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Recommended to help backdate your Tamiya or Fujimi 1/700 USS Saratoga CV-3 (1944) kit to represent the ship's 1941 - March, 1942 appearance. Note that the Fujimi kit has a hull without the starboard stability blister and forward flight deck features for 1941.
Conversion advice (major changes):
This model represents the island of celebrated aircraft carrier USS Saratoga CV-3 as she appeared the year of the Pearl Harbor attack, after her flight deck had been widened but her 8-inch guns had not yet been removed nor had a stability/torpedo blister been yet installed on her starboard side.
The major difference between this version and the 1936 version is the addition of a box-like Radio Direction Finder Station located above and forward of the Pilot House, a small platform on the port side of the roof of the Flag Plotting Station above the Pilot House, and a shielded extension forward on the windbreak of the uppermost fire control platform.
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© Model Monkey Book and Hobby. This 3D-printed item may not be copied or recast.
Model Monkey Lexington class products:
- fully assembled
- accurately dimensioned from US Navy Booklet of General Plans drawings
- detail locations confirmed by careful study of photographs of the actual ship
- proper asymmetrical deck shapes for Saratoga (Lexington's were shaped differently)
- accurate splinter shield shapes (Lexington's were shaped differently)
- enlarged Flag Plotting Station (above Pilot House), unique to Saratoga
- box-like Radio Direction Finder Station
- accurate fighting tops, including the aft top on the funnel, both with open windows
- upper top Fire Control Station (the large uppermost platform on top the tripod) includes supporting structural framing with lightening holes, subtle locator disks for rangefinders (not included) and splinter shielding of a slightly different shape than Lexington's
- open A/T doors, ready for your favorite photoetch
- open portholes (airports) properly sized and located
- detailed interior barbette and associated bulkheads with open scuttles
- heavy structural supports included
- light structural supports, railings and ladders omitted, ready for your favorite photoetch
USS Lexington CV-2USS Saratoga CV-3
From Wikipedia: "From 6 January to 15 August 1941, Saratoga underwent a long-deferred modernization at the Bremerton Navy Yard that included the widening of her flight deck at her bow and the installation of additional antiaircraft guns and a CXAM-1 radar. The ship began a refit a few days later that lasted until late November, further revising the anti-aircraft armament and added a FC radar.
"When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941, Saratoga was entering San Diego Harbor to embark her air group, which had been training ashore while the ship was refitting. This consisted of 11 Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat fighters of VF-3 (under the command of Lieutenant Jimmy Thach), 43 Douglas SBD Dauntless dive bombers of VB-3 and VS-3, and 11 Douglas TBD Devastator torpedo bombers of VT-3. The ship also was under orders to load 14 Marine Corps Brewster F2A-3 Buffalo fighters of VMF-221 for delivery in Oahu. The following morning the ship, now the flagship of Carrier Division One, commanded by Rear Admiral Aubrey Fitch, sailed for Pearl Harbor. Saratoga arrived at Pearl on 15 December, refueled, and departed for Wake Island the following day. The ship was assigned to Task Force (TF) 14 under the command of Rear Admiral Frank Jack Fletcher; VF-3 had been reinforced by two additional Wildcats picked up in Hawaii, but one SBD had been forced to ditch on 11 December.
"She then rendezvoused with the seaplane tender Tangier, carrying reinforcements and supplies, and the slow replenishment oiler Neches. Saratoga 's task force was delayed by the necessity to refuel its escorting destroyers on 21 December, before reaching the island. This process was prolonged by heavy weather, although the task force could still reach Wake by 24 December as scheduled. After receiving reports of heavy Japanese carrier airstrikes, and then troop landings, TF 14 was recalled on 23 December, and Wake fell the same day. On the return voyage, Saratoga delivered VMF-221 to Midway on 25 December. The ship arrived at Pearl on 29 December and Fletcher was replaced as commander of Task Force 14 by Rear Admiral Herbert F. Leary the following day. Leary made Saratoga his flagship and Fitch was transferred to a shore command that same day. The task force put to sea on 31 December and patrolled in the vicinity of Midway.
"Saratoga, about 420 nautical miles (780 km; 480 mi) southwest of Pearl Harbor on 11 January 1942, was heading towards a rendezvous with USS Enterprise when she was hit by a torpedo fired by the I-6. The explosion flooded three of her boiler rooms, reduced her speed to a maximum of 16 knots (30 km/h; 18 mph) and killed six of her crewmen. The ship's list was soon corrected and she reached Pearl two days later. While undergoing temporary repairs there, her four twin eight-inch gun turrets were removed for installation in shore batteries on Oahu. Saratoga then sailed to the Bremerton Navy Yard on 9 February for permanent repairs. She embarked 10 Wildcats of the VF-2 Detachment and all of VS-3 with its Dauntlesses for self-protection on the voyage."