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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 8:26 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2005 7:02 pm
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Location: Connecticut
I just started this kit and have this to offer. Personally I like this scale for displaying Submarine models..Not too large and not too small. The Kits layout seems to lend for future versions to come. Overall detail is fine and the instructions and parts breakdown look to be excellent. The hull welds are in scale and look good and not overdone. Deck detail is really nice and correct for early Gato.There is no freeflood ballast tank openings or scribing for these on the lower hull pieces.
Kit comes with both early type 3 and 4 inch deck gun options. Both guns are well detailed but kit instructions seem to be a little vague.. The 50 cal bridge gun looks good for the scale.Options for surface running and submerged running are given with the bow planes. Interestingly the seperate bow pieces have the early Gato limber hole design and there is anchor locations on both the Port and Starboard sides.. I rode a Balo Boat when I was in the Navy and I'm quite certain that even though originally designed to have 2 anchors I'm almost certain that no Gatos or Balaos ever had 2 anchors.

However this is a good feature being that all EB and Manitowic Boats had Starboard side anchors and all Portsmouth and Mare Island Boats had Port side anchors giving the modeler more boat options to model. But the short side of this feature is that Riich gives us no blanking plate for this anchor well..
Making one from card or filling the hole with putty etc is a good option but a plate made to size would make the filling job much easier and neater.. I know I'm getting picky. I will make a plate from plastic card.. ( less putty to use)
So you have the option of Port or Starboard anchors. There is a photo etch railing and name plate as well as four Mk 14 (or MK11 ??) torpedos which can be placed in the open torpedo tube option the kit has.
The black plastic base is strong and attractive looking. I will use kit display base.

Riich has also included a really nice OS2U Kingfisher floatplane molded in clear plastic and decals for the airplane and nice decals with flag and ensign and draft markings and hull numbers for USS Gato only.

This is just a open box review. And I am pleasently surprised with this kits promise.If parts breakdown is a clue then It does look like Riich has plans for later Gatos and I'm happy they chose this "Middle Scale to do these in. My Office at work is about to have a 1/200 scale Gato patroling my bookshelfs...

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"When you shoot at a Destroyer and miss. It's like hit'in a wildcat in the A-- with a banjo" !
Lt. Joe Willingham Skipper USS Tautog SS-199

Life is Good/ DBF
Walt


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 11:52 am 
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Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2006 11:27 am
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Location: Los Angeles, CA USA
Thanks for the review Walt. I too am looking forward to later configurations.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2012 9:49 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2010 7:17 pm
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I may have to see if I can get my hands on one of these even if "mostly" for the OSU so I can have a third for my 1-200 Arizona.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 11:05 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 3:50 am
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Location: North Pole, Alaska
I will have to check in my books but I think the first 3 or 4 EB Gatos had 2 anchors.


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