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Bronco Models 1/350 Borei Class K550 Alexander Nevskiy SSBN Kit First Look

by Michael Benolkin

Date of Review June 2012 Manufacturer Bronco Models
Subject Borei Class K550 Alexander Nevskiy SSBN Scale 1/350
Kit Number 5023 Primary Media Styrene
Pros Nicely detailed kit Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) $31.00

First Look


The Borei-class is a new family of nuclear-powered SSBN submarines replacing the Delta IV and Typhoon classes. The first in class is K-535 Yuriy Dolgorukiy and the second is K-550 Alexander Nevskiy. Both are undergoing sea trials. These boats were originally designed to carry the R-39UTTH Bark (SS-N-28) which were also to be carried aboard the Typhoon-class missile boats. When the Bark failed in testing, the program was cancelled and replaced by the RSM-56 Bulava (SS-NX-30) missile. Deployment of the two Borei-class boats was delayed to allow for modifications to support these new missiles.

How often do you see a model of a subject that has not yet deployed? Not very often, but Bronco Models has released this kit of the Alexander Nevskij even while it is still reportedly undergoing sea trials.

Molded in light gray styrene, the kit is presented on two parts trees plus the display stand molded in black styrene and a fret of photo-etched parts with the propulsion fan and name plate. The hull is molded in three pieces, but there is a touch of genius here - the upper hull is one piece and can be used as a waterline model. If you want the full-hull display model, put the lower hull halves together and mate them with the upper hull.

The kit is simple as you'd imagine given that submarines are kept clean on the exterior to keep them quiet while running submerged. I can't tell you aboat accuracy of this kit as the only photos I've seen of this subject were while it was surfaced (not in dry dock) and it looks like those shapes and details are good. I don't know what sort of propulsion is used on this boat, but you'll see in the parts photos that there is a shrouded fan used for power, much like the Trumpeter version of the USS Seawolf that turned out to be conjecture.

You'll also note in the images that the kit provides all of the missile tubes open and two of the tubes are empty. All of the missile hatches are positionable and the two missing missiles are provided separately should you want to pose them outside of their tubes.

The rudders and stern dive planes are movable and while there is a direct shaft connection between the dive planes so they'll move in unison, the dorsal and ventral rudders are offset from one another. Bronco engineered a gearbox that will allow the rudders to move in unison as well. Interesting.

Modern naval modelers will be very interested in this simple project as it represents one of Russia's newest missile boats released in scale even as the full-scale boat is just entering service.

My sincere thanks to DML for this review sample!