OzMods 1/600 HMAS Voyager
A resin ship kit in a classic scale is a rarity. OzMods, an Australian-based firm, has released two resin kits in 1/600 scale of modified Daring-class destroyers - HMASs Voyager and Duchess. The Voyager was the first of these modified Royal Navy destroyers to be built in Australia. She was launched May 5, 1952 and was commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy on December 12, 1957. The Voyager was tragically lost in a collision with the aircraft carrier HMAS Melbourne on October 2, 1964. The HMS Duchess was later transferred from the RN to the RAN to replace the Voyager.
I must confess that I am a novice to resin kits, so I find that this is a good kit to learn how to work with this media. The kit is based on the Airfix HMS Daring kit, but takes into account the modifications made to the design to better suit the warmer climates of the south Pacific. The kit comes extremely well packaged, surviving the trek from Down Under to the New York City area in excellent condition. The one-piece waterline hull comes rolled in bubble-wrap and the parts' trees are individually either shrink-wrapped or come in zip-lock bags with cardboard stiffeners. The individual trees come stored in a larger zip-lock bag. The box is also filled with Styrofoam packing puffs to prevent the items from bouncing around.
The casting of the hull is good, with no air bubbles, which is something that can happen with resin kits. The details found on the hull and the parts are typical of Airfix kits. There is a bit of what appears to be overspill in the stern that must be sanded down and some of the portholes are barely visible. I would suggest a little bit of drilling to make all of the portholes stand out better.
There are three sprues with parts and one bag with loose
bridge and aft superstructure sections. There is evidence of a little flash
on some of the parts, but do not mistake what are backing sheets with flash.
Some of the finer parts apparently need a backing sheet when they are cast
in resin. This needs to be removed and the part cleaned off before usage.
Again, no air bubbles or other imperfections were found on the parts and
the parts are numbered on the trees.
The kit does not come with any photoetch, but there is an abundance of 1/600 scale accessories available to detail the model. A decal sheet is provided with hull markings for four RAN ships in the class (Voyager, Vendetta, Vampire and Duchess) as well as draft markings and kangaroo insignias that apparently appear somewhere of RAN ships.
The kit comes with two single-sided sheets of instructions. The first sheet has a profile and overhead plan view of the ship, with a brief history of the ship and specifications. The plan views will aid the modeler with rigging and the placement of photoetch components. The second sheet contains a parts list and three blow up diagrams as assembly instructions. Not all of the parts are used, so spares will go into the kit-bashing pile. Assembly of the kit is simple enough, so I find the diagrams are sufficient. This sheet also contains important tips on working with resin. Please take the time to read these if you have never worked with resin.
Unfortunately, the instructions lack information on color schemes and decal placement. I find this omission to be very important, because unless you have access to alternative references, the average modeler will be at a loss in completing the model. The box top has a black and white photo of the Voyager which helps with decal placement, but offers no insight on proper colors and on painting the kit.
Overall, I think that this is a nice and inexpensive kit to cut your teeth on resin models. I just wish that the kit had more complete instructions with regards to painting and decal placement. OzMods have released other resin kits, but in the more standard 1/350 and 1/700 scales. I would welcome more RAN ship kits in 1/600 scale to complement this unique offering.