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Model T 1914 Fire Truck (35605) 1:35


Mike
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Model T 1914 Fire Truck (35605)

ICM via Hannants

 

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The Ford Model T has gone down in history as the world’s first mass produced car, introducing the production-line in a manner that would still be familiar to modern eyes, only perhaps with not so many robot arms flailing around. That production line ran from 1908 to 1927 with over 15 million sold.  Its so-called three-speed transmission included a reverse gear rather disingenuously, and the four-cylinder 2.9 litre engine could output a whole 20bhp through the rear axle to reach a top speed of just over 40mph at some point after you floored it.  It was capable of 25mpg with a light foot, and over the course of production, many different applications and body styles were envisaged for the first world-wide car, including armoured cars, trucks and fire trucks.

 

The Kit

This is a new boxing of the recently released base kit with new parts specific to its task.  It is in the predominant AFV scale of 1:35, although ICM have also tooled a 1:24 series of kits that have been released alongside these to appeal to the car modellers in their main scale.  It arrives in a medium-sized top-opening box with ICM’s usual captive inner lid, and inside are two sprues in grey styrene, a small sprue of clear parts, no decals and a glossy colour instruction booklet with the painting guide on the rear page in full colour.

 

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Construction begins with the radiator surround that is moulded to the front axle and has the Ford logo in the centre of the core insert, and on the header tank of the surround.    This is fitted to the floor pan, which has two styles of tread-plate engraved into the footwells and the running boards between the fenders.  Some small parts are added under the front, then the engine block is made up with its transmission and other ancillaries added along the way.  Incidentally, this engine stayed in production until 1941, long after the Model T became extinct as a complete vehicle.  The engine is fitted into the bay behind the radiator, and is plumbed into it with entry and exit hoses.  Underneath is the long exhaust pipe with a single muffler box that is made from two halves with the exhaust tip moulded to the separate part that extends it to the back of the vehicle.  The drive-shaft with its large differential housing is fitted between the rear drive-shafts and suspension part, and is inserted into the underside with the drive-shaft mating to the back of the angular transmission housing.  Suspension braces are added to the front and rear axles, along with the steering arms that fit to the rear of the front axle, then the single-part spoked wheels with pneumatic tyres moulded-in are clipped over the ends of each axle.  The wheels are very well moulded, with air valves and sharp spokes on each one, plus a well-defined rim and tyre tread detail.

 

The early Model T had a faceted five-faced cowling over the engine until 1914, the two sides lifting up on a central hinge that ran from front to rear of the top face.  The hinge is attached between the bulkhead and the radiator, and the two lift-up panels are added over the top to complete the cowling, although you could also leave one or both open to show off the engine, but you’ll need to remove a couple of ejector-pin marks, which is easily done because the cowlings are flat-surfaced and should be a little thinner to be more realistic anyway.  The front floor pan has the Ford logo in the passenger well according to the instructions, but there’s just a section of ribbing there on the plastic, as well as some more treadplate patterning, and this is sandwiched between the two lower sides of the body, with a spacer at the rear.  It is lowered onto the chassis and the three foot pedals and handbrake lever are inserted into their slots on the left (wrong) side.

 

A quick trip to the furniture store has you making up the front seats (read “couch”) from an L-shaped seat pad with quilted surface, and matching texture is also present on the arms.  The completed soft furnishing is fitted within an outer shell that is made from base, back and two side panels, then it is installed on the raised platform between the front and rear areas.  A rear lamp is made up with a clear three-sided wrap-around lens, then the rear passenger compartment is filled with a pair of water tanks, which are three parts each, and joined together by a frame that has control wheels at the rear, along with pressure regulators with more valves on the top.  A large stowage box is fitted on a frame over the tanks, and each side is perforated to form a diamond mesh pattern, with a coiled hose placed in the bottom, linked to the manifold in the rear of the vehicle.  The driver’s fifth wheel has a pair of controls mounted at the top and a long column added, then it is slid into a hole in the sloped part of the floor in front of the pedal box.  Two front lights are made up in the same manner as the rear lamp, but they have handed brackets to fit on the bulkhead, while a two-layered ladder is fastened to the left side of the vehicle on a pair of brackets that form part of the rear equipment area.  Two more headlamps are each given clear lenses and their cylindrical bodies are made of two halves, split top and bottom.  Another lamp, this time a searchlight also has a clear lens and fits to the top of the bulkhead, with a bell for the dinging-of on the opposite side next to the driver.  Two types of fire extinguisher and a short drum are the final parts that fit on the right running-board, with the optional hand-crank for the engine slipped into the front under the radiator.

 

 

Markings

There is only one colour option supplied on the back page, and it’s not going to surprise anyone that it’s predominantly red with a bit of brass for the fitting, plus a pale grey set of tyres.  When did tyres become black?

 

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There are no decals, as already mentioned, so registration and all that aren’t of any interest for a change.  Cool.

 

 

Conclusion

ICM have done really well with this range of Model Ts in both scales, although the 1:35 kits are of more interest to me personally.  Moulding is excellent, with some really crisp detail on show, both in the metal areas as well as those ever-so-comfy front seats.

 

Highly recommended.

 

Available in the UK from importers H G Hannants Ltd.

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Review sample courtesy of

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