Trumpeter 1/700 DKM Bismarck

Reviewed by Timothy Dike
There has been a lot written on the Bismarck. It is perhaps the best known ship of all time. It's storied career has been the subject of many books, movies and even a song. So I am not surprised to see yet another version of this once mighty ship on the market. I will skip the history and get right to what's in the box.
This kit was developed jointly by Trumpeter of China, and Pit-Road of Japan. This partnership has produced yet another kit with state of the art molding. The hull on this kit is done in a waterline style, with a choice of a flat bottom insert or a full hull bottom both molded in dark red plastic. The upper hull molded in gray styrene has an open bow and stern. The bow and stern inserts (see sprue B below) fit up to the mid superstructure. This helps hide the resulting seam but you will still have a little work to do to blend the two parts together. The plus is that the deck inserts fit nicely and that will save you a little work.  Click images
to enlarge
The superstructure walls are molded separately. This allows for an increased amount of detail to be included. Portholes are molded in with rain gutters over them. Some decks even have diamond plate detail molded on. This is a bit over scale, but creates a nice effect when painted with a light wash.
 The bow and stern insert are included on this sprue. Molding is quite good, with nice deck planking.  Other items include gun directors with some fine molding, and masts that are very thin and finely done. 
The superstructure parts have some really nice detailing. The upper decks also feature nice planking.
There are two main gun sprues with nicely molded turrets with plenty of surface detail. They have separate sighting hoods and gun barrels with nice blast bag detailing. The secondary and light anti aircraft guns are as fine as possible with injection molding. 
The full hull stand consists of a simple frame with interlocking sides.
There are two sprues with float planes and ships boats. These are very well done and include separate top and bottom parts for some boats. The machine guns and davits are very thin. But what really caught my eye was the anchor with the eyelet for attaching the chain molded open. Now that is some fine molding that I didn't know was possible in this small scale.
The decals include flags and aircraft markings. The deck swastika is done in composite fashion to avoid offending those who are sensitive about seeing  this symbol. You will have to put these together in layers to get the complete effect. Camouflage slash markings in case you do not wish to paint them on. 
The instructions are a 12 page booklet of exploded views with subassembly views. These are extremely well illustrated and give you a very complete guide to build the ship out of the box.
Yet another impressive kit from Trumpeter. This is kit TSM-5711 1/700 German Bismarck Battleship 1941 with a suggested list price of $22.95. This is an amazing price for such a large well detailed kit. Trumpeter is really making it hard on the competition. 

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.