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IJN Sen Toku I-400-class Submarine, 1945

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"Bob Cicconi shares his latest submarine build with us, Aoshima's 1/700 scale I-400 kit, with Bob's special touch!"

the vessel...
The Sen Toku I-400-class (伊四〇〇型潜水艦) submarines of the Imperial Japanese Navy were the largest submarines of World War II, and the largest ever built prior to the development of nuclear ballistic missile submarines in the 1960s.

These were submarine aircraft carriers and each of them was able to carry 3 Aichi M6A Seiran aircraft underwater to their destinations. They also carried torpedoes for close range combat and were designed to surface, launch the planes then dive again quickly before they were discovered.

The I-400 was originally designed so that it could travel round-trip to anywhere in the world, and it was specifically intended to destroy the U.S.-controlled Panama Canal. A fleet of 18 boats was planned in 1942, and work on the first one was started in January 1943 at the Kure, Hiroshima arsenal.

Within a year the plan was scaled back to five, and only three (I-400 at Kure, and the I-401 and I-402 at Sasebo) were completed.

the model...
"Ahoy, mates, here are some photos of my latest build- the old Aoshima 1/700 scale, I-400 sub circa 1945. I used Niko resin triple 25mm guns, Voyager PE single 25mm, Tom's Axis Sub PE, Gold Medal's IJN Auxilliary PE, and an IJN detail kit for the Seiran aircraft and deck gun, along with a bunch of filling,sanding, and scratchbuilding to spruce up the old kit into something presentable.

It was fun, and didn't take too long to do, as subs don't have the same amount of detail as a larger ship."

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About the Author

About Bob Cicconi (bobcicconi)


Well done Bob, your additions have brought this old kit right up to todays standards. I've recently purchased the new I-400 kit from Aoshima, and it is a vast improvement on the old one. With this said, it's good to see you building an older kit and not just dismissing it for the new one. Frank
MAR 19, 2008 - 10:57 PM
Hi Bob You have a lot of courage to tackle the Aoshima I-400 Although I also have it, I prefer the skywave/pitroad one (actually two, because the box includes two vessels, so you can make I-400 and I-401). I liked the deck and I would like to know your feelings on the Niko's triple AA guns... Congrats mate Rui (aka skipper)
MAR 20, 2008 - 05:34 AM
Nice work as always Bob! I echo Rui's sentiments about doing up the Aoshima version. Great work nonetheless from the master!
MAR 20, 2008 - 06:32 AM
"It was fun" That is a very important thing to remember. Also, I like the I-400, very nice looking.
MAR 20, 2008 - 07:08 AM
Beautiful work Bob. Gator
MAR 20, 2008 - 11:27 AM
Thanks for all the compliments, guys! To answer Skipper's question about the Niko IJN AA guns- They're the best ones going, in my opinion. PE ones may be slightly better, but they're a lot more labor-intensive!
MAR 21, 2008 - 10:16 AM
Fantastic work! Love the base..thanks for sharing! Cheers
MAR 21, 2008 - 12:55 PM
Alwyas so nice to see Bob's boats round there I have to also say that i really like what you did with the base, it really makes an original and quite good display. I really like the way the scene is centered around the "bridge" and the plane, congratulations ! JB
MAR 21, 2008 - 09:15 PM