Bronco Models 1/350 S-100 Class Schnellboot Kit First Look
|Date of Review||March 2009||Manufacturer||Bronco Models|
|Subject||S-100 Class Schnellboot||Scale||1/350|
|Kit Number||5004||Primary Media||Styrene, PE|
|Pros||Nicely detailed kit||Cons|
|Skill Level||Intermediate||MSRP (USD)||$19.98|
The S-100 class of German Navy fast attack boats (schnellboot) trace back to an advanced yacht built in 1927. The design was capable of 34 knots, and with its round-bottom hull and 22-ton displacement, demonstrated great seaworthiness in the sometimes adverse seas of the North Sea and the English Channel. The German Navy had a similar boat built for trials, but also included two torpedo tubes in their requirements. This became the S-1 class.
The S-100 was significantly larger than the US PT boats and British fast attack craft with a length of 114 feet and a displacement of up to 120 tons. Despite its size, the S-100 could achieve almost 44 knots and deliver up to four torpedoes (two tubes plus two torpedoes that could be reloaded).
Bronco Models has tooled up the S-100 in 1/350 scale, and while there have been other kits of this subject released in the past, this kit has some nice features.
Molded in light gray styrene, the kit is presented on one parts tree plus one fret of photo-etched parts.
Assembly of the kit is straightforward as you might expect, with the first decision that needs to be made as to whether you want a waterline or full-hull model. Simply grab the hull bottom of choice, wrap the hull sides in place and add the main deck with integral deck house.
Next you add the spare torpedoes onto their deck racks, add vent shafts, depth charge racks, and life boats to the deck. If you're building the full-hull version, you'll add the three propellers provided as photo-etch onto the drive shafts. The rudders are provided as your choice of styrene or photo-etch. There is no display stand provided for the full-hull option, so you'll have to be careful not to mush the propellers and rudders when you flip the model back over.
The build finishes up with the deck guns and all of the safety frames provided in photo-etch that block the guns from accidently firing on the boat itself. The final step is to add your choice of open or shielded railings to the sides of the boat.
There is a lot of detail in this little kit and yet it really won't be a difficult build as long as you haven't had too much coffee. If you've been wanting to tackle a multi-media naval subject, here is a good kit that will let you develop your skills without breaking the bank and give you the confidence to do that 1/350 aircraft carrier you've wanted to build!
My sincere thanks to Stevens International for this review sample!