Trumpeter (company)

Last updated
Trumpeter
Headquarters,
China
Website trumpeter-china.com

Trumpeter is a Chinese company that manufactures plastic injection moulded scale model kits. Their product line consists of model ships, aircraft, cars and military ground vehicles. The company is located in Zhongshan, China, just north of Macau. All of the design and development is done at this site and production facilities on site extend to full mold making engineering using spark erosion techniques. The factory has the capacity to take production from computer design right through to packaging with some outsourcing done on things like photo etched parts. Not only are they making models for the Trumpeter label but, under license, also for a number of other brands like Hobby Boss, Mini Hobby and even Fujimi Mokei [ citation needed ] and Pit-Road.

Contents

Armor models

Trumpeter's early armor kits were reviewed negatively in publications such as AMPS' Boresight. Their series of T-55 kits were criticized for lack of accuracy and buildability issues. However, in recent years, Trumpeter's armor and artillery kits have been the subject of increasingly favourable comparisons with those of other manufacturers. [1] [2] In particular, their 1/35th scale kits of the KV tank series, SA-2 Guideline missile, and Karl Morser have been well received. The KV, K-5 Leopold and Karl Morser kits have been reviewed and are considered far better than competing kits of these subjects from Tamiya, Eastern Express, and DML. Their kits of the Pz.Kpfw. IV-based Karl Morser ammunition carriers and the German 150 mm SFH 18 have been reviewed less favorably than competing kits from DML on the Perth Military Modeling web site. [3] More recently their catalogue has increased with many variants of various military vehicles kits in 1/35 and 1/72 scale.

Ship models

Trumpeter plastic models of ships are produced in 1:200, 1:350, 1:500 and 1:700 scale, although 1:350 and 1:700 are dominating. Trumpeter has a cooperation with Japanese ship model manufacturer Pit-Road for kits in 1:700 scale. These kits are usually available under the Pit-Road label in Japan and under the Trumpeter label in the rest of the world. Trumpeter's ship models have included a rising number of parts, but quality is still disputed due to insufficient research and some recent releases have been over-engineered. For example, the 1:350 scale kit of the American aircraft carrier USS Hornet (CV-8) (an early release) has been found to compromise in detail ("disappointment"), while the hull form shows major mistakes and the island is also not perfect. Fit, however, is said to be excellent, and surface detail "very credible". [4] Also modern US carriers (for example the 1/700 Nimitz-class aircraft carriers) suffer from a wrong hull form. [5] Hull form problems are also found in the Baltimore-class cruiser kits. [6] Mistakes in the correct outfit (catapults, armament) have been pointed out regarding the details of some Essex-class carrier kits [7] and the Bismarck-class battleships (wrong AA fit). [8] Especially regarding the Essex class, the well known modeller Scott van Aken on the Modeling Madness website praises the kits of a competitor as preferable over Trumpeter: "The moldings on the kit (of the competitor) are top rate and without the myriad of ejector pin marks that have plagued Trumpeter ship kits since day one." [9]

On the other hand, Trumpeter kits usually contain a lot of small parts, a feature which many modelers appreciate as impressive, and general comments are often positive in summary, especially for Russian navy ships. Trumpeter also put out scale models of popular items long-awaited by enthusiasts that other companies have not included in their range. One kit from Trumpeter that has been very popular is the 1:350 scale kit of HMS Hood; the 1:700 scale kits of the battlecruiser were rumored to have been developed with input from the HMS Hood Association.

Aircraft models

Trumpeter produces kits of airplanes in 1:350, 1:144, 1:72, 1:48, 1:32 and 1:24 scale. The kits in the larger scales are generally highly detailed and include metal parts, while the smaller scale kits usually are rather simple. The aircraft kits from Trumpeter are, like the other ones, of a varying quality; while the 1:32 scale of Me 262 received very good reviews, [10] the F4F Wildcat kit in 1:32 scale was initially so poorly made that Steven's International - distributor for Trumpeter kits in the USA - refused to market it until corrections were made to the model's fuselage. However some copies of the initial version were marketed in Japan and Europe. [11] Subsequently, Trumpeter retooled the kit to more accurately reproduce the fuselage shape of the F4F and it received far better reviews. [12] The 1:24 scale Messerschmitt Bf 109 G was judged as "acceptable" and "quite accurate", although the cockpit details were not up to the standard of the much smaller Hasegawa 1/32 kit (Brett Green, Modeling the Messerschmitt Bf 109 F and early G series, Oxford 2007, pp. 20–24) altogether it seems that [this make] is not of outstanding quality, as one could expect of similar kits from some of the competing leading Japanese manufacturers.

Related Research Articles

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Ship model

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<i>Nimitz</i>-class aircraft carrier US Navy nuclear-powered aircraft carrier class

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USS <i>Nimitz</i> (CVN-68) Supercarrier of the United States Navy, lead ship of her class

USS Nimitz (CVN-68) is a supercarrier of the United States Navy, and the lead ship of her class. One of the largest warships in the world, she was laid down, launched, and commissioned as CVAN-68, "aircraft carrier, attack, nuclear powered", but she was later redesignated as CVN-68, "aircraft carrier, multi-mission, nuclear-powered", on 30 June 1975, as part of a fleet-wide realignment that year.

USS <i>Lexington</i> (CV-2) Lexington-class aircraft carrier

USS Lexington (CV-2), nicknamed "Lady Lex", was an early aircraft carrier built for the United States Navy. She was the lead ship of the Lexington class; her only sister ship, Saratoga, was commissioned a month earlier. Originally designed as a battlecruiser, she was converted into one of the Navy's first aircraft carriers during construction to comply with the terms of the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922, which essentially terminated all new battleship and battlecruiser construction. The ship entered service in 1928 and was assigned to the Pacific Fleet for her entire career. Lexington and Saratoga were used to develop and refine carrier tactics in a series of annual exercises before World War II. On more than one occasion these included successfully staged surprise attacks on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The ship's turbo-electric propulsion system allowed her to supplement the electrical supply of Tacoma, Washington, during a drought in late 1929 to early 1930. She also delivered medical personnel and relief supplies to Managua, Nicaragua, after an earthquake in 1931.

USS <i>Saratoga</i> (CV-3) Lexington-class aircraft carrier

USS Saratoga (CV-3) was a Lexington-class aircraft carrier built for the United States Navy during the 1920s. Originally designed as a battlecruiser, she was converted into one of the Navy's first aircraft carriers during construction to comply with the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922. The ship entered service in 1928 and was assigned to the Pacific Fleet for her entire career. Saratoga and her sister ship, Lexington, were used to develop and refine carrier tactics in a series of annual exercises before World War II. On more than one occasion these exercises included successful surprise attacks on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. She was one of three prewar US fleet aircraft carriers, along with Enterprise and Ranger, to serve throughout World War II.

USS <i>Franklin D. Roosevelt</i> (CV-42) Midway-class aircraft carrier of the US Navy

USS Franklin D. Roosevelt (CVB/CVA/CV-42) was the second of three Midway-class aircraft carriers. To her crew, she was known as "Swanky Franky," "Foo-De-Roo," or "Rosie," with the last nickname probably the most popular. Roosevelt spent most of her active deployed career operating in the Mediterranean Sea as part of the United States Sixth Fleet. The ship was decommissioned in 1977 and was scrapped shortly afterward. She was the first aircraft carrier of the United States Navy to be named in honor of a President of the United States.

HMS <i>Trumpeter</i> (D09) 1943 Ruler-class escort aircraft carrier

USS Bastian (CVE-37) was a Bogue-class escort aircraft carrier built by Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding of Tacoma, Washington, laid down on 25 August 1942 and launched 15 December 1942. She was transferred to the United Kingdom, under Lend-Lease and commissioned on 4 August 1943 as the Ruler-class escort carrier HMS Trumpeter (D09).

<i>Yorktown</i>-class aircraft carrier US Navy aircraft carrier class

The Yorktown class was a class of three aircraft carriers built for the United States Navy and completed shortly before World War II, the Yorktown (CV-5), Enterprise (CV-6), and Hornet (CV-8). They immediately followed Ranger, the first U.S. aircraft carrier built as such, and benefited in design from experience with Ranger and the earlier Lexington class, which were conversions into carriers of two battlecruisers that were to be scrapped to comply with the Washington Naval Treaty, an arms limitation accord.

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Plastic model

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A1B reactor

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1:350 scale is a popular scale used by model ship kit manufacturers such as Tamiya, Hasegawa, Aoshima, Fujimi, Trumpeter and Revell.

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Fujimi Mokei

Fujimi Mokei Co., Ltd. is a Japanese model manufacturer based in Shizuoka Prefecture. It produces plastic model kits of a variety of vehicles, including model aircraft, model cars, model ships and model armored vehicles along with historical structures and science fiction kits. Since "mokei" means "model" in Japanese, "Fujimi Mokei" is often called "Fujimi Model(s)" in English.

References

  1. Trumpeter
  2. K5 Leopold kit comparison
  3. http://www.perthmilitarymodelling.com/reviews/vehicles.htm%5B%5D
  4. Roger Chesneau, Yorktown Class Aircraft Carriers, London 2005, p.22
  5. Thorsten Dressel, critical online review at www.moduni.de for Trumpeter 1/700 USS Nimitz. The reviews on www.moduni.de have been subject to a heated debate at former www.modellboard.de during 2007. Unacceptable moves of some Trumpeter "fans" resulted in pending legal action so the original page had to be closed.
  6. Werner Kaiser, "KIT-Report BALTIMORE and PITTSBURGH, Trumpeter M 1:700", review published as fold-out in "Schlagseite" 2006
  7. Werner Kaiser, "KIT-Report FRANKLIN", as cited
  8. Jürgen Barnbrock, online review at www.moduni.de for Trumpeter 1/700 Tirpitz. The reviewer gave the kit four stars out of five.
  9. Dragon 1/700 USS Antietam (CV-36), previewed by Scott Van Aken Archived 2008-02-24 at the Wayback Machine
  10. Messerschmitt Me 262A-1a Review by Brett Green (Trumpeter 1/32)
  11. F4F Wildcat Statement by Stevens International
  12. F4F-4 Wildcat Retooled Review by Brett Green (Trumpeter 1/32)