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In-Box Review
South Dakota Class Turrets
Yankee Modelworks 1/350 Scale South Dakota Class Replacement Turrets
  • ykm3011-001

by: Jim Adams [ GOLDENPONY ]

Originally published on:
Model Shipwrights


The big gun of the US Navy during World War II was the 16” sported by its battleships. The USS South Dakota and her sisters used her main guns with great effect during her time


Designation-16"/45 (40.6 cm) Mark 6
Ship Class Used On -North Carolina and South Dakota classes
Date Of Design-1936
Date In Service-1941
Gun Weight-192,310 lbs. (97,231 kg) excluding breech
Gun Length,oal-736.0 in (18.694 m)
Bore Length-720.0 in (18.288 m)
Rifling Length-616.9 in (15.668 m)
Chamber Volume-23,195 in3
Rate of Fire-2 rounds per minute

The bore was chromium plated for a distance of 625 inches from the muzzle, this was to increase barrel life. This class of gun could still fire the larger round, 2700 lbs, common to the Iowa class battleship. However it had a significantly shorter range

The box, and what's inside...:

The kit comes in a heavy duty, hinged lid style cardboard box, with a close up picture of the South Dakota’s main gun on the front. Inside, you will find two zip lock bags holding the turrets and barrels. Also inside are the kits instructions for the replacement turrets.

The main turrets are cast together on a single resin sprue. They can be removed quite easily, and with no problem from their casting strip. Each turret features nicely detail rivet pattern along its top as well as a crisp turret ring on its base. On the underside of the turret, minute detials such the escape hatch is cast in the rear bottom portion. There was no sign air bubbles or sink holes on this sample, however there was a small amount of flash. Cleaning these up will be no problem.

The secondary turrets are all on one pour strip. There are ten turrets provided, however only eight are needed for your So Dak. These too have nice detailing, including the entrance hatch on the side, as well as the escape hatch on the top side of the turret. There was some very minor flash near the range finders, and you will need to run the bottoms over some sand paper after you remove them from the casting strip...but neither one of these should again, be no trouble to take care of.

The final resin parts are the bloomer bags for the 16” gun barrels. These again have nice detail to them. You will need to do a little work to get the extra resin material removed,so they fit into the main turrets correctly.

The barrels for the guns are all cast in white metal. The material is fairly soft and easy to work with. The main gun barrels have bloomer bags already cast on them. These too fit into the turrets well after you remove the excess material. The modeler can either use the white metal parts as is, or cut off the barrel and use the resin bloomer bags. There are no mold lines on the main gun barrels, and they even have a part of the muzzle hollowed out. With a little care you should be able to make this a little deeper.

The secondary gun barrels fit right into their spots in the 5” mounts. Both sets of barrels did have some bent pieces, however since the material is soft you can straighten them with ease.

The main gun range finders are also cast in white metal. They do not have much detail and are hollow on the bottom. After removal from their pour sprues they fit right into their spots on the 16” mounts.

The instructions are straight forward and printed on one page.

Final impressions:

Overall the details of the replacements are very nice. The white metal barrels will need to be straightened aq bit, so be careful there.

A couple missing features from this kit is the lack of ladders between the barrels on the turrets. Also there are several pictures of the South Dakota class ship having lift rafts mounted on top of the turrets as well as hung on the sides.

Highs: Nice crisp resin castings.
Lows: White metal barrels will need some work.
Verdict: Good way to upgrade your South Dakota class Battlewagon.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:350
  Mfg. ID: YKM3011
  Suggested Retail: 34.99
  Related Link: Official Company Website
  PUBLISHED: Feb 21, 2008
  NATIONALITY: United States

Our Thanks to Yankee Modelworks!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Jim Adams (goldenpony)

Copyright ©2020 text by Jim Adams [ GOLDENPONY ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of ModelGeek. All rights reserved.


I've seen this kit on the Steel Navy site...looks EXACTLY like the YMW North Carolina turret kit...why is this kit..."New"
FEB 22, 2008 - 04:42 AM
Dave, this a review of the kit, not a news announcement. Yankee Modelworks asked to have their product reviewed because it could be used on the new Trumpeter 1/350 USS Alabama.
FEB 25, 2008 - 02:09 AM
I purchased the YMW North Carolina turret set and it was horrible...flash in hard to clean/detailed ereas...2.8 to 3.4mm of material would need to be removed from main turret bottoms to get the correct hight. About the only usefull items in the entire kit was the blastbags! If the YMW South Dakota turret set is just a copy of a NC kit. ( or one in the same )...save your money and work the Trumpeter parts! [
FEB 27, 2008 - 11:33 PM
Ahoy, Pete (very clever username, btw...Top Gun fan? ) We could sure use a detailed review of the NC kit, to make a fair comparison of the two...would you be interested in submitting one? ~Gunny
FEB 28, 2008 - 12:19 AM
Better yet...here are photos of some of the NC parts!...I'm useing the box for spare parts!
FEB 28, 2008 - 12:37 AM
Nice images, very detailed and clear....... Comparing your images with the recent review images of the So-Dak, the flash clean-up appears to be a bit heavier on your parts, although still some nasties are apparent on the review images as well...as far as the height differences, I'll have to take your word on it, as I don't have either of these upgrades to base a study upon....thanks again for sharing! Cheers, ~Gunny
FEB 28, 2008 - 01:10 AM

What's Your Opinion?

Click image to enlarge
  • ykm3011-001
  • Contents
  • Main Turrets, Secondary Turrets, Blast Bags
    Main Turrets, Secondary Turrets, Blast Bags
  • Main Turret Close-up
    Main Turret Close-up
  • Main Turret, Side Detail
    Main Turret, Side Detail
  • Main Turret, Top Detail
    Main Turret, Top Detail
  • Secondary Turret, Top Detail
    Secondary Turret, Top Detail
  • Blast Bag Detail
    Blast Bag Detail
  • Secondary Gun White Metal Barrels
    Secondary Gun White Metal Barrels
  • Secondary Gun White Metal Barrels
    Secondary Gun White Metal Barrels
  • Range Finders
    Range Finders
  • Instruction Sheet
    Instruction Sheet