1:350 Injection Molded Kit
by Loren Perry
The new ICM Konig is truly a brilliant kit. It's easily the equal of a Tamiya product. The one-piece hull is perfectly shaped with full symmetry and good surface detail. The decks feature restrained planking detail with a combination of raised and engraved planking displayed. All guns, directors, and searchlights are superbly detailed and can be positioned in every axis. The ship's boats are works of art, probably the finest ever done in 1/350 scale. There are many pieces involved with separate steam plants for the launches, separate thwarts, separate rudders, and beautifully detailed cradles assembled from multiple parts. Masts and yardarms are finely detailed and very close to scale in sizes and diameters.
Surface detailing on the superstructure is almost beyond belief with some details visible only under extreme magnification. An example: the latches that hold the porthole covers closed are all there, molded right onto the bulkheads, but you won't see them without a powerful magnifying glass. Some of the smaller parts are so finely made that they look like they belong in a 1/700 scale kit. The ship's three screws are some of the most perfectly contoured I've ever seen, and are superior to Tamiya's screws. The toolmaking for this kit is almost revolutionary.
All five of the one-piece main battery turrets correctly display perfectly vertical sides with no signs of molding draft (slightly slanted sides) common on lesser kits. Even the gun ports in the turret faces are correctly shaped and closed off at the bottom. And the hull shows signs of being produced from a seven-piece tool, surely a record of some kind. ICM's multi-color instruction booklet is outstanding with excellent artwork, clear drawings, and good English and German translations.
Weaknesses are few: no torpedo tube doors on the underwater hull, no flags, no decals, and weak anchor chain moldings on the forecastle. (Editorís Note: Grosser Kurfurst and more recent Konig kits came with decals.) Some flash is visible on the hull and elsewhere, but this is extremely minor and easily removed. Also, numerous optional parts are provided but with no indication in the instructions as to when or if they were applied to the prototype. Steve Wiper of Classic Warships is working with Duane Fowler to produce a dedicated set of custom decals for this kit that will also include flags. Steve has also been instrumental in assisting me in acquiring plans and documentation on the prototype for designing the GMM PE set now being prepared. (Editorís Note: The Gold Medal PE Fret for this kit has been available for many months.)
My final recommendation: get thee to a hobby shop now and buy this brilliant kit. If you don't love it, I'll buy it from you myself. (Editorís Note: The last phrase was addressed to one individual and not the hobby as a whole.)
(Editorís Note: This review was originally written by Mr. Perry on May 28,
2000, appeared on SMML and is reproduced here with Mr. Perryís kind