Russian Kirov Class, Petr Velikiy, CGN-099, nuclear battlecruiser
The Russian Kirov Class nuclear powered Battlecruisers:
The official Russian designation of these ships is "heavy nuclear-powered guided missile cruiser", but because of their size and general appearance, the ships are referred to as battlecruisers in western media.
These are large vessels, each displacing 28,000 tons, over 825 feet long, a 94 foot beam and a draft of 30 feet.They carry a crew of over 700 personnel.
Kirov class vessels' main offensive weapons consist of twenty P-700 Granit (SS-N-19 Shipwreck) missiles mounted in vertical launch cells on the fore deck. These missiles were designed to engage large surface targets, like aircraft carriers. They have a range pf pover 300 miles, can travel up to Mach 2.5, and carry either a 1,700 pound conventional warhead, or a small 500kt tactical nuclear warhead.
Air defenses for the Kirovs varies according to ship, but generally consists of a main battery of twelve octuple S-300F launchers with 96 missiles. These missiles have a range of aprroximately 200 miles. Alos, generally a a pair of Osa-MA batteries with 20 missiles each are icnluded. Close in defenses are provided by 30mm AK-630 CIWS systems and Kashtin hybrid gun and missile CIWS systems.
The ships had some differences in other weapons suites: Kirov came with SS-N-14 ASW missiles, while on subsequent ships these were replaced with 9K331 Tor SAM systems. The Tor installation is in fact mounted further forward of the old SS-N-14 mounting, in the structure directly behind the blast shield for the bow mounted RBU ASW rocket launcher. Kirov and Frunze had eight 30 mm (1.2 in) AK-630 close-in weapon systems, while later vessels were mixed the Kashtan air-defence system in with the AK-603 weapons.
The main guns consists of an automatic, twin 130 mm (5.1 in) AK-130 DP gun mounted aft on all vessels except the Kirov, which had two 100mm main, DP guns. The vessels also include ten 21-inch (533-mm) torpedo/missile tubes capable of firing torpedos or the SS-N-15 ASW missile, and Udav-1 with 40 anti-submarine rockets in two sextuple RBU-1000 launchers.
Four vessels were built and put in service with the Soviet and then Russian Navy:
Another vessel was laid down, but never completed. After the fall of the Soviet Union, all three completed vessels were soon laid up, and progress on the outfitting of the fourth, the Petr Velikiy, languished for many years, but she was ultimately completed with more modern weapons and sensors than her three sisters.
That fourth vessel is currently the only active Kirov class cruiser, which is the subject of this model and also the current Flagship of Russia's Northern fleet. The third vessel is currently undergoing modernization and is scheduled to be completed in 2016 or 2017 and back in service in 2018 as the Flagship of the Russian Pacific Fleet. The first two vessels are currently laid up and have not been maintained for many years. They are not likely to be modernized and put back into service.
The Petr Velikiy, CGN 099:
Sincer her commissioning in 1998, she has been on a number of deployments:
August 2000 Russian Exerciese:
Petr Velikiy is the most modern of all of the Kirov class nuclear powered battlecruisers. Her sister ship, the Admiral Nahkimov, is currently being modernized to a similar standard. As such, they are likely to become the only two surviving Kirov class battlecruisers in servce, and will remain in service for upwards of 40 more years. Their specifications include:
Displacement: 28,000 tons (full)
Introduction and what's in the box:
The model is big, almost 30" long and it is very detailed.
When you open the box the first thing you notice is that the hull is in a large, single piece (that is for the major portion of the hull). It's not in two halves, it doesn't have an upper and lower portion, and there is no waterline version of this vessel possible unless you cut the hull at the waterline yourself.
Now, there are numerous parts that attach to the hull...but more on that later as we build.
You also see a portion of the box that is literally full of parts on plastic sprues, and one photo etch sprue, though there is a large section of the main deck that is a standalone part too.
There are fifteen plastic sprues. Twelve of them are molded in gray, while two are modled in clear plastic, and one is molded in clear and black plastic. Altogether there are over 750 parts included with the model.
The photo etch sprue contains 26 parts which are made up mostly of sensors, some safety netting, and the landing pad mesh for the helicopters. As I said, I have purchased Gold Metal Model's Kirov class PE set specifically for the 1/350 scale Trumpeter Kirov class cruisers, which gives all of the railing, other equipment, more sensors, and improves on the sensors provided by Trumpeter.
There is a very decent, 24 page instruction booklet with easy to follow, intuitive instruction about assembling the model. In addtion, the water-sldie decals are on a single sheet and include 54 decals for marking the vessel.
Finally, there is a full-color painting scheme for the vessel showing the vessel in three views in full color, showing where all the decals go and showing the paint colors for the model, called out in several supplier's part numbers.
Here is the box and it's contents:
Here is the paint scheme, the decals, and instruction booklet:
This looks like a very fun and detailed build. I have been waiting some time to put her together. She will be joined later by 1/350 sclae models of a Slava Class cruiser, a Udaloy class destroyer, a Soveremenny Class destroyer and an Akula II class nuclear attack submarine. I have already nuilt the new Russian Yasen class nuclear attack class submarine for this group. And of course, they will all be escorting the 1/350 scale Kuznetsov aircraft carrier for the Russians which will be the center pieces of this powerful carrier group.
The first thing I did was to assemble the several pieces necessary for outfitting the hull. This included the large bow sonar and other sonars and sensors along the hull, as well as stabilzor fins. it also included the shafts, shaft supports and the rudders.
The parts went together very well, with just some xacto knife and minor sanding to get any residual from the sprues off of the parts.
Then I began masking off and painting the hull. This involved insiginia red for the lower hull below the wterline, a white waterline stripe (which I have not completed yet and am considering a test run using thin, white vinyl tape), and the upper hull portions in a darker gray, which is called out as a Barley Gray for Tamiya and Humbrol colors which I do not have, but which is a very close match, surprisingly enough, for the Model Master Primer Gray that I do have...so I am painting all of the vertical surfaces for my Russian ships in that color.
In the next session I will get the waterline mark on the vessel and also get all of the main deck appropriately painted and detailed somewhat.
Okay, so I decided to give some of that white vinyl pin stripe tape a go for the white waterline mark on this vessel. It comes in a single role, 72" long, with several widths included. I figure I cna use thois for the Petr Velikiy, the Slava cruiser, VAryag, and the Udaly and Sovremmeny class DDGs, all with one roll...that is, if it works out alright.
So far it is looking good. I will need a little flat white touch-up paint at some of the joints at the bow and on the stern, but otherwise is looking very good.
Then it was time to complete painting the main deck. This involved the weatehr deck painting I am using, which is a mixture between Testors Flat Brown, and MOdel MAster Insignia Red. Did not end up with quite enough brown/orange, but it look pretty good just the same. Also used my Model Master Prime Gray for the verticval surfaces and the missile hatches. Quite a bit of detail painting work to get that right...and then the helo landing pad for Russia is a flat, dark green.
Once that was done, I let them dry and then glued the forward decks to the vessel, including one vertical wall between the helo deck and the main deck. I waited on the helo pad until getting the hanger completed. As a note, after researching this online, I have found that there are a number of changes that have been made in equipment arrangement on the decks of the Petr Velikiy since this model was made. Some of them are fairly straight forward and I will make them...others, more involved, which would require some soignificant alterations to some of the superstructure I will probably leave as is.
While the other decks dried in place, I assembled the helo hanger, and left one end open below decks with and extension to the hanger deck so I could show a KA-25 ASW helo partially onto the elevator, while I show another on deck. The helo hanger walls are pinted in flat-white. Once all of that dried, I glued it onto the stern helo deck and then added that to the vessel as well.
I also then assembled the main gun, which is a twin-barrel, rapid-fire, 130mm naval cannon that is a dual purpose weapon. It is capable of firing at shore and surface targets as well as being used as an anti-aircraft weapon. The gun mount is painted in the same gray as the vertical surfaces, and the gun itself the same, except for the barrel near the gun mount and the actual mechanism for changing the gun's elevation which I painted in a darker, Model Master Gunship gray.
Here's how all that looks now:
So, she's coming together nicely...but a LOT of work to do. lots of details with the parts supplied by Trumpeter and a lot of excellent detail in the Gold Metal Model's Kirov class PE set I have for this vessel.
This weekend is a three day holiday weekend, so I should have some very good progress to report next Tuesday.
I began this session by adding the details along the main deck from the aft section to the bow. Aft and amidships, this included the sixty-four SA-N-9 vertical vertical missile launchers, two RBU-1200 ten barrel 254mm Anti-submarine rocket launchers and numerous life raft stations and other blast deflectors and equipment.
Forward, it included two of the six Kashtin CADS-N-1 CIWS systems. Each of these is quite the assembly itself, consisting of fourteen parts to put together the housing, the two 30mm cannons, the eight missiles, and the onboard sensors for each unit. These close in weapons are quite effective, able to launch short range anti-missile missiles and shoot 30mm gatlin guns at incoming missiles. They each also have stores of 24 additional missiles in an autoloader beneath them. This necessitated the small deck housings for the Kashtin CIWS systems. These assemblies were somewhat intricate and require a llight and deft touch to assemble properly. Paint beforehand. I painted the housings the darker gray overall of the vertical surfaces, and then painted the gun barrels and even darker, model master gunship gray, and the missiles, a lighter, light ghost gray. You will need to use fine point tweezers to assist you in assembling these very small pieces once they dry.
In addition to thses systems, there is enclosed decking, a forward RBU-1000 twelve barrel 305mm anti-submarine rocket launcher, and other equipment. These are very heavily armed vessels. In these pictures you can now see how these weapons systems surround the twenty large vertical launch hatches for the SS-N-19 Shipwreck long range anti-shipping missiles, and forward of those, the twelve vertical launch hatches for the SA-6-N Grumble long range anti-air missiles, each of which contains eight missiles.
At this point, and because I had some extra time due to the long three day weekend, I turned my attention to the aft deck house. This structure includes numerous sensors, a viewing/control area for the helicopter deck landing, four more Kashtin close in weapons systems, and numerous soptlights, other small sensors, storage tanks, and equipment arranged along and on this structure.
Once again the Kashtin CADS-N-1 CIWS systems involved a good deal of time in assmbly. The small search lights and their platforms are also very small and intricate. As are the smaller radars and fire control equipment.
The portions of the deck house that include windows are molded in clear plastic. I prefer having these types of section molded in gray, with clear plastic windows to insert into cutouts. Trumpeter does this on some models, as do some of the other model makers, but, for whatever reason, on this model, they molded the entire portion of the deck house in clear plastic. I proceeded by painting the bulk of the section in the Model MAster primer Gray I am using for all vertical surfaces. I did not paint over the windowed areas. I then came back and on the inside of the windows, used FloQuil weathered black to paint the windows. After doing that (allowing the paint to dry inbetween of course) I then used one of my very fine brushes to paint on the outside of the part the window fram in gray. This worked out quite nicely as you can see on the aft end of the deck house for that control station.
Lots of parts (amd time) involved in this assembl6y, but it is well worth it. I will come back later and add what I call the "super" details which will consist of all of the Phot Etch (PE) sensors and antennae. As it is, right now, this assembly is looking very nice, expecially when dry fitted to the hull as in the last three pictures.
With all six Kashtins, this means that the Petr Velikiy has twelve very high rate of fire 30mm Gatlin guns and 48 ready missiles for close in anti-missile defense, plus another 144 missiles in reserve to be loaded through their autoloaders. That's very impressive close in defenses.
In the next session I will be working on the forward deck house.
Okay, in the last week I have worked on the main deck house (the forward deck house) and the main mast structure and all of their details. And there are a lot of them.
There are several levels to the main deck house and a lot of equipment, instrumentation, sensors, and viewing ports and windows on these decks. The main deck house rises five decks above the main deck on the Petr Velikiy, and the Main Mast structure rises another five decks higher still. Adding those decks, all of the equipment, including weapons, radars, fire control, life rafts, sensors, ranging instruments, and other sensors took a lot of time. Many of them were small, delicate assemblies of their own. Then their were numerous small windows and viewing ports , and the decks themselves that needed to be painted in their approriate colors as shown.
However, once that was done, this allowed the various parts of the main deck house and the main mast structure to come together very nicely as a whole:
Once the main deck house was assembled, that allowed me to complete all of the details of all of the dech house structures and then dry fit them together away from the ship, and then also dry fit them onto the ship itself. They are fitting together very nicely now and have completed the majpority of the structural build of the ship. They also have allowed the ship to come together and take on the real look of the Petr Velikiy as she appear in the russian Navy. But there is still much to do. As it is, here is how all of thos eparts look together now, both away from the ship, and together on her.
Now I have the fairly involved taks of putting together all of the photo etch work on this vessel. All of the main radars and sensors for the surperstructure are yet to be added, and they are quie involved. All of the railing throughout the vessel, and the webbing and netting for the helicopter landing pad too. Once that is completed, the decals will need to be added, before th final touch up painting will finish the vessel. All of that should take another two sessions.
Lots of intricate photo etch work this last week. The most intricate were the various radars and their mounts. There are numerous radars on the Kirov class cruisers and they vary from vessel to vessel, with the Petr Velikiy (this vessel) as the latest ship having the most modern fit. In this session I worked on the following larger radars:
The Russian Voskhod MR-800 (Top Pair) 3-D Search Radar:
Russiat Fregate MR-7600 (Top Plate) S-Band 3-D Search Radar:
Russian Topaz-V MR-302M (Strut Pair) 2-D Search Radar:
Russuan Topaz MR-320 (Palm Frond) Surface/Low-flying aircraft/missile Search Radar:
Getting these radars added properly in photo etch parts adds significantly to the authentic look of the vessel in scale as opposed to the plastic parts that come with the kit. There are a few of the radar dishes that the Trumpeter kit includes in photo etch, and I did use a couple of them, but I prefer the Gold Medal Models Kirov Class 1/350 scale photo etch kit that is made specifically for the Kirov class and includes the varuious radars and their mounting hardware that are used on each of the four vessels. These parts are much more detailed...and also much more difficult to assemble.
I started with the landing netting for the helo deck. This is included in both the Trumpeter kit and the Gold Medal Models kit, but the Gold Medal Models part is much more detailed and outlines the actual landing markings on deck, so I used that one.
Then it was on to the main 3-D Volume search radar, the Top Pair radar...and also the 2-D air and surface search radars mounted on the main mast, the Strut Pair radars.. I carefully cut out each of their mounting brackets, bent them appropriately to shape, then cut out their dishes, antennae, wave guides, etc., assemnbled them, and then used the Epoxy/Super glue to put them together and then onto the main mast. I also assembled and added the Palm Frond radars on either side of the upper main mast during this step.
Once these were complete, it was time to move to the second mast and add the 3-D Top Plate radar, replace the plastic yard arm, and add the four ECM/Sensor platforms to that mast.
I also was able to add the four inclined ladders to the various levels of the main deck fore and aft, and the safety netting around the helicopeter landing deck aft. Once this was done I added three antennae masts (one forward and two amidships) and then took a few pictures of the various photo etch details with the three major deck assemblies once again dry fitted to the main deck:
That is really starting to look good!
I hope in the next week to get all of the final plastic parts (ships launches and their davits and a few more details), all of the photo etch railing, and a few final details added to the vessel, along with the decals. If I can do all of that, I can finish the vessel this week. If I can, I will end up four weeks start to finish on her, and that will be pretty good time.
Well, a lot of time has passed. More than I usually like to see. But I got really side tracked with the Sochi Olympics, and then the situation in the Ukraine with the Maidan Protests and the entire Crimea situation, and finally the loss of Malaysian Airline Flight MH-370, all took my attention. But finally now, I have gotten back to the Petr Velikiy.
There was quite a bit to do.
First, there was the massive amaount of photo etch railing required for the vessel. Kirov class nuclear cruisers have a lot of main deck railing over their massive length, and then a lot of secondary and auxilliary decks throughout the vessel. I am using the Gold Metal Model's Kirov class PE set specifically for the 1/350 scale Trumpeter Kirov class cruisers, and I highly recommend this set. It has the various railings for the main deck and all of the other decks. You just have to careffully cut it to fit and then either using a PE bending tool, or your tweezers or other tools to bend the railing to fit.
It toook me several days of work, in the evenings and on the weekends to accomplish this, but the look is very good indeed.
I also assem;led and painted the various launces fot the vessel. This consists of two larger launches and a smaller launch under each crane on either side. The crane assamblies were put together too at this tage and you can see how the cranes and the launches, look together with the railing in the following pictures.
I also needed to do the props on the vessel. The vessel comes with four bladed propos which are not correct for the Kirov class cruiser. They have five blade props. Luckily, the PE set from Gold Metal Models includes two five bladed propos. You have to bend these to the appropriate angles (and I recommend doing that while they are still attached to the Sprue), and then cut the plastic blades off of the Trumpeter part and glue these new props to the resulting prop housing. This results in a very decent set of five-bladed props for the ship.
Once all of this was completed it was just a matter pof putting the decals on. Not too many decals necessary for the vessel, partuclarly since I painted the helo landing markings on the aft helo pad by hand. Pretty much the vessel name, it's pennant number, and a few other identifying decals.
Once the decals were completed, it was time to give the vessel it's two coats of dull coat and then get the overall pics and a few detail pics.
She is looking very good. I intend to build and detail a cople of Ka-25 ASW helos later. One for the landing pad and another in the hanger.
I will also do some pics comparing the Kiov Class to the modenized Iowa Class. Though the Iwoa class are now (gain) in reserve status and all laid up as museum (and will probably never sail again, despite US law maintiaining them), there has always been a lot of interest in the two classes and how they might have faired if ever pitted against one another. I will compare this Petr Velikiy and my USS New Jersey when that time comes.
Now, I will take another break from the Russian group and build the new PLAN Type 052D destroyer I got, the DDG-172, , which I will add to my PLAN Carrier Group. Then it will be back to the russian Group with a UDaloy II DDG and then the Carrier, the Kuznetsov.
The completion of the PLAN Carrier group was 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 was 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 completion of the UK Group featured the Airfix 1/350 scale HMS Illustrious, R06 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 Royal 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 is centered on Heller's 1/400 scale Charles De Gualle, R91. 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 D612 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 completion of the Japanese JMSDF group was centered on Fujimi's very finely detailed, 1/350 scale Hyuga, DDH-181. 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 Kirov Class nuclear battle cruiser (CGN), the Peter the Great, by Trumpeter (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), all 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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