Russ, David, Mark, Richard, and Mark - thank you all for your kind comments!
Even though I'm home all the time now COVID-19 shelter in place teleworking, my home shipyard time seems to be getting harder and harder to come by.
Still, some progress:
The kit funnel sides came with faint footrails molded in them, but I scraped these off in preparation for better ones from the Gold Medal Models 1/200 IJN 2-Bar Railing etched brass set.
After marking out the locations, I opened the locator holes for the support fittings with my smallest (a No. 80) drill bit. I also drilled out the holes for the line of handgrabs at the front of the funnel.
The footrail supports were fit into the holes and held temporarily with plastic cement; once I was confident with the positioning they were secured more permanently with tiny dabs of super glue.
The individual handgrabs were secured in the same way. This photo also shows the 34 gauge brass wire footrails test fitted through the supports (I have since installed additional supports to enable the footrails to go completely around the funnel).
More handgrabs were attached to the funnel side. The way they curve around the vent grate may seem odd, but that arrangement is well attested in the Gakken Reikishi-Gunzo IJN Akizuki-class Destroyers book and both the Miyukikai and Kagero scale plans I consulted. Go figure.