Title: 1/96 USS Missouri BB-63

Mk 37 Secondary Battery Director Support Structure

15JAN16 - Since I'm nearing completion of the underdeck supports for the 05 level, I put some time into constructing the midships Mk 37 secondary battery director structure. Externally, this support extends from the 03 deck to the bottom of the 05 deck, and comprises the bulkheads and a central tube. The compoennts are challenging as the include numerous cutouts and braces.

My original plan was to build the structure in two segments - the 04/05 deck part, and the 03/04 deck part. I built the first of these two on both sides of the superstructure and promptly decided it wasn't "good enough" (refer to photos of prior work). So I created Solidworks modules of the entire structure and built one of these. Once I had the unit assembled, I again decided there were too many problems. Fast forward to today, and after building three prior examples, I finally have one with which I'm satisfied.

The photos on this page are of the fourth unit, and are "raw." I took them while doing a fit-check on the superstructure, and there remains some cleanup to be done.

Use the (vertical) scrollbar at right as needed. Clicking on any thumbnail will take you to a larger version of the photo.

View of the Solidworks model used to create the support module. These are the major parts for the starboard structure. The forward and aft bulkheads have internal T-bracing added per drawings/photos. The framing and cross-bracing for the 04/05 deck area is added after assembly using 0.060" styrene strips.
Same view but showing the outer sides of the fore/aft bulkheads. Here the port structure is complete, while the main components of the starboard side have been assembled. Also shown is the basic structure of a director barbette. In the background are the first three failed attempts. I now consider myself to be a fairly accomplished 1/96th scale Mk 37 director support structure fabricator.
I had to paint the module "early" due to the integrated deck (04 level). Waiting until later would have made painting this deck piece more difficult. I got lucky because the original effort (the 04/05 deck piece) came out without too much struggle, and the new piece fits very well.
I am pretty happy with the result of this effort, although I have yet to build the port side (and this is the fourth module I've already built). The addition of this structure makes the existing work start to make sense visually.
As mentioned, I have some minor clean-up work to perform on the framework seams, and I'll probably lighten up the final color before painting (Brad...). Overall, I think it's a pretty faithfull representation of this structure. If you see anything wrong, please let me know as I really would like to close this subject out :)
Use the inner scrollbar at right as necessary!