|The four ships of the Gridley Class were
similar to the Mahan
class in hull size and shape. They could be distinguished by their
single stack and unique trunking funneling their advanced higher
pressure power plant, with larger turbines. These powered these Destroyers
at over 40 knots during trials. Like the Dunlap
and Fanning she had enclosed 5" 38 Cal mounts up front eliminating the
need for the large splash shields. The Gridleys also featured four quad
torpedo launchers mounted on the main deck. These ships were built with
only four 5" 38 cal gun turrets due to their heavier torpedo battery.
The four Gridley's; DD-380 Gridley, DD-382 Craven, DD-400 McCall, and DD-401 Maury began the war as part of Destroyer Division 11 of Destroyer Squadron 6 based at Pearl Harbor in 1941. They frequently served together through the war until the threat of Kamikaze attack forced them to be withdrawn from the Pacific Theater Front lines. In spite of their speed and firepower, this class suffered from weak hull design that prevented them from receiving the late war upgraded 40 mm anti aircraft fits that would have helped to fend off this new threat.
|Midship Models a new line of ships from Chris Decker of Trident Hobbies has produced a completely new line of waterline ships. This one, the USS Gridley is depicted as a prewar version. There are plenty of extra parts in this kit can easily be converted to mid or even late war versions of any of the Bagley class destroyers. This kit also includes all the parts to build a Benham class Destroyer. This review uses many of the photo's from my earlier USS Stack review since they are the same in both kits.|
|HULL AND SUPERSTRUCTURE PARTS|
|The hull is molded one piece with a bow insert. There are
slight drag marks on the sides near the hull break. These are probably
due to the long vertical sides that need a little draft to keep them from
hanging on the mold. But don't worry a light touch with some fine sandpaper
will smooth them out. The hull looks very much like the Gridley class
|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 A-size sheet. 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. A class list and specs of the ship are included as
well. Some basic subassemblies are shown on the first page as well. The
main hull assembly is shown on page 2. These are all you really need to
build the ship out of the box.
|LINKS AND RESOURCES|
It's good to have a new line of ships on the market. Especially one with so many build options. A lot of thought went into the design of this kit. I am however disappointed with some of the errors in the parts. Having said that I know that this is pretty good for a first kit, and the next ones will be even better. This kit will provide a good base on which to produce a whole bunch of ships that have not been available in some time time. Order yours now for $19.99 on the Trident Hobbies online website.