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  1. Tramway “X” Series Mid Type (38026) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Trams have long been used for mass transport within built-up areas of larger cities, using rails set into the street and making a familiar dinging noise just before they run you over. They’ve made a comeback in some cities recently, but were far more numerous pre-WWII, and a lot of folks used them to travel deep into cities where the standard railways couldn’t reach before other cheap forms of mass transport such as cars or taxis came along. Soviet Russia operated these trams in their citie
  2. Pz.Kpfw.IV Ausf.H Krupp-Grusonwerk (35330) Mid Prod. AUG-SEP 1943 Interior Kit 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Unlike the later Tigers and Panther tanks, the Panzer IV had been designed in the years leading up to the outbreak of WWII, and was intended for a different role than it eventually played, which was as a form of infantry support with the mobile artillery function rolled into one. It was a heavier tank than the previous numbered types, and was well-designed, although it did suffer from the typical WWII German over-engineering that made them comp
  3. Hi folks, just starting on my next build, which is Miniart's T34-85 Egyptian tank. This looks to be an absolutely stunning kit, which only came out the end of last year, there is so much detail, hopefully I can do it justice. As is typical with Miniart with the amount of detail that you have, it comes at a cost with the amount of parts in the kit (no problem for me as I enjoy the building). You have no fewer than 82 sprues plus photo etch and decals. Looks like they give you decals for some shells and some instrument panels as well, which is nice. On checking the parts I only found one breakag
  4. German Traffic Tractor D8532 (38041) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd The Lanz Bulldog was a peculiar early tractor, powered by a single-cylinder “hot bulb” diesel engine with a single piston, which although it was ahem… agricultural, was very effective and easy to repair, so it became very popular in Germany, manufactured at its base in Mannheim and built under license in other countries. The D8500 used a three-speed transmission plus one reverse gear, and the curious engine was upgraded over time with output eventually reaching over 50hp. The upgrades were
  5. I really enjoyed this build. I'm quite fond of Miniarts models. They travel by the road less travelled by, and both engineering and fit are very good. Sometimes their kits are a little over-engineered, but since the fit is so good it works. Small, fiddly parts, especially the thinner ones (has anyone managed not to break the little footstep on the left side?) are a bit taxing, but the plastic is forgiving, so it's most often quite easy to clean the parts up. The decals are very good; thin but still resilient, and with a little setting fluid they really "hug" the plastic, even though, in this c
  6. Austin Armoured Car 1918 Pattern (39019) Japanese Service - Interior Kit 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Armour became an important part of WWI, seeing the first fielding of the Tank by the British, and numerous types of armoured car that saw various uses. At the beginning of WWI Austin’s armoured car was built on their civilian chassis, with light armour and two Maxim machine guns in separate turrets, one firing to each side, front and rear. Many were destined for Russia, but after the Russian Revolution in 1917 some of the later variants were used in
  7. T-34/85 Mod 1945 Plant 112 (37091) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd The T-34 was Stalin's mainstay medium tank that was produced in incredible volume by sometimes crude and expedient methods, to be thrown into the fray against the numerically inferior German tanks on the Eastern Front. The engineers combined a number of important advances in design such as sloped frontal armour, wide tracks to spread the load, and the ability to cope with the harsh Russian winters without freezing to a halt, which was a problem that affected the Germans badly after the initial
  8. Toolmakers (38048) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Tools don’t make themselves, but who makes the toolmakers? Their parents, of course! This set of figures and accessories from MiniArt is a pair of toolmakers working at a long bench on some unknown task, with some accessories lying around to assist them in their travails. The set arrives in a shrink-wrapped figure box, and includes five sprues in grey styrene, plus a small fret of Photo-Etch (PE) brass and a single sheet of instructions. The painting guide is on the rear of the box, showing suggestions fo
  9. German Tankmen with Gantry Crane & Maybach HL120 Engine (35350) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Tanks are big, but sometimes they need fixing, and there are very few parts of a tank that aren’t heavy. In a workshop situation, cranes are the way to go, and that’s what this kit is all about. It arrives in a small top-opening box with a painting of the contents in action on the front, and within are twelve sprues of grey styrene, two types of metal chain, a decal sheet and instruction booklet with colour covers. It supplies parts to create a four-legged g
  10. Small Carts Collection (35621) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models MiniArt’s range of diorama accessories in 1:35 are legion, and it keeps getting more legion-y by the month. This set contains a variety of wheeled carts, and arrives in a shrink-wrapped figure box with five sprues in grey styrene, one for each of the items shown on the box top. The instructions on the back give a brief run-down of construction, and are accompanied by painting suggestions that relate to a table that gives small swatches, paint codes from Vallejo, Mr.Color, AK Real Color, Mission Mode
  11. Railroad Crossing (36059) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Crossing a railway can be dangerous unless you do it at a monitored or automated crossing. Computerised automation is a relatively modern thing, but in WWII and earlier it was either a much more manual thing that involved signals with manual booms, or electro-mechanical operated barriers if you were lucky. This set from MiniArt arrives in a small top-opening box and contains a combination of vacformed bases and styrene accessories. Inside the box are two sheets of vacformed grey plastic plus fifteen
  12. Welders (38039) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd The introduction of welded seams on metal structures happened because the joints were stronger and lighter than the riveting methods previously used, and the job could be done quickly and more cost-effectively into the bargain. For deconstruction, similar gear can be used to rapidly cut metal apart for scrapping or recycling. The torches use gases mixed together to create an incredibly hot flame that melts metal in seconds or less, with the most well-known method being oxy-acetylene, which is clearly a mixture
  13. German Drivers & Officers (35345) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Vehicles need drivers even in war, but officers seem reluctant to drive themselves for whatever reason, preferring to have someone do it for them. WWII German military were no different, and this set of figures includes a group of four figures of that ilk. Inside the shrink-wrapped box are four sprues, each one containing the individual figure and their accessories. Three of them are drivers, with one officer looking on. The drivers are posed as per the box art, one rooting under the bo
  14. Close Combat US Tank Crew (35311) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Sometimes tank crews have to vacate the relative safety of their vehicle to fight, such as when their ride is disabled or knocked out by enemy action, the occasional mechanical breakdown, or getting caught napping outside by the enemy. They’re specifically equipped with more compact weapons to fit the confines of their vehicles, and in WWII US tank crews typically carried the M3 Grease Gun or an M1911 pistol for self-defence, the latter sometimes on a close-fitting three-point body holster keeping
  15. British Lorry 3t LGOC B-Type (38027) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Built by the Four Wheel Drive (FWD) company, this was a very early truck used by the military of Britain and the US during WWI, beginning in 1915 with a small order from the British Army. It was full of curious technology from a modern standpoint, but then vehicles of this type were still in their infancy, so that’s hardly surprising that there were a few dead-ends. It was originally supplied with solid tyres and the front wheels had a strange toed-in look due to the suspension geometry se
  16. German Agricultural Tractor D8500 Mod.1938 (38024) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd The Lanz Bulldog was a peculiar early tractor, powered by a single-cylinder “hot bulb” diesel engine with a single piston, which although it was ahem… agricultural, was very effective and easy to repair, so it became very popular in Germany, manufactured at its base in Mannheim and built under license in other countries. The D8500 used a three-speed transmission plus one reverse gear, and the curious engine was upgraded over time with output eventually reaching over 50hp. The
  17. Pz.Beob.Wg.IV Ausf.J (35344) Late/Last Production 2 in 1 with Crew 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Unlike the later Tigers and Panther tanks, the Panzer IV had been designed in the years leading up to the outbreak of WWII, and was intended for a different role than it eventually played, which was as a form of infantry support with the mobile artillery function rolled into one. It was a heavier tank than the previous numbered types, and was well-designed, although it did suffer from the typical WWII German over-engineering that made them complex, expens
  18. US Weapons & Equipment for Tank Crews & Infantry (35334) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Every soldier has to carry a selection of gear to defend himself, dig a place to hide from bombardment, and keep some food and supplies in case he’s where there’s no canteen or chuck wagon. Tankers need different, more compact equipment and headwear, the latter in order to protect them from banging their heads in the cramped interior of their tanks, or getting hung up on the lip of their helmets. During WWII the American tankers had close-fitting helmets and usu
  19. Egyptian T-34/85 with Crew (37098) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd The T-34 was Stalin's mainstay medium tank that was produced in incredible volume by sometimes crude and expedient methods, to be thrown into the fray against the numerically inferior German tanks on the Eastern Front. The engineers combined a number of important advances in design such as sloped frontal armour, wide tracks to spread the load, and the ability to cope with the harsh Russian winters without freezing to a halt, which was a problem that affected the Germans badly after the initial
  20. Wooden Barrels – Small & Medium (35632 & 35630) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Wooden barrels. You don't see so many of them these days without flowers in them, but before mass-produced metal and plastic barrels became the de facto standard, they would have been much more prevalent where large quantities of anything needed to be stored. Everyone’s thinking of beer right now, but they have been used for a great many things over the years, so they’re not only found in pubs and breweries. These two sets give you a gaggle of styrene barrels in differe
  21. Pz.Kpfw.IV Ausf.J Nibelungenwerk (35342) Late Prod. Jan-Feb 1945 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd Unlike the later Tigers and Panther tanks, the Panzer IV had been designed in the years leading up to the outbreak of WWII, and was intended for a different role than it eventually played, which was as a form of infantry support with the mobile artillery function rolled into one. It was a heavier tank than the previous numbered types, and was well-designed, although it did suffer from the typical WWII German over-engineering that made them complex, expensive
  22. Austin 3rd Series Armoured Car (39007) Czechoslovak, Russian, Soviet Service 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd After the start of WWI the Russian Army started to form armoured car units. Due to Russia's limited industrial capacity at the time they looked overseas for vehicles. One delegation was sent to the UK for this. Initially they failed to find a source for the car they wanted with twin machine guns, however Austin designed a new vehicle based on a civilian chassis. Two guns would be mounted in separate turrets towards the rear of the vehicle with a
  23. German Tank Crew Kharkov 1943 (35354) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd The Battle of Kharkov began in 1941 when the Germans took the area from the Soviets, with two more substantial battles where the area changed hands once again, then the final battle in 1943 when the Soviets finally kicked the Germans out for good. The damage to the area was severe both in terms of civilian and military casualties, with the infrastructure heavily damaged in the process. By the time of the last battle in 1943, the Germans were struggling with lack of resources, poor equipme
  24. M3 Lee Mid Prod. Interior Kit (35209) 1:35 MiniArt via Creative Models Ltd In the years before WWII America realised that they were lagging behind in respect of armour, a fact that became especially clear when Germany came out from under the Versailles treaty to show off and then use their new tanks and Blitzkrieg tactics. The M3 Lee was conceived in 1940 as a medium tank carrying a powerful 75mm gun, partly for manning by their own crews, but also because Britain had requested a large number of tanks to make good their losses from Dunkirk. The Lee was a decent
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