login   |    register

In-Box Review
Dragon Premium Edition USS Charles F. Adams

by: Kenny Loup [ GATOR ]

Originally published on:
Model Shipwrights

The Original Ship History:

Laid down on June 16, 1958 and commissioned September 8, 1959, the Charles F. Adams class destroyers were a progression of the Forrest Sherman class. The Adams class was the first ship in the U.S. Navy designed from the keel up to launch anti-aircraft missiles. The Adams would go on to participate in the recovery of Mercury 8 astronaut Wally Schirra and to be part of the quarantine forces around the Island of Cuba. She served her country until 1992 when the class was replaced with the Arliegh Burke class.

The kit, box, and what’s inside:

This kit is packaged for the modeler in style that is a trademark of Dragon’s quality.

The medium weight, open lidded style cardboard box, is adorned with a beautiful illustration of the Adams cutting through the open sea. After opening the box, you will find three individually sealed clear plastic bags containing the kit’s contents. The first bag that you will want to reach for is one containing the brass photo-etch sheet and the decal sheet attached to a heavy cardstock decorated in Dragon fashion.

The other two sealed bag contains the plastic sprues, molded in a medium gray, injection molded plastic, that make up the body of the kit.

Here is a brief breakdown of each sprue and its contents.

Sprue detail

Sprue A

This sprue contains the majority of the ship’s components including the waterline hull and bottom plate, the forecastle and the upper deck assembly

Sprue B

This sprue is the weapons sprue that offers all the variants of weapons carried buy the four navies that operated this class. There are four different types of turrets, include those of the Adams, various, launchers, Sea King and Seahawk helicopters, life boats and radar arrays, both of which will be replaced by photo etch parts. There is some flash that will need to be cleaned up before assembly.

Sprue C and D

These sprues contain the remaining parts for the superstructure, mask and stack.

Sprue D

This sprue contains the lower hull, and the propulsion system components, as well as the included molded kit base and nameplate. The shafts, rudders, and screws are are well molded with very little flash to clean up.

Brass Photo Etch

The photo-etch sheet, an important piece of the DML Premium kit package, will improve the look and accuracy of this kit over one previously issued. The largest part of the fret is made up of the ship’s railings, something that always dresses up a model. The bottom quarter of the sheet contains the radar arrays which will make this kit stand out and will greatly increase the accuracy.


The excellent quality decal sheet for this set was designed by Cartograf of Italy exclusively for Dragon. It gives the modeler the option of markings for 33 different ships. There are twenty three different stern plates for the entire Adams class included. One name that stands out is that of the USS Hoel, the same name that is shared with one of the gallant members of Taffy 3. Also included is the hull numbers for all ships of the Adams class as well as those of the foreign navies. The markings for the deck, rounds out the decal sheet.

Instruction Sheet

The fold out style instruction sheet is made up of five separate pages. The sheets are well drawn, featuring blow up style construction diagrams that clearly illustrate the building steps. Dragon has taken the time to provide the modeler a separate building process for the different navies, with the US and Greek navies sharing the same step-by-step instructions. This is very helpful for it eliminates the need to pour over each step to ensure the modeler is using the right part for his build. The paint chart listing has color recommendations for three separate paint makes, Aqueous Hobby Color, Testors’ Model Master, and Gunze Mr. Color.

Photo-etch folding diagrams are clearly shown as are the exclusion of old parts replaced by the photo-etch. This makes for an easy retrofit. There is one page dedicated to the markings of the three foreign navy ships and which each option, the instructions are very clear and defined.

Final thoughts:

The Dragon Premium Edition USS Charles F. Adams offers a great value and a host of options for the model builder. Topping the list of excellent features are the photo etch fret and the numerous choices when it comes to subjects. The minimal amounts of flash is greatly out weighed buy the vast amount of detail one gets in the kit. For any modeler who is interested in Cold War ships or who has a history with one of the ship choices, this kit is highly recommended.

The USS Charles F. Adams DDG2 is one of the latest additions from Dragon Models’ stable of 1/700 scale “Modern Sea Power” Series ships. This “Premium Edition” kit offers the modeler improved accuracy and greater detail with the addition of photo etch parts. It also provides the modeler the choice to build versions of the ship as used in the Greek, German and Royal Australian navies.
  PE SET:100%
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:700
  Mfg. ID: 7059
  Suggested Retail: $22.99
  Related Link: Dragon Models USA
  PUBLISHED: Jan 11, 2007
  NATIONALITY: United States

Our Thanks to Dragon USA!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

View Vendor Homepage  |  More Reviews  

About Kenny Loup (gator)

I was the kid that his dad would say "Hey, there's a war movie on." and come running. As a kid, I dived head first into military history. We would always have to stop at the USS Alabama on our way to Florida. I also got to visit the Seawolf Park and the Alamo on vacation, too. All things I want ...

Copyright ©2021 text by Kenny Loup [ GATOR ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.


Good review, Ken, and also a good looking model kit. . .thanks for the effort, mate! ~Gunny
JAN 16, 2007 - 08:54 PM
Nice review Kenny. Well done. Regards Sean
JAN 16, 2007 - 09:14 PM
Clean, well done and precise review, keep on this way! JB
JAN 17, 2007 - 12:35 AM
Thanks guys. It was a pleasure. Kenny
JAN 17, 2007 - 01:26 AM

What's Your Opinion?

Click image to enlarge
  • 001 USS Charles F. Adams
  • 002 USS Charles F. Adams
  • 003 USS Charles F. Adams
  • 004 USS Charles F. Adams
  • 005 USS Charles F. Adams
  • 006 USS Charles F. Adams
  • 007 USS Charles F. Adams
  • 008 USS Charles F. Adams