The Whiskey III Class Submarine in 1:350 Scale

  • By: Richard
  • Time to read: 5 min.

The Project 613 medium submarine (NATO designation Whiskey) was designed and constructed at the Rubin Central Design Bureau for Marine Engineering during the late 1940s. It represented the ultimate expression of underwater shipbuilding expertise gained throughout World War II. Its diving depth was 200 meters, and its submerged speed was 13.1 knots.

History of the USS Whiskey III

The submarines were fitted with the most modern electronic equipment of that time. In the 1950s, 215 submarines were built at four plants simultaneously. Twenty submarines were built in the People’s Republic of China by Soviet technical documentation with the completing equipment supplied by the USSR.

A design bureau was set up in Gorky (now Nizhni Novgorod) to improve the technical documentation for the Project 613 submarine. The bureau had to adapt the documentation to the abilities of particular shipbuilding companies and develop modernization projects for this class of submarines.

The Lazurite Central Design Bureau was later renamed Central Design Bureau #112, Sudoproekt Special Design Bureau, and Lazurite Central Design Bureau. Project 613 submarines became a vital part of the Soviet underwater fleet: they could be used in coastal seas and oceans worldwide.

The German plans to build submarines that could go ocean-going were unsuccessful because of the war. The Type XVIII was changed into the successful Type XXI “electro-boat.” This new design had larger batteries, allowing the submarine to move quickly underwater for a longer time. This new technology influenced the design of submarines after the war.

The Soviet Union was behind the United States regarding submarines during the five years following World War II. In 1946, the United States thought the Soviet Union would have 300 submarines by 1950. However, it was not until 1949 that the first postwar Soviet submarine designs were used. The Whiskey and Zulu were two different types of submarines. The Whiskey was smaller and less capable than the XXI, but it was designed for coastal defense and operations near Europe. It was not until the mid-1950s that Whiskeys were even given snorkels.

236 small submarines were built after World War II. These boats were all Whiskey-class and used to defend the sea approaches to the Soviet Union. There were also larger Zulu-class and smaller Quebec-class submarines, which helped out the Whiskey-class boats.

The Zulu-class submarines operated further out at sea and communicated with land-based planes to supply targeting information to the shore centers. The approximately thirty Quebec-class subs patrolled the coast.

The Whiskey III subclass was designed to fix the original design’s main flaw — its lack of endurance. The new boats had two external fuel tanks, increasing the range to 11,000 nautical miles. To make room for the extra fuel, four torpedo tubes were removed. The boats were also given a new sonar system and updated electronics.

Features of The USS Whiskey III

Features of The USS Whiskey III

The Model

This new kit from MikroMirs is of a Whiskey class submarine. I believe it is the only one of its kind on the market. It is a very welcome release for anyone interested in submarines. The kit comes in a sturdy cardboard box with a good photograph of one of these boats surfacing. The kit is tightly packaged inside a poly bag, etch, decals, and a simple instruction sheet. The styrene is quite soft, but the details are very finely done.

sprue gates on the hull sections are in strategic places

The sprue gates on the hull sections are in strategic places, so it is easy to clean up any marks. Construction starts with gluing the two hull sections together. Then you add the etch deck and etch hatches. There is one confusing part. It looks like it should go under one of the stern hatches, but the instructions are unclear about how it fits.

The hull is mostly done, so the island is put together.

The hull is mostly done, so the island is put together.

The two halves are glued together, and the “snorkel” is attached to the bottom of the back deck. The “snorkel” is a long tube that goes up to the water’s surface.

If you’re interested, I wrote a post on the best submarine kits, which you may view by clicking here.


The "snorkel" is a long tube that goes up to the water's surface.

The periscopes and sensor poles are put in next.

The periscopes and sensor poles are put in next. After that, an aerial for finding things (DF) is put in. Then, the whole assembly is attached to the main deck.

Then, the whole assembly is attached to the main deck.

First, the planes, rudder, and propeller shaft fairings are fitted.

Then the PE propellers are attached. The bow planes and etched anchors are also in place now. Finally, the railings and safety line supports are added. They can be rigged using a medium of the modeler’s choice.


The decal sheet has a lot of markings for the submarine. It has markings for the individual hatches and openings. It also has depth marks for the bow, amidships, and stern. The sheet also has markings for the island. This includes identification numbers for seven different boats.

There are two different color schemes for ID markings. One is Ocean gray over red antifouling. The other is black over red. There are also some national markings that you will need to research and find out where they go. They are not marked in the painting guide.

Assembly and Painting Tips for The USS Whiskey III

  • The first thing you’ll need to do is assemble the hull. This can be tricky, so take your time and be careful. Once the hull is together, you can start painting. I recommend using a dark color for the hull, such as black or navy blue.
  • I suggest using a brush instead of spray paint for the paint job. This will give you more control and allow you to get into all the nooks and crannies of the model. When painting the submarine, use thin coats of paint, so it doesn’t drip or run.
  • Once you’re finished painting, you can add some weathering effects if you like. A little rust or dirt can bring out the model’s realism.


It’s great to have the chance to design a Whiskey class, and Mikro Mir deserves commendation for creating these previously relevant submarines. The construction is fairly straightforward, making it an ideal entry-level model for anybody interested in building a collection. Highly suggested.

Hi! I'm Richard Baker, a miniature painter who has been painting for about ten years. My website is packed with great advice that I've learned from both books and personal experience on building and painting miniatures.

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