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Destroyer Shimakaze by Mariusz Motyka

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3.5
The Japanese destroyer Shimakaze (operational Spring 1943 - November 1944) was a one-off development of the Kaguro class, but longer, with a heavier torpedo armament and higher speed (nearly 41 knots), achieved through boiler power roughly equivalent to a British cruiser. Indeed her armament pretty well qualified her as a light cruiser. Her original design played to a key IJN strength, night fighting with torpedoes, but this advantage was degraded by increasing availability of radar to the IJN's enemies. She is shown after her AA armament was augmented in 1944, in the event not sufficient to save her from American carrier-borne air power.

Five pages of illustrated explanatory and historical text (I think in translation; some rather odd vocabulary is encountered) and constructional details are followed by 72 pages of very elegant detailed colour pictures of the ship and her deck equipment and its arrangement from several different angles. The quality of presentation, and of the artwork developed from a 3D computer model, is superb.

Shimakaze escapes reference works such as Jane's altogether for obvious reasons, so information about her internal arrangements such as crew accommodation is elusive.

Included with the A4-size softback book is an A2 drawing showing port, starboard, overhead and other detail. There are dozens of other volumes in this series advertised at the end, illustrating ships from battlecruisers to submarines from six different navies. Any of these would be a perfect gift for a model maker, so complete is the coverage of each subject's visual appearance.
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Seaweed
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