1/700 USS Mahan DD-364 1942

Mahan Class DD
Reviewed by Timothy Dike
The USS Mahan was the lead ship of a new class of Destroyers, an improvement over the earlier Farragut class. They saw service all over the Pacific in World War Two. They were built with five 5" 38 cal main guns but the number 3 gun was removed in favor of a heavier anti aircraft fit. This kit represents the Mahan as she was rebuilt in 1942 without the number 3 gun mount.

MidShip has produced this new kit based on the many variants of the Mahan class destroyer. Up until now the only available kit has been the old Kobo Hiryu Mahan class kit USS Drayton. This kit is a vast improvement over that one, and is easily workable into other versions of this class.

The hull is molded one piece with a bow insert. The molding is very good, the pictures below show flash where the hull breaks. This is exaggerated in the photo's and will be easily corrected with a light touch of sandpaper. The deck features some nice chock details. These destroyers were steel decked so there is not a whole lot of surface detail. The shape apprears to match my plans of the USS Cushing.
The deck insert is correct for the later Fanning and Dunlap, but is lacking the wrap around shield for the number one gun mount found on the Mahan Class. The modeler will have to scratch one out of thin plastic sheet or brass strip. These are shown on the box art, but curiously were left out of the kit. I hope that MidShip will at least make these available in resin like they did in the bridge part # R1. Most of the parts on this sprue are nicely molded and some are very thin and fine. 

Click images to enlarge

The partial open 5" 38 cal gun shields are included on this sprue and are well molded. They are designed to be used with the open 5" guns used in the included in the weapons sprue. The gun mounts are a little oversimplified in shape, but acceptable in this scale and better than anything else on the market. The ejector pin marks on some parts are little heavy on some parts, but nothing a little sanding won't cure.02
The weapons sprue is the same as the one included in the MidShip Models Gridely Class Destroyer. It includes all the weapons and fittings you will need and then some. The rafts are molded in two styles and are both nicely done. Some of the other items such as gun directors and search lights came out pretty nice.
 I wish that the 20 mm guns and the K-guns would have been done differently instead of being done almost exactly like the Skywave parts. The good thing is that the parts that I find over simplified are the ones I usually replace with Photo etch. 
The decal sheet includes flags and pennants as well as both prewar and early and late war hull numbers. These are printed by Microscale and are typical of the high quality decals they usually produce. They are nicely registered and sharp.
The instructions are nicely done on an four pages  Page 1 includes a color profile with Model Master and White Ensign Colorcoats paint equivalents. The color profile is however so dark it is hard to make anything out on it, I would recommend lightening this view. A class list and specs of the ship are included as well. 
The next two pages are dedicated to the basic subassemblies and are really well done. Since this kit was designed in CAD, there is no reason not to use CAD to do the instructions. Even thought some views are a little pixal ated, they are extremely effective in showing the parts fit. The different parts are shown in contrasting colors and you will have no problems following them. Page four shows some of the other kits you will want in your collections.
It's good to have a new line of ships on the market. MidShip is producing those ships that have been neglected by all but the obscure resin producers. I'm glad to see not only the Mahan, but just about every variation of this class and the succeeding Dunlap and Fanning. Also available is the one off recontructed Cassin, Downes, and Shaw that were almost totally destroyed at Pearl Harbor. Prewar, early war, and late war variants are all available. The kits from this new manufacturer are improving in quality with every release. So if you want to see more, I would advice you to help support them and build some of their kits. They can only get better and they are being manufactured by one of our own!
This kit will provide a good base on which to produce a whole bunch of ships that have not been available in a long time time. Order yours now for $21.99   on the Trident Hobbies online website

© ModelWarships.com