Niko Model 1/700 USS Nashville CL-43

Reviewed by Timothy Dike

The USS Nashville was one of seven Brooklyn class light cruisers built shortly before the second world war. Nashville was on the east coast when Pearl Harbor was attacked. One of her first actions was to escort the carrier Hornet on her voyage to attack Japan with B-25s. Nashville operated in the Aleutians and South West Pacific during the remainder of 42. Early in 1943 she sailed to the west coast to get a badly needed refit. Emerging from Mare Island, she was almost a brand new ship. Gone was the huge bridge wings and superstructure and in it's place a lower profile slimmed down bridge that saved enough weight to allow for even more anti aircraft guns. This was the typical refit also applied to sister ships Phoenix and Honolulu during the same time frame. Nashville returned to the South Pacific and carried General Douglas MacArthur and his staff on their march toward the Philippines. She remained in the area until the wars end and helped carry the troops home afterwards. After the war Nashville placed in reserve fro a time and was later sold to Chile 9 January 1951. She was renamed Capitan Prat and served the Chilean Navy for many years until she was finally scrapped.

Niko Models has yet another famous warship captured in 700 scale resin. This is another one of my favorite ships and I am pleased to see it represented so well in my favorite scale. Waterline divine 700 scale!

The hull on this kit is cast with much of the lower superstructure cast in place. The casting is very well done, and the detail is very finely executed. The deck has some extremely nice deck planking not typically seen on a kit of this scale. Splinter shields are nicely done with external bracing where appropriate. 
click images
to enlarge
The superstructure levels are cast on a thin resin wafer and are nicely detailed. Splinter shields are thin and the walls have nice door detailing. 
click to enlarge click to enlarge click to enlarge click to enlarge click to enlarge
click to enlarge click to enlarge click to enlarge
The main guns are nicely shaped with separate gun barrels. The turrets lack any locating pins so you will have to center them on their bases yourself. Gun barrels include cast on blast bags and the effect is pretty nice for resin. 
The 5" 25 cal open gun mounts are very detailed and impressive in their casting. These are designed so that you can elevate the gun barrels. Twin and quad 40 mm mounts are very well cast and feature very thin gun barrels and detail mounts. The main and secondary directors are well done with the secondary directors being exceptionally well done.
The Kingfisher Float plane is pretty good except for some voids in the tail surfaces. That shouldn't be too hard to fix and the nice float detail and surface detail on the aircraft help make up for it.
The ships boats are not bad and the rafts are nicely detailed. The Mk-51 directors came out very nicely as did the searchlights and other small details. 
Two brass photo etch frets are included. One with the railings, including swept up bow railings. The other has all the cool parts, and many are relief etched. Searchlight towers, aircraft catapults and cranes, and boat davits are all well designed. A length of brass rod is also included to make the mast.
The instructions are six pages, four of them exploded views using photos of the actual kit. A camo sheet is also included to help you get the colors right.

A highly detailed and accurate kit of the Nashville and a first for this particular ship. Included is everything you need to build the kit with no need for any aftermarket accessories to spruce up the kit. This kit is listed in Pacific Front Hobbies catalog for $79.00 a great price for a highly detailed kit like this with photoetch. They carry the entire Niko line of ships and many more hard to find, high quality kits.