The 3”/50 gun dates back to World War I and was broadly used up to the 1930s.  At that time, they were being replaced by 5”/25 mountings and later on by 40mm Bofors.   While they were considered to a dual-purpose gun, they were considered ineffective due to its manual operation and the light-weight shells they fired. Yet in World War II the 3”/50 continued to be widely used as the main gun on destroyer escorts, gunboats, submarines, auxiliaries and merchant ships.  The USS New York and USS Arkansas had their 3”/50s fitted as late as 1943. As time went on, improvements were made to the guns making them more effective and a post-war a twin automatic loading mount was developed and used into the 1980s. The Polish company Master Models has added the 3”/50 gun to its 1/350 scale brass barrels offerings. The barrels are sold in packages of 12 which enables to you fit several kits.  The machined brass barrels are very well done with a slight taper to the muzzle.  In addition the muzzle has been drilled out just enough to make it look realistic.  What I find especially helpful is the stem at the bottom end of the barrel which facilitates gluing the brass part in place.

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The photos show how the brass barrel looks dry fitted on one of the 3”/50 guns in the Trumpeter USS England destroyer escort kit compared to a “stock” part.  These barrels would also greatly improve the look of any of the resin or white metal versions provided in kits by Iron Shipwrights and would also enhance the version produced by L’Arsenal. The brass barrels are sturdier and will not bend, warp or possibly snap off like resin or white metal versions. The instructions provided with this set of barrels are simple and straightforward and lay out the three steps required to make the swap. If you want to achieve as much realism as you can with a 1/350 scale model that have 3”/50s fitted then these brass barrels are what you need.

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