|When I first learned of AXIS models first project, I was very excited. Patrizio Carlucci and I have exchanged a few emails in the past. But it was his 3D CAD work that really peaked my interest. My background is in CAD, Computer Aided Design, and I am always excited to see new technology used in the ship modeling world. This new ship is an example of a Computer Designed Model that existed in a virtual 3D space before an ounce of resin was ever poured. The virtual model was built up and some parts were created using a 3D printing technology called stereolithography. A process that prints parts in 3 Dimensions out of a translucent resin material that allows you to actually hold the finish parts in hand. Some of these pieces became masters for the kits resin parts. Patrizio then took it a step further and created a durable master for the hull, not with the 3D printing, but with what is commonly called CAD-CAM in the machining world. CAM is short for Computer Aided Manufacturing. In this case it was taking the coordinates of the CAD model and translating it into a machine language that a CNC milling machining could understand. CNC is short for Computerized Numeric Control. This CNC Mill then cut a solid block of Aluminum into a master for the hull. Patrizio worked with master caster Giampiero Galeotti of Regia Marina to get the parts cast in resin. The fruits of this project are now being realized, as I just received the resin parts of the new AXIS Models RN Roma. The Photo Etch and Machined gun barrels have not yet arrived, but with all the interest in this kit, I couldn't wait to give you all a look. I should stress that this kit is a work in progress and improvements are being made even as I publish this.|
|The hull is a massive chunk of resin with some amazing detail. It is cast full hull and at first glance looks like most other resin kits. But take a close look at fine details and prepare to be impressed. One of the first things you will notice is the finely cast tread plate detail on the decks. The surface detail is very good, with the aft deck showing some nice work planking. What really caught my eye was the hull plate detailing on the hull. This is a detail item that modelers often use creative airbrushing to simulate. In this case you will only need a light wash to bring out the lines on the hull.||Click images
|A kit of this size deserves a few extra views of the hull
|The bottom of the hull is a little rough, but this is one area that AXIS is working to improve.|
|The Superstructure Parts are well done, with most being
cast on resin gates to feed the resin evenly to the parts and reduce the
likelihood of voids and unevenly cast parts. This also allows for both
the top and bottom of the parts to be fully detailed without compromising
the detail. Note, the bracing under the various decks
|The main gun turrets are very well done. The panel lines
are well defined, but the splinter shields and base plate were a but to
thin to survive shipping on my sample. This is another area that is being
addressed by AXIS. The sighting hoods on these main guns are cast hollow
for a most realistic effect.
|SMALL PARTS AND FITTINGS|
|The many small parts are very well done, and show some
very intricate detailing. I'm not sure what all the parts are as the instructions
were unavailable as I wrote this review. I will come back to these items
when I can properly identify them. Stay tuned.
|The ships boats are nicely done, with plenty of individual
detailing. You can even make out the planking on the large whale boats
both inside and out.
|Two types of float planes are provided and both are nicely
|Various lengths of plastic rod are included to help fabricate some of the kit parts. Metal chain is also provided.|
|The instructions were not ready when I received my sample,
but a large plane and profile sheet was included.
|The jury is still out until the kit is completely ready, but from what I have seen, we definitely have a winner. I am anxious to see the rest of the kit. Italian Navy fan rejoice, a 1/350 Battleship is almost ready to join your fleet. Check out the AXIS website to see how this kit was developed and to find out more about AXIS Models ships.|