The Imperial Japanese Navy took air defense of its warships seriously before World War Two. For light anti-aircraft ordnance it chose a heavy 13.2 mm machine gun
and also chose a 25mm cannon. This was at a time when the USN light AA defense was the .50 machine gun and the RN had the .50 Vickers machine gun. The 25mm
gun was a development from a French Hotchkiss weapon developed in 1930. French models imported into Japan were named on June 19, 1935 as either Type 94 or
Type 95 25mm machine guns. The Japanese modified the design and added a German designed Rheinmetall flash suppressor and designated it the Type 96 25mm
Machine Gun Model 1 on August 6, 1936 and was to be the light AA gun of the IJN in World War Two. In theory the gun could fire 200 to 260 rounds per minute. In
reality rate of fire was seriously degraded by the fact that the gun was fed y a 15 round magazine and it took time to replace the magazine. It could fire four types of
rounds, explosive, common, incendiary and tracer. Usually a tracer round was every fourth or fifth round. War experience reflected that rate of fire was too slow
because of the need to frequently change the small capacity magazines and the blast was too strong decreasing crew effectiveness. At the start of the war the 25mm
gun was by far most common in the twin mount. Almost every battleship and cruiser had numerous twin mount 25mm anti-aircraft guns. It was only later in the war
that single 25mm guns proliferated and the triple 25mm gun mount made its appearance. By 1944 most of the heavier warships had replaced the twin mount with the
triple mount.

If you model in 1:500 scale, there are a limited number of kits available. Fujimi has some new mold 1:500 scale models but many of the models in this scale were
molded decades ago with all of the inherent limitations and lack of detail that implies. Seen in the photographs in this review is the old Nichimo kit of the
Hyuga
battleship/carrier with the flight deck aft and galleries of 25mm triple mounts on either side of the flight deck. Look at the kit supplied triple 25mm mounts. Do you
really want those popsicle sticks on your model? The answer for this kit or any other 1:500 scale kit is set
N503 from 3D Model Parts. The label says there are ten
mounts in the tube but in my sample there were twelve. The detail is fantastic and each mount has two pieces, the guns and their mount.
Steve Backer
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