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1:200 USS Missouri Build Log - Trumpeter w/ Pontos Detail Sets


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  • 2 weeks later...

greetings everyone. i am new to this site. just discovered it. ihave to say, one fantastic build ,so far. can't wait for the next series of pictures. i am having a hard time getting my hands on this particular model, so i ordered the IOWA. since they are sisters, i figure a few small changes would be about all that is needed. can anyone comment? i would appreciate it.

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On 2/25/2021 at 12:15 PM, oldjohn said:

greetings everyone. i am new to this site. just discovered it. ihave to say, one fantastic build ,so far. can't wait for the next series of pictures. i am having a hard time getting my hands on this particular model, so i ordered the IOWA. since they are sisters, i figure a few small changes would be about all that is needed. can anyone comment? i would appreciate it.

Greetings, John, and welcome to the site.  I hope you like it here.  I've been here a couple years and can say the people here are about the most friendly and helpful group I've yet to run across.  Yeah, you may ask why I'm on a model airplane site when I'm building a battleship.  Well, I started out working on a 1:48 B-17 (which ended up in the trash), then progressed to a 1:48 B-29(still WIP) and finally a 1:32 F-14D Tomcat (Still in the box).  All this while building my "Monster Mo" as I call it.  


I also belong to a model warship site as well but I don't post there much anymore since a few of the members decided to take issue with my abilities (or lack thereof) in regards to my ship.  Apparently I'm not quite up to caliber the people on that site are used to, hence my posting of my progress here.  The folks here don't appear to be nearly as fussy as the rivet counters at the model warship site - at least when it comes to building a plastic toy boat!  However, when it comes to aircraft - Holy Smokes!  There is some unbelievable talent here.  I'm l almost afraid to show my face when I start my Tomcat!


Yes, John, while they are indeed sister ships, there are several differences between the Iowa and the Missouri, particularly in the bridge area and also in the radars and the AA armament. However, the Iowa will turn out to be a beautiful and impressive model - one that you can be extremely proud of.  I'm not sure how much detail you want to put into your ship, but may I strongly recommend that you purchase a detail kit to go with the model.  I selected Pontos because I felt I got the most for my money, and also because they also have an "Advanced Detail Kit" which includes even more detail.  But be aware, all this detail comes at the cost of hundreds of extra $$$ and literally thousands of little tiny Photo Etch parts.  The Trumpeter kit has 1500 parts, but with the 2 detail sets and all my scratch built parts, my parts count is somewhere up around 6200 individual parts.


If I may offer a suggestion, John;  head over to Modalwarships.com and get on their forums page.  Go down to the "Calling All Ship Fans" page and select "Battleships".  Once there, open the thread "Calling All USS Iowa BB-61 class fans".  There's over 200 pages of information regarding not only the Iowa and Missouri, but the Wisconsin and New Jersey as well.  Also, you might want to take a look at the build log I started there which covers the time up until I got my feelings hurt and stopped posting. 


The Ship Model Forum • View topic - Trumpeter 1/200 USS Missouri Build Log (Sept 2015 - ?????) (shipmodels.info)


Lastly, any help or advice that I can give you, please feel free to pick my brain.  If you prefer not to tie up the bandwidth here, you are welcome to contact me through E-mail at phydeaux99 (at) comcast (dot) net.


Good luck and have fun!!





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i appreciate you answering my post. So, you are saying that you can't build the IOWA as the MISSOURI,because of differences in the bridge, radars and AA armament. that is a bummer. If i had known that , I would have sucked it up and waited. Thank you for yourinformation. And yes i know upgrade kits are expensive I already checked out the Pontos website. Look forward to more of your pictures.

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  • 1 month later...

Hi there Ladies and Gentlemen!


Happy Easter!!  It's a gorgeous day here in Grand Rapids, Michigan!  Things are starting to green up, the sun is shining, and it's supposed to get up to the low 70's today.  Truly a delightful spring day.


I went back and looked and my last post was back in January, so I thought it was about time I gave you an update on my "Plastic Toy Boat", or, what I refer to as my "Monster Mo".  Since I last posted an update, I've been cleaning up and repairing places I didn't like, adding the seaplanes, dingys, and boarding ladders, and installing railings on the main deck. I won't  take up bandwidth with repeat photos of what I've already done, but here's a few photos of the new additions.


Just in case you did forget what she looks like, though, here she is in all her current glory.  She's a full 53" long and stands 11 5/8" from keel to the top of the foremast:



I don't know if I ever mentioned it or not, but every time I complete a sub-assembly, I count the parts that went into it and log the totals in an Excel spreadsheet. As the ship stands now, there are 6,291 individual parts that make up this ship. 1,311 of them are plastic and 4,341 are brass photo etch.  There are also 392 resin parts and close to 300 miscellaneous parts such as chain, string, fabric, etc.  You guys that complain about photo etch - I probably wouldn't recommend you tackle this ship!



I really think I'm nearing the end.  I have to still do a bit of clean up, finish the main deck railings, and do the rigging, which will take quite a while.  Believe it or not, there is a LOT of rigging on this ship!  Also, I still have those 300 sailors to paint!  Any volunteers???



Here's the stern showing the seaplanes.  If you recall, they were used as spotters and reconnaissance.  They were  shot off the catapults with dummy 5" explosive cartridges and upon return landed in the water where they were hoisted back onto the ship by the crane.



One thing I did since my last update was to add number decals to the quad 40mm Bofors gun positions. There are 20 positions and each are numbered according to how they were numbered at the end of WWII.  According to my reference books, each gun tub was numbered as well as the splinter shield on the gun mounts proper.



I cleaned up the crane, added some rigging to it, added a tie-down, and added the seaplanes. I also straightened the railings on the catapults, or at least I thought I did.  I see, though, that my messing around messed up the railing on the foreground catapult.  Oh well, it's an easy fix!



Painting the canopy on the little 1/200 scale seaplanes was a real pain in the you-know-what!! I think the brush I used had at least 3 bristles in it!



The underside of the seaplanes is white and it gradually fades to blue on top. It took me forever to get this where I thought it didn't look crappy. Finally, after 4 cycles of stripping and repainting, I finally gave up. Not perfect, but hey, it's the best I can do.



I have to make a decision fairly soon. The rigging you see on the crane is 0.01" thread called EZ Line. At 1/200 scale, this would represent rope 2" in diameter, which is about right. The problem is, it's very hard to see and unless it's on a white background or a bright light is on it, you can barely make it out. The crane tie-down is 0.02" EZ Line, which would be 4" actual. Most of the rigging on the masts is actually about 2", but it's going to be hard to see. Should I go for realism or use the larger diameter thread? What to do????? 



OK, now we move on to the dingys. Believe it or not, there are 30 separate parts to the little boats and their mountings. I added a lot of detail because they're one of the focal points of the ship and they add a bit of color to an otherwise fairly drab grey superstructure.



There are two of these dingys, one on each side.  THis shot also shows part of the main deck railing.  More about that later.



Sure was fun adding the windshield! Not to mention the bow cleats!  Extreme close ups never flatter a model, as this shows.  But this is the only way I could show some of the tiny detail.



Here's a dime placed along side one of the dingys to show how small these little boats really are. Sharp tweezers and a strong magnifying glass are petty much a necessity. As is a glass of wine more often than not!!



Three fenders are stowed on either side to prevent damage to the sides of the ship. Can you see the brass screw on the rear of the dingy? The prop blades are even bent to approximate the correct pitch!



One of the boarding ladders has been added. There is one on the port side toward the stern and one toward the bow on the starboard side (yet to be added). This is also a good look at the main deck railing.



I'm thinking that maybe I'll paint the rope on the ladder crane black to make it stand out better.  Wish I'd have thought of that before I glued it in place!!



I finally got a halfway decent shot of the top of one of the funnels. Each one of those dividers is a separate brass piece of photo etch. Need I mention what a job it was drilling out the 3 tiny vent stacks!!



Here's what I'm working on now.  These are the parts that make up the main deck railing. The railing comes in 6" lengths of PE like you see here.  Once you cut it free from the fret, you have to be extremely careful not to bend the individual strands.  They are fragile beyond belief! The stanchions have to be cut loose from the sheet of PE, then folded in half and glued. And, there's an outside and inside to them as well, Good thing they give you lots of spares!!



Then you apply a tiny amount of super glue to the railing at the appropriate locations and carefully drop the stanchions in place, making sure they are straight and not crooked. And, they go on the OUTSIDE!!  Actually, this one of the easier jobs.  You don't need a magnifying glass to see the pieces of PE!



Once you get all the stanchions glued in place, you then have to locate the positions of the chocks on the deck, transfer this location to the strip of railing (about 6"), and cut the bottom rails to fit the chocks in between the rails. Touch a tiny drop of glue to everything and carefully glue this section of rail in place.



OK, Friends, that's all I have for you today.  I'll post more when I get started on the rigging.  That's going to be a pain, because every time I get my fat fingers in there I damage something.  


Have a great day, y'all!!

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 7 months later...

Thanks, Keach!  


I guess it's about time for a brief update on what's happening with this beast.  The ship itself is basically finished.  What's left is I have to finish painting 360 tiny sailors and officers and then populate the ship with her "Crew".  As you can imagine, painting 360 little men about 3/8" tall is quite a boring job and I don't work on them for long periods at a time.  I am almost done, however, and then the fun starts.


In addition to the crew, I am also trying to depict the Japanese surrender ceremony that took place on this ship on September 2, 1945.  Trumpeter has put out a kit that includes a table, chairs, a microphone stand, and a dozen or so Japanese officials.  I've added to this with a few scratch built items that you will have to wait to see.  I will tell you, though, that trying to make cameras in this scale is a real *****!!!


Oh yeah, don't worry.  When it's done, I'll be sure and post LOTS of pictures.  You'll probably get bored.


To all my Christian friends out there, I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Safe, and Joyfilled 2022!  And to those who celebrate it - Happy Boxing Day as well!  Maybe someday someone will explain to me what that means and how it came about.  Boxing Day??


Take care, stay healthy, and please get vaccinated!!  This latest round of this **** is no laughing matter!


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  • 2 months later...


That's right, Folks, this beast is finally finished!  After umpteen years, even more $$$, and lots of cussing (+ many bottles of vino!) I can call it finished.  The last thing I had to do was paint 368 little people (approx 1/3" tall, or 8.3cm).  You wanna know what a pain in the butt that was! Especially the neckerchiefs the sailors wore! By the time I did all that, and positioned them in somewhat resembling a realistic manner, I was more than ready for this thing to be done.  So, Guys and Gals, let's take a look at the final project, shall we?


Here is the entire ship.   You can't see a lot of detail in this shot.  Be patient, we'll get there.

BB-63 - 01


In case you've forgotten, I elected to mount the ship o simulated keel blocks similar to how they were when the ship was in drydock.  I thought it looked nicer than mounting it on a couple brass pedestals.


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This next photo shows a yardstick (91.4 cm) alongside the ship.  The model is 53" long overall (134.6 cm).  It is a LARGE model!  And yes, if you look close, you can see some of the crew.


BB-63 - 04


Here's a bow-on shot.  For those of you who shy away from PE, you might be interested to know there are 4395 individual pieces of brass PE making up this ship.  This is from the two Pontos detail kits, various Eduard seta, and the PE that came with the ship.  As I finished a subassembly, I listed the parts on an Excel spreadsheet. (Yeah, call me anal!).  In case you're interested, the modal contains 6754 discrete parts:  1325 plastic pieces; 730 resin parts, and 305 other misc parts, aside from the PE.  If you hate PE, you might not want to detail it quite as much as I did!


BB-63 - 05


A lot of you have seen similar shots, but for those of you who haven't, here are a few pictures of the starboard side.  I'm not showing port side photos as the ship is mostly  the same on both sides.


BB-63 - 06


BB-63 - 07
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BB-63 - 08


BB-63 - 09


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BB-63 - 11


OK, now you can start to see some of the crew.  They are so small that you have to get in fairly close in order to make them out.


BB-63 - 12


BB-63 - 13


You all know that the Japanese surrendered on the deck of the USS Missouri in 1945.  Trumpeter has issued a surrender kit that simulates this event.  I have tried to duplicate this as best I could.


BB-63 - 14


More of the crew and officers:


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Here's a closer shot of the surrender site.  You can see people sitting or standing everywhere to watch the ceremony. 


BB-63 - 18


I've got more photos, but I have to take a break for a bit.  Real life calls (My wife!!).

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