H.M.S. Hood Today - Scale Models & Miniatures of Hood
Trumpeter/Pit Road's 1/700 Scale 1941 Hood - Basic Review
by F.W. Allen
Updated 10-Jul-2016

This article is a basic out of box review of the Trumpeter (and Pit Road) 1/700 scale model of Hood as she appeared at the time of her sinking in May 1941. As time permits, we plan on posting additional information, to include tips for correcting any errors that are discovered later.

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Box art for the Trumpeter 1/700 scale 1941 HMS Hood
Box art for the Trumpeter kit

Hood "as sunk" has been a popular choice among modelers for years. One of the most popular small scale Hood kits was Tamiya's 1/700 scale waterline series offering. Based on information available at the time of its creation, it served as one of the best Hood models for many years. Over time, it started to show it's age: newly discovered information rapidly changed Hood's known final appearance. Additionally, modeling technology improved. The time was perfect for a new Hood in this scale.

Trumpeter answered the call for a new model. They easily downscaled their successful 1/350 scale Hood model design into 1/700 scale. Unfortunately, there were some errors present in the 1/350 design. Trumpeter were aware of this, so they once again sought out the assistance of experts on the ship to include a certain member of our website staff (me).

In addition to the known errors, there was also a fair bit of newly uncovered information concerning Hood's final appearance (things not in any books, plans or models). This information was relayed to Trumpeter and they finalised the design. By mid 2007, the moulds were built and test pressings made. I received my sample at that time. I reviewed this model and provided final inputs to Trumpeter shortly thereafter.

The Trumpeter version of the kit was released to the western world in November 2007. The Pit Road version of the kit will be released in Asia in March 2008. Please check with a local or online hobby retailer of your choice for latest prices and availability.

Moulding & Detail
The kit consists of approximately 400 injection moulded plastic pieces (429 pieces per Trumpeter). Keeping with standard Trumpeter practice, there is the option to build the ship in either waterline or full hull format. The parts above the waterline are in grey and the parts below are in red. There were 8 sprues, 4 large deck segments, upper hull, lower hull and a waterline plate. Also included were detailed instructions, colour painting guidelines, black plastic mounting base, name plate and decals.

The overall quality of the kit parts is quite good and exactly on par with the 1931 kit: The moulding is crisp and most parts are sufficiently thin (the hull is an exception, more on this in the hull section below). There is a small amount of flash, most of which is easily cleaned-up, but some of which will require some careful work (see the bridge section below). I should also note that like the 1931 kit, some features of this kit are a bit "fiddly" or complicated, but nothing that can't be addressed by simply following instructions and dry-fitting in advance.

Overall Impression
Athough not as nicely/crisply/cleanly moulded as the venerable Tamiya kit, Trumpeter's 1/700 1941 Hood is still the better of the two in terms of accuracy. This kit also edges out Trumpeter's 1/350 Hood for the same reasons- accuracy. More updates and corrections were incorporated into this kit than the earlier kit. The kit does have its problems; there are moulding issues as well as incorrect details, but these are far outweighed by the overall quality and accuracy of the kit. Simply put, its currently the best mass-produced and affordable model kit of Hood as sunk. We highly recommend this model.

Notable errors and new discoveries are covered below. Also included are some suggestions on how to correct or improve the kit. Also note that this kit shares many of the same features (and parts) as the 1/700 1931 Trumpeter/Pit Road Hood. As a result, those of you who've read our 1/700 1931 Trumpeter/Pit Road Hood review will note a great deal of similarity and repetition in some of the descriptions contained herein.

Corrections & Suggestions for Improvement

Upper Hull
1/700 scale Trumpeter Hood armour belt detailsThe hull appears to be correct in shape and size. When one compares the hull to its larger 1/350 scale sister, there are some notable differences: Trumpeter wisely omitted the detailed hull plating and degaussing cable as these would have been grossly out of scale at this size (modellers can always add photoetch degaussing cables if they wish). Trumpeter did include a nicely moulded armour belt and torpedo mantlets. Click on the image to the right to see the belt/mantlet details.

One major issue noted was that the sides of the hull (where one inserts the deck pieces) seem excessively thick. This was especially the case in the bow/focsle area. As for the hawse pipes on the sides of the hull, these are largely correct, but would look better if drilled out and mated to the hawse pipes on the focsle deck piece. More on this issue below

Focsle Deck of the 1/700 Scale Trumpeter Hood 1941 variantForecastle (Fore Deck)- This part, shown in the image to the right (click to enlarge), is a bit "off" as a result of the excessive hull sides thickness. It's a tad narrow at it's widest point. Because of this, the starboard sheet anchor hawse pipe (the second/rear on on the starboard side) is too small. In reality, it was identical in size to the other two focsle deck hawse pipes Most modellers can certainly live with this minor error, but those of you wanting extreme accuracy may have to make modifications. We suggest carefully drilling and filing the opening after gluing the deck piece to the hull (the drilling/filing will have to reach slightly into the inner edge of the hull in order to make the hawse pipe opening the correct size). As always, it would be wise to add/augment additional detail using aftermarket photoetch parts (i.e., anchor cables and hatches).

Enclosed Forecastle Deck (Center Deck)- This is the large lower centre deck piece. It's quite accurate overall. It's a tad narrow at the very front due to the extreme hull thickness, but this is negligible. Additionally, some of the small mushroom vents (and possibly some winches) are slightly out of place or missing in the area around "A" barbette. This of course is hardly noticeable and can probably be left as is. It has one key error that must be addressed- it is missing some tall upright vents from the front of "B" barbette. These should be added using styrene strip stock.

Shelter Deck (UP Deck)- This part is largely accurate. If so desired, the hatches can be replaced with photoetch. Some of the small upright vents are a tad out of scale as well. This is understandable due to the scale and moulding limitations though. Most are acceptable as is. The only two small vents that need notable attention are the twin hooded vents located just ahead of the centre-rear splinter shield. These are shown in blue in the photo to the right. These need to be as tall as the splinter nearby splinter shield.

Quarterdeck (Rear Deck)- Nicely done. One hatchway needs to be added near the forward-starboard side of "X" barbette. Once could also possibly add some tiny upright vents that appear to be missing around "Y" barbette. If so desired, photoetch can be used to enhance hatches and skylights. The rear hawse pipe can also be drilled out.


15" Main Gun Houses/Turrets- The four main gun houses (C5 & C8) are much better than their 1/350 scale counterparts. As the photo to the right illustrates, they are still a bit too angular in appearance however. This can be remedied with careful sanding/shaping. Trumpeter provided the option of barrels with or without blast bags. This One of the main gun turrets of the Trumpeter Hoodis a particularly nice touch.

Twin 4" Secondary Armament- These seven mounts (D3, D23 & D25) are largely correct in shape and size. Due to the scale, some components are a bit thick, but should be acceptable for most modellers. It's likely that aftermarket parts can be incorporated into these assemblies to enhance details.

UP Rocket Launchers- The five UP launchers assemblies (D14 & D15) suffer from a lack of detail, but this is because of the scale. Most modellers can use them as is, but there are aftermarket replacement parts available for anyone so inclined.

Pom-pom Anti-Aircraft Guns- The three pom-poms (C43, C44 & C45) are nicely done considering the small scale. They are a bit thickly moulded, but again, this is to be expected at this scale. They can, if wished, be made more accurate with or even replaced by aftermarket replacement parts. Most modellers however, should find the kit guns acceptable.

0.5" Machine Guns- The pedestals are quite nice, but the guns (D4) should be replaced with photoetch as they are excessively bulky looking. Use the shielded versions.

Forward Superstructure/Bridge
Conning Tower SlitsConning Tower- The view port slits are not entirely correct. On the actual ship, these were the same height. They are not so configured on the model. One row in particular is too tall- the ones created by adding part B51 to part G12. This could be difficult to fix. The average modeller can probably get away with ignoring it, but those desiring accuracy should consider making the necessary changes.

When finishing the Conning Tower, please take care to fill the larger seams. This is one of Hood's most notable features, so great attention to detail should be paid towards modelling it correctly. It should be quite smooth and should line up exactly. Take great care in assembling it and filling gaps where necessary.

Bridge Decks- These are largely correct. If so desired, one can add additional detailing such as styrene voice pipes. It's also advisiable to replace any plastic kit ladder with photoetch ladders. Additionally, suggest using photoetch doors and rails. Additional details to consider adding are the navigation lights, semaphores, cable trunking on the tripod legs, etc.

Admirals Signal Platform Base- This is formed from various parts. My comments only apply to the deck portion (part F20). This is largely correct, but could use some detailing aft. I suggest augmenting or replacing the signal flag lockers (the four rectangular features at the very rear of part F20...they are in blue in the photo to the right) with photoetch. There are also some important items that need to be added to this area:

Admirals Bridge- This is correct in overall layout, but windows are missing from the rear screens (G23 and G24). These can be cut-out or painted on. One other problem are the windows at the bottom of part B9. The ones on the port/left side are not fully formed. Its delicate in some spots which complicated clean-up; it will require very careful and delicate work (as its easy to damage the other windows). Please note that canvas covered railings were used on the Admiral's Bridge deck (Part F17) up until early 1941. If modelling Hood as sunk, you will need to add a metal splinter shield around this deck instead! Use strip styrene for best results.

Forebridge, Compass Platform and Torpedo Control Platform - This is the assembly made from parts F13, G16, F19 and F16. For the most part, the external shapes are correct. There is a serious problem with part F19 though. The square ladder openings are too far aft. They were much closer to the front of the platform (they lead to the door of the Compass Platform on the actual ship). Additionally, just aft of the Compass Platform (part F16) there was a transverse splinter shield (with a swinging door). The deck in this area also rose up about 2 feet higher.

I should note that Trumpeter is not alone when it comes to erroneous bridge details: pretty much all commercially-produced models of Hood as sunk seem to have similar mistakes on their bridges. At any rate, it will be difficult to make this area 100% correct without heavy scratchbuilding. All is not lost though- it may be possible for modellers to make a few basic changes which will help improve accuracy: One could fill the opening in part F19 and cut/file a new one forward. Additionally, it may be possible to simply glue a piece of plastic strip to simulate the missing splinter shield.

Spotting Top/Starfish/Foremast- Quite accurate in shape. Due to the small scale, the starfish (Part F18) is moulded a tad thick, but this is acceptable for most modellers. Anyone wishing ultra-accuracy can replace the starfish with photoetch. Important- we've yet to see accurate photoetch of a starfish. Not a single producer got it right for the 1/350 scale kit, but we are hoping they make the necessary corrections for the 1/700 scale kit. Please check the shape very carefully and make sure it is the same (albeit slimmer) than the kit's starfish. If it's wrong, don't add it.

Amidships/Aft Structures
- Largely correct, but suggest hollowing out caps (C41) and replacing the funnel cages with photoetch.

Mainmast Starfish platformMainmast- The mainmast starfish (B35), shown in the image to the right, is shaped correctly. Nevertheless, due to the medium and scale, the underside is moulded a bit thick. We suggest replacing starfish platform, main derrick pulleys and tackle plus the Type 279M radar assembly with aftermarket photoetch. Add the diesel exhaust pipe up the port rear tripod leg using wire or tube styrene. A rough schematic showing the correct layout of the mainmast starfish is shown to the right.

After Superstructure- Put canvas over the square windows around the lower rear of the structure (G4 & G5). This can be done with squares of sheet styrene. Do not blend them into the structure, but make it look like the windows are merely covered. There is also a slight problem on the port side where the structure is indented (G4). There is a sharp edge at the top of the indent...this beam should be angled inward actually. Also suggest drilling out the doorways to the side searchlight platforms on parts G4 and G5. These doorways are right above where parts F5 and F6 attach. Add cruciform supports to the HACS Mk III* director pedestal atop the structure. Also suggest detailing the HACS Mk III* (see earlier comments on this). Click here to see an image showing suggested corrections.

Pom-pom Bandstand- The bandstand (G1) is nicely done. As mentioned earlier, the only major issue is it's base (G25). Trumpeter made this the correct shape, but oriented it 90 degrees too far to the left. Modellers will need to remove the raised portion on the Shelter Deck piece, plus change the underside of the pom-pom bandstand itself, then rotate the base 90 degree to the right. This is a major error and really needs to be fixed. Be sure to add two splinter shields under the bandstand as well. One was under the forward "flat" end and one was under the port side of the bandstand. Both shields extended from the deck to the bottom of the bandstand.

The boats are all somewhat under-detailed, but this is not surprising as Trumpeter had little reference material in this area. Understandably, the scale makes it difficult to include much moulded in detail. It may be possible to augment some boats with photoetch, or replace them with aftermarket parts. Of course, some shortcuts can be taken as well- Hood's small motor boats, Admirals Barge and open row boats were usually canvas covered. I recommend taking advantage of this fact. It should save some modelling time!

Other Suggestions
As always, just about any 1/700 scale ship model can benefit from additional detailing. The following are some generic suggestions:

Photos of Completed Kit
Photos of completed Trumpeter 1/700 scale Hoods can be seen in our Models Gallery. We hope to add even more, so if you've finished this model, please send us some shots!

Kit Build
If anyone has built this kit and would like to share the experience, please let us know. We'll gladly add an article here.

Aftermarket Parts
Existing Sets- There are a number of existing photoetch sets for Hood, as sunk, in 1/700 scale. The problem here is that there is both old and new photoetch available...older sets based upon the Tamiya 1/700 Hood and newer sets based on the new Trumpeter kits. So be certain you are purchasing the correct photoetch. Unfortunately, we've had no time to compile an up-to-date listing. If anyone would like to provide such a listing to us for inclusion in this article, we'd be most grateful.

New Sets- We understand that KA Models of Korea is offering a wooden deck set for this model. We've yet to see or review this product though, so we cannot comment on it's accuracy. Additionally, Flyhawk Models has issued a new photoetch set for this model. Click here to learn more. If anyone out there has seen these products and would like to provide a review for our site, please let us know.

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