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Found 232 results

  1. Cartridges and Shells 1:35 Master The latest releases from Master Models in their series of cannon shells and cartridges have recently arrived at BMs London offices. Trouble is they are seriously small and very difficult to photograph now that my macro lens has given up the ghost. There are loads of uses in dioramas or vignettes for both the empty cartridge cases and loaded cases, not sure so much with the separate shells, unless you glue them to the cases. [GM-35-018] – This set contains 15 German 2cm ammunition (cal. 20x138B) for Flak 30/38, KwK 30/38 - shells and 5pcs each of 3 types of projectiles [GM-35-019] – As above, but includes 25 German 2cm ammunition (cal. 20x138B) for Flak 30/38, KwK 30/38 - empty shells [GM-35-021] – This set includes 25 cartridges for the Browning .50 calibre heavy machine gun. [GM-35-020] – As above, but includes 25 empty cartridges, great for being strewn around the floor of a M3 half track of the turret of a tank. Conclusion Here we have some really useful and well produced items. Very handy for your dioramas. Review sample courtesy of Piotr at
  2. Hello everyone, I've been looking around here for a while and now it's my turn to contribute. I returned back to modelling a couple a years ago. And after building a couple of models I found that my creativity wasn't triggered enough by just putting together pieces someone else had made. I read all I could find on the internet and when I felt like I knew enough to start I kicked away. This build started somewhere last spring so I try to recreate the progress. Materials used, scrap electronics, cardboard, plasticard and spare parts from other kits. First step was using an old dock station for a laptop as a base and detailing it, this would later become the centre area underneath the spaceship.
  3. Hello, starting a new project, Sd.Kfz. 186 Jagdtiger - Henschel Production Type - Dragon - Nr. 6285 - 1:35 more picts soon
  4. Hi everyone. Hope there's room for another Ian McQue inspired scratch build . I've loved his designs since the first time I saw them, and have all of his kits from Industria Mechanika that I'll eventually build. Since those are all 1:35 scale, I'm building this scratch to match. Check him out if you like his designs. Facebook Twitter Instagram This will be my first attempt at scratch building, so it'll probably be a slow build. Parts of the model will be more kit bash than scratch, mainly the engine and underside. These are the sketches I'm basing the build on. I mirrored one to use as the basis for the opposite side. I started off by building an L shaped box to use as the core of the design. Next, I added another layer to build out the basic shape a bit more. I'll be adding weld line decals from Archer where you see the pencil lines. Here, I've thickened up the top of the front fins, added a floor and round greeble, and cut a notch on the port side. If you notice some rough edges, those are intentional. His sketch looks like a vehicle that would have beat up edges. That's where I am today with the main body. I did spend a little time playing around with some parts to add to the deck, and came up with this "control box" that I'll add somewhere behind the pilot. The red part is from an old Koh-I-Noor drafting graphite container I found at work. I'm not sure what the numbers on the top will look like under primer and paint, but they should be slightly visible. I figure it can serve as an engine system model number. That'll be all I post until next weekend. I'm excited to keep going, but I'm away from home for a few days. Thanks for looking!
  5. My last work: Merkava Mk. IIID (Hobby Boss) 1/35 tank Regards
  6. German Schnellboot S-38 Eduard 1:35 It was great to see the release by Italeri of the 1:35 S-38 Schnellboot, adding to their impressive array of 1:35 scale MTB’s. The kit itself is very nice, but there is always room for improvement, and Eduard have a lot of experience in giving us modellers the sort of detail sets that will help do this. The three sets reviewed here are perfect for the task in hand, although I’m sure there is a lot more that can be added to the model, and not just in etched brass. 53212 – Schnellboot: Comes in a zip lock bag with a large sheet of etched brass and a small pre-painted sheet of etched steel. The brass sheet contains many new and replacement parts for the torpedo tubes both internally and externally, a new door and other fittings for the bow mounted 20mm cannon, plus a host of deck fittings such as gratings, hatch fittings and 48 stanchion plates. There are also new foot plates, brackets for the boot hook, skylight surrounds, ventilator grilles, plus foot pedals, sights and other fittings for the 40mm Bofors. Within the wheelhouse there are new fittings for the ships wheel, compass rose and surrounds for the two binnacles, and grille for the aldis lamp. All the dials and instrumentation are replaced with the well printed items on the etched steel sheet. For those modellers who wish to build a pre-war version with the 20mm cannon on the stern, then there are parts include for this weapon too. 53213 – Flag: This set is very simple in that it just contains are large pre-printed German flag. The flag comes complete with eyes top and bottom for you to add your favourite rigging line. If you don’t like to build your models with the swastika then you might not like to use this on your model. 53214 – Hatches: Also comes in a zip lock bag with one sheet of etched brass and a pre-cut acetate sheet. The sheet contains complete replacements for all the deck hatches. Each hatch is made of the hatch surrounds, the hatch itself with an acetate backing representing the glass, hinges, handles, clasps, and outside cover. Conclusion As mentioned above, the kit out of the box will make a nice model, but if you want something more, then these sets will certainly go toward making a model with more finesse and improved detail. Some modellers may want to go further, but for those with a limited budget you can’t go far wrong with these sets. Rieview courtesy of
  7. Shar2

    Soviet T-34/85. 1:35

    Soviet T-34/85 ICM 1:35 History The T-34 was and remains a legend. It is not only the most produced tank of the WWII-era, with 84,000 built (compared to the 48,966 Shermans of all versions) but also one of the longest-serving tanks ever built. Many are still stored in depots in Asia and Africa, and some served actively during the 90’s (such as during the 1991-99 Yugoslavian war). They formed the backbone of countless armoured forces around the globe from the fifties to the eighties. The basic design was drawn for the first time in 1938 with the A-32, in turn partially derived from the BT-7M, a late evolution of the US-born Christie tank. The T-34/85 came about after it was recognised that there was a need to increase the firepower of the T-34/76 following the Battle of Kursk in 1943. While the hull stayed the same, a new turret was designed and was to be originally fitted with a derivative of the M1939 air defence gun. This gun wasn’t chosen to be produced en masse, that honour went to the ZIS-S-53 which armed the 11,800 tanks produced between 1944 and 1945. The Model The model arrives in a strong box with a separate top sleeve with a nice artist’s representation of the tank and riders on the front. Inside, within a large poly bag, are five sprues and two hull parts of green styrene and, four lengths of tracks, a small sprue of clear styrene, and a smallish decal sheet. On initial inspection the parts are really well moulded, clean, with no sign of flash. There are a number of moulding pips, some of which are on quite fragile looking parts, so care should be taken when removing. The sprue gates attaching some items like are also quite heavy and I can see these parts breaking if not careful. The build begins with the fitting of the engine cover onto the rear decking, and the bow machine gun, armoured tear drop, mantle and ball. The two intake covers are then assembled and also fitted to the rear deck. The two piece bow mounted machine gun is then assembled and slide into the ball of the mounting, being glued such that it is still moveable, whilst there are four plates that are fitted to the underside of the rear decking. The drivers hatch is made up form four parts before being glued into position. Back aft, the rear bulkhead is attached, followed by the radiator cover. Inside the lower hull section the eight suspension boxes are fitted, four per side as are the two driver’s control sticks, whilst the rear mudguards are fitted to the rear. On the outside the driver gearbox covers are fitted, as are the five axles on their torsion beam suspension arms and the idler axles. The drivers are machine gunners seats, each made from six parts are glued in their appropriate positions and the two hull halves joined together. Each of the idler wheels, drive sprockets and road wheels are made from two parts before being fitted to their respective axles. The four towing hooks are then attached, two at the front and two aft. The upper hull is then fitted out with grab handles, stowage beams and a couple of smaller hooks. Each of the two halves of rubber track lengths are joined together and slide of the wheels. While there isn’t really any interior, ICM have allowed for the fact that some modellers like to have the hatches open, to that effect there is some semblance of interior parts. The main gun breech is made up form thirteen parts, and although relatively simple, does look quite effective. On the outside of the turret the mantlet and fixed section of the mantlet cover are fitted, the breech assembly is then glued to the mantlet from the inside and the lower turret, including the turret ring is glued into place. The moving section of the mantlet cover is then attached, along with the machine gun muzzle. The three piece mantlet extension and three piece main gun is then fitted, along with the four piece cupola, gunners hatch, grab handles, ventilator dome, viewing block and top armour plate for the mantlet. There are more stowage bars, periscope sights, lifting eyes and viewing blocks fitted to the turret before the whole assembly si fitted to the upper hull. Final assembly includes the four, four piece fuel drums, each with two cradles, spare track links, stowage boxes and aerial base. There is a four piece folded tarpaulin, (in place of one of the fuel drums), another stowage box, two more track links headlight, horn, two towing cables and a large saw attached before the model can be declares complete. Decals The decal sheet provides four options for tanks that each served in 1945. All of the tanks are in all over green, each with tank ID numbers and unit markings. The choices are:- A T-34/85, 7th Guards Tank Corps, Germany, Spring 1945 A T-34/85, 7th Guards Mechanised Corps, Germany, Spring 1945 A T-34/85, 4th Guard Tank Army, Germany, Spring 1945 A T-34/85, of an undesignated unit, from the Spring 1945 Conclusion This is another fine kit from ICM. Although not the most complicated of tank kits, it does look the part and would make a nice, relaxing weekend build. Review sample courtesy of
  8. Shar2

    KHD A3000 Light Truck. 1:35

    KHD A3000 Light Truck ICM 1:35 From 1940 onwards the German army, by standardizing and simplifying the numerous types of trucks, tried to improve the procurement of spare parts and facilitate repairs. The result was the standard 3 ton truck, which all German manufacturers now used as a basis for construction. This was also the basis on which the motor manufacturer Klöckner Humboldt Deutz AG, (KHD) of Cologne produced the A3000. Various bodies and sets of equipment were available, including a half track, “maultier”. A typical recognition feature was the oval radiator grille and one-piece windscreen. In total about 5960 examples were built between 1940 and 1944. The 4 wheel drive A3000 came to be used on all fronts in the Second World War and was indispensable for supplying the troops with goods of all kinds. The Model The model arrives in a strong box with a separate top sleeve with a nice artist’s representation of the vehicle on the front. Inside, within a large poly bag, are three sprues of light brown styrene and, in a separate poly bag, one clear sprue. On initial inspection the parts are really well moulded, clean, with no sign of flash. There are a number of moulding pips, some of which are on quite fragile looking parts, so care should be taken when removing. The sprue gates attaching items like the cover rails are also quite heavy and I can see these parts breaking if not careful. The original kit was released in 2015, this one includes new parts, but not having the original, I couldn’t tell you what they were. The build starts with the nicely detailed engine with the block and gearbox halves glued together followed by the addition of the rocker covers, starter motor, alternator, front engine mounts, cooling fan, air filter, and other sundry items. The instructions then move on to the complicated transfer box, with its input and output shafts and cross member frame that fits onto the chassis rails with the addition of four other cross members and rear chassis end piece, to which the towing eye, cover and pin are added, along with the front mudguards and engine are attached. The front and rear leaf springs are pre moulded to the chassis rails, the front and rear axles and transfer box are then fitted. Turning the rails over the engine can now be fitted plus the exhaust system, which comprises of four parts, and looks particularly fragile so it may be an idea to build in situ rather than as a separate assembly the instructions call for. The two driveshafts are then be added, as are the radiator/front chassis end piece. The steering rack assembly is built up using the four parts provided and, if the modeller chooses can be built up so that the front wheels are posable, although this may make it rather fragile, particularly the rear tie rod. After fitting the various brackets and supports as well as the front bumper, it’s onto the wheels, these come as single piece tyres plus inner and outer hubs. There are seven provided, singles for the front, doubles for the rear and a spare which fits on the chassis behind the cab and under the bed, along with the four piece fuel tank. The building of the cab begins with filing off the ejection pins marks on the underside of the floor, before fitting the pedals, steering column, steering wheel and handbrake handle. The seat support and cushion is fitted to the floor, whilst the windscreen, instrument panel, (with decal instruments), are fitted to the roof/front part of the cab. Onto the rear panel of the cab the seat back and rear screen are attached. The next assembly for the cab is the bonnet, which is made up of left and right hand parts, bonnet and radiator grille. The completed bonnet cannot easily be made to be posed either open, which is a shame. To finish off the foot plates are attached along with the doors, which are made of the external panels, door cards, clear parts, and door handles. Last details are the wing mirrors, lights, wipers; grab handles, spade, triangular roof marker, jerry can and its support bracket. The last assembly is the truck bed, with the bed itself being fitted with the side, rear, and front plank sections. On the underside, four lateral strengthening beams, plus the two wheel arches are fitted with their attachment struts. The kit comes complete with four tilt rails that attach to the outsides of the truck bed sides. To complete the build the windscreen wipers, wing mirrors, grab handles, headlamps, and width markers are glued into their respective positions. Decals Apart from the instruments mentioned above, the small decal sheet gives the modeller two options. The decals are nicely printed, clear and in good register with a slightly matt finish. The options:- KHD A3000, Ukraine, Summer 1942, in Panzer Grey overall KHD A3000, Italy, Summer 1944, in Dark Yellow Conclusion This is another superb truck kit from ICM. The details straight from the box are rather good, and there is plenty of scope to add extra detail, particularly to the engine and the very empty cargo bed. Once built and weathered this truck will make a nice component to a multi-vehicle diorama, or on its own with a bit of imagination and some figures, one or two of which would have been nice to have been included in the kit. There doesn’t appear to be anything that would trouble anyone other than complete beginners, so I can quite happily recommend this nice and quite interesting truck. Review sample courtesy of
  9. Hi to all,My main hobby is mount tanks 1/35. On each kit there are several leftover pieces. One day I imagined mount something with those pieces and this is the result. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mS_XDiluZs4
  10. Hi everyone, really looking to getting this one going! This is the kit, The contents of said box, The extra bits dragon have included in the kit the side fenders are photoetch which is nice and looking at the instructions the road wheels rubber bits can be slipped on later which will mean no masking!! The suspension seems workable and there's a barrel for the 105mm gun which is nice. The only problem is that the way the rubber/vinyl tracks have been stored is that they are stuck on this position. The plan is maybe to do the USMC machine as I like the yellow on green but Ill have a look for decals if not I'll just go for kit ones. Joss
  11. CMP F 15A Water Truck Mirror Models 1:35 The Ford built F 15A trucks were 4x4 versions of the ubiquitous CMP designed series of trucks. They had a wheelbase of 101” and could carry ¾ of a ton. There were a number of different bodies used, with the kit example being that of the water tanker. The kit comes in a very attractive, full colour box with a representation of the vehicle in use. The kit is contained on fourteen sprues of light grey styrene, plus two with a slightly mauve tint, although there are quite a few parts that are only destined for the spares box, as they are not used in this build. There is a single sprue of clear styrene, two sheets of etched copper, a length of rubber tubing, a length of copper wire, a length of steel wire, five rubber tyres and a medium sized decal sheet. All the parts are very nicely moulded, with no sign of flash or other imperfections and only a few moulding pips, but be aware of the sprue gates as they are quite large, even for the smaller parts. The build process is quite complex with lots of detail in and around the chassis, as for most truck models, so this won’t be a quick and easy build, but one that will need time, patience, and care to assemble, certainly not for a beginner. The instructions are very clear and easy to read, but not always logical, particularly with the way the sub-assemblies are used, although they use the CAD/Photo style of drawings. Before beginning assembly the modeller will have to make a choice of whether they are going to build a CMP F 15 or F 15A, as there are optional parts for both vehicles and each has different bonnets, and running gear, the F 15 being a 4 x 2 while the F 15A is 4 x 4. I’ve concentrated on the build of the F 15A. Construction begins with a load of sub assemblies. These include the rear cross member spring unit, which includes the tow hook, associated clamps and the anti-swing bars, front bumper frame, exhaust/silencer, fuel tank and gearbox. The assembly of the very nicely detailed engine is then started. The two block halves are glued together, followed by the lower block plate and sump, cylinder heads, front, which includes the auxiliary drive points plus the starter motor and air filter unit. The drive belt needs to be made of tape from the modellers stock. The water tank is assembled next. But before construction begins, you need to assemble the two pump assemblies, each made from five plastic, one PE part and a length of steel wire. The tank itself is in two halves, top and bottom. To these, the top access hatch, two lifting eyes and the vent mast are all attached. Four cradles are glued to the underside of the tank, followed by two longitudinal rails. To the rear of the tank the control cupboard is fitted, made from a single piece unit to which the water levels are fitted, along with the two doors and locking mechanism. The doors can be posed open if the modeller wishes. Two walkways are then attached, one per side of the tank, as are two, three piece stowage boxes and one two piece box. To the rear, two mudguard support beams are attached, followed by the mudguards and another stowage bin. The cab is assembled from the floor pan to which is fitted the scuttle, gearbox/engine cover, bonnet, wheel arches, windscreen, instrument binnacle, front end, grille and bonnet side panels. The four part seats, gear sticks, PE window hinges and pedals are then fitted. The two piece rear bulkhead is then attached, followed by the roof, rear window, two doors, wing mirrors and PE radiator grille. Finally we get to the chassis, which is normally one of the first things assembled in a truck kit. Each of the chassis rails is fitted with the single leaf springs and their supports at the front, whilst at the rear there are double leaf springs fitted, along with the tow bumper beams and their brackets. Each rail is then joined together by the front bumper, five cross members and the rear end beam with tow hook assembled earlier. With the chassis assembled, all the sub assemblies can now be fitted to it, the engine, exhaust, the front and rear differentials, transfer box, all joined together by the various drive shafts, truck fuel tanks, water tank assembly, cab and access steps, and the five piece wheels, which at this point you will have a completed model. Well, almost. You will then add eh rubber hoses above and below the front of the tank, joining the pumps with the outlets. Decals The decal sheet provides decals for seven different trucks, with various placards for around the truck, plain stars for the cab doors. The decals look like they have been printed in house and appear to be very well printed, with good opacity and very thin carrier film. Ford 15A with Cab 11 in Canadian service Ford F 15A with Cab 11 in Italian service Ford F 15 with Cab 13 in Canadian service Ford F15 with Cab 13 in British service There are also decals for other vehicles, well, their registration numbers, but not shown on the painting guide, as well as three German crosses for a captured vehicle, again, not mentioned on the guide. Conclusion It’s great to see another version of the well recognised CMP truck released as an injection moulded kit. Whilst it is certainly not for the beginner, with care, patience and a bit of skill the average modeller should be able to produce a great looking model. I continue to be pleasantly surprised by the quality of the mouldings and will certainly be looking forward to their future releases. UK Distributors for
  12. King Tiger, Initial Production Takom 1:35 Hitler, and therefore Nazi Germany was obsessed with bigger which they equated with better, and this was reflected in almost every aspect of arms production in the run-up to, and throughout World War II. After the Panzer IV had been matched by Allied designs, the Tiger addressed the balance back in their favour, becoming the most feared combatant from any force, despite several draw-backs of its design, such as a weak transmission, and a level of complexity that meant it was slow to manufacture, prone to break-downs and expensive to repair. Expecting the Allies to bring heavier tanks to the field before too long, the King Tiger, Tiger II, or Königstiger as the Sd.Kfz.182 was known came into existence, having begun development even before the war started. Porsche's ground-breaking and complex design was unsuccessful for this reason, while the Henschel proposal was taken forward to production, using the same underpowered Maybach engine that was barely adequate for the Tiger I, and taking on the sloped armour of the successful Panther to significantly increase the effective thickness of the armour whilst keeping weight down to a staggering 70 tonnes. The initial turrets had curved surfaces that were difficult to manufacture, and a redesign was necessary to cure this and remove the shot-trap under the mantlet, with the new design being known today as the Henschel turret, while the old design became the Porsche turret, although both were designed by Krupps. A weak transmission design, coupled with the underpowered engine ensured that many vehicles broke down in the field, and plans were in progress to improve both aspects with fuel-injection and a new drive-train, but were curtailed by the end of the war. Most of the initial order of 1,500 units were built under difficult circumstances due to bombing of the factories and the encroaching Allied forces, and despite its problems it became one of the icons of German tank design of WWII, with a number surviving to be placed in museums, with some still running. The Kit We have had a few King Tiger (KT) kits in 1:35 over the years, but nothing new for quite a while, and at times the preferred brands have been hard to come by with prices reaching silly levels on eBay. Takom's new range of KT kits aims to provide a full set of these imposing tanks, with and without Zimmerit anti-mine coating, with Henschel and Porsche turrets, and with or without interiors. This should cater for almost every possibility, and if you like your tanks buttoned up, you won't be wasting the interior if you buy wisely. The type included from the box is that of the initial production, it therefore includes the Porsche turret and no Zimmerit. It is this and the paint schemes that are represented that make it one of the plainest King Tigers built. Inside the box are a lot of sprues, taking up almost all the available space. There are ten sprues, two hull parts and upper turret in a grey styrene, one sprue of clear parts, one small sheet of Photo-Etch (PE) brass, and a very small decal sheet. The instruction guide is in the by-now-familiar Takom format, in landscape A4, with a separate booklet for the painting instructions. All the parts are beautifully moulded with no sign of flash or other imperfections, but there are quite a few moulding pips, and for those modellers who have an aversion to indie link tracks, look away as, although these are link and length, each individual link is connected to the sprue by no less than ten gates which will require the nice tedious job of cleaning them up before fitting. Before building can begin, you will need to decide which of the four versions you wish to build as certain parts of the front glacis plate and hull deck need to be removed, as well as some holes to be opened up. Construction begins with the the road wheels and the sprockets are made up from two parts whilst the idlers are three part units. Once the gearbox covers and axles, which you will have to be careful in getting the parts fitted int eh right order, have been fitted to the hull all the wheels can be attached to their relative axles. There is a separate lower glacis plate to be attached as well. With all the track links and lengths cleaned up it’s just a case of patience and following the build guide carefully, ensuring it sags in the correct places. Work then begins on the upper hull and the fitting of the towing cables, pioneer tools, and the separate panel for the drivers and bow gunners hatches. Inside, there is a large panel glued to the inside of the glacis plate, along with the two periscopes. The three piece bow machine gun is then assembled and glued into the ball socket in the bow plate. Then, on the outside the rest of the ball mechanism is fitted, along with the armoured hood. The track guards are also added at this point, although I’d probably leave them off until the entire hull is complete and the tracks fitted. Once you’ve decided which version you are building he rear bulkhead is fitted out with the engine gearbox cover, a smaller access hatch, the alternative exhausts and exhaust covers, track puller, the two rear mudguards and rear mounted towing shackles. The completed bulkhead is then attached to the rear of the hull. On the rear upper hull alternative centre engine covers, one is fitted with three individual engine hatches each fitted with a ventilation style dome and two other access hatches. The alternative centre hatch is fitted with a single large hatch each with two ventilation domes. There are also alternative radiator covers, attached each side of the centre hatch, there have different grilles and on one style the grilles are covered by armour plate. Each of the centre mounted circular opening is covered by PE grilles. Each assembly is then glued into position. The upper hull is then glued to the lower, then the upper bow mounted track guards are fitted, followed by the three piece bow mounted light and lower, inner gearbox covers, to which the towing shackles are attached. The turret is assembled next, with the single piece centre section of the turret fitted with the roof, inner rear bulkhead, gunners internal hatch framing, inner section of the commanders cupola, outer rear bulkhead gunners hatch actuator, in open or closed position, three piece gunners hatch, periscope cover, small access hatch and grab handles. The large eight piece rear mounted hatch is then attached with its hinge covers, along with the roof mounted ventilator cover or alternative cover plate. The turret base is fitted with the gun trunnion section via two trunnion mounts and then glued to the turret. The outer commanders cupola is fitted with the seven periscope covers before being glued into position. There are two types of gun barrel, dependent of which version is being built, each made up from five parts before being fitted to the mantlet and the breech end within the turret. The completed turret is then attached to the hull, completing the build. Decals There are four paint schemes, one for each version. All the paint codes are for AMMO paints, but with the German names for each colour. There are six schemes with vehicle numbers; the other two just have generic crosses etc. The decals have been printed by Takom and although only a small sheet they are nicely printed, in register with good opacity. Three of the options are from November 1943 when at the Henschel Factory, each in the same Dunklegelb overall with Panzer grey barrel and red brown muzzle. The one different scheme is for a vehicle from January 1944 at the Henschel tank proving grounds, Houdenbeck, Germany, in Panzer grey overall Conclusion This is a very nice kit, as we have come to expect from Takom. The track links could cause some modellers sleepless nights, but with a bit of patience they should be fine. Other than that a fairly easy build and will look great in any collection. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  13. Modelholic

    British Ammo markings

    Who does ammunition box marking. I've got some Resicast ammo sets 25pdr ammo 35.287 boxes and UK small ammo boxes 35.2227 (3" mortar; four) types of .303 and am considering decaling some of them up. I see Archer do the 25pdr but what about others? TIA Tom
  14. SoftScience

    Soviet M3 Lee

    This thread will present my build of Takom's excellent iron cathedral. The kit is of a very early Lee, so much as I'd like to build it as an Operation Torch machine, my lack of proper parts forces me to keep things the way Takom intended. The kit offers excellent details, and I began with the bogies. Each of these consists of 14 parts, and all hinges can be built to swing. The first one is finished. Five more to go
  15. My 1:35 tank series (2017)
  16. Sd.Kfz. 222 Light Armoured Vehicle HobbyBoss 1:35 History Adoption of the SdKfz 221 series of armoured cars in 1935 by the German Army eventually led to a broadened line of similar cars all based on the same power pack, design form, and running gear of the original in the SdKfz 222 and SdKfz 223. The SdKfz 222 was an up-gunned form mounting a combination 20mm cannon with 7.92mm machine gun in its turret. The 222 also increased the crew by one to three so a dedicated gunner could manage the armament. All of the vehicles in the family were of the same 4-ton, light-class design though the 22-models proved slightly heavier in practice thanks to the additional armament and its applicable ammunition stores required. The 222-model retained the original's open turret as well as its folding mesh protector which was designed to keep enemy grenades from entering the fighting cabin in action. Production of the SdKfz 222 variant spanned from 1937 into 1943 to which some 990 of the type were eventually delivered. Early forms lacked radio sets up until early 1942 and the original MG13 machine guns were upgraded to the MG34 machine gun in 1938. Finally, during 1942, the original KwK30 cannon was upgraded to the KwK 38 series and a different chassis was used which led to the Ausf.B. The SdKfz 221, 222, and 223 cars succeeded over earlier German Army armoured cars because they were built atop a dedicated armoured car chassis designed with the rigors of military service in mind. This also improved cross-country travel which was an important quality of a modern mechanized force. All three variants held inherent 4x4 wheel drive and four-wheel steering capability and used the same Horch V8 gasoline engine which simplified in-the-field repair work and general logistics. The engines were installed in a rear compartment on all marks, leaving the central and frontal hull sections for the crew and armament. A spare road wheel was carried externally, on the right hull side in case of emergency. The addition of heavier armament added slightly more weight to the SdKfz 222 design which already was forced to manage the armoured superstructure. Sloped armour was seen on all faces of the hull superstructure which offered protection from small arms fire up to 7.92mm in calibre. The 222-model could engage other light-armoured vehicles through Armour-Piercing (AP) projectiles and enemy infantry concentrations through use of a High-Explosive (HE) 20mm shell. 180 x 20mm projectiles were carried aboard along with 1,050 x 7.92mm rounds of machine gun ammunition. However, it still remained a reconnaissance-minded and scouting vehicle first and not intended a direct-combat vehicle - its armament intended for local defence. Their compact dimensions did make them hard targets to train in on at range but protection for the crew was, on the whole, lacking against larger calibre weaponry. The Model This is yet another of the old Tristar moulds being put back into good use, and a good looking kit it is. The box art is the same as the Tristar packaging with the colour artists impression of a pair of vehicles on the road, surrounded by a yellow boarder. As with the other kits, all the parts are beautifully moulded, with the sprues in a sandy yellow styrene. There are seven sprues in the yellow styrene, one of clear styrene. There are also four rubber tyres, one sheet of etched brass, eight small springs and a smallish decal sheets. There is no sign of flash or other imperfections, but there are quite a few moulding pips that will need to be cleaned up. Looking at the parts count and layout, it doesn’t appear to be a complicated build, but the interior and suspension detailing means it would probably not be easy for a novice modeller. Construction begins with the chassis, the two rails being joined together by seven cross-members and the three piece rear differential. The four upper wishbones are then attached, one per corner, followed by the three piece front differential, drive shaft and attachment shaft. Two towing hooks are fitted to the front of the chassis, followed by the front bumper, two shock absorbers per axle, complete with actual metal springs and the lower wishbones. Each wheel is made up from five parts, plus the rubber tyre, these, and the nine piece steering rack are then fitted to the chassis and the whole assembly put to one side. The lower hull is fitted with the fighting compartment floor, followed by the build up of the interior details. These include the drivers pedals, steering column, battery box, five control sticks to the front, while to the rear there are two storage boxes and a seat frame. The engine compartment bulkhead si then fitted, as is the two piece drivers seat and six piece ammunition box and rack. The turret basket frame is then assembled and fitted with the commanders seat, rotation hand wheel and gearbox, plus turret control pedals. The 20mm cannon is made up from four parts. This is then attached to the nine piece gun mount along witht eh two piece MG-34 machine gun. Pipe work is then attached to eh mount, before the assembly is attached to the turret basket assembly, with the addition of the traversing gear and trunnion mounts. The interior is further detailed with the addition of various items such as binocular cases, pistol holster, stowage boxes, interior frames as well as the two, three piece side doors, external towing hooks to the rear, large storage box on the left hand side and spare wheel on the right hand side. The rear wheel arches are attached and fitted with more gear, such as the large jack, tool boxes, light clusters, tow cable, as well as the exhaust. The upper hull section is fitted with the vision ports which can be posed open if required. The engine hatches are glued into place, as are the headlights, lower glacis plate, pioneer tools and rear mounted extension box. The interior of the upper hull has more detail fitted in the shape of gas mask cases, steering wheel and instrument panel, which has decal instruments, vision port hinges, bolt croppers, and gun cleaning rod case. The upper and lower hulls are joined together and the four piece front wheel arches attached. These are fitted with hooded lights, corner extent poles, and wing mirrors. The gun mounts/turret basket is the pushed into place so that it can traverse before the six piece turret, plus three piece radio set and mounting, is assembled and pressed into place. The two turret hatches are fitted with their respective PE anti grenade screens before being glued to the turret in either the open of closed positions. The two piece aerial base is attached as is the PE decking to the rear of the turret. The completed hull assembly is then glued to the chassis assembly, completing the build. Decals The small decal sheet contains markings for three vehicles, they are nicely printed, in register and opaque. The three options are:- 1./Kradschuetzen-Btl., Gross Deutschland Panzer Grenadier Division, Orel, Russia, 1942 in overall Panzer Grey 20 Panzer Division, USSR, 1943, in overall Panzer Grey with Dark Yellow splotches Bulgarian Army, M222, First Army Armoured Battalion, Hungary, February, 1945, in overall Panzer Grey. Conclusion I was pleasantly surprised with this kit having a full interior, excellent news for those who like to have all the hatches open or for use in a diorama. It’s only small, but they have packed a lot into it, and it looks like it will build into a very nice little model. Review courtesy of
  17. T-55 MOD 1963 Soviet Medium Tank MiniArt 1:35 Having reviewed the massed ranks of MiniArt’s T-54, we are now onto the T-55’s. Since the T-55 was a progression of the T-54, there are still quite a few similarities, but with enough differences to make the builds interesting. As with MiniArt kits with interiors there are a lot of sprues, ninety two in this case, of grey styrene, plus one of clear, two sheets of etched brass and a smallish decal sheet. The very colourful box, quite a bit deeper than a standard tank kit box, has a nice painting of the tank on the front. On opening you are greeted by a mass of sprues, many of them quite small because modular nature of the tooling , with quite a few parts going unused for this boxing. The mass of sprues fill up just about all the space in the box, leaving only room for air between the sprues, anyone familiar with the old Krypton Factor will realise getting all this back in the box is one of life’s little challenges! Construction is almost identical to the earlier releases, complete with the full engine, which is a lovely model in its own right, and consisting of forty two parts if you include the engine mounting cradle. The lower hull is then fitted out with a multitude of parts that include the torsion beam suspension, multi part axles, gearbox covers, and interior escape hatch plus PE beam covers. The interior is then built up from the fighting compartment floor and includes all the pipe work, seats fire bottles, steering mechanism and internal bulkheads. The interior and exterior of the sidewalls are also covered with detail, including the large racks of shells for the main gun, with additional shells stored around the fighting compartment. The extra parts that go into this interior goes to graphically demonstrate how cramped these tanks were. There seems to be so much equipment and extra ammunition for both the main gun, the co-axial machine gun. The detailed sidewalls are then glued into place, as is the engine assembly, engine compartment firewall and other ancillary equipment. The upper glacis plate is then fitted as are the three piece road wheels, drive sprocket and idlers. The turret ring assembly is the attached, followed by the rear bulkhead, each fitted with more detail parts. The engine deck is then built up and the separate hatches are able to be posed open or closed as per the modellers’ wishes. The deck is topped off with PE grilles in their frames, which are much more complex affairs than in previous versions, being made of five parts. The rear mounted intakes, consisting of six parts are fitted with individual PE slats and the PE mesh is fitted from underneath, these are then glued into position, followed by the large hinge for the main hatch. There are quite a few parts that are intended to be used if the tank is fitted for use with the mine rollers, (which are not in the kit), The tracks are of individual link type, with ninety links per side, and it will be a case of assembling it like a link and length style, gluing each link together before draping them over the road wheels. The fenders are fitted with stowage boxes, fuel tanks and spare track links plus front and rear mudguards before being glued into position. The two fuel drums mounted to the rear of the tank are assembled and glued into their mounting frames, as is the unditching beam and the pipework for the fender fuel tanks. The separate exhaust assembly is also glued into position on the left hand rear fender, whilst the pair of nine piece deep wading kit tubes are attached to the rear bulkhead, one above and the other below the auxiliary fuel drums. The turret is another new moulding, which has even more equipment in it than the earlier versions, due to the improved technology. As with the other kits the turret interior includes the full main gun breech, radios, training motors, seats, hand cranks, and other equipment, but with additional sighting equipment for the main gun, and more spare ammunition boxes for the co-axial machine gun, which is just as detailed as before, consisting of sixteen parts, plus another eight for the new sighting system. Ready use shells are added to the inside of the upper turret along with a multitude of brackets and clamps. The turret roof comes complete with all the periscopes and hatch details for the commander and gunner positions, and rolled up tarpaulin. There are a pair of grab rails each side of the turret, as well as larger brackets and an aerial, including the six piece platform for the three piece fighting light.The single piece main barrel is glued into the breech, and fitted with a choice of two mantlet covers and a two piece bracket that attaches the fighting light to the gun barrel. The Commanders cupola is fitted with a smaller searchlight, and there is a large periscope for the commander, situated just in front of their hatch. Finally the driver's wet weather cover, that fits over his hatch can be posed stowed or in place. If you are stowing it, there are some PE straps to tie things down on the bustle. The turret assembly is then fitted to the hull, completing the build. Decals The decal sheet gives the modeller no less than twelve options. The decals are beautifully printed, are clear and in good register with a slightly matt finish. The options are:- T-55, Presumably the 51st Infantry of the Republic of Iraq, “Operation Iraqi Freedom” (“Shock and Awe”), Basra, March 2003 T-55, Vietnamese People’s Army, 2000’s T-55, Captured during the “Six Day War” as part of the IDF, 1968 T-55 of the Egyptian Army, 1973-1974 T-55 of the Syrian Army, during the “Yom Kippur War”, Golan Heights, October 1973 T-55 of the Cuban Army during the 1970’s T-55 of the Finnish Defence Forces, 1973 T-55 of the Ethiopian Army, during the “Ogaden War”, 1977 T-55 of the Iragi Army during the War in the Persian Gulf, Battle of Khafji, Feruary 1991 T-55 used for the Parade in Honour of the 50th anniversary of the October Revolution, Khakiv, November 7, 1967 T-55 of the 24th Motorised Rifle Division of the Soviet Army, Kiev, 1967 T-55 of the Soviet Army, Operation Danube, Prague, Czechoslovakia, August-September 1968 Conclusion These beasts of tanks, and models are really coming thick and fast for the moulding machines of MiniArt and you really just can’t fault them. There is so much detail that it could overwhelm a modeller unless their mojo was really cranked up. But if you break the build into bite sized pieces as sub-assemblies, painting as you go, there shouldn’t be a problem. Not one for beginners or maybe even intermediate modellers, but there are versions being released, without interior, that would perhaps be more suited to their level to gain experience before tackling a full interior build. As bang for your buck goes, these have to be some of the best value kits around these days. Review sample courtesy of Miniart - Distibuted in the UK By Creative Models
  18. Hello! This is my second model car and once again I'm shooting for a post apocalyptic theme. I picked the Fiat Topolino because, well, it's super cute guys and it comes with a dog! The other selling point for me was the open roof, because I'm gonna shove a machine gun in there. I'm trying to go in a bit more prepared, so I treated myself to a copy of the 'Underhaulin' ebook from the Model Junkyard website (here: http://shop.modeljunkyard.com/product/underhaulin-junk-model-car-ebook/) for some guidance on doing more realistic weathering. I also got some much needed tools, a little cutter, some files, a new cutting mat etc. I've also been eyeing up some reference material. I seriously love how gross these cars look. Anyway, this is end game stuff, first things first is I need to build this thing. OK - So I want to put the car into a diorama setting so I picked a 1:35 model because all the diorama bits I found online were the same size. I got a damn cold shock when I opened the box and saw how small all the parts are. Intimidatingly small, I had no idea 1:35 was so tiny (yes I'm a hopeless newbie)! Content warning ahead, this build will suck, you will cringe at how bad I am at this. Here we go: I love how the body comes in a wee little box. Oh God, everything in wonky and covered in glue... I glued 3 out of 4 wheels so they don't spin..ahhhh. The photograph is quite forgiving, the myspace angel of the model car world if you will, because from any other angle this engine is real squiff. No wait, it looks squiff from here too. Sorry not a clear picture, but I got one 'part' all glued up ready for priming. And this is where I got to so far. Despite the cold rinse of fear I feel every time I have to pick up a microscopic part, I am having a total blast. Thanks for looking in
  19. Bussing NAG 4500S w/EMC Type II Mines Ding Hao 1:35 The foundation of the company Bussing goes back to the year 1903. Bussing is considered the oldest German lorry manufacturer. In 1931 Bussing took over AEG daughter company NAG and became Bussing-NAG. This company manufactured many lorry types from 1.5 ton to 11.5 tons payload. The Bussing-NAG type 500 was manufactured from 1939 to 1941. Beginning in 1940, it was designated Bussing-NAG type 500 S. It was propelled by a 6 cylinder, 105 HP diesel engine and had a payload of 4.75 tons. The Bussing-NAG type 500A was developed in the beginning of 1939. It was made in small numbers from late 1940 to 1942. Unlike to the Bussing-NAG type 500S it had all wheel drive. The Bussing-NAG type 4500 S was the successor model of the Bussing-NAG type 500S. Outwardly, it looked different, but it was based on the same technology. It was manufactured from 1942 to 1945. A whole range of alterations were introduced into the series production units of the Bussing-NAG 4500, especially to type 4500A. Nearly 15,000 units of the type 4500 A/S were manufactured until the end of Second World War. The Model The kit is a variant of the previously released 4500S by AFV Club which is also part of the Hobby Fan group that owns Ding Hao. The box style is covered in a separate sleeve that is glued to the box and has to be cut to actually get the box open. Inside the box it is literally stuffed full of sprues. There are six sprues of yellow styrene, two of green styrene, one of clear styrene, a small etched sheet, two small decal sheets, seven vinyl tyres, a length of string and four poly caps. There are also eight resin parts included in the kit, which I will talk about later. Naturally, being from AFV Club, the truck is a highly detailed kit, but it doesn’t seem as complicated, and therefore, difficult than other manufacturers releases of similar trucks. Whilst all the parts are cleanly moulded, with some finely rendered details there is a small amount of flash, but only on a couple of parts. There doesn’t appear to be any signs of other imperfections, but there are a lot of moulding pips. The tyres, although not to everyones taste are very well moulded with very fine tread detail, (certainly for road use, not cross country), and sidewall details, including the manufacturers name. As with most truck kits, most of the detail is on the chassis and suspension parts, and this is no different, so care and attention to the instructions and parts placement will be needed to get all the wheels to sit on the ground correctly as it looks like it will be relatively easy to get the chassis slightly skewed. As with most truck kits the chassis is the first section to be assembled. Consisting of two longitudinal rails which are joined together via six cross members, the rear most one being fitted with a four piece towing hitch with its associated spring mounted behind the cross member. Two five piece accumulator tanks are then fitted, one on each chassis rail whilst the four part exhaust/silencer is threaded through the mid section cross members and out to the left hand side. The front bumper is then fitted with two reflectors and number plate before being attached to the front of the chassis rails. On each rail, two footstep support brackets are attached, followed by the front mudguards, which have the footsteps moulded integrally. The two piece fuel tank is then fitted to the right hand rail via two triangular brackets. To the rear of the chassis, the two reflector arms are attached, and then fitted with the reflectors and the rear number plate to the left hand arm. Up forward the radiator is fitted along with the single hooded headlight and two open headlights, which come with clear lens parts. The rear differential is then assembled from nine parts, while the front consists of six parts. The differential and front axle are then attached to the chassis. Each of the four wheels are built up with an inner hub which has a poly cap fitted into it, followed by the outer hub, then the vinyl tyres are slipped over the rims, and the centre hub glued into place. The wheels are then attached to the axles. Assembly moves onto the engine, which is made up from two halves of the block, to which the cylinder heads are attached, followed by the alternator, auxiliary drive cover and exhaust manifold. The gearbox is then assembled from eight parts, and then fitted with the two piece bell housing before being glued to the engine assembly, which is then fitted with the sump block. The engine is further detailed with the fitting of the intake manifold, three piece air filter unit, coolant pipes, fan belt and fan. The engine/gearbox assembly is then fitted to the chassis, along with the transfer box and the three driveshafts, each having separate universal joints. The gear leaver is then attached to the top of the gearbox The assembly of the cab begins with the fitting of the foot pedals and hand brake lever, as well as a couple of fixing brackets to the floor. The bench seat base is then fitted, being topped off with a single piece seat cushion. The rear bulkhead is fitted with the single piece seat back, rear window and two hand holds. The interior of the front cab section is detailed with the fitting of the instrument binnacle, switchbox, two windscreens and a couple of fuse boxes. The three cab assemblies are then joined together and the roof fitted. On top of the roof there is a small light fitting complete with clear lens, along with two grab handles, two more of which are fitted to the sides of the rear bulkhead. The cab assembly is attached to the chassis, with the previously fitted gear stick, threaded through the hole in the cab floor. The steering column is, likewise slid into a hole in the floor and attached to the steering rack, before being fitted with the steering wheel. The bonnet centre bar is then fixed between the cab and the radiator. Each door consists of a single piece door, clear window part plus internal and external door handles. These can be fitted to the cab either open or closed positions. The four piece bonnet, with additional PE mesh fitted to the inside of the grille, and pioneer tools to each side panel, is then fitted over the engine. Unfortunately the bonnet sections cannot be posed open without resorting to some surgery. The truck bed consists of as single piece bed, to which five stowage boxes are fitted to the underside, as is the spare wheel and its associated brackets. The bed is the glued to the single piece support frame, along with the rear mudguards and their attachment brackets. The front, sides and rear flap are then attached, with e the sides having extra slated top rails fitted. The bed assembly is then glued to the chassis. On the right hand side a large jack unit is fitted, and the assembly if the mines can begin. Each mine assembly is made up of the lower weight unit, to which a reel of mooring wire is attached. Each mooring weight consists of no less than thirty four parts and each mine consists of twelve parts, including separate individual horns. Each mine is then attached to their associated mooring weight, which in turn is glued to their resin transport pallets. The mine assemblies can then be glued to the rear of the cargo bed. The kit also comes with a single resin figure of a Kriegsmarine officer. The figure comes with separate arms and head but with limited options of a different pose unless the modeller does some major modifications. Decals The two small decal sheets contains only a fairly few decals. The first just has the registration numbers for six vehicles, and unit markings while the second contains numbers for the mines and two halves of the Kriegsmarine ensign, with dislocated swastika. The decals are nicely printed, in register, with good opacity and definition. All variants are painted in Panzer Grey overall. Conclusion There’s not a lot more I can say, other than this is a very nice kit, that’s not to complex to build and will make a nice addition to any collection. There is also so much you can do with this truck though, with endless possibilities for diorama settings or vignettes. Modify some troops from the spares box for the crew and away you go. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  20. Shar2

    Soviet 1.5 ton Cargo Truck

    Soviet 1.5 ton Cargo Truck MiniArt 1:35 The GAZ AA 1.5 ton truck was a licenced manufactured version of the Ford AA truck for the Soviet Union, where more than 950,000 were built. There were many body styles, but the most recognisable version was the flat bed truck as depicted in this kit. The model is contained within a very attractive, bright and colourful box that MiniArt have started using recently. Inside, there are thirty five sprues in grey styrene, one of clear a single sheet of etch brass and a full decal sheet. Once again, MiniArt have included, what is essentially another kit, in the form of a large set of furniture for that can be placed on the truck bed. Inside the beautifully printed instruction sheet there are two printed carpets, with the backing also printed alongside, so that it can be folded over forming the complete carpet, for the modeller to cut out and use. The carpets can then be rolled up and placed on the truck. The build starts with the nicely detailed engine with the block, head and sump being glued together followed by the addition of the starter motor, alternator, water pump, auxiliary drive belt, cooling fan, cooling pipes, oil filler pipe. The gearbox is then assembled from three parts and glued to the engine assembly, along with intake manifold. The two, chassis rails are fitted with an extra beam where the truck bed will sit. These are held on the rails by three “U” bolts and thir associated clamps. The rear leaf springs are then attached via their support links. Four cross members are then used to join the rails together, as well as the rear chassis end piece, to which the towing eye spring is attached. There is a three piece box attached to the left hand rail, near the front. The wheels are assembled, and in this, MiniArt have deviated from the norm, by making the inner tyre half made up from four individual rings, while the outer section is made up of three rings. The wheel itself is then sandwiched between the two tyre sections. Whilst this sounds odd, I think it’s to make a realistic tyre with the type of radial tread used at the time. The rear axle and differential is made up from six parts, if you include the drive shaft. This assembly is then fitted to the rear leaf springs, while the front suspension is made up on a single leaf spring assembly mounted laterally and fitted with the front axle, steering rack and support arms. The rear differential is then fitted with a triangular support structure which also supports the brake rods. The front chassis end cap is attached as are the two bumper side arms, while to the rear there is a choice of towing hook styles, one, just a single piece unit, the other is made up from five parts. The spare wheel, mounted under the rear chassis is held in place by a support large clamp. The front and rear brake drums are then attached to the axles, followed by two wheels per side on the rear axle and one per side on the front axle. The engine assembly in then glued into position, followed by the two piece radiator, two piece front bumper and two support brackets on chassis rails. The five piece exhaust is the attached to the right hand side. The two front fenders are each single piece units to which a small hook is attached before being fitted to the chassis, as are two of the lateral truck bed beams. The cab floor is also attached and fitted with the bench seat, gear stick and panel support. The three piece wiper/wiper motor is fitted to the front screen surround, once the clear screen has been fitted. The screen is then fitted with two small arms, these can be glued in either the stowed position for a closed screen, or down, so that the screen can be posed open. The rear of the bonnet section is then glued to the front of the screen support, along with eh two side sections and engine bulkhead which has been detailed with several small parts. Inside the foot pedals are attached lower bulkhead, part of the floor panel fitted earlier, before the front cab assembly is glued into place, along with the steering column and wheel. The three piece rear panel and roof of the cab are then glued into place, as are the two bonnet supports, between the bulkhead and the radiator. Each door is made up from five parts, including clear section, door handles, latches and window winders. The doors are then put to one side. The bonnet halves, split longitudinally are each made from two sections, which can be posed in either the open or closed positions, allowing the modeller to show of the engine should they so choose. The doors are then attached; again, they can be posed open or closed as the modeller wishes. The three piece horn is attached to a rail, which in turn is attached to the front of the vehicle between the fenders. The two, three piece headlights are then fitted, as is the single, two piece wing mirror, on the drivers side. The truck bed is then assembled from five parts, bed, sides, front and rear sections, and glued into place, completing the truck section of the build. The rest of the build concentrates on the furniture. There are two styles of chair, each made up form five parts, a three piece miners lamp, two piece oil lamp and a four piece telephone. The main furniture items consist of a five piece office desk, seven piece cupboard, six piece chest of drawers, and ten piece circular table. Also included is a five piece radio telephone, used on some of the options. As mentioned earlier there are the two carpets printed in the instructions booklet, and there are also six large period posters and six small posters, which could also be the covers of pamphlets. Decals The decal sheet gives the modeller no less than eight options. The decals are beautifully printed, are clear and in good register with a slightly matt finish. The names of the different companies are included, as well as their respective registration plates and insignia. The options:- GAZ AA, Emergency help, Trolleybus Park, Leningrad, 1937-1939. Black cab, chassis and wheels with green truck bed sides. GAZ AA, Emergency Technical Assistance vehicle, machinery municipal trust cleaning, Moscow, 1939-1941. Painted overall Ochre, with black chassis and wheels. GAZ AA, Technical Assistance of the Machine Tractor Station, Orel Region, Summer period, 1939-1941. Green cab and bonnet section, Emerald Green truck bed sides, black chassis and wheels. GAZ AA, Requisitioned transport of the needs of the Red Army of one of the collective farms in the Kiev region. Kiev Pocket, August to September 1941. Green 4BO cab and bonnet section and wheels, Emerald green truck bed sides, black chassis. GAZ AA, Freight Taxi, Moscow, 1938-1941. Emerald green overall, with Green 4BO wheels and black chassis. GAZ AA, Freight Taxi, Odessa region, 1947. Green 4BO cab and bonnet section and wheels, Dark Emerald green truck bed sides, black chassis GAZ AA, Postal truck, Stalingrad region, 1939-1942. Grey cab and bonnet section, Dark Emerald green truck bed sides, Green 4BO wheels, black chassis. GAZ AA, Postal truck, Ruza, Moscow region, 1950. Green 4BO overall, including wheels, black chassis. Conclusion I just love these trucks from MiniArt, they are so evocative of the period and can be used in so many situations, whether on their own, a military or civilian diorama. The added furniture and posters provide the modeller with even more options on how to display their creation. You really do get so much for your money with this and the German truck reviewed here. The staff at MiniArt should be commended for giving us modellers such great kits with pretty much everything you need, just let your imagination run wild. Review sample courtesy of Miniart - Distibuted in the UK By Creative Models
  21. T-54A Soviet Medium Tank MiniArt 1:35 By 1953, the OKB-520 design bureau saw the rise of a new team, under the direction of Leonid N. Kartsev. Their T-54A came equipped with the new STP-1 “Gorizont” gun stabilizer in a vertical plane with better guidance, an automated electric ejection device to purge the barrel, and the initial small muzzle counter-weight was replaced with a massive fume extractor. This new gun was called D-10TG. Now it was possible to conduct true aimed fire on the move. The engine received an air cleaner with controlled blinds, multi-stage air filter and radiator control to maintain optimum performance and a new OPVT wading snorkel. The driver received a night vision periscope, as the TVN-1 and related IR driving searchlight. A new R-113 radio was also made available. The gunner received an upgraded TSh-2A-22 telescopic sight. Other modifications included an electrical oil pump, bilge pump and automatic fire extinguisher. The most distinctive change in appearance, outside the gun’s fume extractor, were the massive rear mounted extra fuel tanks. T-54A production was scheduled for mid-1954 but not produced until the end of 1955 as an upgrade, which lasted until 1957. Some 2102 T-10TG guns were completed by the Sverdlovsk and Perm arsenals for 1955 alone, 1854 in 1956 and 840 in 1957. (Taken from Tanks-Enclyclopedia.com) The Model Having reviewed the T-54-1 here, T-54-2 here and T-54-3 here recently, we are now onto the main production machines proper. As with earlier kits there are a lot of similarities but quite a few new parts as well. As with MiniArt kits with interiors there are a lot of sprues, seventy seven in this case, of grey styrene, plus two of clear, two sheets of etched brass and a smallish decal sheet. The box, deeper than a standard tank kit box has a nice painting of the tank on the front. On opening you are greeted by a mass of sprues, many of them quite small because of the tooling's modular nature, with quite a few parts going unused for this boxing. The mass of sprues fill up just about all the space in the box, leaving only room for air between the sprues, anyone familiar with the old Krypton Factor will realise getting all this back in the box is one of life’s little challenges! Construction is almost identical to the earlier releases, complete with the full engine, which is a beautiful model in its own right, and consisting of forty two parts if you include the engine mounting cradle. The lower hull is then fitted out with a multitude of parts that include the torsion beam suspension, multi part axles, gearbox covers, and interior escape hatch plus PE beam covers. The interior is then built up from the fighting compartment floor and includes all the pipe work, seats fire bottles, steering mechanism and internal bulkheads. The interior and exterior of the sidewalls are also covered with detail, including the large racks of shells for the main gun, with additional shells stored around the fighting compartment. The detailed sidewalls are then glued into place, as is the engine assembly, engine compartment firewall and other ancillary equipment. The upper glacis plate is then fitted as are the three piece road wheels, drive sprocket and idlers. The turret ring assembly is the attached, followed by the rear bulkhead, each fitted with more detail parts. The engine deck is then built up and the separate hatches are able to be posed open or closed as per the modellers’ wishes. The deck is topped off with PE grilles in their frames and the large hinge for the main hatch. The tracks are of individual link type, with ninety links per side, and it will be a case of assembling it like a link and length style, gluing each link together before draping them over the road wheels. The fenders are fitted with stowage boxes, fuel tanks and spare track links plus front and rear mudguards before being glued into position. The two fuel drums mounted to the rear of the tank are assembled and glued into their mounting frames, as is the unditching beam and the pipework for the fender fuel tanks. The turret is another new moulding, which has even more equipment in it than the earlier versions, due to the improved technology. As with the other kits the turret interior includes the full main gun breech, radios, training motors, seats, hand cranks, and other equipment, but with additional sighting equipment for the main gun, and more spare ammunition boxes for the co-axial machine gun, which is just as detailed as before, consisting of sixteen parts, plus another eight for the new sighting system. Ready use shells are added to the inside of the upper turret along with a multitude of brackets and clamps. The turret roof comes complete with all the periscopes and hatch details for the commander and gunner positions, a highly detailed Dushka (DsHK) 14.5mm heavy machine gun, consisting of twenty nine parts, and rolled up tarpaulin. The single piece main barrel is glued into the breech, and fitted with a choice of two mantlet covers. There a many more grab handles fitted to the outside of the turret on this version, not to mention brackets and clamps. Finally the driver's wet weather cover, that fits over his hatch can be posed stowed or in place. If you are stowing it, there are some PE straps to tie things down on the bustle. The turret assembly is then fitted to the hull, completing the build. Decals The decal sheet gives the modeller seven options. The decals are beautifully printed, are clear and in good register with a slightly matt finish. The options are:- T-54A, No.221 of the 2nd Guards Mechanised Division of the Soviet Army, Budapest, Hungary, 24th - 30th October 1956 T-54A, No.411 of the 2nd Guards Mechanised Division of the Soviet Army, Budapest, Hungary, 24th - 30th October 1956 T-54A, No.312 of the 202th tank regiment of the Vietnam People’s Army during the initial phase of operation “Nguyen Hue”, April 1972 T-54A, No.212 of an Unidentified Guards unit of the Soviet Army in winter camouflage, 1950’s and 60’s T-54A of the 3rd Tank Battalion, 68th Guards Tank Regiment of the 6th Guards Motor Rifle Division of the Soviet Army, Checkpoint Charlie, Berlin, October 1961 T-54A, No.823 of the 2nd Guards Mechanised Division of the Soviet Army, Budapest, Hungary, 24th – 30th October 1956 T-54A, No. 166, Celebration for the parade, an unidentified unit of the Soviet Army 1950’s and 60’s. Conclusion These beasts of tanks, and models are really coming thick and fast for the moulding machines of MiniArt and you really just can’t fault them. There is so much detail that it could overwhelm a modeller unless their mojo was really cranked up. But if you break the build into bite sized pieces as sub-assemblies, painting as you go, there shouldn’t be a problem. Not one for beginners or maybe even intermediate modellers, but there are versions being released, without interior,that would perhaps be more suited to their level to gain experience before tackling a full interior build. As bang for your buck goes, these have to be some of the best value kits around these days. Review sample courtesy of Miniart - Distibuted in the UK By Creative Models
  22. T-54-3 Soviet Medium Tank MiniArt 1:35 The T-54's gestation and transformation into the T-55 was long-winded and complicated by constant changes to an as yet unsatisfactory performing vehicle. Production of the T-54-1 was halted due to production and quality issues, and an amalgamation of all the alterations were incorporated into the re-designed T-54-2, which saw the fender machine guns removed and replaced by a more modern bow-mounted single gun, the tracks widened, and the turret design changed to closer resemble the eventual domed shape of the T-55. The -2 didn't last all that long before the -3 replaced it, eliminating the shot-traps on the turret sides, but retaining the more modern gun and sighting improvements that had been made to the dash-2 toward the end of production. The Model We reviewed the T-54-1 here and the T-54-2 here recently, and, as with the two earlier kits there are a lot of similarities but quite a few new parts as well. As with MiniArt kits with interiors there are a lot of sprues, seventy threer in this case, yes you read that correctly, seventy three sprues of grey styrene, plus two of clear, two sheets of etched brass and a smallish decal sheet. Construction is almost identical to the earlier releases, but this kit sees the return of the full engine, which is a beautiful model in its own right, and consisting of forty two parts if you include the engine mounting cradle. The lower hull is then fitted out with a multitude of parts that include the torsion beam suspension, multi part axles, gearbox covers, interior escape hatch and PE beam covers. The interior is then built up from the fighting compartment floor and includes all the pipe work, seats fire bottles, steering mechanism and internal bulkheads. The interior and exterior of the sidewalls are also covered with detail, including the large racks of shells for the main gun, with additional shells stored around the fighting compartment. The detailed sidewalls are then glued into place, as is the engine assembly, engine compartment firewall and other ancillary equipment. The upper glacis plate is then fitted as are the three piece road wheels, drive sprocket and idlers. The turret ring assembly is the attached, followed by the rear bulkhead, each fitted with more detail parts. The engine deck is then built up and the separate hatches are able to be posed open or closed as per the modellers wishes. The deck is topped off with PE grilles in their frames and the large hinge for the main hatch. The tracks are of individual link type, with ninety links per side, and it will be a case of assembling it like a link and length style, gluing each link together before draping them over the road wheels. The fenders are fitted with stowage boxes , fuel tanks and spare track links plus front and rear mudguards before being glued into position. The two fuel drums mounted to the rear of the tank are assembled and glued into their mounting frames, as is the unditching beam and the pipework for the fender fuel tanks. The turret is a new moulding, but has as much, if not more detail added, including the full main gun breech, radios, training motors, seats, hand cranks, and other equipment. The coax machine gun is also beautifully detailed, consisting of fifteen parts. Ready use shells are added to the inside of the upper turret along with a multitude of brackets and clamps. The turret roof comes complete with all the periscopes and hatch details for the commander and gunner positions, a highly detailed Dushka (DsHK) 14.5mm heavy machine gun, and rolled up tarpaulin. The single piece main barrel is glued into the breech, and fitted with a choice of two mantlet covers. Finally the driver's "hood" that fits over his hatch for inclement weather operations can be posed stowed or in place. If you are stowing it, there are some PE straps to tie things down on the bustle. The turret assembly is then fitted to the hull, completing the build. Decals The decal sheet gives the modeller five options. The decals are beautifully printed, are clear and in good register with a slightly matt finish. The options are:- T-54-3 of the 2nd Guards Mechanised Division of the Soviet Army, Budapest, Hungary, 24th - 30th October 1956 T-54-3 of the 1st Armoured Division of the National Peoples Army of the GDR, Command Staff exercises of the NVA, GDR and Soviet Army, 1961 T-54-3 of the 23rd Guards Taman Motorised Rifle Division of the Soviet Army, beginning of the 1960’s T-54-3 of the 23RD Taman Guards Motorised Rifle Division of the Soviet Army in the Winter of 1962 T-54-3 of the Army of the Republic of Iraq, Baghdad, February 1963 Conclusion MiniArt really are cranking these tanks out, forming a complete collection of T-54’s. With the full interior, these kits really aren’t for the beginner and will, probably be built by the real enthusiasts for these vehicles. They will require plenty of time and patience to build and, particularly, paint, but it will be well worth it at the end. Releases without interiors have also been issued, for those modellers who don’t really require a full interior. Review sample courtesy of Miniart - Distibuted in the UK By Creative Models
  23. Shar2

    German Cargo Truck L1500S

    German Cargo Truck L1500S MiniArt 1:35 The Mercedes-Benz L1500S is a rear wheeled drive light truck built for the Wehrmacht between 1941 and 1944. A total of 1500 were built and used throughout the various theatres of operations. After the war, many were taken up by civilian companies as they were reliable and could carry a decent payload. The Model The model is contained within a very attractive, bright and colourful box that MiniArt upgraded to using recently. Inside, there are eleven sprues, and a separate cab, in mustard coloured styrene. There are also, twelve in grey styrene, three of clear green, three of clear red, seven of clear, as well as two sheets of etch brass and a well filled decal sheet. There are really three kits in one, as the bottles and barrels have been released separately. Before building the truck, the instructions take you through the assembly of the crates, barrels and bottle carriers. There are six crates for beer, six crates for milk, two crates for wine, two milk churns, two small barrels, two large barrels and two carriers for milk. The truck build starts with the nicely detailed engine with the block and gearbox halves glued together followed by the addition of the rocker cover, starter motor, alternator, front engine mounts, cooling fan, air filter, cooling pipes, gear stick and other sundry items. The instructions then move on to the chassis rails with the addition of six cross members and rear chassis end piece, to which the towing eye, cover and pin are added. To the front of the chassis, there is a four piece sub frame, to which the two front engine mounts are attached. The four piece exhaust, which includes the silence box is the attached to the left hand rail. The front and rear leaf springs are fitted along with the front, (fourteen parts), and rear axle, (thirteen parts), assemblies. The engine assembly is mounted onto its supports and the radiator, which is attached to the four piece front bumper is glued into position. The two driveshafts are then be added, as is the exhaust pipe between the engine and the silencer. After fitting the four piece steering rack and four piece id plate/headlight assembly, it’s onto the wheels, these come as single piece tyres with outer hubs moulded onto them, the inner hub is attached and the inner section of the wheel is fitted with a PE ring, which will need to be carefully rolled, before being glued into place. There are seven provided, singles for the front, doubles for the rear and a spare which fits on the chassis behind the cab and under the bed. There are two PE plates fitted to the outer sections of the front bumper and two steps, one on either side of the chassis. The building of the cab begins with the fitting of several items to the front of the bulkhead. These include an oil can, air filter, linkages and brackets. On the cabin side of the bulkhead, the pedals, steering column, steering wheel are attached. The seat support and cushion is fitted to the floor, along with the handbrake, gear stick, and a complex heater assembly, made from nine plastic and PE parts. The windscreen, rear window, and instrument panel are fitted to the cab body, as are the indicators, wing mirrors, roof mounted ID triangle and inner wings. Onto the rear panel of the cab the seat back is attached, while the outer wings, each with two piece headlights and edge markers. The next assembly for the cab is the bonnet, which is made up of left and right hand parts, bonnet, radiator grille and centre mounted beam. The completed bonnet has been made to be posed either open, or closed. To finish off the front, the doors, which are made of the external panels, door cards, clear parts, map boxes and door handles. The last assembly is the truck bed, with the bed itself being fitted with the side, rear, and front plank sections. On the underside, four lateral strengthening beams are fitted. To complete the build the windscreen wipers, spotlight, bonnet clamps, three piece rear mudguards and a chain for the rear towing hitch are fitted. Decals The decal sheet gives the modeller no less than eight options. The decals are beautifully printed, are clear and in good register with a slightly matt finish. Not only are the names of the different companies included, as well as their respective registration plates and insignia, but also the different coloured bottle tops. The options:- L1500S, Milk truck, of Alpen-Milch, Saarbrucken, Germany in the 1950’s in overall white body with a black chassis and wheels. L1500S, Milk truck, West Berlin in the 1950’s in overall white body with blue chassis and wheels. L1500S, Reichpost, (Imperial Post, Germany, 1941-1945 in overall red body, with black chassis and wheels. L1500S, Deutsche Post, (Postal Service), Germany in the 1950’s. In overall yellow body with black chassis and wheels. L1500S, Beer Truck, of Dressler Bier, American occupation zone, Bremen, 1947-1949. Blue cab and bonnet, yellow wheel arches, truck bed and sides, black chassis and red wheels. L1500S, Beer Truck of Engelhardt, West Berlin, 1950’s. Overall green body, with red chassis, wheel arches and wheels. L1500S, Laundry Service, Grobwascherai, Province og Brandenburg, Germany, 1941-1945. Overall Ochre body, with green chassis, wheel arches and wheels. L1500S, Cargo transportation, Karl Ostermann company, Britishoccupation zone, Hansestadt Hamburg, 1947-1949. In overall dark turquoise, with red wheel arches, black chassis and wheels. Conclusion This is superb truck kit from MiniArt on its own, but with the additional details you can build a beautiful civilian vehicle straight from the box. Yet, there is plenty of scope to add extra detail, particularly to the engine and the cargo bed, if you’re not using the supplied accoutrements. Once built and weathered this truck will make a nice component to a multi-item diorama, or on its own with a bit of imagination and some figures, which MiniArt are releasing civilian packs separately. There doesn’t appear to be anything that would trouble anyone other than complete beginners, although some of the parts are very small, and the front axle assembly could be a little tricky. It’s great to see this and other civilian kits being released as they bring another dynamic to 1:35 modelling. Review sample courtesy of Miniart - Distibuted in the UK By Creative Models
  24. Hello ! I present to your attention the result of the test-build of the new model from MiniArt - the early T-55 Enjoy watching ! This model and other new items MiniArt will be available next week at Telford
  25. M4A3 Sherman W/T24 “Calliope” Academy 1:35 History The American Sherman tank has to be one of the most famous tanks from World War 2. What a lot of people may not know is that it was once adapted to carry 60 rocket tubes above the turret, a conversion nicknamed the Calliope, after a musical instrument which had similarly arranged pipes. The launcher was developed in 1943 and could fire a barrage of 4.5” M8 rockets. Only small numbers were produced and were used by various US armoured units in 1944-45. The Model The kit comes in a top opening box with an interesting picture of the vehicle firing its rockets, although the effects aren’t particularly well rendered, not that it’s that important. What is important is what’s in the box. There are eleven sprues of bluey grey styrene, a small sheet of etched brass, a pair of vinyl tracks, a piece of string and a small decal sheet. The parts are all well moulded, although the detail is a little soft and perhaps not as effective as some other kits of the Sherman. The provenance of the kit is a little uncertain, but it looks like Academy’s own tool Sherman M4A3 with the rocket launcher parts possibly coming from Italeri. There is no sign of flash or other imperfections on any of the moulded parts and only a few moulding pips. Construction begins with the assembly of the sprocket wheels, each provided as two halves, two piece idler wheels, plus the road wheels, with two piece wheels and two part axle units. The road wheel assemblies are then fitted into the five piece suspension units. The escape hatch and rear track guard sections are fitted to the lower hull, followed by the rear bulkhead, which has been fitted with the exhausts, an access hatch with handle, three piece towing hitch and two small stowage boxes. The idlers and road wheel assemblies are attached to the lower hull, along with the front hull extensions on which the sprocket wheels and their gearbox covers are attached. The drive cover is fitted to the front of the lower hull whilst on the upper hull the bow machine gun, its ball sockets, front headlamps, two lifting eyes and the engine deck hatch with two grille piece are all glued on. The drivers and machine gunners seven part hatches are next, along with the four fuel caps, rear lights and ventilation mushroom. The upper hull is kitted out with the various pioneer tools, front and rear lights, their respective cage guards, the guards being made of either styrene or PE depending on what you prefer, and grab handles. At the rear of the tank the exhaust grille is attached, with the rear mounted covers mounted behind where the idler wheels would be. Above the exhaust shield a four piece storage rack is attached, and another two grab handles fitted to the top of the engine deck. The build then moves onto the main gun and the turret. The main gun is a nicely produced item, moulded as a single piece, with a similarly moulded muzzle attached. The trunnion mount consist of three parts and is fitted to the inside of the inner mantlet, with the outer mantlet covering that. The barrel is then slid into position, being glued to the trunnion mount. The main gun assembly is then attached to the front of the turret, which does as least have some casting texture on it, from the outside, whilst the 30 cal co-axial machine gun is mounted from the inside, with the turret ring glued to the turret base. For the fitting of the rocket launcher legs, you will need to open up the oblong holes on either side of the turret. The commanders cupola hatches are assembled, with the left hand hatch having a periscope fitted from the inside and with a cage guard fitted on the outside. The two hatches are then glued to the cupola which is then glued to the top of the turret. The gunners hatch is also attached, along with the aerial base, which has the option of either a straight or bent version, turret lifting eyes, plus the gunners periscope and guard. The gunners hatch also has a couple of spring like objects fitted and there is a second aerial base fitted to the rear of the turret. The commanders sighting arm is attached in front of his hatch, whilst a searchlight is attached via a PE plate to the base of the main gun. To accommodate the rocket launcher elevation support the gun is fitted with a ring attachment point. The rocket launcher consists of two full width cluster of tubes and four smaller widths. Each sections is made up from two halves with single piece end caps to the rear. Having built the Revel version of this vehicle I found that getting the seams all cleaned up in the bores of each tube was quite difficult. But you can always cover the fronts with a sheet of tarpaulin made form tissue paper and watered down PVA glue. The large rocket tube sections are joined together, as are two pairs of the narrower width tube sections. The launcher frame is made up from four parts, with the front cross member being fitted with the elevation support rod and its attachment block. The launcher side arms are each made up from three parts which are then glued to the side of the turret. The moving gas struts are then slid into position and the attachment plate holds them in place on the side of the rocket tubes. Strangely the is a very nicely detailed M2 50 cal machine gun and mount consisting of fifteen parts included, but this wasn’t normally fitted to a rocket carrying tank, but it can be fitted to one of the options which is carrying the rocket pack. The build is finished off with the vinyl tracks fitted to the lower hull assembly, the upper hull assembly then glued to the lower hull and the slotting into position of the turret/rocket launcher assembly. Decals The small decal sheet is quite well printed, and not as thick as Academy decals used to be. They’re in register and nicely opaque, particularly useful as the stars and other markings are printed in white. There are four stars that have been over-painted in olive drab, although I’m not sure the reason why, they do make for an interesting look. There are markings for three vehicles. Sherman M4A3 Calliope of the US 12th Armoured Division, Fletrange, France, March 1945 Sherman M4A3 Calliope of the 14th Armoured Division, Germany, Early 1945 Sherman M4A3 of the US 95th Infantry Division, Germany, January 1945. Conclusion Ok, this isn’t an uber kit of the Sherman. But it is a great little kit with some nice details, nothing too taxing, which could make for a pleasant break from more complex builds. If it’s anything like the Revell kit, which this does bear a marked similarity to, it will build into a nice looking kit, just right for some heavy weathering. Perhaps one for the weekend? Recommended Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
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