Loose Cannon review
Reviewed by Timothy Dike
USS Cachalot and Cuttlefish were the last of the V-boats designed before the second world war. Each boat differed slightly from each other as new arrangements and technology was tried out. The Cachalot was laid down by the Portsmouth Navy Yard and launched on October 19th 1933. The Cuttlefish was built by  Electric Boat Co., in Groton, Conn on November 1933. Both ended up in the Pacific in time for the war with Cahalot being in Pearl Harbor and Cuttlefish in San Diego undergoing refit. Both engaged in patrols early in the war and held the line until the newer Gato class subs became available in sufficient numbers. More about this class can be read at the  V-class Submarine history article on UnderSeaWarfare.
This kit includes two complete waterline subs with the hulls cast on a resin wafer. One represents the Cachalot in her 1941 Pearl Harbor fit. The other the Cuttlefish as she emerged from her refit at San Diego in 1942. 

The casting is pretty good overall with wood planking on the deck and hatch details. The fins are cast in the stowed position for surface travel. The propeller guards are cast onto the wafer. These might be a bit difficult to remove, but a bit of flat sanding should free them up. You can always replace them with photoetch if you prefer. Tom's Modelworks makes a nice set #741 Gato Submarine that has many of the parts you would need on these subs. 

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Detail views
The conning towers are nicely cast featured a really cool gun platform on the Cuttlefish. You can make out the perforated deck. There were a couple extra in my set as the ones on the main sprue didn't fill out completely.  The deck guns are well cast and have well defined features that will stand out. However the 5" guns were not installed on these subs.
The instructions are a single sheet with history on the front and a drawing and photos of the back. These are pretty basic and you will most likely have to consult some extra sources for detailing. The copies of the photos are not all that great, but links to the Navsource photo archives sections are listed so you can look up 

This is yet another unique kit by the Loose Cannon crew. It provides you with a couple of important V-boats for your Pacific Fleet. Just about all the waterline enthusiasts have a Gato or two, but not many will have a Cachalot class sub in their fleet. This is kit #86 USS Cachalot and USS Cuttlefish and it retails for $20.00 US. That's only 10 bucks a piece, a great price for a couple of WW2 vets. They are available where ever Loose Cannon products are sold. Check the Loose Cannon page for details on these and other kits.

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