Tamiya 1/350 USS New Jersey

Modernized Battleship
Reviewed by Timothy Dike
Though the battleship era ended during World War Two, the Iowa class Battleships continued to soldier on, some serving in Korea, Viet Nam, and finaly Desert Storm. This kit represent the New Jersey in her final configuration, complete with Harpoon and Tomahawk Launchers, and an updated electronics suite.
Like Tamiya's other 1/350 ships, this one is packaged well, with the hull securely located and the box divided onto two sections to protect the parts. The hull is one piece, and includes a battery compartment and running gear for those wishing to motorize there ship. The hull is pretty accurate, and appears to match the lines of the real ship nicely.
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The deck is split into three parts, the middle section is molded to allow easy access to the battery compartment. Though there are some compromises made for the motorized version, they don't affect the detail or accuracy of the kit. 
The deck seams will be very easy to hide as they are strategically placed to minimize the joints.
The superstructure parts are pretty well detailed, and are made up of several subassemblies. Hatches and other details are molded on.
The armament is very nice on this kit, the twin 5" gun turrets are molded in three parts with molded on sighting hoods on the separate sides. The barrels are also molded separately. The Harpoon launchers and Tomahawk launchers build up into real nice assemblies. The main gun barrels are all molded separately with nicely tapered barrels and blast bags. The phalanx guns look pretty good but could use a little extra detailing. There is an SH-60 included as well that include quite a few extra parts, that will build up nicely even without photo etch.
The main gun turrets have a lot of molded on detail and have that distinctive Iowa class shape. Overall you will find the parts well molded and well detailed, with little or no evidence of flash or sink marks.
The lattice work for the masts and the frame work for the helipad are pretty fine, so use care when handling them so as not to damage them.

Decals are provided for the helicopter and the deck markings for BB-62 only. If these decals don't excite you, then I suggest you get the Dunagain Decals Modern BB set made for this kit.

A separate set of propellers is included if you wish to motorize your kit. The motor is an optional part, but a gearbox and set of shafts are included. Also included is a base to mount your ship on.

.The instructions are well presented in separate English and Japanese booklets. They are several pages and include both exploded views and actual pictures of the sub assemblies. There are many detail views that show you some of the more intricate steps. There are too many pages to try to include them all here so you'll have to get the kit and see for your self.

This is a pretty good kit right out of the box and builds up into an impressive kit. Add a little photo etch and you have a real contest winner. To see how this kit can be built up check out Kelly Quirks BB-62, part of his Tamiya Con 2001 award winning diorama. Or to follow along as Len Roberto builds his New Jersey.

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