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 Post subject: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:45 pm 
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Hi Everyone,
This is my first Fletcher build DD-555. It's based on probably the worst Fletcher kit known to man the 1/125th scale Lindberg Blue Devil.

I'm doing a lot of scratch work to correct many of the kit's flaws. I,m using Toms PE, HR Porducts guns, Props by Gordon Briggs, and Lifecolor Paints. The kit will also be converted to RC.

Well here's where I'm at as of 3/4/12.
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I decided around the end of March 2012 to change the 5inch gun turrets. This is the revised turret. Go to page 3 to see all the changes I made to transform them. Which one do you like the best?
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The forward and midship deck meet at the Mast, that's how the Lindy Fletcher is. I am not sure if this is correct or not.
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Last edited by snaphappy321 on Tue Apr 10, 2012 9:21 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:51 pm 
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These next photos show how I reworked the aft 40mm mount.
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Kamikaze off the starboard, note that the twin 40mm is from the kit. I havn't received the guns from HR Products, they are the slowest vender I have ever delt with.
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Last edited by snaphappy321 on Tue Apr 10, 2012 9:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 7:11 pm 
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These next photos are of the midship compartment rework.
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I don't have the plan book from Floating Drydock. I'm using any original Fletcher photo I can find online. My work is not perfect and I don't claim it to be, but neither is the kit that I'm using. I'm doing my best and having a great time gluing and cutting my fingers along the way. The Haggard was painted Measure 21, here is a picture of the Lifecolor paint that I'm using.
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More to come, stay tuned in.

DD-555


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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 8:30 pm 
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Snap,

This is looking great, so far! :thumbs_up_1:

I've only seen one of these Blue Devil kits built (I've only been around for about 4 years) and it was at a contest in KC. If you need any further reference, I took photos of that build and they are posted here.............

http://s264.photobucket.com/albums/ii194/carlomaha/Model%20Fest%20-%20KC%202011/

I don't think you're in need of any help but, I hope that these pics are of some value to you.

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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:17 pm 
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Hi Carl,
Thanks for your words of encouragement, and thanks for the link. I will be sure to take a look.

DD-555 :wave_1:


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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:55 pm 
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Hey Carl,
I just checked out the link you gave me, some mighty fine work. I really loved the Osterbay Diorama, I'm a hugh PT Boat fan. I think that I've seen that diorama before. The Fletcher model looks ok, but the Lindberg kit is not a very good representation of the real thing. It's the same kit that I'm working with, but the person that built it really didn't change much, it's almost an OOB build. None of the Fletcher Class Destroyers ever had four port holes on the bridge, they all had five. That's the first thing that should have been corrected. I noticed that they probably used the same guns that I'm going to use.

Thanks DD-555


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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 10:49 am 
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Hello Roger,

Looks great so far. I'm not 100% certain, but I think the space between the forward and middle superstructures, where the mast is located, was open with walkway gratings used to span the gap. I never could find any clear photos of this area, but a few looked like there where grates in this location, one one each side of the mast. Maybe someone else here has better information on this.

Cheers,

Bill


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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:07 pm 
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Hi Bill,
I think your right about that, but like you say it's very hard to see because a lot is going on in that part of the ship. I think I'll post that picture in the main Fletcher page and ask Rick Davis if he can shed some light on the subject. I also posted those pictures on Lindy Fletcher as well.

Thanks
Roger


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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:14 pm 
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The first thing I modified from the kit was the bridge and the Mk 37 platform. I didn’t take a picture of the kit parts before performing plastic surgery, so unless you have built or seen an OOB build you would know just how far the kit is from an actual Fletcher.
Like I previously stated I’m using Tom’s PE, and these are some close ups of the Mk 12 and 22 radar I scratched. Tom’s PE is very nice, but the slots in the Mk 12 are not quite correct.
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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:20 pm 
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Next the Mk 37 Director with Radar.
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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:24 pm 
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The Mk 37 is almost complete, all it needs are the hand rails. I need a small drill bit before I can add them.
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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:16 pm 
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I'd love to finish off my big Fletcher one of these days. I'll be getting lots of tips looks like.

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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:16 pm 
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Hi Kevin,
What scale is your big Fletcher, and which one did you chose to build? I would like to build a more accurate Fletcher in 1/96 or my dream size would be 1/4 scale. For now I'm learning a lot that will help on my next build. My Grand father worked at the Boston Navy Yard during WWII. I would like to build one of the round bridge Fletcher that came out of Boston for the only reason that my grand father might have helped to build it. Thanks for looking at my build. :thumbs_up_1: :wave_1:

Cheers!!! Roger DD-555


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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:36 pm 
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Snap, I admire your courage even to attempt that beast of a kit. Your scratch work looks great. I wouldn't have either the nerve or the skill to even attempt it, and you appear to be pulling it off admirably. I'd love to see one of those kits built up to look really good and it looks like you are well on your way.

Bob

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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:43 pm 
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Hi Bob,
If you want to see about the best 1/125th Fletcher that started with the Lindberg kit and finished with a fiber glass hull, you should take a look at the Red Devil Squadron USS Mertz built by William Dunn :woo_hoo: . You can find his work in the gallery on this site.

Thanks, I really appreciate your words and checking out my build. About the only thing I'm not going to try fixing is the hull, that's out of my league at this time, but some day I would like to try to scratch build a hull. Anyway check back now and then to see my progress. :wave_1: :thumbs_up_1:

DD-555 Roger


Last edited by snaphappy321 on Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:48 pm 
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I like what I see! Just because a kit is dated doesn't mean you should throw it out. What you're doing here is a fine example of making the best of an old mold. I've always wanted to try building one of these big Fletchers, but a round bridge version. How easy do you find it to work with the large scale PE? I've never built anything this big before.

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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:57 pm 
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snaphappy321 wrote:
Hi Kevin,
What scale is your big Fletcher, and which one did you chose to build? I would like to build a more accurate Fletcher in 1/96 or my dream size would be 1/4 scale. For now I'm learning a lot that will help on my next build. My Grand father worked at the Boston Navy Yard during WWII. I would like to build one of the round bridge Fletcher that came out of Boston for the only reason that my grand father might have helped to build it. Thanks for looking at my build. :thumbs_up_1: :wave_1:

Cheers!!! Roger DD-555

I have both the big Lindberg kit, as well as the newer Revelll 1:144 version.

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30 years ago I started off with nothing, and I've still got most of it!


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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 10:28 am 
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Roger,

Very impressive work! I really like what you are doing with this kit. This kind of a project is not for everyone! Older kits, especially the Lindberg Fletcher, are great starting points for modelers that enjoy extensive modifications and scratch building. I experienced a lot of frustration and periodic project fatigue when I did USS Mertz from the Lindberg Fletcher, but overall I enjoyed the project very much. The kit hull is a real problem. Being such a large and prominent feature of the model, I tried to improve its shape, but finally gave up and used an accurate fiberglass hull I got from Hong Kong.

You probably already know this, but just in case be sure to modify the kit funnel parts by carefully increasing the slope of funnel top. The kit parts in profile have too flat of a slope to the top of the funnels and look funny. Have a look at some drawings or photos to see this more clearly. The funnels are one of the few parts of the Lindberg kit that look fairly accurate once this modification is made. You can go even further with more detailing of the funnels (hand graps, antenna struts, foot rungs,....) - have a look at the Mertz photos to get a better idea.

Cheers,

Bill


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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 11:45 am 
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Hi Dr Doom,
This may sound odd to you, but this is only the second time I have used PE. Also the Lindberg Fletcher that I’m building is the first time I have done this much scratch building on any kit in my life, and I have been building models since I was six years old. :smallsmile:

I was a machinist for many years though I no longer work in the trade. I have also helped my father remodel two of the three homes that he’s had, and in doing so I learned very valuable skills that I have put to use time and time again. Over the years I have had many hobbies such as: target shooting and reloading my own ammo, restoring cars, photography, and building models. About the only two I’m still doing is modeling and taking photos of what I’m building.

What ever I’m doing I apply all of my skills to the task at hand. Cutting the evergreen sheet plastic is the same as cutting sheet rock for walls in your house. I use a steel ruler from a combination square to cut against to score the plastic, then just fold it back just like sheet rock and it snaps off. Then I use a sanding block with 400 grit automotive wet dry sanding paper to smooth out the edge I cut. You will also notice a Vernier Caliper in some of my photos. I measure every thing I cut and if it’s too big or not parallel I will use the sanding block to bring it down to the size I need. The tools I use most for modeling are: a dremel, a pin vise to drill small holes and an assortment of X-acto knifes.

Like you have already mentioned, this is a good kit to start with. The most important thing to do is some research about the Fletcher Class Destroyer. You don’t have to buy any of the books that are for sale. I guarantee that many of the original WWII era photos you can find for free online are in the books you might purchase. I have found this to be true of the PT boats used by the US during WWII.

After looking at the real Fletcher take a look at the kit parts and you will see the need to do the same thing that I am doing. The kit screams for you to use Toms PE. Just look at the radar screens and the depth charge racks and you will see it for your self. Remember the kit is only plastic, if you make a mistake it’s easy enough to fix.

As for size of the PE or the kit, I think the bigger the model is the easier it is for me to build it. Although when building bigger kits you will find the need to add more detail to really make it look more realistic. There are many tools for bending PE. I use any thing that has a very square edge so the bend is square and not rounded. What ever I’m using to bend the PE on I hold it in a vise so I have both hands free to do the job. I find this is a big help.

Sorry this has been such a long answer to your short question, but it may help out many others that check out my build. :wave_1: :thumbs_up_1:

Roger DD-555


Last edited by snaphappy321 on Tue Mar 06, 2012 8:56 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: USS Haggard DD-555
PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 11:57 am 
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Hey Bill,
You know that your Mertz has been a great inspiration for me to go above and beyond what ever I had originally planned to do with this build. I am very pleased to have met you even if it has only been online. I can't thank you enough for the detailed pictures of your build that you posted on the Lindy Fletcher Group site. Those pictures are like a treasure. Every time I look at them I see things that I missed the time before. Your Mertz is about as close as you can come to the real thing. Thanks for following my build and as always check back from time to time. :wave_1: :thumbs_up_1:

Roger


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