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USN 3 inch/50 Deck Gun

White Ensign Models 1/72 USN 3 inch/50 Deck Gun First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review December 2007 Manufacturer White Ensign Models
Subject USN 3 inch/50 Deck Gun Scale 1/72
Kit Number PE7235 Primary Media Resin and Photo-Etch
Pros Exquisite detail Cons
Skill Level Advanced MSRP (BP) £11.02 (+VAT)

First Look

USN 3 inch/50 Deck Gun
USN 3 inch/50 Deck Gun

White Ensign Models continues to expand its product lines into broader areas and this detail set is no exception. This time, they've released three alternative deck guns for Revell's 1/72 USS Gato-class submarine.

Out of the box, the kit represents a late war configuration of the boat with the modified sail and bridge structure. If you remember Trumpeter's nice 1/144 Gato, the first release had the pre-war sail and bridge structure with the deck gun located aft of the sail. The second release updated the sail to its cut-down configuration and relocated the deck gun forward.

If you cruise the internet for the wealth of information on the Gato and Balao class boats, you will see a variety of sail configurations as these differed somewhat between boats. Also of note is the main deck armament. This too varied by boat and time as a variety of weapons were employed by these boats to provide as much punch as possible.

This set represents the 3 inch gun 50 caliber (76mm) Mk.21 deck gun employed on submarines as well as smaller surface combatants. This weapon was used as an anti-aircraft gun as well as against surface targets. The weapon fired a 13 pound projectile out to a range of over 16,000 yards or at aircraft at up to 21,500 feet.

This set replaces the weapon provided in the Revell kit with a nicely cast and very detailed resin and photo-etched gun and mount. The resin parts include the main gun with the barrel closed up with a water-tight tampion, pedestal, and structural supports.

The photo-etch parts detail out the gun elevation mechanism, optical ring sights, operator controls, and even a barrel lock.

The instructions provide good references for parts assembly and placement.

If you're looking to render one of the many variations in the Gato/Balao class submarines, one of these deck gun sets will help you replicate the armament of the boat of your choice.

My sincere thanks to White Ensign Models for this review sample!