For the last major building piece, we'll need to make all four of the propeller shafts and their supports out of brass rod/tube. The kit gives you props but no rod material. Only white metal rods for the main masts are provided. The overall deck color is Polyscale Deck Tan Special. As built, she wore the standard Weatherdeck Blue.
Here's a view of the bow which includes two twin rapid-fire three inch gun mounts and their associated directors. These are white metal parts. The overall hull and superstructure color is a slightly darkened variant of world war two Haze Grey. The lower hull is Tamiya's Hull Red in a spray can. The forward guns were radar directed and reflect the anti-aircraft technology of her day. As late world war two cruisers go, she was heavily armed.
The forward and aft masts are not glued down, they are just sitting in place (dry-fitting) for photo purposes (and safety, with all the photo etch!). Each mast contains just at or under fifty parts. The forward mast is just missing some safety raililng and then it will be finished. Once finished, I'll spray them separately and then install them. I may leave them off the ship for transport purposes.
The stern was really complex for some strange reason. The crane is made up of multiple parts and builds quite quickly. The hanger door does not open. The kit gives you an early helicopter to build, but it was not embarked as per the veteran we're building for. Photo references are pretty vague and even the instructions tell you that you're on your own as far as the helicopter is concerned.
Here is another view of the cruiser's aft/midships area featuring the main mast. The radar was comprised of numerous photo etched parts and the Yankee Modelworks photo etch is really easy to work with. Not too bendable but not too rigid either. Most of the mast/radar parts are supplied though there is some scratchbuilding to do. Namely the mast extensions and a few platforms and mounting posts here and there.
The aft (main) mast needs some final assorted parts on the rear which will actually make it level (or just lower) than the forward mast. When both masts are finished, I'll remove them and spray them separately. Right now, they are just dry-fitted to get them out of the way so that they're not laying on the bench exposed.
Yes, those are etched windows. They are provided in two parts: the bridge windows themselves and the bridge window shutters. The shutters are loose at the moment. Once all of the whip antenna work is done, they'll be glued down. I won't bore you with how many whip antennas there are. The top outside of the bridge will be ringed with a dozen whip antennas when I'm done. Just have to check my references as to how many.
All "building" is done. Just have to add railing to the forward half of the ship. But that will wait until the props and shafts are done. Then a massive repaint/touch up evolution. Once that's done, I will add threads to the bottom so I can screw the ship to a base for travel. The vet's son will be meeting me around the middle of October to take delivery. he's going to combine a vacation with the pick up. He is going to take care of building the display case which will contain medals that his father was never awarded. I've provided him with a list of medals that his father would have been entitled to and the the name of a store to buy them from. After that I'll be finishing up a Spruance Class destroyer for a vet that served onboard her in the 90's.