ESCORT                                                       ISSUE 117

H.M.S. Edinburgh

A kit from Atlantic Models at 1:700 scale

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The original intention was that H.M.S. Edinburgh, and her sister ship Belfast, would carry sixteen 6” guns in four quadruple turrets, a significant increase over the preceding Southampton class, but problems with the design of the turret resulted in it being cancelled and the two ships given the same primary armament (i.e. twelve 6” gun in four triple turrets) but with a greater elevation of 45°.  The after turrets were also raised a deck level and the longer hulls permitted other improvements in layout.

The AA armament initially comprised twelve 4” guns in twin turrets and sixteen 2pdr pom-poms on two mounts.  In February 1942, the two octuple mounts were replaced by two quadruple mounts and six 20mm guns were added.

On the 30th April of the same year, Edinburgh was hit by two torpedoes from U456, resulting in the stern breaking off aft of ‘Y’ turret.  Two days later, whilst under tow, she was attacked by three large destroyers, achieving the sinking of one but also receiving another torpedo hit which resulted in her being abandoned and eventually sunk by a torpedo from H.M.S. Foresight.

When sunk, Edinburgh was escorting Convoy QP11 from Murmansk to Great Britain and was carrying approximately 4,500 kg of gold bullion.  The majority of the gold was recovered in 1981, and a little more in 1986 but five ingots are still unaccounted for.

This  kit  was  originally  released  by White Ensign Models

and is now available from Atlantic Models.  I have not seen the original release but the instructions lead me to believe that a number of changes have been made.  The instructions are similar to the WEM approach with those for the etched brass items similar but the assembly drawings for the main superstructure are very different but very clear.

The waterline hull is a very crisp, clean moulding with little flash and very fine scribing of the deck planking, where appropriate.  The other resin components are contained in four plastic bags, the first containing the main parts for the superstructure and the funnels.  A second bag contains smaller superstructure parts and the primary gun turrets, with separate barrels.  Brass barrels are available in the Sea Master Series from Master Model in Poland for those who prefer them.

The third bag contains the boats, Carley floats and parts for two Walrus amphibious aircraft, and the fourth the smaller details such as searchlights.  All these components are crisply moulded and will need little cleaning up.  Being supplied in these separate bags means location of the components during assembly is simple.

Dimensions for the masts are given in the instructions but no brass rod is included although the instructions say that it should have been.  There are two sheets of etched brass, the smaller one containing the railings.  The larger one contains the crane, the aircraft catapult, ladders, small caliber AA weapons, davits, boat chocks and antennas – all you could want, but the instructions do include references to sources of extra detail for those who feel so inclined.

A colour guide portrays Edinburgh as in 1939 - AP507B hull and superstructure with AP507A and wooden decks. The yardarms and tops of masts are white.

Another superb model that is very welcome – especially for those who have a particular interest in the history of the Royal Navy.