SC 431 Model by Steve Maggipinto

Submarine chaser SC 431 was built by Matthews Boat in Port Clinton, OH. After the war, it was transferred to the Coast Guard, and later was among the few WWI chaser hulls to see service in WWII.

Lt. Cdr. William V. Maggipinto served as commanding officer of SC 431 in 1942.

This photo set shows a scratch-built model, constructed by his son, Steve Maggipinto.

From his notes on SC 431:

SC 431 was one of a class of wooden hulled vessels originally built for Word War I service. Subchasers were designed to combat German U-Boats off the shoreline of the United States to a distance of approximately 300 miles. Their construction and size were conceived for mass production in as short a time as possible.

During the 1920’s and 1930’s, many subchasers were transferred to the Coast Guard. SC431 was one of these; she was renamed Knudsen by that service. Returned to the Navy at the outbreak of World War II, SC431 was updated in 1942, receiving the following major modifications: a steel mast to replace the original wooden mast, radar, sonar, increased armament, 2 rubber rafts to replace a 12’ wherry, and alterations to the shape of the pilot house. The model depicts her appearance after these modifications.

In 1942, on patrol off the coast of Virginia, SC431 detected and engaged a U-Boat. At the time she was commanded by Lt (jg) William V. Maggipinto, father of the modeler.

About the Model:

SC431 was built in 1980 to a scale of 1⁄4” = 1’ (1/48th actual size). The hull is constructed of laminated balsa covered with basswood. The wooden deck is planked with basswood strips, each strip representing a scale 2’x3’x12’ plank.

The balance of the ship’s structure utilizes basswood. Some fittings were purchased, some were scratch built using strip plastic, plastic sheet, brass tubing, wire, fishing line, straight pins and Kleenex tissue. Paint used was Humbrol Dunkelgrau (HG4), portraying U.S. Navy 1941 Camouflage Measure 1.

SC431 is the modeler’s first scratch built effort. Plans for a World War I version came from The Floating Drydock, and were extensively modified to reflect what the vessel looked like in 1942. SC431 operated out of Norfolk, Virginia.


Photo Set - click to view large versions: