SMS Kurfürst Friedrich Wilhelm 
by Christian Hoeltge 

1/700 SMS Kurfürst Friedrich Wilhelm (Combrig)

In 1888 by Kaiser Wilhelm II his desire for a strong navy was implemented with the construction of the 4 armored ships of the Brandenburg class. The ships were designed by the naval chief engineer Alfred Dietrich. They differed significantly from similar ships of other navies by the 6 pieces of 28cm main gun. It is also interesting to note is the arrangement along the long axis of the ship for the first time. Although the lead ship of the class, the class was called after the second built ship, the SMS Brandenburg.

The Kurfuerst Friedrich Wilhelm was built in the imperial shipyard Wilhelmshaven and had its launch on 24.3.1890. On 29.04.1894 the commissioning took place. The length was 115.7m and the width was 19.5m. As armament the Kurfuerst had 4 x 28 cm L / 40 and 2 x 28 cm L / 35. The secondary armament consisted of 6 x 10.5 cm and 8 x 8.8 cm rapid loading guns. Also included were 12 x 3.7 cm revolver guns and 6 x torpedo tubes on board.

The four ships of the Brandenburg class formed the 1st Division after commissioning, and the Kurfuest became the flagship of this. The division had the first mission in the defeat of the boxer's uprising in China, but was not involved in any fighting. After the return, the ships were rebuilt several times and, e.g. the number of the 10.5 cm guns increased.

However, the ships were soon considered obsolete and the Kurfuerst and the sister ship Weißenburg were sold to the Ottoman Empire. There she was renamed in Barbaros Hayreddin. During the first world war she sailed on the Ottoman side under the command of German commander Hermann Lorey. On the way to the Dardanelles, she were sunk on the 8th of August 1915 by the British submarine HMS E11. There were 253 dead.

The model is a resin kit from Kombrig and represents the Kurfuerst before the conversion 1902. As usual the kit contains of finely cast resin parts and also an etching part board with the most necessary parts. On the instructions, however, the positions of the 8.8 cm guns were incorrectly stated. I corrected this. The ladders were replaced by better ones from Flyhawk and the railing comes from Lion Roar and Bigblueboy. Otherwise there were no problems with the construction. To complain is only the absence of the 3.7 cm revolver guns. These I left out because of lacking alternatives.

For the painting I used again Lifecolor and Vallejo colors. The rigging was again created with the stuff of Uschi van der Rosten from the rust and could have been more complete with more documents available. The water surface was created from several layers of Vallejos Water Effects. At last came a layer of Noch's clear water.

Christian Hoeltge

Gallery updated 4/21/2017