Scale: 1/72

This model represents the shield of the fairwater of USS Balao SS-285, the first of 122 World War Two-era Balao class submarines, successor to the Gato class.  The Balao class had a differently shaped fairwater (sail/conning tower) than the earlier Gato class although the hull was nearly identical externally.  


This model has features specific to USS Balao SS-285 as it appeared during 1945.  It can be adapted to other boats of the class with similar features.


This model is fragile.  Caution is advised when cutting away supporting sprues.

This model was designed based on US Navy drawings.  See Navsource for excellent photo references:

© Model Monkey Book and Hobby.  This 3D-printed item may not be copied or recast.

From "The Balao-class was a successful design of United States Navy submarine used during World War II, and with 122 units built, the largest class of submarines in the United States Navy. An improvement on the earlier Gato-class, the boats had slight internal differences. The most significant improvement was the use of thicker, higher yield strength steel in the pressure hull skins and frames, which increased their test depth to 400 feet (120 m). Tang actually achieved a depth of 612 ft (190 m) during a test dive, and exceeded that test depth when taking on water in the forward torpedo room while evading a destroyer.

"Museums: Eight Balao-class submarines are open to public viewing. They primarily depend on revenue generated by visitors to keep them operational and up to U.S. Navy standards; each boat gets a yearly inspection and a "report card". Some boats, like Batfish and Pampanito, encourage youth functions and allow a group of volunteers to sleep overnight in the crew's quarters. The following is a complete list of Balao-class museum boats:

  • USS Batfish (SS-310) at War Memorial Park in Muskogee, Oklahoma
  • USS Becuna (SS-319) at Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • USS Bowfin (SS-287) at USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park in Honolulu, Hawaii
  • USS Clamagore (SS-343) at Patriot's Point in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
  • USS Ling (SS-297) at New Jersey Naval Museum in Hackensack, New Jersey
  • USS Lionfish (SS-298) at Battleship Cove in Fall River, Massachusetts
  • USS Pampanito (SS-383) at San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park in San Francisco, California, which played the part of USS Stingray in the movie Down Periscope
  • USS Razorback (SS-394) at Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum in North Little Rock, Arkansas"

1/72 Balao class Submarine Fairwater Shield

SKU: 72-Balao Shield