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USS Cole

Trumpeter 1/350 USS Cole DDG 67 Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review August 2009 Manufacturer Trumpeter
Subject USS Cole DDG 67 Scale 1/350
Kit Number 4524 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-Etch
Pros Very nicely detailed Burke-class destroyer kit Cons
Skill Level Intermediate MSRP (USD) $89.95

First Look

USS Cole
USS Cole
USS Cole
USS Cole
USS Cole
USS Cole
USS Cole
USS Cole
USS Cole
USS Cole

The USS Cole is an Flight I Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer that is homeported in Norfolk VA. This ship is named for Medal of Honor recipient Sergeant Darrel S Cole, USMC, who led a series of successful attacks against fortified Japanese positions on Iwo Jima before being killed by a Japanese grenade.

The USS Cole was commissioned in 1996, powered by four gas turbine engines that can propel the ship above 30 knots. At first glance, it only appears to be armed with a single 5 inch main gun, but the Cole, like the other members of the Burke-class, are armed with a number of vertical launch cells below deck that can fire the Standard Missile SM-2, Tomahawk cruise missile, and ASROC missiles. The ship is also armed with torpedo tubes and two Phalanx CIWS gun systems. The flight deck will accommodate one SH-60 Seahawk helicopter.

The USS Cole has the unfortunate distinction of being the subject of a suicide bombing attack in Yemen in October 2000 killing 17 of its crew. The ship was carried home by the Norwegian semi-submersible carrier MV Blue Marlin and returned to service in mid-2002.

It is always interesting to see the gun battle between DML and Trumpeter as far as kit subjects go. DML released the DDG 92 USS Momsen (Flight IIA) while Trumpeter released USS Lassen DDG 82 and now this Flight I USS Cole.

Trumpeter molded this kit in their usual light gray styrene and presented it on eleven parts trees, plus separately provide upper hull and main deck. The kit also includes two parts in red for the full lower hull or waterline hull options, two parts trees in clear styrene, and one fret of photo-etched details.

When you look over the instructions, you'll see just how much detail is provided in this box. Trumpeter has taken great steps to capture as individually molded parts many details that other companies might simply mold as lumps on the deck. You can see the shorter-barrel gun on the 5 inch mount that is fitted to the earlier Flights, the close-in gun mounts for proximity defense/security, and much more.

The stowable flight deck extension plates are rendered in photo-etch and can be posed out for flight ops or up for safety railings.

You can see from the modular parts that make up the superstructure that Trumpeter is planning to accurately render other members of the Burke class with the right details.

I really like the details on the yardarms where Trumpeter has captured the various antennas that are fitted to these combatants. Even the ESM and Link 16 antennas are present.

As usual in Trumpeter's ship kits, you have your choice of a full-hull model on a provided stand, or a waterline presentation. Either way, you'll have some nice details to show off.

A nice touch in this kit is the set of photo-etched railings that capture one of the essential details of a ship model and are near impossible to do right in styrene. Normally the railings are left to the aftermarket companies to fulfill. You won't need any aftermarket details with this kit.

The kit provides a very nice set of decals for the various identification and safety markings, as well as a number of spare drop-shadow hull numbers to render other ship numbers should you opt to do one of the Cole's sisters.

Trumpeter provides a nice full-color paint guide that is easy to read and provides paint colors using Vallejo, Model Master, Tamiya, and Humbrol paints. Keep that up Trumpeter!

I'm happy to see these Burke variants coming out as these will make for a nice display to depict the detail variations from Flight to Flight as well as having the ability to update or backfit the weapons mounts, antennas, etc., to depict any of these vessels at different periods of time.

My sincere thanks to Stevens International for this review sample!