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SCIENTIFIC AND ENGINEERING WORKS OF ART
24 October 2001
An extremely fine 1:48 scale museum display quality model of the United States Navy Fletcher Class Destroyer U.S.S. "Rooks", Pennant No. 804,
built by Fine Art Models, with signal mast with radar, radio and other aerials, halyards and rigging, anchors, capstan, fairleads, bollards, hatches, deck rails, companionways, hose reels, main and anti-aircraft armament, lockers, ladders, fire hydrants and hoses, superstructure with wheelhouse with fire control and associated equipment over, fore and aft funnels, the fore with searchlight platform, ladder, safety valve extension pipe, hooters and siren, torpedo tubes, depth charges in racks, two motor boats with interior detailing in davits, carley floats and much other fine detailing, the hull finished in red to the waterline and black/grey camouflage above, with two shafts with three blade propellors and 'A' brackets, bilge keels and rudder and painted hand built brass deck fittings and is mounted on wood blocks, with mahogany display base and plexiglass cover -- 47in. (119.5cm.) long.
See Colour Illustration
The U.S.S. Rooks was the very last of the extensive "Fletcher" class of destroyers ordered in 1942, a number of which were not completed until the Second World War was in its final phases. Rooks herself, designated DD804, was built at the Tacoma Seattle yards and launched, coincidentally, on 6 June 1944, the day chosen for the D-Day landings in North West Europe. Like all her sisters before her, she displaced 2,325 tons standard (2,924 fully loaded) and measured 376½ feet in length with a 39½ foot beam. Powered by twin-shaft General Electric turbines fired from four Babcock & Wilcox boilers, she could make 38 knots at full steam and carried a complement of 273 officers and men. With a main armament of 5-5in. guns, various anti-aircraft weapons and 10-21in. torpedo tubes, the whole class was widely regarded - by older U.S. Navy men at least - as the most satisfactory of all American destroyers and they served with distinction in many operational theatres.
Completed early in 1945, Rooks' only notable service during what remained of the War was her participation in Operation "Iceberg", the landings on Okinawa, from 1-5th April, when a total of 451,866 men were embarked from a vast flotilla of 1,213 ships including 603 landing craft. A huge operation comparable to D-Day, its ultimate success marked the beginning of the end of the War in the Far East. Laid up in the immediate post-War period, Rooks was reactivated from 1951 and remained in service until 1962 when she was sold to the Chilean Navy who renamed her Cochrane (after the British admiral Lord Cochrane, a Chilean hero after his assistance with their liberation from Spanish rule in 1821).
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