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USS Long Beach CGN 9

DML 1/700 USS Long Beach CGN 9 Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review February 2013 Manufacturer DML
Subject USS Long Beach CGN 9 Scale 1/700
Kit Number 7135 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-Etch
Pros Nice looking model Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $42.95

First Look

USS Long Beach CGN 9
USS Long Beach CGN 9
USS Long Beach CGN 9

USS Long Beach (CGN 9) was a nuclear-powered guided missile cruiser laid down in 1957 and would be the only cruiser built after World War II upon a true cruiser hull (Tico-class cruisers are build on a Spruance-class destroyer hull). Long Beach was the only ship in her class as it was designed as a testbed for a number of systems including the box-like superstructure that mounted the first phased array radar that would lead to the SPY-1 systems used on the Burkes and Ticos. Her extensive use of aluminum in her structures led her to have the voice callsign 'Alcoa'.

The Long Beach would the first ship to shoot down an aircraft in anger using a SAM and shot down two MiGs during the Vietnam war serving as Red Crown. In 1983, Long Beach was refitted with a newer radar and new weapons to bring her up-to-date. After serving escort duty during the first Gulf War, Long Beach was nearing her next reactor refueling and was decommissioned due to budget cuts in 1994.

The DML USS Long Beach kit molded in light gray styrene and presented on five parts trees plus waterline hull, hull bottom, display stand, and one fret of photo-etched parts. Some key features of the kit are:

  • Waterline or full hull version can be built
  • Optional display stand for full hull version
  • Standard Missiles on twin mounts
  • Harpoon missile tubes/launchers
  • Tomahawk box missile launchers
  • Twin 5" guns midships
  • Extremely well detailed parts like workboat

While some of the parts are small, this will make a great addition to Dragons growing line of 1/700 scale warships.

My sincere thanks to DML for this review sample!