I finally finished my 1/350 scale Lexington in her last pre-war configuration. I used the Yankee Model Works backdate set for the turrets and superstructure parts that were missing. I fabricated trunks for the exhaust within the funnel and used Charles Landrum's technique to get a good complete elevator well, this involves cannibalizing one well to make a complete one for the other. I ran into a problem with the 50 caliber MG, the kit came with 24 and in this version I needed 32. I ended up using photo etched guns for the remaining 8 and "hid" them on the starboard side as I don't plan to take her around much (or at all) and want to show off the flight deck and aircraft. I got three more boats to fill the other pockets as she didn't have any 20 MM at this time. I replaced the YMW 8" barrels (which were oval in diameter) with B&D brass barrels. I replaced the 5" 25s and 1.1" with L'Arsenal parts. I also replaced the screws with photo etched screw blades to get the correct 3 bladed props. I painted her with Model Master engine gray FS36076 (still a little light) as I was out of 5D at the time for the dark gray and used 5L for the upper works. I painted the flight deck yellow for stripes first then masked those stripes and "LEX" and over painted this with a wood color. Then I over painted the wood/stripes with blue stain 250 allowing the wood and stripes to bleed through. I used Micro Mask to mark off the false bow wave the ship carried at this time. The only shot of the ship I've seen from this time showed 18 F-2A on the foredeck in the gray pre-war paint (I used gull gray FS 36440) I also installed 12 SBD and 16 TBD in the early war colors using blue-gray upper and gray lower including the initial painting of the outer wings of the TBD.

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Robert D. Dedmon

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