Tom's Modelworks 1/700
USS Yorktown CV-5
Trumpeter Review
Reviewed by Timothy Dike
September 2013
 The Yorktown and her sisters comprised the first class of United States Navy ships to be designed as aircraft carriers from the keel up. The Yorktown, Enterprise and  Hornet all played vital roles during World War II in the Pacific Theater. The Yorktown was present at the Battle of Coral Sea in May 1942 in the first naval engagement where the opposing fleets never actually made visual contact. The battle was conducted entirely by carrier based aircraft that passed each other on their way to attack the opposing fleet. 

The Yorktown's most famous action was her role as part of the carrier force at the Battle of Midway about a month later. The Japanese carriers responsible for the attack on Pearl Harbor were all sunk and the tide began to turn in the Pacific naval war. Sadly, the Yorktown was sunk by a Japanese submarine the day after the battle was over while going home to repair damage she sustained at Midway. 

Richard Harden of Tom's Modelworks debuted their new Yorktown and Enterprise kits at the IPMS Nationals this year. To some this would appear risky with two injection molded kits already on the market. However there have been cries for an accurate rendering of this famous Carrier class and neither the Trumpeter Hornet or Tamiya versions of this class got it right. More about those kits below. First lets take a serious look at what's in the box of this new kit. The masters for this kit come from HP Models and they have been modified to fix some of the inaccuracies of that kit. This kit can be used to depict the Yorktown in 1942. 

The hull is cast waterline style with an open hanger deck. The casting is very nicely done with sharp details. The hanger is detailed inside and out and the roll up doors are thin enough that they can be easily removed to show off the interior. There is abundant piping detail along the hanger deck walls, The only problem I could find on my casting was the aft flight deck supports were bent. This should be an easy fix for most.  Click images
to enlarge
The very best thing about the hull is it's shape. Yes, this is the most accurate hull on the market without a doubt. So what the big fuss about the Trumpeter and Tamiya hull? Well as you can see from the images below, each kit is different. The Yorktown class had a long sleek hull and that is not what you see in the Trumpeter hull with it's almost tug boat like hull shape. The Tamiya hull is better, but someone made a mistake when they calculated the length of the ship and it is way too short. This give the ship a stubby appearance and it will really stand out when displayed alongside other ships of this scale. Sadly the brand new Tamiya Yorktown is just a reboxing of the old Enterprise/Hornet kit with no fixes. The Tom's Modelworks hull is clearly a cut above. 
The flight deck is cast in three pieces split at that elevator opening. The deck is nicely planked and includes most of the gun tubs that were standard to Yorktown and Enterprise during the 42 time frame. The forward and aft sections fit nicely when test fitted. Casting this way and the cat in groove on the underside will make removing the elevators easier. Underside bracing is included on the flight deck and it fits nicely onto the hull thanks to an interlocking fit. 
The superstructure is cast in three main pieces to allow for other fits. These parts are well cast on thin resin wafers and all have pretty nice surface detailing. The funnel top has nice cast on funnel grills and correctly shaped platforms.  There are several lengths of plastic rod for the tripod and mast provided. Separate deck elevators are included in case you decide to open yours up. 
5" 38 cal gun mounts are provided as a single piece casting. 1.1" anti aircraft guns are cast with the barrel assembly and base separate. Note the base is shown on the superstructure wafer above. 20 mm gun pedestals are included to mount the PE guns on. 
A variety of ships boats are included. Be advised that the number of boats carried was gradually reduced as more AA guns were added. Stacks of rafts usually took their place, also included. Gun directors and search lights are nicely detailed and extras are provided.
The Yorktown class PE set is included with all the parts you need and then some. New boat cranes, platforms, rigging details, and even funnel grills if you chose to drill out the cast on ones.
A variety of radar's are included covering every possible fit for any member of the Yorktown class. Store what's left of this fret for your other ship projects. 
Plenty of railings are included in two,  and three bar styles in a variety of stantion spacing. Ladders are also included. Again, more than enough so you can save the rest for other projects. 
The old 20 mm gun set one of my favorites due to the 2d fun pedestals. But that is remedied by the cast resin ones shown above. Simply cut the shields off and use them with the PE gun assembly and the resin pedestal. 
The photo etch comes with it's own set of instructions six pages long. 
The aircraft supplied come from Trumpeter. No need to reinvent the wheel, these are sharply molded in clear plastic with separate landing gear and propellers.  Panel lines are recessed and the lines of the aircraft look pretty accurate for this scale. I'm not a big fan of clear plastic, but it does allow you to mask the canopy for a more realistic clear look. . 
F4f Hellcat Fighter (3)
TBD Devastator Torpedo Bomber (3)
SBD Dauntless Dive Bomber (3)
A decal sheet is included with aircraft and ship markings. These are provided by Mark @ Starfighter Decals. As you would expect, they are well done and include not only the roundels, but also the squadron markings for the various battles of 42. Proper flight deck markings are also included with yellow and white deck stripes. The instructions for the decal set also show placement and painting instructions for these aircraft and the deck as well. 
The main kits instructions are six pages long. They include notes about the kit and when used in conjunction with the PE and Decal instructions, should give you more than enough info to build your ship right. 
What a pleasant surprise this kit is. The old HP kits were pretty good to start with, but with a price tag of $225, they were out of reach of the average modeler. This upgraded kit adds an extensive photo etch set, and the best CV-5 Class decal set on the market and somehow ends up costing only $139 US. I love your math Richard. If your not bothered by the errors in the Trumpeter and Tamiya kits, then this kit is not for you. If you on the other hand want the best, most accurate kit of the Yorktown, then this is your kit. 

This is kit number 700-02 USS Yorktown 1942 for $139.99 available direct from Tom's Modelworks or Freetime Hobbies