Refit: USS Missouri

This 12 foot, 1/72 scale model of USS Missouri was originally built by Deryk Haole around 1995-96.  It was sold to a 1/144 combat club that used it for recruiting purposes around the San Francisco Bay area.  During this period they promoted it as the USS Iowa, but she was originally built as the USS Missouri in a circa 1945 configuration.  For those that know the ships, there is a difference.

After several years of  this mis-handling and abuse, she fell into pretty deplorable shape.  The original builder re-purchased the ship where it eventually became the property of Gary Powell.

In 2014 a large and very active Veterans Group in Roseville, California requested she be put on display as the centerpiece for their annual Pearl Harbor Rememberance set for the upcoming December 7.  The new owner agreed, but she was in absolutely no shape to be displayed anywhere!  Time to do a complete refit was just 4 months.

Hull damage, broken and missing deck detail.

 

 

 

Portions of the superstructure broken away and completely missing.

 

 

 

Paint is flaking and peeling.  Also note how dirty the deck has become.

 

 

 

More broken, missing and dirty superstructure.

 

 

 

 

Left picture showing the damaged bow area.

Picture on the right shows broken rigging and missing parts of the superstructure detail.

 

 

 

 

 

Photo to the left, shows the stern area where almost all the deck detail is missing.  So the process of totally dissembling the ship began.  Below right is a photo of the broken 40mm quad guns that either needed repair or would be completely replaced.

Total number of the 40mm guns that needed to be replaced was 80.  There were also 49-20mm guns that needed to be made and replaced.

To the left is a start on replacing those 40mm guns.

Each set of guns would have to be molded separately, then painted and assembled.

On a positive note: the pile of broken parts was given to another PMWC member, who was happy to repair as many as possible.

They eventually found their way onto another ship in the club that didn’t need as many.

Stack damage, from initial patching and sanding, to the finished repair shown on the right.

The USS Missouri was originally built in two halves, which made the repairs much easier (try lifting a 12 foot ship and moving  it around without causing even more damage).  These pictures show some of the patching that was required to remove all the bumps and bruises it had acquired over the years.  It would take hours to cut out damaged sections of the hull, putty the low spots before doing any sanding.

The dirty process of sanding the hull patches, created HUGE piles of dusty powder.  The payoff is a smooth hull, that once painted would no longer show any of the imperfections caused by the many hanger dents it received through the years.  The end result on the right is having the hull receive a perfectly matched, authentic camouflage scheme from the time period.

The Mighty Mo is starting to look a lot like her old self!  Be sure to compare the stern area photo above, with the one earlier that was taken prior to the refit.

Many, many, thanks to Mel Nosal of the Sun City Roseville Veterans Association, for providing that “kick in the…” inspiration needed to finally undertake this refit.

Since the refit, the USS Missouri has been well received at several other functions.

For anyone interested in the USS Missouri appearing at your function, email Gary at:   hmsheffield@rocketmail.com

 

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