not included in box are paint and glue! 

The hull is cast in a one piece, waterline fashion. This updated hull now has much of the primary superstructure molded in place, as well as featuring upgraded deck details. The main deck has simulated teak planking where appropriate; even so, Blue Ridge has included a laser-etched wooden deck from Artwox. 
The parts for West Virginia are cast on resin sprues, and then sealed in bags.
This kit has 24 machined brass barrels from Master Model (eight 16"/45 and 16 5"/28), and also includes a tapered mainmast. Blue Ridge has also included brass rod, so the foremast can be cut to length. 
OS2U Kingfisher
There is a clear styrene sprue of Trumpeter OS2U Kingfisher2- two to the sprue- for the embarked scout floatplanes on Wee Vee. 
Another impressive thing about this kit are the SEVEN frets of photoetch included, from two different manufacturers; Blue Ridge/Tom's Modelworks, and Five Star Models (FStar). 

Blue Ridge
Radars, Catapults, Cranes, Assorted Details

Blue Ridge
Railing, Ladders, Anchor Chain

Tom's Modelworks

Tom's Modelworks
Variety of Extra Details

Five Star
USN Watertight Doors and Hatches

Five Star
20mm Oerlikon Single and Twin mounts 

Five Star
Quad 40mm Bofors (16)
The decal sheet is a real treat and includes flags and pennants as well as both prewar and early and late war hull numbers. These are printed by Microscale and are nicely registered and sharp.
Blue Ridge has included a well-detailed and full color instruction book. These instructions are a mix of photos, exploded CAD and hand-drawn views, as well as some reproductions from original sources. As always, read through the instructions, check your references, and plan your assembly; there are many choices to be made before you start.
The Blue Ridge mindset about model ship building is best said by the company itself. Taken from the instructions; "As always, remember this is YOUR kit, and how you choose to build it is the RIGHT way." Couldn't agree more! 

Blue Ridge is on track to release a kit of virtually all of the "Standard Type" USN battleships not currently available in plastic. Blue Ridge has a great philosophy about these kits; they bring together the best accessories into one box, so no additional purchases are necessary. If the quality of this West Virginia is any indication, they will all be outstanding kits and in high demand! In fact, the first run of these WeeVee's has sold out- get yours on pre-order today! Highly Recommended! 

Available now from Freetime Hobbies. This kit, BRM-70001, retails for $135.00. Thanks to Blue Ridge Models for this review sample.