Combrig Conte di Cavour

1/700 Italian Battleship
Reviewed August 2020
by Christopher Martens
Conte di Cavour was the name ship of her class of battleship completed in 1915. Initially a five-turreted coal burning battleship, Conte di Cavour was almost entirely rebuilt as a near-modern battleship from 1933 to 1937. The vessel bore little resembelence to her World War I appearance, during which she saw little combat. 

Conte di Cavour was torpedoed and sunk by the British at Taranto. She was refloated and placed in drydock, where the Italian Navy realize damage was far more extensive than initially believed. Repairs proceeded slowly until she was again sunk in 1945. The battleship was unceremoniously broken up starting in 1946. 

Combrig chose to model the ship as sunk in 1940. 

Conte di Cavour's hull is a thing of beauty. Crisply and accurately modeled in resin, the hull features extraordinary detail, likely a product of Combrig's choice to model to 3D design. I checked fit by attaching her turrets and was impressed with the precision present in this kit. Her length appears to be in-line with what drawings I can find. Planking is sharp and I'm most impressed with the barbette detail. 
Again, detail on this kit is fantastic. Hatches, lockers, and other details on the superstructure are good enough to not need any sort of photoetch replacements. I'm also impressed with the ship's rangefinder. If I had to offer any criticism? I wish the pilot house and admiral's bridge levels were photo etch. 
Combrig includes a myraid of small resin parts for everything from paravines to anchors. These parts are presented on Combrig's usual strip wafers. Aside from the delicate davits (pictured below), all these parts were securely attached. Detail is incredible, on par with many modern resin and 3D printed options. 
The 12.6 inch turrets are beautiful and closely matched to available drawings. Blast bags are molded on and act as slots for the resin barrels. These are nice, aside from lacking the "hollow" look of brass barrels. Conte di Cavour's secondary battery is well-molded, with her smaller twin AAA guns molded finely. 
The ships' boats are, by far, the best options Combrig has offered with their kits. Again, these are on par with many cutting edge offerings from well-respected aftermarket options. 
Combrig's comprehensive photo etch set contains everything that is needed to complete this vessel. There is minimal relief etching, but what's offered is very good. 
Photos below are snapshots from Combrig's instruction manual. Instructions are intuitive, clear, and also offer in-scale sizing brass stock needed for masts and some crane booms. Full instructions can be found at: Conte di Cavour's Instructions, 1940

Combrig continues to produce kits that haven't been comprehensively and/or qualitatively covered by other resin or styrene manufacturers. These new kits are true multimedia kits, though often missing masts and other brass stock scratched items. Their level of detail has continued to improve and impress putting them at the forefront of resin kit manufacturers for a reasonable price. Conte di Cavour retails for approximately $89 dollars which is in my humble opinion, a steal.

Thank you to Combrig for this review sample. I will thoroughly enjoy building it.