My Review and Build of Trumperer's 1/350 scale Kit #04539,
JMSDF DDG-110 Takinami, Guided-missle Destroyer

Last Updated: Final Details, Railing, Helicopter, Complete - September 11, 2013 <-- Click to go directly there

Introduction and What's in the Box - August 14, 2013

Overview - The JMSDF Takinami Class:
The Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) is continually updating and modernizing its naval forces. Each class serves no longer than its service life and is then replaced with new calasses of vessels. This is the case with the five Takinami class guided-missile destroyers which were built by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) and IHI Corporation between 2000 and 2004. They are an improved version of the Murasame Class destroyers. The Takinami Class has a slightly heavier displacement over the Mursami and is also fitted with larger main gun and more advanced fire control system and sonar system. The power plant is based on four dual-axis gas turbine propulsion system.

The Takinami Class is equipped with OYQ-9 CDS (combat direction system). OYQ-9 CDS consists of AN/UYK-43, AN/UYK-44 and AN/UYQ-21 workstations. The maritime operation force system onboard provides enhanced network capability to the ships.

The Takinami Class destroyers are fit with an Mk48 VLS (vertical launching system) for Evolved Sea Sparrow surface-to-air missiles. The Mk41 VLS installed on the ship can fire RUM-139 VL ASROC (anti-submarine rockets) as well. The Type 90 (SSM-1B) anti-ship missile onboard carries a 260kg warhead for a maximum range of 200km. The ship has two triple-mount Type 68 anti-submarine torpedo tubes, firing six Mk46 ASW torpedoes. The main gun fitted forward is an Oto Melara 3 (now Oto Breda) 127mm, 54 calibre, compact gun. It can fire 40 rounds a minute at a range of 30km. The range can be extended to 100km with guided VOLCANO ammunition. The close in air defence is provided by two Phalanx 20mm close-in weapons system (CIWS) mounted on the vessel. The Phalanx CIWS is used to defend incoming anti-ship missiles and low flying aircraft.

Sensor consists of OPS-28D surface search radar, OPS-24 3-D air-search radar and OPS-20 navigation radar. The OPS-28 is the Japanese equivalent of the American TAS Mk 23. The ship is also fitted with OQS-5 bow mounted medium frequency sonar and OQR-2 TASS (towed array sonar system).

The Takinami Class has an aft helicopter deck and hangar to allow the operations of a single SH-60J ASW helicopter. The embarked helicopter is deployed in anti-submarine patrol missions.

Five vessels were built. The JS Takinami, DDG-110, the JS Onami, DDG-111, the JS Makinami, DDG-112, the JS Sazanami, DDG-113, and the JS Suzunami, DDG-114. These are powerful multi-mission destroyers that are especially geared towards anti-submarine warfare. As such, each of these destroyers has the following specifications:

Displacement: 4,650 tons
Length: 495 feet
Beam: 57 feet
Draft: 17.4 feet
Speed: 30+ knots
- 2 GE LM2500 gas turbines
- 2 Rolls Royce SM1C gas tuurbines
- 2 Shafts
Crew: 550
Aircraft: 1 SH-60J ASW
- 1 x 127mm DP Gun
- 1 X 32-cell MK-141 VLS (ESSM & VL ASROC)
- 2 X 20mm Phalanx CIWS
- 2 x 3 324mm Torpedo tubes

Takinami Class destroyers serve ably as task force escorts for vessels like the Hyuga Class DDH ASW helicopter aircraft carriers, or the Osumi calss LPD amphibious assault vessels. Thye perfomr anti-submarine patrol duties in such escorts and may also perform close-in anti-air defense. They also serve as a part of destroyer flotillas and surface action groups to either perform seperate ASW duties, or surface warfare duties.

JS Takinami, DDG-110:
JS Takanami (DD-110), is the first in class and was laid down in April 25, 2000, launched July 26, 2001, and commissioned into the Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force on M In her ten year career she has served as an escort of high value Japanese vessels, has served and exercised with other Japanese destroyers and frigates as part of ASW groups, and has served in numerous allied nation exercises (particularly woith the US Navy) conducting anti-submarine warfare and escort exercises.

JS Takanami, along with the destroyer Kirishima and supply ship Mashu was initially assigned to the Indian Ocean in August 2004 to provide assistance to anti-terrorist coalition forces in Afghanistan as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. On her return voyage to Japan in December 2004, the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami struck, and she was diverted to Thailand to participate in international rescue and recovery operations.

On 13 October 2009, Takanami, along with the destroyer Hamagiri, was dispatched to the coast of Somalia to participate in anti-piracy escort operations. From November 7 to February 20, 2010 she undertook 34 sorties, escorting 283 vessels safely. She returned to Japan on March 18, 2010.

Takanami was also one of many in the JMSDF fleet participating in disaster relief after the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.[2] She arrived at Ishinomaki, Miyagi the day after the disaster, rescuing 32 people.

On 11 October 2011 Takanami was dispatched to Aden, Yemen together with the destroyer Onami, to resume anti-piracy escort operations off the coast of Somalia. The context for this extended deployment off the Horn of Africa was the "Law on the Penalization of Acts of Piracy and Measures Against Acts of Piracy (Anti-Piracy Measures Law)". She returned to Yokosuka on 12 March 2012 and is currently assigned to the Sixth Squadron of the JMSDF Escort Flotilla 2.

What's in the Box:
The 1/350 scale Trumpeter model of the Takinami Class, kit #04539 is an exccellet, detailed depiction of the vessel. It is molded in gray and clear plastic, and comes with a very good set of photo etch metal parts. Trumpeter is very well known for its quality producs and modern manufacturing techniques.

Inside the box, you find that this is a full hull model (no waterline option other than to cut it) molded in a single part. There is a full length deck to match to it. Bpoth are molded well and have accurate details. Very little flash or extra plastic left over form the molding process.

There are 10 sprues of gray plasic parts, 1 sprue of clear plastic parts (the helicopter) and two sprues of photo etched parts. The photo etched parts include the sensors, netting, vents, and all railings needed for the vessel so no after market photo etch set is necessary to complete this model.

A very good set of waterslide decals with over 50 decals is included which covers all of the flight deck markings, all of the helo markings, and the pennant numbers and various hull and superstructure markings. There is a very nice full-color sheet of the Takinami in multiple views for painting, including several of the most common paint suppliers part numbers for the paint.

The instruction sheet is, as is the case with all newer Trumpeter models, very intuitive and well laid out.

Here is the box and the overall contents

This looks like it will be avery good build and a great addition to my JMSDF Carrier group cenbtered on the JS Hyuga, DDH-181, that I recently completed.

The Build: Hull parts, Painting and Deck Houses - August 19, 2013

With my ship models I am always somewhat torn or undecided when ot comes to the initial hull and painting it. Do I add the props, rudders, supports, fins, and any sonar dome first, before painting? If I do I risk having them get brolke off as I work with the model later. Or, do I put those on last, pre-painted, and then touch up the glueing etc? The best look is to do it before and then paint them all together. The best safety is to do it last. Thise time I chose to do it first. So, I assembled and glued the props, their supports, the rudders, the stablization fins, and the sonar dome on first, as shown:

This came off nicely. So then I masked the below the water line portion and painted it (I decided to us the same Tuskuny Red I had used on the JS Hyuga, DDH-181, then masked off the water line mark for flat black, and then the upper hull above the water line in neutral gray.

I then painted the main deck in its flat gray, and built the main gun, a 125mm (5") gun and mounted it, making it capable of turning (main gun painted in neutral gray, with the inner gun shroud a gunship gray). At that point, once it had all dried (and there was drying for at least 3 hours in betweeen each hull painting), I then added the main dek and it turned out as follows:

Then it was on to assembling all of the deck houses. There are many sections for this for the Takanimai Class DDG. You have the forward small deck house that contains the Mk-42 VLS cells, with the forward Phalnx 20mm CIWS mounted just aft and above it. Then you have the large bridge structure. Aft of that you have the first smoke stack exhaust for two og the gas turbines, then there is a small structure, followed (further aft by a large join structure that contains the aft smoke stack exhaust for the other two gas turbines, and the hanger deck with the after Phalanx 20mm CIWS atop it.

This involved quite a bit of tedious work. Painting them all, the vertical parts in nuetral gray and all the weatherdecks in flat gray. Painting the inside of the helicopter hanger in a very light gray. In addition, good joints are formed on all of these enclosures with angled ends to the walls and decks at their joints. it is critical after carefully cutting each of these pieces off of the srpues, to then use either your exacto knife or sand paper, or your dremel tool to ensure you have a flush finish on all of these mating surfaces, and on the bottom of the walls where they meet the deck so they all fit together flush. I have become quite adept at using my Xacto knife for this. It's the fastes and can give just as good a finish and surface as either sand paper or my dremel tool for the purposes of making these joints.

So here are some pictures of all of that taking place for the major structural portions of each of these deck houses with the last two pictures showing them dry fitted to the hull and main deck.

There are literally hundreds of pieces left in details for the main deck and for each of these deckhouses, not to mention a very detailed, and complicated, main mast for the vessels with all of its sensors. I inetedn to do the main mast for the necxt session, put the main deck decals down, and then attach each of the main deck houses and the main mast. After that I will detail them all up. Lots of PE parts included for the vents and sensors, as well as the railing for this vessel.

The Build: Deck House details, Main Mast, Decals - August 26, 2013

Another week gone by and numerous more after-work/evening hours spent on the Takanami Class DDG escort.

I started by adding several details to the forward deck house and aft, above the haner. These consisted of various sensors and domes as well as both Phalanx CIWS.

Then it was on to the main mast. This is a fairly intricate assembly made up of numerous parts (about 60 in all) and they are small, delicate parts that one has to exercise care in removing from the sprues and then in handling.

There are two parts, the lower and uppoer portions, and they are failry intricate structural pieces with numerous angled supports on all four sides as opposed to the newer integrated masts the JMSDF has moved to with its Hyuga, Izumo, and Akizaki (which is a futher upgrade of this class) vessels.

This was a several day process. You have to let these small sub assemblies dry before moving on and attempting to then add them to other assemblies. But in the end, it is looking very nice. still a bit of PE railing to add to the main mast.

Once this was completed, it was time to add the decals to the main deck.

The Takiname cclass (and it's forerunner the Murasami class) have long main decks with walkway markings from fore to aft, and then a rather intricate helo landing marking scheme.

It is important to add these before glueing the deck houses dow. trying to add them afterwards would be very difficult if not impossible to do and have it look good. In addition, many of these decals are long, narrow decals, with various bends and crossing portions. I cut each of those into at least two pieces because my experience has been that it is better to cut them and apply them on your terms, then to have them break (which they would almost invariably do for such long, individual decals).

Here's how they went down:

Once these were down and dried, I then dry fit the deck houses back to the deck and took a few pictures for how the vessels is beginning to look.

Looking very good indeed. Lots of details (SSM launchers, torpedo tubes, more sensors, etc.) still to add. Then the railing. I hope to get to both of these this week and come very close to finishing her, if not doing so.

The Build: Final Details, Railing, Helicopter, Complete - September 11, 2013

There were still numerous small details to add to the deck houses and to the weather decks. Trumpeter provides a myriad of details to all of its newer 1/350 scale model vessels, and the result is very nice...but it is also very time consuming. Between that, and the railing 9which I will speak of momentarily, I spent about two wereks on this final portion of the model. Now, granted I am just working in the evenings and at this time of year have a lot of other stuff on my plate...but it is something that takes time if you are going to get them all these parts added properly. These included the davits and ship's launches, the life raft stanchions and life rafts, numerous antennae, PE vents around the smoke stacks and superstructure, etc.

Once these were all in place it was time to add the railing. The kit comes with a complete railing set. These rails are extremely light guage and easy to bend improperly. I found myself having to "fix" numerous bends in the railing that the seemingly lightest touch could create. They look very nice, but be aware of this should you get this kit, the PE railing is very delicate. These parts are not like with some kits where the railing has been cut specifically for particularl locations. You have to cut these to fit. Also, there are different railings for the main weather deck (5-rail) and the secondary, auxillary and upper decks (4-rail). At long last, howerver, I got that completed, and then built the SH-60K ASW helicopter. It is a very well done helo with all of the additional sensors and decals to mark the helicopter up properly. Here are some pictures of all of this completed, including the heicopter in the last photo without its rotors added.

Now it was time to complete this baby. This included touch up work for painting, Photo Etch corrections, and insuring that all of the plastic parts and details were in good shape. It also involved adding a few final parts like the propellers and final details. Once this was completed (another day or two), I let everything dry real well over night. Once that was done, I applied a couple of final coats of dullcoat to normalize the finish. when adding the railing in particular, even though you work had to apply as thin a bead of glue as possible, that glue finish is just different than the paint underneath it and the dull coat serves to normailize all of that...particularly after a couple of coats. Once that was done, it was just a matter of setting it up anbd taking the pictures.

And, as I nomally do, here are a few picturs of some of the detail:

And so, my first escort for the JS Hyuga is now complete and my foirst Takanami class is built. I have a Kongo Class DDG, an Atago Class DDG, and another Takanami to go. But before I do that, and since it is a short week, I inted to build the JMSDF SS-503, Hakuryu, diesel electric submarine to go with this group. it is one of Japan's newest Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) diesel electric submarines, and one of the most advanced diesel electrics in the worl.

SCHEDULE for Future Activities - September 11, 2013

  1. By Nov 15, 2013: Complete the JMSDF Kauryu, SS-503, and a Kongo AEGIS DDG.
  2. By Dec 31, 2013: Start the French Carrier Group centered on Heller's Charles de Gaulle with two DDGs and an FFG.
  3. By Feb 31, 2014, Start the Russian Carrier Group centerd on Trumpeter's Kuznetsov with two DDGs and an SSN.
  4. By Apr 31, 2014, Start the US Navy Amphibious Ready Group centered on the Gallery USS Wasp with an LHD, an LPD, a DDG, a SSN and a LCS.

The completion of the PLAN Carrier group, centered on the already completed Trumpeter's 1/350 scale PLA Navy's Aircraft Carrier CV-16, Liaoning, (in addition to the other escorts already completed) included Mini Hobby's's PLAN Guangzhou, DDG-168. I recently pre-ordered a 1/350 scale model of the PLAN Type 071 LPD, Yuzhao Class, announced by Trumpeter and due out in October, 2013. I will end up adding two of those, propbably LPD-998 Yuzhao and LPD-999, Jinggangshan, add the PLAN- DDG-139, Ningbo, and the PLAN DDG-115, Shenyang, along with the PLAN Weifang, FFG-550 and thus build a PLAN ARG.

The completion of the US Carrier Strike group, centered on the completed Tamyia's 1/350 scale USS Enterprise, CVN-65, (in addition ot the other escorts already completed) included Trumpeter's, USS Freedom, LCS-1, Dragon's USS Preble, DDG-88 and Hobby Boss's USS Texas, SSN-775. When a 1/350 scale USS Enterprise, CVN-80 (or any Gerald R. Ford Class) is released from Trumpeter, Tamiya, Dragon, or whomever else, I will add it to this group along with another AEGIS Cruiser. Whichever Ford Class coms out in 1/350 scale, I will build it as the USS Enterprise, CVN-80.

The US ARG will include Tamiya's 1/350 scale, USS Iowa, BB-62 (which I have already completed), Trumpeter's 1/350 scale USS Iwo Jima LHD-7, Gallery's 1/350 scale USS Sommerset, LPD-25, Bronco Models 1/350 Scale USS New York, LPD-21, Cyber Hobby's USS Independence, LCS-2, Acadamy's 1/350 scale USS Rueben James, FFG-57, and another Flight IIA US AEGIS class detroyer based on Trumpeter's 1/350 scale USS Lassen, DDG-82...all of these models which I already own.

The UK Group is (as shown) featuring the Airfix 1/350 scale HMS Illustrious as its centerp[iece until a 1/350 scale Queen Elizabeth carrier is released. When that happens, I will add that carrier to the group as its centerpiece. The Roylal NAvy CSG will also include two Airfix 1/350 scale Daring Class DDGs (one of which is already completed), two Trumpeter 1/350 scale Type 23 HMS Duke class Frigates (one of which is already completed), and the Hobby Boss 1/350 scale HMS Astute SSN (which is also already completed) and Airfix 1/350 scale HMS Tragalgar SSN. One day, when a 1/350 scale HMS Ocean LPD come out, I will use tt to start building a Royal Navy ARG.

The French CSG will be centered on Heller's 1/400 scale Charles De Gualle (which I already own). I have purchased the 1/400 scale Heller French De Grasse, D612 DDG, which is an ASW DDG, the French Duquesne, D603 DDG which is an anti-air multi-purpose DDG, and the French Aconit F713 FFG and Gueprattet F714 FFGs, both of which are Lafayette class frigates. These five vessels will round out my French CSG. As soon as a French Robin class nuclear sub, like the French Perale S606 SSN is released in 1/350 or 1/400 scale, I will add that to the group. Also as soon as the Forbin D620, Horizon class anti-air DDG is released in 1/350 or 1/400 scale, I will purchase two of them and replace the De Grrasse and Duquesne with them, and then save those two for when a Mistral Class LPD is released in 1/350 or 1/400 scale so I can create a French ARG with those vessels.

The Japanese JMSDF group will be centered on Fujimi's very finely detailed, 1/350 scale Hyuga, DDH-181, which I own. It will be escorted by Trumpeter's 1/350 scale DDG-177, Atago, an AEGIS class DDG and the JMSDF, DDG-174, Kongo class (which I own), Trumpeters's 1/350 scale DDG-114 Susunami and DDG-111 (both of which are Takinami Class DDGs which I own), and by the 1/350 scale SS-503 Hakuryu (which I own), one of Japans new, very modern and capable AIP Diesel Electric submarines. As soon as a DDG-115 Akizuki in 1/350 scale is released, I will add it to this group. Should a 1/350 scale Osumi Class LPD be relased, I will buy two of those vessels and create a JMSDF ARG.

Then, finally it will be a complete Russian CSG (centered on Trumpeter's Kuznetsov which I own) the Russian Slava Class cruiser, Varyag by Trumperter (which I own), two Trumpeter 1/350 scale Udaloy DDGs (which I own), Hobby Boss's Akula II class SSN (which I own), and the new Yasen class Russian SSN which I own in 1/350 scale. Some time in the more distant future when a 1/350 scale Russian version of the French Mistral class comes out (which is building in real life right now), I will add two of those and build a Russian ARG.

Recently I purchased Heller's 1/400 scale Foch, the Clemceau Class carrier that was sold to the Brazilians in 2000 and in 2002 was refitted and became the Brazilian CV, Sao Paulo, using steam catapaults. I will build the model as the Sao Paulo and thus start a Brazilian group, though the Type 22 DDGs and the FFGs the Brazilians use are not available at present. I have however purchased a set of 1/400 scale A-4 Skyhawks and S-3 Trackers to build a suitable airwing for the Sao Paulo.

Then, again, once the models are available, I'd like to build an Italian Carrier Strike Group centered on the Cavour and their Horizon DDGs, a Spanish Carrier Strike Group centered on the Juan Carlos and their F-100 AEGIS FFGs, and ultimatly an Australian Strike Group centered on the new Canberra Class LPD and the Hobart class AEGIS DDGs. If they ever build the models, an Indian Carrier Strike Group centered on either the Vikramaditya or their new ADS Carrier, the Vikrant, and their Kolkata class DDGs and Shivlak class FFGs would also be nice.

Years more worth of work!

You can see all of these actual carriers, read their histories and specifictions at my site:


...and most of their surface escorts at:


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