by Jason Abraham

The Agano class of light cruisers has always intrigued me. The ships were really large destroyers or really light cruisers. While most light cruisers had at least 8 guns of their main armament, the Agano and her sisters were lightly armed in main armament and all other weapons (with the exception of torpedoes). The Agano class is to light cruiser design as the Aoba and Furutaka classes were to heavy cruiser design: weak ships for their classes when designed. The principle difference is that the Aoba and Furutaka were designed and built almost 15 year before the Agano. Main armament consisted of 6 - 5.9" guns in three twin mounts (weak for a cruiser). Secondary armament was 4 - 3.9" guns in two twin mounts (even weaker than her equally bizarre "twin" class of ship: the Oyodo). On a side note, the 3.9" guns were the main armament on the aircraft carrier Taiho. Anti-aircraft was paltry as well, with only 10 barrels of 25mm cannons as designed. Granted this was increased to 60 barrels.

This ship is an interesting build: one that I have had for 10+ years and it just sat in the box. I kept saying, "I'll get to it." And I finally did. This model was a neat little build. Painting on IJN ships is always pretty basic. Tamiya never disappoints, but this ship deserves a new tooling. No flash on any sprues and limited cleaning up of parts was required. Everything fit together nicely. From start to finish, this model took me about 2 hours (including the painting). I recommend this kit if you have a few hours to kill and want to build a nice, simple kit.

For more information on the Agano - Click here.

Click the images below for a larger view.