|The HMS Leander was commissioned March 27th, 1963 the lead
ship of a new class of ASW frigate designed to counter the Soviet sub threat.
Basically an improved Type 12 frigate, there were 26 of them build for
the Royal Navy, New Zealand, Australia, Chile, India, Pakistan, Ecuador,
and the Netherlands. They were built in several batches reflecting the
weaponry and technology of the day. The first ones were called Batch 1
ships. They were built with two 4.5" guns in a single twin Mk6 mount forward.
One Seacat surface to air missile launcher, two 20 mm guns in single mounts,
and one ASW Limbo mortar. A single Westland Wasp ASW helicopter was carried.
Later versions referred to as Batch 2 and 3 mounted the Exocet missile
and more advanced radar and ASW gear.
These ships proved to be quite successful and many are still in service today. The Leander herself was finally taken out of service and sunk as a target in 1989.
This new kit from MT Miniatures represents the Leander in it's as built configuration. It can be used for most any Batch 1 Leander class with little modifications. It is available as kit or pre assembled and painted.
|HULL AND SUPERSTRUCTURE|
|The hull is the only resin part on the kit and it is cast as a waterline kit with hull and superstructure as one piece. The casting is a bit rough but workable. It appears to closely follow the lines of the ship and there is quite a bit of surface detailing. Mounting holes are provided for most of the parts so it shouldn't be too difficult to locate the parts.||Click images
|The rest of the parts are cast as white metal fittings. They include the main guns, 20 mm guns, the mast, ships boats and other fittings. Some of the parts will need a little cleanup and straightening. Detail is a bit on the light side for my tastes.|
|A single brass fret is included with railings, and antenna. Helicopter rotors are included as a separate etched part. The main antenna would be better represented by PE.|
|Two decal sheets are provided with ship numbers, and deck markings. Helo markings are also included.|
|The instructions are a single page in an exploded view format. Everything except the railing locations are shown. But you can refer to the included photo of the completed ship for that.|
|The kit comes packed in a plastic bad with the metal parts and photo etch individually bagged.|
Mountford Metal Miniatures' range of ships has previously been confined to 1/1200 scale. This new Leander represents a move into 700 scale. This kit, while not as detailed as most multimedia kits now on the market can give the modeler a good starting point for this class of Frigates. But if they are to seriously compete with the other established resin kit makers, they will need to add more detail to satisfy the more advance modelers who typically build resin and metal ships.
This is MT Miniatures - 1/700th HMS Leander Item number MTM002 with a price of only 25.20 GBP or about $40.34 at today's exchange rate. They also do a Batch 2 and 3 version of those ship. See the MT Miniatures website for details.