Fletcher Class Destroyer

Discussion in 'Ship & Watercraft Models' started by rowiac, Nov 9, 2005.

  1. rowiac

    rowiac Member

    Here's a question for the ship folks. Since I normally build planes and land vehicles I thought I'd ask your opinions.

    I'm looking for a card model of a Fletcher class WWII destroyer that is not too difficult and will look reasonably good. I see that Modelik has the USS Leutze, which is a Fletcher class ship. Has anyone built this or know anything about the quality of Modelik ships? How about other publishers?

    I'd like to try to build one for my uncle who served on the USS Haggard (DD-555).

  2. Atomsk

    Atomsk Member

    A while back, I thought I saw that Digital Navy planned to offer one, in electronic format. I think the plan was to publish it after the release of the updated USS Arizona. That happened in July.

    I haven't seen any word on the Fletcher since then, but you may want to go to Roman's site and ask. It's at http://www.digitalnavy.com
  3. Vess Irvine

    Vess Irvine New Member

    Hi Roger:

    From a cost point of view, I would say buy the Modelik 1/200th USS Leutze for $12 or thereabouts. You can hardly lose at such a reasonable price.

    The cost to you of buying a poor model is the time you invest into it before deciding the darn thing is "unbuildable."

    I have heard (second hand) that the model appears to have never benefited from a "test build," which would have caught a few obvious misfits.

    But .... if you have a few basic computer skills (say, Photoshop), new parts can be jury-rigged as needed.

    The Modelik model does appear to be your only choice, so go for it and tell us how it turns out.

    And of course, a Fletcher destroyer is an A+++ modeling subject. Good looking and a historically important ship. The Leutze also has a snazzy camo paint job.

    If your Uncle's service was not important in the choice of subject, I would dearly like to see someone build the new Modelik 1/200th USS Oakland, an Atlanta Class AA cruiser of the same era, on sale starting next week.

    Now there is one good looking boat; fast, sleak and bristling with 5 inch guns (16 of them?). It looks like it is ready to take care of "business."

    The Atlanta's had a tendency to blow up into smitherens when hit by a Japanese long lance torpedo. Still, they look terrific.

  4. Jim Nunn

    Jim Nunn Member

    Wilhelmshaven has a Fletcher class destroyer.
    I built this model 30 years ago and remember it as an excellent kit with good detail. I always thought that it was one of the better Wilhelmshaven models of that area. You could change the hull number and stern plate to convert it back to a US ship.

    Jim Nunn
  5. DeWayne

    DeWayne Member

    Fletcher, Sumner and Gearing

    Not being a ship man I'd like to know how much of a difference there is between the Fletcher class and the Gearing class Destroyers. I know there is 14 feet in length between the Sumner (?) class and the Gearing class. Where does that leave the Fletcher? I ask because my Dad served on the USS Higbee DD-806 during the Korean War and I'd like to do a reasonable model of it. Any help on this one?
  6. rowiac

    rowiac Member


    Here are comparative specs for the Gearing Class:
    • Displacement: 2425 tons
    • Length: 390''6"
    • Beam: 40'10"
    • Draft: 18'6"
    • Speed: 35 knots
    • Armament: 6 5"/38, 2x5 21" torpedo tubes
    • Complement: 355
    • High-pressure super-heated boilers, geared turbines with twin screws, 60,000 h.p.
    and Fletcher Class:
    • Displacement: 2050 tons
    • Length: 376'6"
    • Beam: 39'4"
    • Draft: 17'9"
    • Speed: 35 knots
    • Armament: 5 5"/38, 2x5 21" torpedo tubes
    • Complement: 329
    • High-pressure super-heated boilers, geared turbines with twin screws, 60,000 h.p
    It seems like the main difference is an extra 5" gun on the Gearing.

    I became interested in building the Haggard after reading the crew's stories. The ship was kamikazied near Okinawa, and almost sunk. The crew managed to nurse it back to port, scrounged up scrap to patch it up and sailed it all the way back to the East Coast.

  7. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

    Higbee...... Wasn't that the destroyer attacked by MiG-17's during VietNam?

    I think that was correct?

  8. lakedweller

    lakedweller Guest

    Yes the Higbee was 'bombed' by a MIG

    If I remember the battle correctly, the Higbee was hit by a bomb from one of the attacking MIGs but the MIG was shot down by the USS Sterett's SAM's. A second MIG was a 'probable' kill by the Sterett but the actual missile intercept was not seen by any friendly force....only a secondary explosion was detected as the MIG was fleeing over the mountains. Was quite a sea/air battle for the record.
  9. Atomsk

    Atomsk Member

    The Gearings were lengthened because early-war experience showed that pre-war assumptions about the necessary endurance for a destroyer were, shall we say, "somewhat on the low side". The extra length was primarily for additional fuel bunkerage.

    The main battery on the Gearings (and the Sumners too) was not only a gun heavier than the Fletchers, but it was arranged much better too. The Fletchers had five single turrets, two forward, two aft, and one amidships with a "gord awful" field of fire. The Gearings and Sumners had their guns in three twin turrets, two fwd., one aft. That way they could put twice the weight of fire over the bow as a Fletcher could. Even so, they still had the same number of guns at the rear. One of the reasons for the slightly greater beam on the later classes, is to acommodate the larger twin turrets. These are the same turrets used on the CLAAs and as secondary armament on battleships and cruisers.

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