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White Ensign Models 1/350 USS Hornet "The Ship" Detail Set

By Abram Joslin


Date of Review January 2005
Manufacturer White Ensign Models
Subject USS Hornet "The Ship" Detail Set
Scale 1/350
Kit Number PE3525
Primary Media Photo-Etch
Pros Adds significant detail and fidelity to your Trumpeter 1/350 USS Hornet
Skill Level Advanced
MSRP (USD) Approx $52.00

WEM has produced a superb detail set for your Trumpeter USS Hornet. This kit allows you to take detailing to a whole new level. This kit includes things essential to make a ship look like a ship:

  1. Railings
  2. Radars
  3. Ladders
  4. Cranes
  5. Gun detail parts
  6. Funnel caps
  7. Cat walks
  8. Cable reels
  9. Lifebuoys
  10. Replacement 1.1” AA guns
  11. Boat details
  12. Mast yardarms
  13. Replacement 20mm Oerlikon guns
  14. Antennas and much more.

The set comes with 3 pages of instructions stapled together printed front and back. These instructions are very thorough and easy to understand. The only problem I had with the set is the instructions don’t have a railing placement guide, but this can be remedied by looking at pictures of the ship, so it’s not that big of a deal. Some things I especially like about this set is the inclusion of the 1.1” guns and the details for the 5”/38 guns, the 1.1” are great replacements for the kits poorly made guns. The details for the 5”/38 guns really dress up the kit’s sparsely detailed guns. Included in the gun replacements/enhancements are the inclusion of the 20mm Oerlikons and some .50 cal water cooled guns.

The kit’s 20mm’s are, like the 5”/38s, sparsely detailed and slightly not correct. This set gives one the option of replacing them entirely with the ones included, or you can use parts from the included ones to detail the kit’s guns (which would be the easier route). One drawback to using the PE 20mm’s is they are flat. Although you could use some paint buildup or putty to thicken the guns, this would take time, and patience, but they would look very nice in the end.

If you want to build the Hornet in her as-built configuration you can use the included .50 cal guns; Hornet carried 24 of these as-built. This set also includes two types of radar, the early SC radar and the late CXAM radar. In the instructions it tells you which one to use for which time frame you plan on building the Hornet (SC for Doolittle raid, CXAM for Midway and after). I believe this is a very comprehensive set for this ship and would highly recommend it.

Although this kit doesn’t provide parts for the air wing, you can buy that set from WEM as well (#PE 3526); for even further detailing you can get WEM’s perforated catwalks to replace the kit’s solid cat walks (#PE 3546) and the hangar deck detail set (#PE 3541). WEM also provides individual sets for each WWII aircraft kit produced by Trumpeter. Again I would highly recommend this kit to anyone who’s looking to spruce up their Trumpeter USS Hornet kit, and with all the other available extras now-a-days you can really make a master piece from the already wonderful Trumpeter kit.

White Ensign Models detail sets are available directly from their website at