by: David J. Salvin [ ]
Originally published on:
"Crew-mate David J Salvin gives us a "Full Build" review of MAS Regia Marina's full resin offering, Italian Missile Cruiser Giuseppe Garibaldi 1957-1961."
One of the perks of taking work on commission, is that you get to build kits you wouldnít normally build for yourself. Such is the case with this commission which I took for the Italian post WWII hybrid (gun/missile)cruiser Garibaldi. I had never heard of MAS Regia Marina before.
The kit itself is resin with a small PE fret which includes railings. Unfortunately, the railings are too thick and thus way out of scale, and they didnít provide enough railing to go all the way around the ship.
In fact the PE fret is not brass, but rather stainless steel. Which is good for large components like the radar towers, but nearly impossible to bend the smaller details straight such as the stairs or finer points of the towers.
In fact, for the main front tower, there are two large platforms which fit over two pre-set supports, however, the part which the kit includes to make the platforms was too short. I had to scratch build the platforms to go all the way across to reach the second support. (Doesnít anyone build a kit before they send them out?)
The resin molding work itself is fair at best. It was probably a good kit when it first came out some time ago. However, next to the new generation of Japanese plastic kits or even the resin kits being produced by Com Brig or Admiralty Modelworks, the kit is a bit dated and rather "lumpy" looking.
The hull, superstructure and most of the major parts just werenít clean and sharp enough for my tastes. Several of the major parts such of the away boats and missiles were badly formed or damaged and had to be repaired or left off in the case of the missiles. However, no parts were missing, and the parts they did provide generally went together well without too much trouble.
Where this kit, like most resin kits, fails is in the directions. I have included scans of the instructions. The only other pages included poor quality photocopies of old black and white pictures of the original ship. Better than most which donít include any pictures of the ship, but how hard would it have been to make the pictures better before sending them out with the kit.
The instructions give the highlights to construction and assume the modeler knows exactly what to do and when to do it. Being in Italian, at least the instructions werenít in Japanese. I could at least make out most of the words (thank you high school Latin!).
Pretty much out of the box except for minor scratch building, substitution of Lion Roar railings for those provided in the kit and the brass rods for the secondary armament gun barrels and crane derricks. Rigging and vertical antennae were done with stretched sprue.
The highlight of the ship and also the kit is the large "greenhouse" glass roof on the upper navigation bridge. This gave me an opportunity to create the windows with Micro Kristal Clear glue. I think it turned out well. The ship is seen mounted to my customary plexiglass shipping platform with wood screws from beneath.
Overall a fair kit in comparison to other brands, but the only version of this particular ship I am aware of.