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HMS Montrose Type 23 Frigate

Trumpeter 1/350 HMS Montrose Type 23 Frigate Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review March 2013 Manufacturer Trumpeter
Subject HMS Montrose Type 23 Frigate Scale 1/350
Kit Number 4545 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-Etch
Pros First kit of this class in styrene in this scale Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Intermediate MSRP (USD) $69.95

First Look

HMS Montrose Type 23 Frigate
HMS Montrose Type 23 Frigate
HMS Montrose Type 23 Frigate
HMS Montrose Type 23 Frigate
HMS Montrose Type 23 Frigate

The Type 23 'Duke' class of frigates was developed in the early 1980s to replace the Leander class in Royal Navy service. Designed as an anti-submarine warfare (ASW) vessel, the Type 23 is armed Stingray torpedoes, but the class is also armed with eight Harpoon surface-to-surface missiles and 32 Sea Wolf surface-to-air missiles, as well as a 4.5 inch main gun, making this class of frigate as operationally versatile as a destroyer.

The Montrose was laid down in 1989 and serves as the flagship of the 6th Frigate Squadron. Montrose was first on the scene for the Canadian submarine Chicoutimi incident providing assistance to that crew and has spent deployments to the Falklands as well as to the Arabian Gulf.

Trumpeter has released the next installment of the Type 23 frigate in injection molded styrene and the kit looks nice (I never had the opportunity to see the first release - HMS Kent). The kit is molded in gray styrene and presented on 10 parts trees plus the main deck and hull. Unlike previous releases, this kit does not have provisions for waterline display but a display stand is provided.

The kit appears to be a straightforward build with a limited amount of photo-etch to represent details on the masts and antennas. The AMS modeler may want to add railings which are no doubt available as aftermarket detail sets. The kit features a Lynx HMA.8 for the flight deck as well as nice detailing in its fit and armament.

I've been looking forward to getting my hands on one of these, not to do a Royal Navy Type 23, but to build the namesake of the Captain featured in the movie Master and Commander. The book and movie of the same name which presented the main character as Captain Jack Aubrey (the lesser of two weavels) but in fact was representing Admiral Thomas Cochrane, a Royal Navy officer whose exploits at sea led to several books.

After leaving the Navy, Cochrane had mixed success in business and politics before using his expertise to organize the Chilean Navy. He spent nearly four years as an Admiral in the Chilean Navy and his forces were able to defeat the Spanish Pacific throne in Peru which led to the successful war of independence from Spain. Since that time, the Armada de Chile has had five warships named in honor of Admiral Cochrane, the current one being the Type 23 formerly HMS Norfolk. I had the privilege of standing on her bridge and touring the vessel several years ago. With a little work, it won't be difficult to reconfigure the Trumpeter kit to represent the Almirante Cochrane.

My sincere thanks to Stevens International for this review sample!

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