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HMS Apollo (1970) Leander Class Frigate

White Ensign Models 1/350 Scale Waterline Kit

by Alberto Rada

The Leander class frigate was a development of the Royal Navy's already successful Whitby class, or Type 12, frigates. The excellent sea keeping qualities of the distinctive Type 12 hull, with its raised forecastle, inspired the improved design for a general purpose frigate that became the Leander class.

The lead ship of the class, HMS Leander commisioned in March 1963. She was then followed by a further 25 vessels through the ensuing years, until March 1973 when the final ship, HMS Ariadne, was commisioned.

The final eight ships of the class were built with a beam increased by two feet and were known - unsurprisingly - as the "broad beam" Leanders. this increase in beam made for a less cramped interior and improved the habitability of the ships. Although most of the Leander class received major modifications to their systems and weapons fits throughout their lives, the last four ships remained in their original form due to a change in policy regarding mid-life updates. These last four ships were HMS Achilles (F12), HMS Diomede (F16), HMS Apollo (F70), and HMS Ariadne (F72). Apollo was commisioned in June 1972, and was sold to Pakistan in 1988, where she recommisioned as Zulfiquar.

Specifications:

Dimensions 360pp,372oa x 43 x 19 feet

Machinery: 2 shaft English Electric geared steam turbines, 2 Babcock & Wilcox boilers. 30.000 shp, giving 28 knots.

Armament: 2 x 4.5" guns in twin turret. 2x single 20mm Oerlikons, 1 x quadruple Seacat launcher, 1 x Mk AS mortar. 1 x Westland Wasp helicopter.

Complement: 260.

This is one of the first 1/350 W.E.M. models, and although it does not have the ultimate refinement of their latest models, it is a fine kit. In my particular case there was none of the bubbles and flash you normally find with resin models. In fact the only parts that where damaged were the seacat missiles,. And upon letting W.E.M. know about it, within a few days I received a small package with the replacement - and the compliments of Caroline Carter.

The kit is of basically simple construction, everything fits perfectly, you only have to follow the 10 page instruction manual, and that is it. The only tricky parts are the 965 single bedsteam radar that is a photoetch kit in itself, and the Wasp helicopter, that when finished is absolutely outstanding.

Color guide is very complete, I painted the model with Floquil Marine Colors, that unfortunately, I believe, will no longer be available.

Reference Material:

Modern Combat Ships 1 " Leander Class ", by Cdr. C.J. Meyer OBE, RN

Leander Class Frigates, by Richard Osborne and David Sowdon

Leander Class Frigates, by Jim Allaway

Navies in the Nuclear Age, Conway's history of the Ship

 




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Air Intelligence
1999 Modelers'
Reference Guides

1/32 Scale Guide $18.00
1/48 Scale Guide $25.00
1/72 Scale Guide $25.00
HH-43 Huskie Color
Reference Guide $15.00

Please add $3.20 Postage in the US.

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Albuquerque NM
87199-0933
USA

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