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Disappointment with new Trumpeter 1/700 ships

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  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Disappointment with new Trumpeter 1/700 ships
Posted by warshipguy on Saturday, May 12, 2018 9:58 AM

Last weekend I bought the new Trumpeter 1/700 HMS Nelson. Upon opening the box after getting home, I was extremely disappointed to see that the model did not include a lower hull.  I do not like waterline models; they are only half a model to me.  That is why I like Trumpeter; they have always offered the modeler a choice between waterline and full hull ships.  Upon looking at their website, it seems that all the new 1/700 ships by Trumpeter are now only waterline.

To put my angst about this in context, I have all of the previous battleships by Trumpeter, all built as waterline, and they are arranged by nation on rows of shelves in my den.  Looking only at their British offerings, I have all of the Queen Elizabeth class ships, both kits of the Renown, the Repulse, both kits of the Hood, and both of the Dreadnought.  Again, I built each as a full hull ship.  I eagerly bought the Nelson only to find that it does not fit into the collection!

The same is true of the American battleships. The Texas and New York will not fit, nor will their Enterprise and Yorktown fit into the CV row.

I have written Trumpeter about this, expressing my appreciation for their effortsin the past and my subsequent disappointment in their latest kits. I also stressed that there is much to be said for the overall quality of these kits, but I do not build waterline ships and I really appreciated the choice to build the kits as full hull ships.

I will be happy to post Trumpeter's response if the community wants.

Bill Morrison

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, May 12, 2018 10:10 AM

I agree with you, Bill.

I tried to add a full hull to the 1/700 Tamiya Bogue.

 

  • Member since
    September, 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Saturday, May 12, 2018 10:27 AM

I'm curious to know how popular both styles are.  Myself, I prefer to finish a ship as a waterline model and put it on a water base.  I'm curious to hear any reply Trumpeter might give you, too, and to hear whether they had any research to support eliminating the full-hull option.

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/HansvonHammer/Humor/th_MonogramMafia.jpg?t=1296972087~original

  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Saturday, May 12, 2018 12:09 PM

I had bought the Meng HMS Rodney several months ago which has a lower hull. Although the kit is toylike in several respects, I dry-fitted the lower hull to the Trumpeter kit. It is a very close match, so I will be able to graft it onto the Trumpeter kit. But, I am very disappointed in Trumpeter for this sudden, abrubt and unannounced change in their kits.  And, to me, it doesn't really matter whether or not the full hull is less popular than the waterline (if, indeed, it is). What matters is that Trumpeter had a well-established practise that satisfied either group of modelers. They can continue to do so.

Bill

  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Saturday, May 12, 2018 1:43 PM

What upsets me the most is that, if I had wanted the Tamiya kit, I could have paid $11.00 for it instead of over $60.00.  For a little more investment I could have purchased a photoetch set of watertight doors and railings, and an Evergreen pack of plastic strip for the armoured bands around the hull, thereby giving me the same ship while saving approximately $35.00.  I paid a premium price expecting a premium product.  I know that Trumpeter will claim that it costs more to manufacture the lower hull, but they have already included that as part of their normal pricing. I feel like they pulled a bait and switch on us!

Bill

  • Member since
    July, 2014
  • From: Philadelphia Pa
Posted by Nino on Saturday, May 12, 2018 7:07 PM

Bill,

     You got me started now.  I like FULL HULL  I like it so much that even with my limited experience and ability I am making a best effort to add a lower hull to a Tamiya Scharnhorst, Tamiya Enterprise, and an IMAI Winston Churchill.  For Dioramas a waterline kit is a fine idea in theory but don't you still need a bit of the lower hull if you want to show the ship in a rough sea?

     I was quite disappointed to hear of your HMS Nelson kit. I was equally disenchanted last year when hearing  Trumpeter's releases of Enterprise and Yorktown would be Lower Hull-less. An interesting aspect to this is that the molding on the Yorktown class kits upper hull seems to indicate a possible future Add-on lower hull.  Does your Nelson have a ridge or other molded indication of aligning a lower hull?

( Edit:  I expect to buy a Trumpeter Yorktown and an Academy Enterprise.  I will try aligning the Academy kits Lower hull to the Trumpeter kit or atleast use it as a reference.)

  

     Merit-Trumpeter-HobbyBoss-PitRoad-Minihobby all seem to be "Trumpeter" related companies whether owned or associated thru leasing molds or copying.  It is disheartening that the new Trumpeter releases will be waterline.  

(Edit: It will be interesting to see if a Hobby Boss future release of the HMS Nelson and others, might include a lower hull.)

 

     Lately it had seemed that more model ship OEM's were going with Full Hull for 1/700 kits. Dragon-Cyberhobby, Academy, and Arii, are full hull. Many of  newer releases from Aoshima, Hasegawa and Fujimi are offered full hull too.   Tamiya held out but Tamiya has not added much to their 1/700 line lately.

     The ModelWarship forums have discussed the new Trumpeter releases but not much discussion (read: Outrage) on loss of full hull.  I suspect many members there are waterline devotees.

You should do a youTube video about this state of affairs. 

Title it  "Keel Bill" Vol III

 

    Jim.

  • Member since
    January, 2015
Posted by PFJN on Saturday, May 12, 2018 7:35 PM

Hi,

Sorry to hear that.  While I have built both waterline and full hull models in the past for the most part I also prefer fullhull models too.

Pat

  • Member since
    September, 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Saturday, May 12, 2018 7:39 PM

warshipguy

...it doesn't really matter whether or not the full hull is less popular than the waterline (if, indeed, it is). What matters is that Trumpeter had a well-established practise that satisfied either group of modelers..

Well, whether it was popular or not, that is, whether it sold well or not, is sort of the point.  If Trumpeter conducted any research that suggested that fewer modelers wanted the full hull, then they could omit it from the production process and reduce the cost of producing the model.  Now, apparently there may be a backlash to that decision, and perhaps they didn't anticipate that.  But it still may have been a decision taken for a reason.

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/HansvonHammer/Humor/th_MonogramMafia.jpg?t=1296972087~original

  • Member since
    August, 2005
  • From: Seattle, WA
Posted by Surface_Line on Saturday, May 12, 2018 8:04 PM

I agree with Brad.  I build only waterline ships on water bases.  This seems to me the most accurate representation of the way we see a ship.  In real life we have no ide what color or shape is the lower hull.

Rick

  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Saturday, May 12, 2018 8:32 PM

Rick and Brad,

In real life, sailors see their ship or other ships in drydock frequently. I know that I did, and still do living close to and traveling on an naval base all the time.  My point with my angst is that Trumpeter has always offered the choice in each kit, full hull or waterline. They included parts for both.  If you prefer waterline kits in a diorama, terrific.  If, like me, you prefer full hull models, build that one. Now, you can't do so. Trumpeter made a terrible decision.

Jim and Bill,

The Academy USS Enterprise is an exceptional kit in its own right, but the lower hull might fit a Trumpeter Yorktown and Hornet.  Good luck, my friends!

Pat,

I appreciate your comments!  Thank you!

Bill

  • Member since
    November, 2005
  • From: Formerly Bryan, now Arlington, Texas
Posted by CapnMac82 on Saturday, May 12, 2018 9:16 PM

Actually, geiven the success of after-market in the ship modeling community, what's a wonder  is that they don't just offer the underwater hull as an accessory kit..  Those who want it will buy it (as will those wanting it as a modifcation basis for other kits).  Trumpy profits, modelers profit, win/win.

Oh, wait, this is ship modeling, what was I thinking?

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, May 12, 2018 11:08 PM

I built my CV-8 lower hull from foam. Kind of fun.

 

  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Sunday, May 13, 2018 9:46 AM

Bill,

Your Hornet lower hull looks great!  However, I firmly believe that Trumpeter should carry on manufacturing kits in a consistent manner. We shouldn't have to do scratchbuilding when Trumpeter has consistently sold their 1/700 kits with a lower hull option.  As I said earlier, if I had wanted a Tamiya kit I would have paid $11.00 for the one sitting on the shelf at my LHS and saved over $50.00.

Capn,

That would be one option, but Trumpeter is selling their new kits for over $60.00, which is really high dollar for 1/700 scale. We should get that which we pay for and have come to expect. Remember, we had no warning that they were going to change to a purely waterline format.  I bought that kit with the full expectation that I would get that which I have come to expect from the manufacturer, a well-detailed, well-molded model of a ship that I have wanted for years with a full hull option, not a waterline kit.  This, too is ship modeling.

Bill

  • Member since
    May, 2017
  • From: ohio I want to leave
Posted by armor 2.0 on Sunday, May 13, 2018 10:02 AM

Thats why theres site like scalemates you read review and you find out about changes if there as been any I read review on every kit I buy no matter who the manufacture is that there' no surpise when I open box.

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Sunday, May 13, 2018 10:19 AM

Bill,

Again yes to your points. I think there’s an underlying problem with Trumpeters approach on this which is it shows a real lack of respect for the customer IMO.

Sort of a ha-ha we got you.

I showed the Hornet to make a point that NO ONE should have to go to that much trouble to correct a $ 95.00 Model.

I didn’t include pictures showing that I was also building Lexington at the same time, idea being to make use of paint set ups etc. 8 took me months to get to same point as 2 in a couple of weeks OOB.

Armor, one note is that I find most “in the box” reviews to me pretty low value.

 

  • Member since
    July, 2014
  • From: Philadelphia Pa
Posted by Nino on Sunday, May 13, 2018 3:46 PM

GM,
As an aside to the topic, that is a most ingenious repurpose of a steel shelf bracket. The perfect answer to keeping a  hull straight. Thanks for the Pic.
 
WarshipGuys Disappointment :
 
     It now seems certain Trumpeter will cease including the lower hull in all the latest 1/700 kits. Last Fall I learned of the change for the USS Enterprise kit.  I thought, "Perhaps  the lower hull was left off in order to release the kit ASAP", (ie: before Academy released theirs).  Or, "perhaps they feared they would get the shape wrong and be rebuked in the various Ship forums".    My latest thought, "Perhaps they just want more money".
 
How did Trumpeter get the last laugh...and fool us into thinking there was a lower hull?
 
Examples:
Trumpeter 1/700 USS New York BB-34
Model:06711
"...Kit consists of over 480 parts, including photo-etch, two-piece hull, finely-rendered deck wood pattern, and display stand.
Released Date
    2017-08
More Features
    -hull split into two parts
-Deck wood pattern finely rendered
-Contains display stand and engraved name plate
-Photo-Etched parts included
 
 And then there is this, from Trumpeters web site:
 
 Product introduction:
   HMS NELSON   Released Date
    2017-11
More Features
    Lower hull made from multi-directional slide moulds.
-  Deck wood pattern finely rendered
-  Contains engraved name plate
-  Photo-etched frets included
 
  
  I did do a Feedback to Trumpeter:
 
" I am disappointed in your latest 1/700 ship kits for their lack of a Lower Hull.  The following kits are contrary to Trumpeters, previously consistent, "Full-Hull or Waterline" option:   USS Texas,  USS New York,  HMS Nelson,  HMS Ark Royal, DKM Graf Zeppelin, USS Enterprise, and USS Yorktown."
 
My questions to Trumpeter:
 
"Will you be making a lower hull for purchase as a separate item?"
"Will you plan on a future release that will include a lower hull?"
"Will one of your subsidiaries offer the same kit with a lower hull?"
 
               "Thank you for all you have done in the past for the modeling industry".
 
       Jim.
  • Member since
    January, 2015
Posted by PFJN on Sunday, May 13, 2018 9:55 PM

Hi,

I hope I'm not getting off topic here, but with ship models I believe that seeing the lower hull can potentially add a lot to your understanding of the ship, if done right.  Specifically in the case of the Rodney and Nelson when you see the whole ship displayed to me at least its really amazing just how far back the machinery is, well past the fullest part of the under water hull like on other battleships, like shown below.

RodneyKGV

(Images from Factory Direct Models and Freetime Models/Pontos respectively)

Similarly, looking at the under hull of the Bismarck really drives home how close her rudders were (and how small rudders on a ship are as well), and how relatively close together the outboard props were.  Which kind of helps show why a torpedo hit aft could be such a big deal.

Bismarck

(Image from AlwaysHobbies)

And there are other similar things too like, shape discontinuities where bulges had been added to older ships, how pronounced the ram bows were on older battleships, and sometimes just how deeply some ships sat in the water.

Warspite

Mikasa

Hermes

(Images from Always Hobbies, Hasegawa, and SD Model Makers, respectively)

As such I kind of like being able to display a ship full hull alot of times, because I think it helps give a fuller picture of a ship and can sometimes hiighlight thungs of interest about the ship.

Pat

  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Monday, May 14, 2018 7:24 AM

Jim and Pat,

Very well said! So, it seems that Trumpeter advertised that there would be a lower hull, then pulled a "bait 'n switch".  I am disappointed that they have stooped to such a level.

Also, I fully appreciate their past contributions to our hobby. I am wondering if they have new management that did this to us.

Bill

  • Member since
    September, 2013
  • From: San Antonio, Texas
Posted by Marcus McBean on Monday, May 14, 2018 7:33 AM

Trumpeter should have identified the kit as a waterline hull only on the outside of the box.  A little truth in advertising would have avoided upsetting their customer base.  Now their company is not as highly regarded or trusted as they were in the past. 

  • Member since
    May, 2018
  • From: Commonwealth of Virginia
Posted by VA Spartan on Monday, May 14, 2018 9:47 PM

I like building ships with a full hull as long as the subject is mounted on what is to me a classic look (wood and brass).  However, a properly dome waterline model on a realistic water base is pretty neat, too.  I believe Trumpeter’s 1/700 Liáoníng Jiàn (the PRC’s Type 001 aircraft carrier) comes with a waterline base fitted for the ships hull.  They should include this with all their 1/700 kits.  I also agree Trumpeter is getting very expensive.

On the workbench: 1/35 Takom T-54B; 1/35 Tamiya Char B1bis w/French Infantry; 1/48 Tamiya Fairey Swordfish Mk. 1

  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Tuesday, May 15, 2018 5:55 AM

VA,

The problem is that Trumpeter has historically offered the modeler a choice, either waterline or full hull in one kit.  They suddenly and without warning stopped doing so, offering only the waterline option.  Yes, I agree that waterline models displayed on a realistic water base looks nice, but that is not how I prefer to display my ships.  Trumpeter's historic pattern was nice. I shall miss it should they prove to be dismissive of the needs of their customer base.

Bill

  • Member since
    March, 2005
  • From: West Virginia, USA
Posted by mfsob on Friday, May 18, 2018 8:13 AM

Marcus McBean

Trumpeter should have identified the kit as a waterline hull only on the outside of the box.  A little truth in advertising would have avoided upsetting their customer base.  Now their company is not as highly regarded or trusted as they were in the past.

My 2 cents - I think this is where a lot of the emotion on this topic is coming from. NO ONE likes to open the box and then immediately think, WTH, I thought this kit was/had/included (insert missing doo-dad here). I have had that reaction a time or two myself, and it always leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

I am a waterline guy for a few reasons: 1) Space, waterline hulls fit in smaller display cases (all of my builds are in cases, I have cats) and so take up less overall space, and 2) I like building dioramas, so I can tell a little story with every model, or depict a specific moment in time. Doing all the necessary research is part of the fun.

 

 

 

 

  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Saturday, May 19, 2018 12:32 PM

I have heard a lot from modelers who favor waterline models because of the ease of making dioramas.  However, I have rarely seen a ship at sea floating in a flat calm. They pitch and roll in even minor swells, showing portions of their hull below the waterline.  I believe that a full hull model would facilitate the making of more accurate dioramas.

But, Trumpeter has always catered to this dichotomy of preferences by providing for both options in their kits, thereby giving the builder the choice between building a full hull model or a waterline model. To suddenly stop doing so without warning while announcing that the missing lower hulls included in their kits were molded with slide-mold technology makes me angry.  Trumpeter's corporate integrity is at issue here.

Bill

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, May 19, 2018 12:41 PM

Trumpeter got the waterline wrong on their Liberty ship in 1/350.

  • Member since
    May, 2018
  • From: Commonwealth of Virginia
Posted by VA Spartan on Saturday, May 19, 2018 2:11 PM

Warship, that is a problem I agree with you And personally think 1/700 builders do appreciate the option of either waterline or full hull.

On the workbench: 1/35 Takom T-54B; 1/35 Tamiya Char B1bis w/French Infantry; 1/48 Tamiya Fairey Swordfish Mk. 1

  • Member since
    September, 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Saturday, May 19, 2018 2:33 PM

GM,

Yes, they did.  They also infamously got the USS Hornet lines wrong, their 1/500 Nimitz class were basically toys, etc.  But, they did strive to get the modelers that which they wanted, and they got better over time, that is, until this year.  Something must have happened at the corporate level to cause them to make this horrible decision.  It must have been more than the cost of manufacturing the lower hulls for each kit because they have always factored that into their prices.  Could it have been new management at some level?  Whatever the reason, if this practice continues, I am done with Trumpeter kits.

Bill

  • Member since
    March, 2004
  • From: Kincheloe Michigan
Posted by Mikeym_us on Monday, May 28, 2018 11:35 AM

Bill If you didn't know their 1/700 scale kits are usually Pit-Road kits reboxed as Trumpeter kits.

warshipguy

I had bought the Meng HMS Rodney several months ago which has a lower hull. Although the kit is toylike in several respects, I dry-fitted the lower hull to the Trumpeter kit. It is a very close match, so I will be able to graft it onto the Trumpeter kit. But, I am very disappointed in Trumpeter for this sudden, abrubt and unannounced change in their kits.  And, to me, it doesn't really matter whether or not the full hull is less popular than the waterline (if, indeed, it is). What matters is that Trumpeter had a well-established practise that satisfied either group of modelers. They can continue to do so.

Bill

 

On the workbench: Dragon 1/350 scale Ticonderoga class USS BunkerHill 1/720 scale Italeri USS Harry S. Truman 1/72 scale Encore Yak-6

The 71st Tactical Fighter Squadron the only Squadron to get an Air to Air kill and an Air to Ground kill in the same week with only a F-15   http://photobucket.com/albums/v332/Mikeym_us/

  • Member since
    November, 2005
  • From: Formerly Bryan, now Arlington, Texas
Posted by CapnMac82 on Monday, May 28, 2018 1:09 PM

It does rather ring as obtuse as kitting a 1/144 aircraft model with no landing gear.

Especially in a series of kits that all have landing gear.

  • Member since
    July, 2014
  • From: Philadelphia Pa
Posted by Nino on Wednesday, May 30, 2018 11:11 AM

1/700 Trumpeter HMS Nelson
Mikeym_us
 
Bill If you didn't know their 1/700 scale kits are usually Pit-Road kits reboxed as Trumpeter kits.
 
 
 
 
 
I write this in the hope that a Trumpeter Representative will read it. Most Ship Modelers know all this already.
 
     Regarding the Trumpeter 1/700 HMS Nelson:
 
 
     Trumpeter had many of their model ships done by Pit-Road.  I did not find any indication that the HMS Nelson was a Pit-Road mold however.
 
     About Pit_Road...   The early 1/700 kits they sold under their name were waterline only.  Only in the last dozen years did they adopt “Full-hull” for some kits.   The first 1/700 Pit-Road  kit(s) with a lower hull that I recall were  some US Carriers in 2005-6 (Nimitz, Lexington, Yorktown II).  Trumpeter re-boxed these same 1/700 kits and wanted the lower hull to add value and differentiate their kits from the Japanese OEMs.   It sure worked. In spite of accuracy errors I have bought many Trumpeter kits instead of Tamiya because they added the lower hull for the same price. (It's not all good though. I Hate Trumpeter's CV-8 lower Hull!)
 
     The manufacturers (OEM’s), now offering Lower Hull versions far exceed the ones who don’t.  Lower Hull option:  Academy, Aoshima, Cyberhobby, Dragon, Freedom, Flyhawk, Fujimi, Hasegawa, Hobby Boss*, ICM, Italeri, Meng, Microace/Arii, Mini-Hobby*-(poor quality), Pit-Road, and  Zvezda,  Versus Waterline-only: Tamiya, “Skywave”, Minicraft, and Multiple resin OEMs: Combrig, Corsair Armada, Iron Shipwright, Niko, Samek, Wave-line,  and now 1/700 Plastic models byTrumpeter.
 
     Although not all of the Full-Hull OEMS offer every 1/700 kit with a lower hull, they do make a full-hull version for many of their 1/700 line and are continuing to add more!  Trumpeter has unfortunately gone the other way with HMS Nelson and other new 1/700 releases..
 
   I know Pit-Road/Skywave/Combat subs/Wave-line/High-mold releases are from the same parent Company and that Pit-Road made the molds for several other companies like Midship models and Dragon, but as already mentioned, their big customer has been Trumpeter. Perhaps Trumpeter is now doing all their own CAD and Molding for the latest releases. Leaving off a lower hull only saves a tiny bit of money. Maybe they think they can raise the price of a "lessor" kit because their "Name Brand" is at an all time high. We will see. 
 
Bad News: No rumors of a separate lower hull for HMS Nelson.
 
 
Best way to send a message, Buy Full hull kits from Fujimi, Aoshima, Dragon/Cyberhobby, Flyhawk, Hasegawa, etc.  
 
 
  
Current Trumpeter web site for HMS Nelson description indicating Lower Hull.http://www.trumpeter-china.com/index.php?g=home&m=product&a=show&id=3100&l=en
 
Released Date                 2017-11
More Features                   Lower hull made from multi-directional slide moulds.
-  Deck wood pattern finely rendered
-  Contains engraved name plate
-  Photo-etched frets included
 
 
*Trumpeter seem to be supplier to Hobby Boss and Mini-Hobby. 
  • Member since
    July, 2014
  • From: Philadelphia Pa
Posted by Nino on Monday, June 04, 2018 10:42 AM

Nino

 
Best way to send a message, Buy Full hull kits from Fujimi, Aoshima, Dragon/Cyberhobby, Flyhawk, Hasegawa, etc.  
 
 

 
 If you buy on the Internet also try searching with   " 1/700 Furuharu.." 
         (If looking for "FULL HULL").

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