I won't bore you with yet another rendition of the ill-fated liner. While I had thought that everyone on the planet knew the story of the Titanic, I was rather surprised by the outraged reaction of two teenagers (sporting an interesting variety of body-pierced jewelry) in line to see the movie Titanic. They overheard a couple standing in line ahead of my wife and myself wondering why so many folks were flocking to see this movie – the boat still sinks in the end. The teenage couple was outraged and left the line, complaining that these folks had spoiled the ending. Oh well, there are always a few that don't get the word!
Whether you build ship models or not, you've probably seen Academy's 1/350 release of the RMS Titanic. The kit is nothing less than impressive when completed. It is also rather large as well. This latest release is 1/600 scale, and the hull measures approximately 17 inches.
As you can see in the accompanying photographs, the kit is a masterpiece of molding. The plastic is molded in white, black, tan, orange, clear, and brass-plated colors. What is very masterful here is that the parts are laid out in such a way that they are molded in their representative colors on the actual ship, so one could build a very attractive Titanic without any painting. More importantly, the parts are broken down so that they can be easily painted with virtually no masking involved. Way to go Academy! The molding on this kit is extremely crisp, and while there was no parts count available, there are a significant number of details provided in a kit of this scale. Academy didn't cut any corners with this kit from what I can see. The kit even features injection molded railings. While some may complain about the scale thickness of these railings, the molding is about as fine as I've seen without being so brittle as to be impractical for the average modeler. Those who must have perfection can wait for a photo-etched set to be released for this kit.
The brass-plated parts cover the kit stand, propellers and a few other odds and ends.
On closer inspection of the parts, I could not find any flash, no ejector pin marks on any surface that would be visible, or any sink marks. The only work to be done is to lightly sand off the slight mold line running down the length of the one-piece hull.
For those of you who are truly ambitious, the kit also comes complete with a spool of very fine thread to rig the ship. In fact, the rigging begins in Step 1, and walks you through the process of rigging the Titanic concurrent with the overall assembly process. From the looks of the instructions, they've made the process rather easy looking. Nevertheless, before you're finished, you have completed the rigging for the three masts, the four exhaust stacks and the elaborate HF (shortwave) antenna that runs between the two tall masts.
As I said in the beginning, this is a very impressive kit. There is a significant level of detail in such a small scale. While I have not looked inside the box of one of their 1/350 scale Titanic kits, I suspect that the Academy 1/600 Titanic is a scaled down version of the kit. If so, I definitely will looking for a 1/350 scale example for myself! I recommend this kit to anyone with intermediate or advanced modeling skills, and it might be a good training opportunity for a more experience basic-level modeler capable of patience.