1/350 Trumpeter
USS Nimitz CVN-68

Reviewed by Timothy Dike
The USS Nimitz was the lead ship of a new class of supercarrier that would soon come to dominate the sea lanes around the world. These Nuclear powered Aircraft carriers are the largest warships ever built. They were built to operate 90 aircraft of different types as virtual floating air bases. When there is trouble in the region, it is these supercarriers that are sent in to project US Air power into the hots spots around the world.

Like the real ships this new kit from Trumpeter is huge. The kit comes well packed in a large box with cardboard divides securing things in place. 

The hull is molded in two parts split at the waterline. The large hull is internally braced with aluminum straps that bolt together for strength. The lower hull is cast in red and test fitting indicates a pretty good fit. A separate waterline flat bottom is also included so you can display your ship at sea. A full hanger deck is provided in two parts with tie down detail molded in place.

The hull is very well molded with perhaps the best door and hatch detail I have seen on an injection molded kit. The many openings are well done and I am surprised at how well detailed this hull is. The mold used to produce this kit is obviously very complex with multiple slides that allow such fine details as the ladders to be molded in place.

Click images
to enlarge
The flight deck is molded in three parts as shown. Detail is very good and test fitting appears to show a real nice fit with very little seam to hide.
The deck has tie down details cast in place that some have said is too large. I think it looks good and a coat of paint should help shrink it down in size. I am disappointed by the inclined ladders that are molded as the dreaded "Aztec Stairs". Also the flight deck markings are scribed into the deck. The latter should not be much of a problem as the lines are inscibed and not raised. Overall the deck is well done with arresting gear and even nice safety netting. Most advanced modelers will want to replace these with photo etch, but it is nice to know that this kit will build nicely out of the box if you choose to do it that way.
A quick look at the sprues found in the kit will give you an idea of what's included in the kit.
Note the hull part on the right; this is a correction to the original kit. When a problem with the original design was pointed out Trumpeter responded by making a new part and removing the offending part from the kit. Not an easy undertaking by any means. But the result is we now have an more accurate kit.

Random close-ups of the sprues are shown below so you can see the really nice detailing. 

The crane is molded with railings and pulley details. Note the ladders and hatches.
Bridge windows are molded open as well as the port holes. The propellers are also molded in the correct left and right style.
The deck equipment is very nice with separate tires and other details. The forklifts have very thin roll cages and forks. These parts were protected by bubble wrap to prevent damage on the sprue. I don't care for the way the crane on the Tilley is molded but rest assured photo etch replacements will be available.
The Aircraft included in the kit
Two EA-3B's  One E-2C Three A-6E's Six F-4J's
Two S-3A's Six A-7E's One SH-3H One RA-5C
The aircraft in this kit are the best available in this scale. They are like little kits in themselves and are molded in gray, black and clear styrene. Many have details that are really fine for their size. The A-6's have nice refueling probes and the SH-3's rotor blades are very thin. Each one has it's own landing gear. The only thing missing is a weapons load for the aircraft.

If you need additional aircraft they are available separately as:
TSM-6218 1/350 RA5C Vigilante Aircraft Set for USS Nimitz (6/Bx) $7.95
TSM-6219 1/350 F4J Phantom II Aircraft Set for USS Nimitz (6/Bx) $7.95
TSM-6220 1/350 F14D Tomcat Aircraft Set for USS Nimitz (6/bx) $7.95
TSM-6221 1/350 F/A18E Super Hornet Aircraft Set for USS Nimitz (6/Bx) $7.95
TSM-6222 1/350 E2C Hawkeye Aircraft Set for USS Nimitz (6/Bx) $7.95
TSM-6223 1/350 A3D Skywarrior Aircraft Set for USS Nimitz (6/Bx) $7.95
TSM-6224 1/350 A6E Intruder Aircraft Set for USS Nimitz (6/Bx) $7.95
TSM-6225 1/350 A7E Corsair Aircraft Set for USS Nimitz (6/Bx) $7.95

Decals are nice and sharp with markings for most of the squadrons represented by the airwing. They include insignias and tail markings as well as all kinds of other smaller items such as intake warnings.

The decals for the ship include deck makings such as the warning stripes around the elevators and the flight deck stripes.

A large folded B-size color plan and profile is provided for a painting guide and decal placement.
The aircraft and deck equipment are also included in the painting guide.

The instructions are a 24 page booklet showing the assembly in a step by step process that is easy to follow. Very thorough and well written.


A well designed kit with very little to complain about. This kit retails for $199.00, but can be found on sale for less in most places. That may sound high to some of you. but with almost 1000 parts, this kit will provide hours of enjoyment. That gives you a lot of bang for your hobby dollar. 

Thanks to Stevens International for the review sample. They are the exclusive importer for Trumpeter kits in the US. If your hobby shop does not carry Trumpeter kits have them contact Stevens International  or try their Hobby Shop Locator to find one.