Naval Works 1/700 USS San Francisco

New Orleans Class Heavy Cruiser
Here's a look back at one of the classic kits from yesterday. Naval Works was one of the original producers of resin kits, they are now gone, but some of the key players are still around producing kits under other names. 

This kit represents the USS San Francisco a unit of the New Orleans Class. She is modeled in her 1942 before her post battle damage refit that drastically reduced her bridge and superstructure. If you are wanting to build a late version check out the new HP Models 1944 version also reviewed here.

The hull on my kit is nicely molded for a kit of this age, no major defects were evident
The superstructure parts are molded pretty well, splinter sheilds are thin and detail is acceptable. Each part is cast with a large plastic runner, but fortunatly they are placed in locations where they will be easy to cut away and sand flush.
Main guns are pretty good, though there is a casting gate that must be sanded off the back side of the turret. The gun barrels are also cast from resin and are pretty straight, needing only some light sanding to remove the flashing. The 5" 25 cal guns are actually recast Skywave 5" 38 cal guns modified to look correct. I would replace them with Corsair Armada 5" 25 Cal resin replacements available separately. The gun directors are pretty good, as are the rafts. The cranes and catapults should be replaced with photo etch form Tom's ModelWorks.
The instructions are OK with a plan and elevation view showing where each part locates. An exploded view is all you get to locate your parts by. Not nearly enought for most of us, but in the early days of resin this was typical of the included instructions.
This kit is out of production and is included here because I want to share it with you. Who knows one may turn up at a swap meet or on E-bay and you may want to know what you are buying. If you want to build a San Francisco model in 1/700 scale you would be better off getting a Waveline USS San Francisco (almost identical to the New Orleans) for early war verison or the HP Models version for a 1944 or later version. Please refer to the HP Models reveiw for addtional references.