Trumpeter 1/350
DKM Prinz Eugen

Reviewed by Sean Hert

DKM Prinz Eugen. One of the most famous German ships of World War 2. Present at the Battle of Denmark Straits and The Channel Dash, and one of only 2 German cruisers to survive the war. Eugen was the third ship built of the Admiral Hipper class of heavy cruisers, but was built to slightly larger dimensions than the first two (Admiral Hipper and Blücher). Prinz Eugen foundered while under tow, in late 1946, from damage sustained from the Operation Crossroads atomic tests "Able" and "Baker"

The Hipper class of cruisers was Germany's "Treaty Cruiser", built with 203mm (8") guns. The 203mm SK C/34 battery was placed in four twin turrets, two forward and two aft. The Hippers were also armed with 4 x 3 533mm torpedo tubes (12 total), 12 105mm SK C/33 AA guns, up to 3 aircraft, and a host of medium and light AA weapons, increased through the life of these ships.

Prinz Eugen's Dimensions:

  1. Length: 199.5m cwl, 212.5m oa
  2. Beam: 21.7m
  3. Draft: 7.2m max
  4. Displacement: 18,750t max

Trumpeter's new 1/350 DKM Prinz Eugen fill s a long present void in the lineup of plastic ship models. Now, you can have an escort for your Bismarck, or the newly announced Dragon DKM Scharnhorst. This heavy cruiser kit appears in a 1945 fit, instead of a 1941 or 42 fit. Presumably, this choice was made because the best data for the model came from archives in the United States, dating from after the war when Prinz Eugen was in the US hands.


Eugen's hull is molded in Trumpeter's standard 2-piece hull; grey upper hull, red plastic lower, with an red hull plate for the waterline option. All the parts fit very well together, with virtually no seam- the best I've seen from Trumpeter yet. The upper hull has no mold lines, flash or other defects. Other fine details are the scuttles with brow, armor belt and degaussing coil.

The lower hull exhibits Trumpeters usual heavy mold marks, but appears to have the proper bulbous forefoot of the Hipper class. I don't see anything indicating the German GHG hydrophone anywhere along the lower hull; they played a large role in the Battle of Denmark Strait, and really should be present. Also missing from the lower hull are the sea chests/water intakes as found on some large German warship models.

The kit measures out to a bit over 23" long at the waterline, which is a little over .5" too long (should be 22.44"). It's very close in beam, 2.44"000- within my margin of error. On the lower hull, the positioning of the rudder appears to be too far aft from center screw.


The deck comes in 3 pieces, with an additional single long piece for the 01 level deck. These deck pieces all have nice surface details; staggered wood planking on the main decks, with some fine tread plate pattern detail on portions of the 01 deck.

The first piece, the bow piece, goes from the extreme bow to the breakwater- where the angled end of the foredeck meets firmly and seemlessly against the breakwater which forms the start of the middle deck piece. The middle piece covers most of the deck on Eugen. This part ends against the stern piece; most of this seam has been designed to be hidden by the superstructure, but leaving an unfortunate .25" seam to either side. Keeping the planking detail intact through this seem may prove challenging for some modellers.

Some of the deck details and fittings have been simplified; for instance, there should be a deck hatch into the chain locker on the foc'sle, which has been molded as a simple box like structure. The anchor hawsepipes are fairly beefy, but the uninspiring molded on anchor chains are disappointing. The 01 deck has a somewhat heavily molded transfer rail system around the edges, and a challenging mold line on the B & C barbettes.


Sprue A has superstructure levels and aircraft hangar details. The levels feature a variety decking textures; from wooden planking and waffle pattern non-skid to steel tread plate. There are many mounting holes for the various shipboard devices that will be installed on these many levels; most of these have splinter shields around them.

The walls that make up the visible portion of the aircraft hangar have minimal surface details, and the surface of the hanger doors will need some light sanding to remove tooling marks present in the molds.


Sprue B has some walls for the superstructure parts, main and secondary directors, and some parts for the funnel. There are also roofs to the armored citadels, with the myriad periscopes, some simplified radar antennas, prop shafts and skegs, and the aircraft catapult. The few parts that have underside detail also have unfortunately placed ejector pin marks, marring the detail.

Sprue B is also home to the model kit's nameplate.


Sprue C has many various small parts; some ship's boats, the walls for the admiral's bridge, funnel cap, the 3 ship's propellers, and a large, single piece mainmast.


Sprue D has the 2 halves that make up the bulk of the funnel. The funnel parts have some nice detail, and appears will fit together with little problem. There are also additional parts for the masts, yards and antennas, the two propeller shaft struts, torpedo reload storage and Eugen's rudder. The torpedo storage doors have a seam running across the center that will need a touch of work. However, the rudder's shape is a touch off, and the pivot point is incorrect. The rudder post is centered in the rudder, not 1/3 back from the leading edge as it should be.


This sprue is fairly simple, with 10 pieces of superstructure wall. These parts have decent surface detail, occasionally marred by tooling marks in the mold. The molded on doors and hatches will suffice for most modellers, but some will want to replace them with appropriate photo-etched upgrades.


The 2 duplicate sprue F's have a portion wrapped in protective foam. When unwrapped, a fine one-piece rack for a long boat is found, as well as the highly detail halves to a crane winch. Elsewhere on sprue F, are all sorts of goodies; 2 types of deck mounted triple torpedo launchers- with and without the armored enclosure (the enclosure parts are on sprue G), 4cm AA guns, 105mm AA barrels, 203mm main gun barrels, 22 of the distinctive German square life rafts, optical range finders, the crane derrick and the bases for the main turrets.

There is some flash on the torpedo turrets, aka "Drillings", but they are also highly detailed- some of the best detail seen from Trumpeter yet. Trumpeter also used slide-molding technology on the 203 gun barrels, giving a plastic barrel that needs reduced sanding and an open muzzle. On this kit, not all the muzzles formed completely, but the effect is there. The 105's look good, with only an oversized muzzle band issue.


Sprue G is the fun sprue- it as the main gun turrets on it! It also has the classic German domed AA rangefinders, the gun shields for the 4cm AA, the twin 3.7cm AA, and other various detail bits. The base for the AA mount that is placed atop turret Bruno aka "Braunau" has nice base detail.

The main turrets for Hipper class cruisers come in 2 varieties; the superfiring turrets have optical rangefinders built in, and thus are taller and have a prominent sloped roof that is not present on the lower turrets. In addition, these turrets have additional ventilation at rear; these fans and ducts are at the center of the turret on the lower, but the presence of the rangefinder required this ventilation to moved to the outer edge of the rear on the superfiring turrets. These are all details Trumpeter has right on this kit. The one thing that is wrong on these turrets concerns the sliding armored doors on the front face of the turret. These doors, protection for the gun aimers periscopes, should be slightly off-set from one another; the starboard door should be higher than the port one (reversed on the rear turrets), but these doors are symmetrical on Trumpeter's kit.


The 3 sprue H's included each have 2 of the 105mm AA mounts molded on. These pieces, along with the aforementioned torpedo tubes, are some of the highest detailed parts seen from Trumpeter in a 1/350 ship kit. These parts do have some flash, and the doors on the front are somewhat heavy in detail. However, the fuse setting machines to each side, and the open and stowed loading hatch detail resembles the detail seen on some recent resin kits.


Ar-196A, standard wartime floatplane of the Kriegsmarine, in clear plastic. The fuselage is in 3 longitudinal pieces, which is a bit unique, and may cause alignment issues. The plane can be built with optional folded wings. The intrepid modeler should be able to position one of the planes in the hangar in a disassembled state quite easily.


The Trumpeter Schnellboot, was released on its own a few months ago. A nice little kit in it's own right. Online sources disagree on the dimensions for the S-100 Schnellboots, but if the 34.9m measurement is correct, then the hull is almost exact. (~3.93") This kit utilizes the same 40mm AA mount as Prinz Eugen.


Prinz Eugen comes with 3 photoetch frets, labeled ETCH A and ETCH B (x2). These frets include some optional brass parts, like railings and ladders, to upgrade the plastic ones in the kit. The instructions call out when these optional pieces can be used. I thought the funnel grate was a nice addition, as well as the railings. Not many kits include a full set of photoetch railings, so this is a nice touch. Be forewarned, these railings are not pre-shaped, and proper use will require some research by the builder.

The standard display base is included.

The included decal sheet includes deck and flag decals for Eugen, fuselage decals for 1 floatplane and markings for the included Schnellboot. In keeping with modern sensitivities, there are no intact swastikas on this sheet.


A 20 page instruction book is included, using Trumpeter's standard construction order and methods. There are some options the builder will need to decided upon, so close reading of the instructions is recommended before construction.

A full color poster showing the painting steps for Prinz Eugen, the Schnellboot and the floatplane are included. Mr. Hobby, Vallejo, Model Master, Tamiya and Humbrol colors are shown on a paint reference chart. There is no one manufacturer with every color referenced available, so some mixing may be required.


Trumpeter has released a long awaited and long lamented missing kit in this 1/350 Prinz Eugen. While the fit of this kit is beyond the scope of this review, the level of detail in this kit is indicative of a watershed moment for Trumpeter. However I wish Trumpeter would put a little more care into the finish on their molds. So many parts have surface irregularities from mold cutting and imperfect polishing, that it degrades great parts to merely good- and some even lower.

Prinz Eugen is a great looking kit, and I hope Trumpeter keeps up with this level of detail with future releases in the Hipper class, and the upcoming Deutschland class Admiral Graf Spee. Definitely recommended!

Thanks to Stevens International for the review sample. It is listed as #TSM-5313 1/350 German Heavy Cruiser Prinz Eugen 1945 with a retail price of $139.95 US. Stevens is 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 that does.