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 Author  Topic: Review of Revell new tool 80ft Elco PT-109
David Waples


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of David Waples  Posted on: Mar 18, 2018 - 5:19pm
Hi all,
This past week I received the new Revell Germany 80' Elco, PT-109 kit. Where better than on this forum to post a review of this kit. These are my observations and ideas about this kit.

My first thought after seeing this kit is that Revell did their homework. You can see that they spent time on Jeff's PT-103 web site. There are a lot of interesting details included. However it is not perfect and we'll point out some of those issues. Let's get started...

Box and box art: The box opens at the end and the parts slide out. The box art is colorful but not a very accurate portrayal of what you get in the kit. The back of the box is much better with more detailed information about the kit.

Instructions: Revell has recently been improving their instruction sheets. They are now full color and more helpful to the modeler.

Cover page:

Construction instructions:

Paint instructions. This tells you how to mix Revell brand paint colors needed for this kit.

Overview of sprue and parts.

Hull, base, Day Cabin, and Chart House construction.

Closing up the hull, lower hull and transom assembly. Drive assembly, mufflers, Day Cabin side walls covered. Decision point on wether to use the mast or not.

Interior details, engine hatch, and cockpit details.

Chart house assembly and torpedo construction and placement.

Final details and early paint scheme for PT-109.

PT-109 at time of sinking paint instructions.

Okay, let's get into the parts. We'll take a good look at the details and maybe a few suggestions for the modeler...

Hull sides. One of my first concerns after looking at some early images what that there was some sinking in the hull where the bulkheads attach. After looking very closely at the parts there is no sinking. It's very smooth. You may be able to see that the hull the various vents on the sides of the hull. None on the bottom.

Deck. The training crank system is molded into the forward end of the tube mounts. The modeler may want to scrape them off and add rods. The hatches are softly molded. I would have liked to see are sharper rim. they do include molded in handles. You will see holes for the rope stanchions but none are included. The three main vents are molded closed. They are not hollow from underneath so that may proof to be difficult. Location of the deadlights is pretty close if not accurate. The radios are not very good. They are not representative of what was installed and there is no detail. Considering the kit is designed to remove the top of the Chart House I would have expected more accuracy and detail. Perhaps the aftermarket world will come to the rescue. Notice the clamps on the side of the engine hatch frame. That's a nice detail. The cockpit mat is very basic. My understanding is that these were actually similar to those rubber segmented door mats from the 50's and 60's. Deck also has fuel caps and mushroom vents.

Deck details
You're not going to find any planking on the deck as there was on the original. There was too much on the original kit and not enough on this. It's going to be up to the modeler to decide what to do with the deck. The deadlights sink down a bit. It would be a good idea to add some crystal clear to fill that up a little and create a look of glass. Another look at the Chart House instruments. You can see a glimpse of the throttle rod covers and the corrugated cover. More evidence that they spent some time on Jeff's web site. Also note the molded in torpedo tube locks. It will be interesting to see how these match up with the finished tubes. There has also been a lot of grumbling about the toe rails. They are molded in with no slots. If this is important to you White Ensign Models photo etch set for the old Revell PT Boat includes these and we may see something else in the aftermarket world before too long. the fairlead on the bow is molded closed. The modeler may wish to drill this out or remove it and use some cut brass tube slightly mashed down for an oval look.

Hull side view
Kudos to Revell for maintaining that classic curve to the deck. In this view you can also see some of the vents molded into the side. The chine is a little soft at the bow. The fact that Revell cut that chunk out of the bow is an indicator that Revell may do a late model 80' Elco in the future. It will be challenging for the modeler to install and clean up this piece when installed.

Sprue A
This sprue includes the stern bottom which includes the propeller shafts, rudders. Also included are the Day Cabin interior, and bulkheads, The interior is basic but serviceable. Also included is the port side wall of the Day Cabin. Another boat hook but note that it includes the LUX pull. Hand rails around the turret are molded in.

Detail view of the forward bulkhead for Day Cabin. Note the window molded in.

Detail view of major bulkhead that splits the hull front to back.

Sprue B Stand parts. 20mm Oerlikon, Day Cabin parts.
Top and bottom view. Includes part of the stand. Includes side wall of the Day Cabin. The window for the Day Cabin next to the hatch is incorrect. It should be like the windows on the forward part of the Chart House. But that's another story to be reviewed soon. Note the boat hook installed on the side which is a nice touch. Also included is the 20mm Oerlikon. This is nicely done compared to the .50's that you'll see later. The well for the Day Cabin is included on this sprue. The chair is molded into the base and like the rest of this area is probably not very accurate. Note the ejector pin marks at the bottom of the well that will need some attention. Also on this sprue the raised deck over the throttle cable covers, smoke generator, and the ship's wheel.

Sprue C Miscellaneous parts.
Of note are the depth charges look pretty good. Note that on the 109 under Kennedy's command the depth charge racks were set back from the edge of the deck and closer to torpedo tubes than shown in the instructions. They should be set back just far enough that the torpedo would not hit it if it slid out of the tube which did happen to Kennedy. Be sure to remove the toe rail where the depth charge would roll off the deck. Props and mufflers look nice as well. The gun tub is nicely done with covered ammo boxes. The gun mount has a lot of flash. It's going to take some work to clean this up. It does include the ammo feed guides. The .50's are weak. The barrels are smooth with no detail. Some aftermarket barrels would be a good change here. The linkage for the muffler is a nice touch though a bit thick. The vents are nicely done although a little thick around the edges.

Close up of the .50 gun mount.

Ammo boxes and muffler detail.

Close up of linkage

Close up of the twin .50's. Points for the straight bar charging handle and the ammo feed guides. Go find yourself some aviation .50 call barrels and change the kit barrel out.

Sprue D clear parts.
These are the side window clear parts. Nothing noteworthy.

Sprue E Parts for Day Cabin and Chart House. Also engine room man hatch.
Includes the port side of the Chart House. Hand rails are molded in. Note the mount for the search light. Also note the back of the cockpit. There is some nice riveting which I'm sure they got from the web site. Mount for the search light is nicely done. The back piece of the Day Cabin is nicely done with the wind deflector included. The mast is nicely done. Now, the man hatch for the engine room has problems. The cover should extend over the side walls of the man hatch. But they are flush. To correct the modeler may want to add some styrene to the edges of the cover.

Close up view of the engine room man hatch. Not sure why they skimped here.

Close up of Day Cabin top.

Sprue F Depression rails and parts for Chart House.
The cockpit is nicely done. The forward turret depression rails are reminiscent of the original kit. Not sure how else you would do this in plastic. The canvas cover around the stern turret lacks detail on the interior which will be visible. The depression rail is very thick. The windows on the forward part of the Chart House are weak. There should be framework around these windows and there is none.

The windows on the Chart House are very plain. There should be some framework around them. A suggestion to Revell (water under the bridge) is to mold this piece clear. This would allow the modeler more choices for displaying the Chart House interior and do a better job with these windows.

Close up of forward part of cockpit. Hand rails molded in. There is a decal for the instrument panel. Modelers may want to remove the molded detail and use the decal instead.

Interior view of stern turret canvas and depression rail. It makes me depressed. Note the nasty ejection pin marks. Lack of depression rail on the interior. Also very thick and not nicely molded. Worst part of the kit in my opinion.

Sprue G Engine room covers.
Here is another clue that Revell is leaving their options open for a late model boat. Part 166 should just be molded into the deck and not left open. Probably a sign that a 40mm Bofors mount may go there someday. The top of the engine room hatch should have some hangover relative to the sides. Again the modeler can add some styrene to the edges to create that look. The life raft on this sprue is very nice. this sprue also includes the bow plug which is another sign that that they are planning for a late model boat.

Side look at the engine hatch cover. Should have hangover around the top edge.

Sprue H 20mm Oerlikon mount and depression rail.
Very respectable mount! Nicely done. Too bad the depression rail is broken. I'll be asking Revell for a replacement.

Sprue I Torpedo tubes, Engine room match hatch side walls.
The torpedo tubes are nicely molded. The breach is nicely molded but lack hinge detail. Detail is basic but consistent for the scale. Not sure what happened to part 66. The missing section of the rod was not in the bag. I'll be asking Revell for a replacement of this piece as well.

Sprue J & K More clear parts.
This includes the wind screen. Sprue K is the clear windscreen. A very nice touch. It is a bit thick so the modeler may wish to use this was a guide to cut out some thin clear plastic and make your own windscreen. When Kennedy had the boat the wind screen was painted over. Some people confuse this with armor.

Sprue L 37mm Anti Tank Gun
One of the more controversial parts of this boat under Kennedy's command. This is Revell's interpretation. There are no photos of the gun on the boat. There is evidence that the wheels were removed and evidence that the wheels were left on. The gun itself is missing the spoked wheel segment and some of the training detail.

The 109 under Kennedy's command had basic white number with no shadow. These markings would be appropriate for the boat coming out of the factory. Warbird Decals makes a nice decal set available on eBay that include a variety of number styles and colors in case you want to do a different boat. This set also makes a nice finish for the base.

Conclusion: No kit is perfect but Revell has done a very nice job with this one. Modelers have some choices on how they wish to model this boat. It is a nice improvement over the original kit. There are opportunities for improvement and I'm hopeful that some aftermarket companies will set up with some detail improvements for those inclined. There are already many 1/72 details available at Shapeways from various designers that would allow you to create different boats with different weapons. There is also a photo etch set from White Ensign Models designed for the old kit which has parts that may be of use on this kit such as the wing nuts on the torpedo tube breach, hatches, cleats, etc.

If any after market company is interested in doing a set for this kit I would like to volunteer my assistance. I have some ideas for this kit which I think would really step it up to the next level.

If anyone has any questions or suggestions on how I can improve this review please let me know.

David Waples

Total Posts: 1608 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm | IP Logged

Jeff D


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jeff D   Send Email To Jeff D Posted on: Mar 18, 2018 - 7:34pm
Very nice review David, and the excellent images show just what you're getting. Well done sir, thank you! You did a very thorough job of pointing out plus and minus's, I have only a few really minor things to add:

The mooring bitts and depth charge racks look odd.

The muffler underwater outlets are too small.

Overall I think this is a definite upgrade to the old kit. And better than the Italeri in some areas even at half the scale.

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  Daniele Klay

Advanced Member

Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Daniele Klay  Posted on: Mar 19, 2018 - 6:11am
Gents, having researched the subject for a while I may dare to point out a couple of things:
-The chart house interior is a mixed bunch of features from early and late boats.
-The hull outlets seem to be mirror imaged on both sides, this was not the case for galley sink outlet,bilge bailer outlets,bridge drain and center fuel tank vents/drains.
To my limited knowledge only the engine hatch's vents drains and the side fuel tanks vents/drains-subject to boat number- were simmetrical on port and starboard side.
If I am wrong please correct me as I'll be installing those details on my hull soon!!

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Jeff D


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Jeff D   Send Email To Jeff D Posted on: Mar 19, 2018 - 11:19am
True Daniele, they probably used Dick's research and graphic of the stbd side and just mirrored it. I hope you share your findings with us!

You're right about the engine hatch overhang David, about 1/2 on the 103-138 and about 3/4 on 139 on. The 103-138 has a brass binding around the hatch and 139 on a slightly lower strip of wood:



139 on:


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Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Dick   Send Email To Dick Posted on: Mar 19, 2018 - 5:06pm

Very nice job Dave . . . . .

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Will Day


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Will Day   Send Email To Will Day Posted on: Mar 19, 2018 - 5:19pm
Nicely done, guys!


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Drew Cook


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Drew Cook  Posted on: Mar 20, 2018 - 11:57am
Thanks, Dave.

Still think I'd use some of these parts to dress up the old kit, unless the new one's price is prohibitive.

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David Waples


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of David Waples  Posted on: Mar 20, 2018 - 7:38pm
Hi Drew,
Still not available in the US. I'm sure they're on or about to be on a container ship somewhere. I would guess a month or two before they're available here.

David Waples

Total Posts: 1608 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm | IP Logged

Frank Andruss


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Frank Andruss   Send Email To Frank Andruss Posted on: Mar 24, 2018 - 10:41am
Very nice review Dave. I noticed that Revell had the good sense to include the boat mast for those that just think seeing a boat without one just doesn't look right. Love the look of the hull as well as the 20mm cannon. With not much effort there is no doubt this kit will be a good one when completed.

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Paul Houk

New Member

Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message   Posted on: Mar 27, 2018 - 4:20pm
Thank you for the extraordinary images. I was looking forward to this, but diplomatically, this does not look like the usual crisp Revell Germany molding. Hopefully Hobbico will not ruin Revell Germany like GM did to Saab. If there was no hope of aftermarket parts, I would pass. For one of the most important new tools of 2018, this is disappointing.

From the model view, this has interesting potential given precision update parts for the guns, tubes, even the control dials. I can (hardly) wait for the details improvement parts.

"Speed and maneuverability are essential."

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