Whether they are the Big E, Johnny Reb, Big Stick, Ike or USS Enterprise CVN-65, USS John C, Stennis CVN CVN-74, USS Theodore Roosevelt CVN-71, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower CVN-69 or USS Nimitz CVN-68, USS Carl Vinson CVN-70, USS Abraham Lincoln CVN-72, USS George Washington CVN-73, USS Harry S. Truman CVN-75, or the newest, CVN Ronald Reagan CVN-76, as a group, they represent the greatest accumulation of naval power the world has ever seen. Submariners may disagree. In their eyes their silent, slinking, sneaky, tricksy black cylinders are the epitome of naval power. They do have a point, as their boomers are capable of destroying many cities in one salvo of their MIRV missiles. However, when it comes to power projection, the carrier is still king, or if you will, Queen of the ocean.

For years the Tamiya USS Enterprise CVN-65 was the only 1:350 scale model aircraft carrier, nuclear or conventional, available. Many a modeler has jumped at the chance to build the Big E. That monopoly is about to change, for in a few months the 1:350 scale USS Nimitz CVN-68 by Trumpeter will be available. After that, who knows? Depending upon sales, Trumpeter will probably not stop with one of the big modern carriers and Panda is said to be working on their own model of a big deck USN nuclear powered carrier. Do you still hanker to build the Big E in the Big Scale? Do you want the five star Nimitz to go up in your construction yard? Their sheer size and majesty in 1:350 scale, the scale of Kings, proclaims that they will not be ordinary, run-of-the-mill builds. They do not deserve ordinary treatment. Are you ready? What have you done to prepare yourself? 

If you have the Enterprise, you are probably already aware of the fantastic extra level of detail that can be built into the kit with extensive brass photo-etch detail sets that are available for the ship and air complement. The Nimitz is preordained to receive the same care and detail in photo-etch frets designed specifically for the kit. As glorious as brass photo-etch can be, CVNs do not live or sail by brass alone. More is needed! Every ounce of effort is required to pay proper homage to the 1:350 scale CVN Throne. No fear, one of the Grand Masters in the arcane field of model warship detailing has pushed the throttle to all ahead flank speed to get you ready now for the pleasures to come. Modelisimo Loren Perry is on the bridge of the USS Gold Medal Models and has a strike spotted on his deck, to come to the aide of the beleaguered 1:350 CVN modeler now. Just pick up your radio now, dial to the correct frequency, and call in the strike using the call sign GMM 350-8D. The GMM support mission will be launched, in the air and over your position before you can whistle Dixie for the Johnny Reb.

How is it loaded? What is in the strike package? Markings, color, warnings, wings, numbers, names and much more are yours for the asking, after payment of the nominal fee of $12.00 plus $1.50 shipping. Gold Medal Models accessory set 350-8D is a glorious two sheet decal set for the CVNs of the USN. Island markings, deck markings, hull markings, hull names, hull numbers, deck numbers are all covered for the nuclear powered carriers. Whether it is for the oldest, USS Enterprise, or the youngest, USS Ronald Reagan, all the decals that you need for your Big One are there. 


The GMM Rainbow
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Sheet One
Hollywood in all of its Technicolor splendor could not outdo the rainbow of color found on this carrier markings sheet. The photographs show more than mere words. Each CVN has its own unique design of a pair of wings, usually centered by crossed anchors on the forward face of the island. GMM has provided this unique design for each of the nuclear carriers and some have more than one style depending upon the year that is being modeled. Large "Beware of Jet Blast" warnings come in different styles, some yellow in black boxes and some just yellow on the gray island. Again, GMM provides the variants. Efficiency awards for the different departments come in three different sizes. Colorful station markings for underway replenishment are provided in abundance. Your flight deck will be awash in color. Red weapons warning circles; yellow and red ordnance jettison ramp and elevator outline stripes; red and white forward deck markings; white, red and yellow power hatch stripes are all there. About the only color missing is Army green. Hull draft markings, nation ensign & jack, small island markings and even deck tractor markings are provided.


Taking Names & Numbers
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Sheet Two
Its time to take names and numbers as decal sheet two is tailored for that mission. Deck and island numbers are included in this sheet as well as the hull names. The numbers come in four sizes and three styles. Island numbers are in early white with black shading or late solid white numbers. Deck numbers are the jumbo size solid white 68 for the early Nimitz, smaller solid white numbers or the hollow white outline numbers.


Instructions
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Instructions
GMM provides comprehensive instructions that in themselves are a primer in CVN ship markings. The plans and profiles of the Enterprise and Nimitz provide all the information that you need to know. Islands get special attention, especially for the Enterprise. However, the front face and port side of each CVN island is shown, showing how each ship varied in markings placement and composition.

Verdict
If you are going to build a 1:350 scale Enterprise, Nimitz or any other USN CVN, you will be making a very substantial investment, not just monetary but also in your time. For almost all modelers, the finished ship will be the biggest item in their collection. With Gold Medal Models GMM 350-8D you’ll be ready. Do you want to go half measures? Do you want to pull your punch? Or do you want to hit the after-burner? You’re the captain, you decide.

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