by: Frank [ ]
The battleship Orel was one of 5 ships in the Borodino class. The Borodino class of battleships came about in a unique way. The Tsesarevich was a French built battleship that served as a Russian flagship. The Russians agreed to buy the Tsesarevich after the “battle of the Yellow Sea” in 1904 with an understanding that they could build 5 more ships of this design but with more Russian standards. These 5 ships became the Borodino class.
The Borodino class set two records never to be repeated. They would be part of the longest coal powered journey ever conducted by the Russian battleship fleet by traveling 18,000 miles one way. Also they participated in the only decisive battleship fleet action ever fought, “Battle of Tsushima”. Also the Borodino class was considered the worst design ever for a battleship due to the “Tumblehome” hulls on the ships. Tumblehome hulls were unique because the hulls were wider at the bottom and narrower towards the top which lead the ships to be unsteady and top heavy.
Looking a little closer. . .
The first thing you notice when you look at the box is the name. The name of the kit is “Battleship Oriol” but the actual name of the ship is Orel . The box art is very nice and shows the Orel in battle while out at sea.
The box was very sturdy and the parts were molded in a light grey plastic. The parts were all contained on 9 sprue’s which held 394 parts (only 4 of those parts were loose). The kit had one small decal sheet with the ships name and a couple of emblems (all in gold) and one small sheet of paper flags.
This is the main deck of the ship and this sprue also has the props of the ship.
This Sprue has a multitude of different parts. It is the largest sprue in the kit. It has the secondary deck along with the bridge and many of the bulk heads (sides) of the deck. We also have some ladders, cranes, and some funnel parts on this sprue.
This sprue has stack parts, prop shafts, the 305mm main guns, davits, and even outer doors for the 152mm guns which you can have open or closed. There are 2 sprue C’s.
This sprue contains the two parts of the hull. There is very little flash on the parts and the molding is very sharp and crisp.
This sprue has the life boats, the 152mm secondary guns, and the 47 – 75mm AA guns, and the anchors. The guns are molded fairly well and do depict the actual guns quite well. There are 2 sprue E’s.
This is the base of the ship and they use the main part of the base as the sprue with the pedestals coming off of the side.
This is the smallest sprue in the kit and it contains the stacks and a couple of other small parts.
The decal sheet is simple, but effective, decent coloring, with the name of the ship in a couple of different sizes and also has a coat of arms, all gold colored.
Again, quite basic, the flag sheet holds two ensigns of different sizes, made of paper. A little white glue and some slight manipulation should turn out a nice looking display!
The instructions are all on one big sheet folded into different sections. All the sprue is pictured along with corresponding letters and numbers. The instructions are very complete and easy to follow. The parts that are being worked on in each sectioned are shaded so you won’t lose your place. The instructions also have painting and rigging directions. All directions are in Russian and English.
The box art is very nice and depicts the ship under steam and in battle. The side of the box gives a short history of the ship in six languages. Also the side of the box gives the paint needed (Model Master) and lists the kit length as 34.5cm.