As for the Revell single 5-inchers, compared to these historical pics of the real things I think they look about the right shape - possibly a little undersized (or maybe its the perspective in the pics) - but my main impression is that they have too many ridges on them: overly hard- and proud (raised) molded-in details, as well as apparent artifacts from compromises in the mold itself.
The rectangles towards the back on each side, for example, are gunhouse doors - 'way overdone (would've been far better recessed a little, and slightly rounded). And then - no doubt due to limitations of their mold technology - they put a large rim around the base, as well as large block forward, under the gun barrel - making the biggest (visual) detour from the real McCoy, which had a very smooth-faced look, with single, large slot for the gun barrel, in it.
Of course, you really can't fault a half-century-old modeling technology - but it wasn't until I looked at these references recently, that I realized how wrong is the the impression given by Revell Midway's 5-inchers! Which, you are correct, can be pretty easily cleaned-up - with a sharp knife and (especially a) chisel.
Mike, I never got any (of your latest) Barney pics - did you try to send me any?