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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 4:03 pm 
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Location: Peoria AZ
To me the Alaska CB-1 is one of the most attractive ships in the USN during WWII. I also accept the absurdity of the battlecruiser type. However, if the Alaska could have been modified prior to her deployment to be a carrier escort large cruiser, perhaps her utility during WWII would have been worth her cost.

The modification I made was to eliminate the midships aviation (cat, cranes, planes and hangar) and replace them with a pair of twin 5"-38's and two more 5" directors. I also reduced and simplified the midships 20mm. I think this makes her significantly more valuable as a screening ship than either a heavy cruiser (4 more 5" and 2 more directors and lots more 40mm) or a North Carolina / South Dakota BB (SPEED).

Since I knew I was going to make a mess of the ship, Ted Paris of ISW agreed to sell me the PE and loose pieces. The hull and much of the superstructure was scratchbuilt. The picture below shows progress to date, most everything is roughed out. Am interested in comments, pro or con.

Jim


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 4:41 pm 
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Pretty interesting idea, Jim. I'm assuming your hull is wood, just like your Enterprise?

Looks good so far!

I always thought Alaska and Guam were pretty handsome ships as well.

Can't wait to see more progress pics!

Bob


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 10:00 pm 
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Your an artist Jim. I can't wait to see this one completed. :wave_1:


Bob Pink.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:08 pm 
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Excellent as usual, very interesting concept. I will be watching closely.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2008 9:44 pm 
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I like the concept, quite interesting... Though I have to say, the mid deck just looks a little bare. Though I might guess that technically in that setup she could bring eight guns on her broadside for AA fire. Why not go for broke and use 5-54's if she's supposed to do screening duty? The added range would be a benefit. Just a random thought.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 5:37 am 
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You're gonna have a heck of a fleet Jim!!
:thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1:

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 9:34 am 
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Location: Peoria AZ
Bob - Yes the hull is wood, the belt is styrene and the wood decks are evergreen scribed sheet. I have built several ships with a wood hull (Enterprise, 2 CVL, Baltimore, Wichita and Colorado) with an appearance that I think is as good as resin or styrene.

Sauragnmon - My scenario is that the Pacific command met in January 1943 to come up with lessons learned from the Guadalcanal campaign. One fact that had to "shake" them was the treaty cruiser losses. One action to improve the "survivability" of this group was to remove all midships aviation and put 2 twin 20mm on the cat tower stubs (less chance of fire, weight reduction in a seriously overweight group and improvement in AA). Concerns about loss of capability were mitigated by the existence of the Brooklyn's, Cleveland's and Baltimore's, which because aviation was located at the stern, would be unchanged.

This line of thought was extended to the forthcoming Alaska class ships and resulted in a statement of intent to use these ships solely as carrier screening ships. They were not to be commerce raiders nor protectors of the now defunct battle line. In their role in carrier screen there was no need for aviation on these ships and they would be much better served with additional 5"-38 guns and directors. Remember the Alaska was laid down 12/41, launched 8/43 and commissioned 6/44, there was time for all the modifications I made but the 5"-54 was not an option - it did not exist. The 5"-54 also adds serious weight problems.

The "bareness" of the midships area will be mitigated to some extent by the presence of the ship boats - moved from the sides of the aft superstructure because of the large crane removal. I may move the practice loader to this area also. A simple boom will be added forward of the funnel.

I truly believe that this modification is a "should have been" based on knowledge and capability that existed early in 1943.

Jim

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2008 10:13 pm 
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Can't wait to see her finished Jim, superb job soo far :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1:


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2008 8:21 am 
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Jim,

Any new photos to share?

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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2008 9:46 am 
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Martin, thanks for asking. I had to put the Alaska away for a while. March is "High Season" here in the Phoenix area (70's - 80's with SUN) and had a few waves of visitors. I work on the dining room table, thus the ship had to go.

The time was not wasted. I have a small table in my bedroom. I started on a job that was gestating for a long time and which took very little space, the conversion of 4 Trumpeter England's to the 4 Butler's of Taffy 3. The plans were on 1 8 1/2 x 11 sheet. The largest wood part was under 2 inches. Once I started I could not stop, the small ships were fun after all the "big" projects. Just finished yesterday, shot some pictures, and decided the black rigging needed a redo. I will post some pics in the "Calling all ship fans" area - a new listing for the Butler - Rudderow ( 5 inch + low pilot house) classes.

Then it is "Back to Alaska"
Jim

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PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 11:59 am 
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Finally done, I do like the hull lines of this ship more than any other I made.


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MVC-177F.JPG
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MVC-179F.JPG
MVC-179F.JPG [ 135.31 KiB | Viewed 1663 times ]

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PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 12:02 pm 
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I like comparisons. The last treaty heavy cruiser, the first "unfettered" heavy cruiser and the Alaska.


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PostPosted: Sat May 31, 2008 1:20 pm 
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Beautiful work, Jim! Love it. And the side by side comparison is cool.

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