Author Topic: DML 1:350th scale USS [Not] Dallas SSN What-If  (Read 154 times)

Offline Jeffry Fontaine

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DML 1:350th scale USS [Not] Dallas SSN What-If
« on: May 25, 2019, 07:33:44 AM »
Frank3K sent me a partially assembled USS Dallas that was one half of a two kit set, the other was the adversary Russian Navy Alpha Class SSN.  Certainly a vintage kit that was created to cash in on the Tom Clancy Techno-Spy thriller "The Hunt for Red October" that eventually saw a film based on the book starring Sir Sean Connery and the Phat Bastard Alec Baldwin.  Read the book when it came out, saw the film when it came out, it was okay but I was never that thrilled with the books or the films due to my own involvement in the intelligence community back in the day.  Still for the uninformed it was an okay film and book.  Anyway, Frank sent me the USS Dallas and Alpha class SSN models, both were partially built/assembled and I opted to do my part in sending the Alpha boat to the donation box and kept the Dallas.  As built in the bag that I received, the Dallas had the early flight bow with no VLS tubes or bow planes.  I wanted these features so I did some elective surgery and managed to get the better part of the VLS tube featured bow section mated to the rest of the hull, it still required a lot of filler and much sanding to get rid of some flaws that resulted from my face lift procedure.  Once the bow section was in place I attempted to adapt the kit provided bow planes for the later flight LA Class Boats but that failed so I filled in the voids and went to alternate plan B and started to close up each of the VLS holes with their respective hatches.  A PITA to be sure, big fingers and tiny parts are never a good match up and the end result was tiny hatches that did not fit flush with the hull, it had a severe case of pock marks that I attempted to fill in with putty and a lot more sanding.  There are still dimples over some of the VLS hatches but the paint hides many sins. 

The propeller is a bit on the flimsy side so I am going to wait until I have a place to display this model before attaching it.  I do have some PE propellers that could replace the flimsy kit provided propeller but that is yet to be determined. 

I decided early on that the sail/conning tower was not going to be a feature on this submarine and used only the top of the sail/conning tower and attached it flush with the hull.  Yeah, in real life that might create some serious hazards to the boat and navigation but I like the look.  I used the dive planes that were supposed to be fitted to the conning tower/sail as the bow planes.  They are about two-thirds the size of the bow planes that were intended to be fitted in that position and I like the smaller size as they look more suited for the purpose. 

So the attached images show the following:

001 - close up of the conning station now flush with the hull. 

002 - top view

003 - side view
"Every day we hear about new studies 'revealing' what should have been obvious to sentient beings for generations; 'Research shows wolverines don't like to be teased" -- Jonah Goldberg

Offline Frank3k

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Re: DML 1:350th scale USS [Not] Dallas SSN What-If
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2019, 11:29:27 AM »
I'm glad you're building this kit. This is an early DML kit and they weren't known for good fitting models back then, which is one reason I never finished it or the Alpha. The almost flush conning tower/sail is inspired!

Offline Jeffry Fontaine

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Re: DML 1:350th scale USS [Not] Dallas SSN What-If
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2019, 01:13:32 PM »
Yeah, I was surprised at the lack of detail when I compared it to the USS Greeneville kit in the same scale.  There is much more going on in the sail/conning tower of the Greeneville kit.  Figure for the time when DML introduced that kit the chance to inspect the real thing was probably hard to do but a coat of paint does wonders for any glaring errors :smiley:

My first thoughts on inspecting the kit were to somehow try and scale it up to 1:144 or 1:72 scale to make a small submersible craft of the type that is all the rage now for transporting special operations forces but opted instead to leave it at 1:350 and whif it up a little less.  I recall seeing an image of some kind of Russian SSN about the same size at the Alpha class without the conning tower/sail and that may have been the method behind my madness to build the LA Boat in a similar style. 
"Every day we hear about new studies 'revealing' what should have been obvious to sentient beings for generations; 'Research shows wolverines don't like to be teased" -- Jonah Goldberg

Offline Brian da Basher

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Re: DML 1:350th scale USS [Not] Dallas SSN What-If
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2019, 08:42:11 PM »
That looks sharp as a tack, Mr Fontaine!

No easy feat with this kit. I think I turned one into an airship many moons ago.

Very ship-shape indeed!
 8)
Brian da Basher