This entire web page started with a gift Christmas 2003. I am working on a 1:96 scale model of the Okie Boat as it was in the summer of 1971. I scanned my slides to get reference photos, and obtained the few plans that are available commercially. These were inadequate for my needs so I obtained many reels of microfilm from the National Archives containing the original blueprints. Finally, I visited the USS Little Rock museum ship in Buffalo, New York, to take photos and make measurements. As I progressed my interest expanded and I began collecting information about the ship's history and that of the Cleveland class in general. I also collected lots of other relevant photos and documents.
When I started building the model I soon realized that even the blueprints were not sufficient to make an accurate model. Some details of how parts fit together were ambiguous and there were a lot of changes after the ship left the shipyards. I began creating 3D computer models (CAD) of parts of the ship with the program DesignCAD 3D Max, a very inexpensive but fully functional and relatively easy to use program. This was so much fun I have concentrated on completing a CAD model of the entire ship. Then I will certainly know how all the parts fit together!
I figure I am not the only person interested in modeling Cleveland class ships, so here are links to some of the information I have collected and to pages showing my modeling efforts. Enjoy!