Academy 1/700
USS Enterprise CV-6

Reviewed November 2017
by Timothy Dike
The USS Enterprise, the seventh ship to bear the name was a Yorktown class carrier commissioned May 12, 1938.  Arguably the most famous ship of world war two, certainly the most decorated with 20 battle stars earned during the war.  The Enterprise was at sea on December 7 when the Japanese struck Pearl Harbor.  Three days later her aircraft sank the Japanese submarine I-70.  Shortly after, Enterprise and ships of Task Force 8 raided Kwajalein, Wotje, and Maloelap in the Marshall Islands.  She participated in several raids across the central Pacific before returning to Pearl Harbor.  She joined her sister ship USS Hornet escorting her on the Doolittle raid.  Enterprise was on our way to join the battle of the Coral Sea, however she arrived too late to participate.  She was ready when the Japanese attempted to attack Midway island and with sisters Yorktown and Hornet met the Japanese head on.  While the Yorktown was lost the Japanese lost four fleet carriers in the battle and were forced to abandon their plans to invade Midway. 

The big E as she was affectionately called, wasn't done yet.  She sailed for the south west Pacific helping to hold the line at Guadalcanal.  She was at times the only carrier operating in the Pacific in spite of being reported sunk on many occasions.  Enterprise went on to fight in almost every major battle of the Pacific war.  After the war she participated in magic carpet operations bringing troops back to the states.  She was decommissioned in February of 1947 and eventually scrapped.  A sad ending for great ship.

This new kit by Academy depicts the Enterprise in her 1942 appearance during the Midway battle.

The hull is molded in two pieces, the upper hull molded in gray styrene, and the lower hull molded in red.  The kit is well engineered and the upper and lower hulls fit together remarkably well with barely any evidence of a seam. There is plenty of surface detail, but the best part is the shape of the hull, it looks to be very accurate! Degaussing cables are molded on and appear to be correctly placed. I will leave it to the experts to nit pick the details, but this hull closely matches my drawings of the ship.  Click to
enlarge image
One side of the lower bow requires an insert to allow for proper molding of the thin section without sink marks.
The flight deck is molded as a single part with open fore and aft elevators. Deck planking and tie down strips that really stand out are well done and accurate in size and quantity. The splinter shields for the 1.1" guns are a little thick and short for my taste, but of the proper size and shape. The hanger deck is molded in two parts with recessed panel lines and the outline of the midsection walls, though I don't see the actual walls included in the kit. I doubt this will be a problem as you can't see that area once the kit is assembled anyway.
The island superstructure is of the correct width and is slide molded to allow for a better part. I like the way the rear stairway platforms are molded on. Locator tabs on most parts will assist in proper placement.
The propellor shafts, propellors and rudder are all molded in red to match the lower hull.
SPRUE D (x4)
Four of these sprues are included with weapons and aircraft. 5" 38 cal open mounts are molded as a single part, as are the 1.1" and 20 mm guns. Detailing is a little soft, but shapes appear accurate. There are plenty of aftermarket upgrades out there for those who need more detail. Extra flight deck elevators are included in case you want to cut out the third deck elevator. 
Three types of aircraft  are included, 8 of each: F4F Wildcats fighters, SBD Dauntless dive bombers, & TBD Devastator torpedo bombers. They are molded all as one part with molded on props and landing gear posts. 
Island platforms, boat and aircraft cranes, and hanger deck walls are well molded on this sprue. The roll up hanger deck doors are all in their closed position.
More hanger deck walls,  the funnel,. and various platforms are nicely molded here. I do have one complaint here though, I don't like seeing details such as searchlights molded on. These should be separate parts in my opinion, though I know some of you will disagree.
The display stand is molded in black with a spot for the name plate decal. 
A dedicated photo its fret is included to add finer details.  New handrails are custom cut to fit the various superstructure parts.  New radar and various antenna are also included.
One of the cool features of this kit is the precut painting mask for the deck.  The image doesn't show very well but the mask is cut to fit the various deck details and all one has to do is peel and stick them in place.  This nice touch will save the modeler a lot of time.
The decals are provided with aircraft roundels of various sizes, deck stripes, and elevator outlines. All are well registered and sharp. 
The instructions are 18 pages with very well drawn assembly and subassembly views.  Separate full color try fold sheets describe the painting mask locations and the photo etch assembly and placement.
To see what is possible with this kit, check out Won-hui Lee's build of this kit. His kit was built mostly out-of-the-box!
I'm very pleased to see this new kit from Academy.  Especially with what appears to be the most accurate Yorktown class carrier in size and shape in this scale. While some of the parts are greatly simplified this modelers addition can be a great kit right out of the box or serve as a platform for a super detailed masterpiece.  I certainly hope Academy will do other versions of the ship soon.
This is kit number 14224 1/700 USS Enterprise CV-6 with a list price of only $49.00.  It should be in stock now with your favorite hobby shop. Thanks to MRC / Academy for the review sample.
This is an in-box review showing the kit contents. We welcome your input and comments in the review section of the forum especially if you can share details about fit, ease of assembly and accuracy. Click the logo on the right to join in the discussion.