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Scammell Pioneer Tank Transporter with TRCU30 Trailer 1:72 IBG (72080)


Julien
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Scammell Pioneer Tank Transporter with TRCU30 Trailer

1:72 IBG (72080)

 

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The Pioneer was designed in the 20s as a large tractor unit for unmade roads, which eventually caught the eye of the War Office as a potential candidate for tank transport, but it wasn't until later in the decade that it became a more serious tank transporter.  Though lacking all wheel drive, it took full advantage of its terrain handling ability that was due in equal parts to its excellent suspension set-up and a powerful engine that was capable of delivering torque at low revs, making it ideal for unmade roads and rough terrain, even though only the rear wheels were driven by the 6-cylinder diesel engine.  Its large cab size allows the crew and their equipment to travel inside, which endeared it to them immensely when the heavens opened.. Many unfortunate vehicles were destroyed or captured at Dunkirk, and having lost so many it was never available in the desired quantities, so often worked alongside other similar vehicles, with almost a thousand units built by the time they were discontinued.  During wartime a career that long was unusual, so it must have been doing something right. The tank transporter was not originally taken on by the War department, but additional vehicles were purchased from 1937 onward. The cab of the transporter as lengthened to be able to carry the tanks crew  in the cab. Coupled with a trailer the TRCU20 and TRCU30 were 20 tons and 30 tons respectively. Even though articulated this was not like modern trucks in that the two were essentially one unit. The trailer featured rear loading ramps and a PTO driver winch to pull any immobilised equipment on board.  They were replaced in British service by American vehicles as the transporters proved to be too tall to carry Lend Lease supplied American tanks on British Road. Despite the failings of the trailers most of the cabs were retained and were often seen in general haulage and abnormal haulage post war. 

 

 

The Kit

This is new tool for 2020 from IBG in a family of kits with the Heavy Breakdown tractor and R100 Artillery Tractor. There are 10 sprues of grey plastic, a sheet of PE and a small decal sheet in the box. The quality of the plastic parts are very good with some nice fine detail (care will be needed to remove some of the smaller parts from the spures). The windows are provided as a clear film rater than injection moulded parts.  

 

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Construction begins with the cab. The front sub-frame for the steering axle is built up, this is followed by more sub assemblies for the cab; the fuel tanks, radiator, engine, wheels, equipment lockers, and the main winch.  The main chassis is then your next target. The side rails are joined by the cross members and the rear springs go on. At the back of the chassis the sub-frame that makes up the trailer hitching system, and rear wheels is constructed.  Now the parts made earlier can all be added onto/into the main chassis. Now the cab itself can be assembled. There are three seats up front with a bulkhead to separate the front and rear compartments. The front cab goes onto the chassis then the rear cab is assembled behind it. 

 

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Net up we have to build the trailer. The first parts on the bench are the pair of rear loading ramps, these are then put to one side for later. Next the large single chassis frame have the side rails added along with the rear cross member, at the back above this go the mounting rails for the rear ramps.  At the front of the trailer the wood effect decking boards are laid down. Under the decking boards a large equipment locker is built up and installed.  The rear wheels are added. These do not have conventional axles but more of a double bogie each side of the trailer with two pairs of wheels each side. These are fitted to the trailer along with the plates which go above them. Once the ramps are fitted the trailer and cab can be matched up. Two cable one on each side run to the ramps. 

 

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Decals

The decal sheet provides markings for two transporters;

 

1. GHQ 8th Army, 372 Tank Transporter Co. Royal Army Service Corps, North Africa 1942

2. "Maitland", 6th South African Armoured Division, Italy 1944

 

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Conclusion

If you like your vehicles 1/72 then is for you. The quality of the very small plastic parts is very good though care will be need to remove them. The addition of the nice PE makes this a well rounded kit Highly recommended. 

 

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Review sample courtesy of 


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  • 1 month later...

Have you noted that the rear wheels of the tractor unit are the same diameter as those of the front (ie 13.5 x 20); they should be larger (15 x20) because of the additional load supported by the vehicle.  Something Airfix got right half a century ago.  Ironically one of the better reference guides comes from Poland where these vehicles continued in use post war.

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Further to my last.  After a lengthy search I was able to establish the ‘typical’ diameter of the tyre sizes:

1350x20 has a diameter of 47”

In 1/72 this equates to 0.65” or 16.56mm

 

1500x20 has a diameter of 50”

In 1/72 this equates to 0.69” or 17.6mm

 

the wheels supplied by IGB are 16.2mm in diameter and, in addition, the tread pattern doesn’t match any of the 4 main cross country ‘traction’ tyres normally used by the British Army (as far as I can determine from photos and via HMVF).

 

I wonder if an aftermarket company is around to correct this?

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2 hours ago, TeeELL said:

I wonder if an aftermarket company is around to correct this?

Splosh the paint on a bit thick and no-one will know ;) Either that pretend the tyres are worn a bit, and have reduced in circumference through use. ^_^ Third option - disguise the fraction of a mm by adding a bit of mud :)

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On 11/7/2020 at 5:37 PM, Mike said:

Splosh the paint on a bit thick and no-one will know ;) Either that pretend the tyres are worn a bit, and have reduced in circumference through use. ^_^ Third option - disguise the fraction of a mm by adding a bit of mud :)

Mike,

  the point is that IBG have not checked references and have ‘assumed’ the transporter tractor unit is the same.  A real pity when Airfix did get it ‘right’, within the limitations of the 60’s.

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