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First Look Review
RN Ladders & Searchlights
FlyHawk Models 1/700 scale RN Ladders & Searchlights Photo-Etch
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by: Rodger Cole [ HALFYANK ]

Originally published on:
Model Shipwrights


This set is a generic upgrade kit for Royal Navy ships consisting of ladders and searchlights in various sizes. Although it specifies Royal Navy I would think that items such as these are similar enough, especially in this scale, to be useful for other navies as well.

The Fret...

The kit has one medium sized fret, 55mm x 93 mm (2 3/16 in. x 3 Ĺ in.) It includes 36 5 mm long ladders with handrails, 18 6 mm long ladders with handrails, 18 4 mm long ladders with handrails, 5 7 mm long ladders with handrails, and 5 8 mm long ladders with handrails. Also included are 3 87 mm long ladders without handrails, for bulkheads and masts. For searchlights there are 20 2 mm wide searchlight lenses, and 30 1 mm wide lenses. I have no information as to if these are common lengths for Royal Navy ships. I assume the manufacture did their homework....

The metal is thin, but not too thin. The only set I have to compare it to is Tomís Modelworks USS Indianapolis set. The metal is considerably thicker than the Tomís set. One photo shows one of these ladders on the Indianapolis to show it in use.

For the purpose of this review I cut out one of the 8 mm long ladders. Due to the thin metal it was very easy to bend, though also very easy to break, as you can see from the close up photo.

Packaging is one medium thick piece of cardboard that the fret was taped to that prevented damage in transit.


The instructions are extremely basic and easy to follow, simply showing to bend the handrails upward on the ladders and an example of how the searchlight lenses would go over the front of the searchlight. Since this is a generic kit, no distinct ship examples of any kind are given as to where to place the ladders on a ship model.

Highs: Nice detail, easy to bend.
Lows: Easy to break, nearly non existent instructions.
Verdict: Good for those with good eyesight and ability to work with thin photo etch.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:700
  Mfg. ID: FH 700105
  Suggested Retail: 9.99
  Related Link: Flyhawk Model
  PUBLISHED: Oct 07, 2009
  NATIONALITY: United Kingdom

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About Rodger Cole (Halfyank)

American Father, English Mother. Mum was in some British auxiliary, I'm not sure which, and Dad was a truck driver who ended up on a half track towing a 57mm, in the Big Red One. I was a modeler in the early 70s but got out of it. I'm just getting back into modeling after about 25 years. I'm planni...

Copyright ©2020 text by Rodger Cole [ HALFYANK ]. All rights reserved.


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