You've seen the kit! You've seen the build! Now see the photo-etch! Yes, you can see the Aoshima 1:350 scale Chokai, Japanese Takao class heavy cruiser 1942, just one of the models of this class, produced by Aoshima. (Click for Review of Aoshima 1:350 scale Chokai 1942) Yes, you can see how beautifully these kits can be finished with the Maya 1944 by Jose Soca. (Click for Jose Soca's build of the Aoshima 1:350 scale Maya 1944)  Now we'll take a look at the Gold Medal Models' brass photo-etch sets produced for this model. The word sets, rather than set, is correct because there are two. In the old days of Hollywood when a movie producer came out with a rave like "Introducing new screen sensation Rip Rock! ", you knew that it was a B movie because it did not have a proven star. If the movie featured a proven star you knew the quality in advance. In a John Wayne movie, you get the Duke. Peter Hall may be the Sir Lawrence Olivier of photo-etch but when it comes to the USA, it is Loren Perry who is the Duke. Duke Perry provides two fisted action when it comes to providing the enhanced brass details for the 1:350 scale Takao, which will elevate your kit to another level. 

Listen up Pilgrim! If you still want to be standing when the man counts ten at the IPMS show, you had better listen to the Duke. GMM provides high quality relief-etched catapults for not only the 1939 war-time catapult, but also the earlier 1932 catapult originally fitted on the ships. The details include not only the catapults, but also the turntable base plates. For aircraft handling you can push your Petes with panache in their stylish GMM aircraft trolleys. Once on the catapult your dandy Daves will be resplendent in their GMM cradles/shuttles in two different styles. The aircraft will also be fully attired in the best of detail with wing struts, float struts, rear machine guns, radio masts and propellers of fine brass. The Aoshima kit has a solid aircraft/boat crane, which is strictly grade B when it comes to lattice detail. Go with Duke Perry's A team aircraft/boat crane with detailed delicate open lattice work. The stack cap grates have to have the fine brass GMM parts to use in lieu of the heavy plastic parts provided in the kit. To further expand upon the stack presentation the Duke gives you all of the rows of footrails that ring each stack. Brace your stacks with the fine stack braces from GMM. Crown your turrets with fine tripods in both 1932 and 1939 styles, as well as turret crown railing. 


GMM Gold Takao
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Plastic radar can't compare with the delicate brass GMM array found on this fret. Since you have your new GMM boat crane, you might as well have something worth lifting. The Duke has also taken care of this for you. The set has numerous deck cradles with their base plates. For the boats you get boat keels, safety rails, wheels and oars. For those Geisha runs in port the Duke provides Jacob's ladders for your crew to scramble into the boats for shore leave and boats pulleys to lower the smaller boats. Your AA gunners will fire with panache with the detail provided for single, twin and triple 25mm guns. Masts get highly detailed yards with footropes. GMM hasn't forgotten the nuts and bolts. There are relief-etched doors in open and closed versions with unique bridge doors. Brass cable/hose reels are found in different styles and there are turnbuckles and eyebolts. Twenty runs of vertical ladder, large inclined ladders, and medium inclined ladders insure that nobody goes up the down staircase. Duke Perry revolutionized railings with his introduction of drooped railings, which replicate the sag of chain link rails. Now that is standard practice so the Duke swung open the saloon doors for a high-noon showdown in the street with drooped railing, which now has individually discernable links.  GMM provides the curving forecastle railing, which follow the sharp sheer of Japanese cruiser bow. In addition to multiple styles of railing, GMM provides canvas covered railings for the occasional duty in the Aleutians. 


GMM Gold Takao
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Although the Gold Medal Models main feature will satisfy most, some modelers will want a double dose of the Duke. For them, matinee idol Loren Perry has produced a second fret. Entitled the Gold Plus fret, this product additional details for the Aoshima kits. The open grid louvers are really top notch. Other heavy metal are search light towers and machine gun control towers. For funnels, there are funnel platforms and railing. Turrets get observation covers. Do you want really brass strips connecting the linoleum panels on the deck? Now you can have it. The Duke provides the individual brass connecting strips for that ultimate in deck detail. What these strips do for the decks, GMM provides degaussing cables for the hull sides. Masts get enhanced mast bracing. There are boat davits, open hatch covers, closed hatch covers, life buoys, life buoy racks, cutter thwarts, awning stanchions, torpedo control wheels, torpedo loading derricks, searchlight covers, propeller guards, DF loops, capstan wheels, small boat booms, accommodation ladders and awnings, binnacle and leadsman's platforms. 


GMM Gold Plus Takao
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Duke Wayne never had sand kicked into his face by bullies at the beach and Duke Perry will help you prevent bullies at the IPMS show kicking sand into the eyes of your Takao. The large fret of Gold Medal Models 1:350 scale Takao class detail set and the additional Gold Plus detail set provide all of the detail that you need to pump up your Takao to Arnold status.

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