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In-Box Review
Battleship Oriol
The Russian Battleship Oriol
  • 100_31391

by: Frank [ WILDSPEAR ]

Originally published on:
Model Shipwrights


The battleship Orel was one of 5 ships in the Borodino class. The Borodino class of battleships came about in a unique way. The Tsesarevich was a French built battleship that served as a Russian flagship. The Russians agreed to buy the Tsesarevich after the “battle of the Yellow Sea” in 1904 with an understanding that they could build 5 more ships of this design but with more Russian standards. These 5 ships became the Borodino class.

The Borodino class set two records never to be repeated. They would be part of the longest coal powered journey ever conducted by the Russian battleship fleet by traveling 18,000 miles one way. Also they participated in the only decisive battleship fleet action ever fought, “Battle of Tsushima”. Also the Borodino class was considered the worst design ever for a battleship due to the “Tumblehome” hulls on the ships. Tumblehome hulls were unique because the hulls were wider at the bottom and narrower towards the top which lead the ships to be unsteady and top heavy.

Looking a little closer. . .

The first thing you notice when you look at the box is the name. The name of the kit is “Battleship Oriol” but the actual name of the ship is Orel . The box art is very nice and shows the Orel in battle while out at sea.
The box was very sturdy and the parts were molded in a light grey plastic. The parts were all contained on 9 sprue’s which held 394 parts (only 4 of those parts were loose). The kit had one small decal sheet with the ships name and a couple of emblems (all in gold) and one small sheet of paper flags.

Sprue A:
This is the main deck of the ship and this sprue also has the props of the ship.

Sprue B:
This Sprue has a multitude of different parts. It is the largest sprue in the kit. It has the secondary deck along with the bridge and many of the bulk heads (sides) of the deck. We also have some ladders, cranes, and some funnel parts on this sprue.

Sprue C:
This sprue has stack parts, prop shafts, the 305mm main guns, davits, and even outer doors for the 152mm guns which you can have open or closed. There are 2 sprue C’s.

Sprue D:
This sprue contains the two parts of the hull. There is very little flash on the parts and the molding is very sharp and crisp.

Sprue E:
This sprue has the life boats, the 152mm secondary guns, and the 47 – 75mm AA guns, and the anchors. The guns are molded fairly well and do depict the actual guns quite well. There are 2 sprue E’s.

Sprue F:
This is the base of the ship and they use the main part of the base as the sprue with the pedestals coming off of the side.

Sprue O:
This is the smallest sprue in the kit and it contains the stacks and a couple of other small parts.

Decal Sheet:

The decal sheet is simple, but effective, decent coloring, with the name of the ship in a couple of different sizes and also has a coat of arms, all gold colored.

Flag Sheet:

Again, quite basic, the flag sheet holds two ensigns of different sizes, made of paper. A little white glue and some slight manipulation should turn out a nice looking display!

Instruction Sheets:

The instructions are all on one big sheet folded into different sections. All the sprue is pictured along with corresponding letters and numbers. The instructions are very complete and easy to follow. The parts that are being worked on in each sectioned are shaded so you won’t lose your place. The instructions also have painting and rigging directions. All directions are in Russian and English.

Box Art

The box art is very nice and depicts the ship under steam and in battle. The side of the box gives a short history of the ship in six languages. Also the side of the box gives the paint needed (Model Master) and lists the kit length as 34.5cm.
Highs: The parts were molded very nicely with sharp crisp lines and little to no flash.
Lows: The decals and flags were the only down side to this great kit.
Verdict: Great kit with great history behind it. A must have gem for our pre-ww1 modelers.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:350
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Aug 14, 2007

About Frank (wildspear)

Hey guys been modeling since a kid but I had about a twenty year break so I'm pretty much a newbie on the scene. I have always loved navy ships and thats where my intrest is. I'm married with three boys and a tiny dog. I'm also a nuclear rat with a rifle so I have many interesting stories to tell if...

Copyright ©2021 text by Frank [ WILDSPEAR ]. All rights reserved.


Yes, this is a nice kit. BTW, BMK, produces some very nice turned brass barrels for the kit.
AUG 24, 2007 - 05:34 AM
That is a nice kit. Thanks for the review Frank.
AUG 24, 2007 - 02:15 PM
I have just recived this kit so I will let you know how I get on. On opening the box it looks very well made but as has been the said the flags let it down. However as far as I can see that is a small point on what should be a great project and a fine looking model wen finished.
JAN 04, 2008 - 06:35 PM
Hi David, Welcome to Modelshipwrights, mate! The Zvezda Borodino is a good kit, indeed, and yes the flag sheet is a bit crude, I do agree that this is but a small, and easy fix...she will build up into a fine looking showpiece, for sure...you can have your very own "Build Log" here at MSW and post your progress and photos "Blog Style" if you wish, just by checking the appropriate box when you are starting a new topic... Either way, have fun with your build, and do please keep us posted of your progress! Keep Modeling! ~Gunny
JAN 05, 2008 - 12:30 AM
nice review! and useful... I have that one in my stash, SprueBrothers.com had in on their naval bargain bin for 20$.... And very nice build too... will refer to your review and build many times when I get to build mine and only hope comes out a quarter as good as yours! Cheers, Jim
JAN 09, 2008 - 02:15 PM
I havent held the actual flags in my hand yt ,so I dont know just how bad they really are ,but I know when I opened Revells 1:72 U-boat I immediately thought "trashem..." but I kept them anyway. Near the end of the build I was looking at having a flag hanging limp from the pole ,so I thought ,"nothing ventured..." soaked the bejimineys out of it in a mix of glue and water,added a thread to hang it from ....folded it.like an accordion without the creases..manipulated it and it looks GREAT... I added oil paint shadows and highlights to the folds and I must say it looks smart.. I said it before and Ill say it again...many thanks for your help and the build is awesome youre doing
JAN 20, 2008 - 10:49 AM

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