Reviews of scale model kits.

Farmer's Cart

Published: July 10th, 2017     
Farmer's Cart
Reviewed by: Ben Morton, IPMS# 47301
Scale: 1/35
Company: Hauler

Hauler, of The Czech Republic, produces high quality photo-etched sets for AFVs, airplanes, cars, railway vehicles, resin accessories for dioramas, and resin kits. The subject of this review is a Farmer's cart.

These hand carts were typically used on small farms and in villages throughout Europe. There are examples of similar type hand carts still in use today in the United States, principally by the Amish.

The eight parts are cast in light gray resin. The wood grain of the floor and sides of the farmer's cart is nicely rendered. The detail on the two spoked wheels is somewhat lacking but the metal rims are a nice touch. The only flash, on my review example, was on those spoked wheels. But a hobby knife or small file will solve that problem.

USMC F-4B/N VMFA-531 "Gray Ghosts"

Published: July 9th, 2017     
USMC F-4B/N VMFA-531 "Gray Ghosts"
Reviewed by: Rod Lees, IPMS# 10821
Scale: 1/48
Company: Academy

Extreme appreciation to Academy and their USA distributor Model Rectifier Corporation for sending out this new version of their venerable F-4B/N kit, and the usual cheerleading wave of thanks to the IPMS USA leadership for sending it to me.

This kit sat a while in the link. I've built two of the Academy F-4's, a "B" and a "J", and had impressive results from even MY feeble modeling skills. Kits like this take a bit of time to construct, but are well worth it in the end.

What's in the box are the same parts from the previous Academy Rhinos, with the exception of single color gray plastic, with no white, black, and gray parts.

Yes, also clear parts. The decal sheet is new, for two plain-Jane gull gray over white F-4B's from the Vietnam era for VMFA 531, The "Gray Ghosts". The last version is the overall Light Gull Gray scheme with a Dark blue fin and markings. Yep, I went for some original color!

German SU-76i with Cupola

Published: July 8th, 2017     
German SU-76i with Cupola
Reviewed by: Peter Bucher, IPMS# 50232
Scale: 1/35
Company: Dragon Models

What's in the Box?

  • 13 grey plastic sprues
  • 1 plastic lower hull
  • 1 Photo etch sheet
  • 2 bags of magic tracks (one left and one right)
  • 1 decal sheet
  • 1 set of Instructions


The SU76I was based on the German Panzer III and Stug III chassis. It was armed with a 76.2 mm gun. Approximately 200 of these captured vehicles were converted by the Russians. A new superstructure enclosing the 76.2 mm gun was added to the tank. The tank was issued to self-propelled gun units starting in autumn 1943, but it was withdrawn from the front in early 1944. Some SU-76i were recaptured by the Germans who added a Panzer III commander's copula fixed on the roof. I found this to be very interesting in that the original vehicles had been re-purposed twice.

US Army Jeep

Published: July 7th, 2017     
US Army Jeep
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Scale: 1:144
Company: Brengun

The Jeep

The original Jeep was built by Bantam, but Ford and Willys also bid on the original contract. Due to financial problems at Bantam, the other two companies were given contracts to build Jeeps. Bantam called theirs BRC-40 Willys was the MB, the Ford was called GPW. The Jeep was a 1/4 ton all-wheel drive vehicle, with a wheelbase of 80 inches and a track of 47 inches.

Willys produced 363,000 Jeeps, Ford made 280,000. We gave 51,000 to the Russians. They were used in every theater of WW2.

The Kit

The base kit is one very nicely cast piece of resin, which is almost the entire Jeep. There is a PE fret, of which 3 parts are used. There's a decal sheet with all the markings you need. You get enough in the envelope to build two Jeeps, with PE and decals for both.

Martin B-57B

Published: July 3rd, 2017     
Martin B-57B
Reviewed by: Keith Gervasi, IPMS# 44177
Scale: 1:72
Company: Italeri


Created to replace the piston-engined B-26 Invader, the twin jet engine tactical bomber B-57 Canberra was produced by US aircraft company Martin in the 1950s. Derived from the British aircraft EE Canberra it was produced in several versions to perform not only bombing but recon, electronic warfare, ground attack and dive bombing duties. The B-57B, developed for bombing missions, was the main version produced. It was characterized by the adoption of a new cockpit with two crew members arranged in tandem and under-wing hardpoints able to be armed with a wide range of weapons. The first units produced were armed with eight 12.7mm machine guns installed within the wings and later substituted with four 20mm cannons.

The Kit

Originally released in 1985, it has been re-boxed at least 7 different times, and is still a pretty nice kit. Inside the box are: 2 sprues of light grey, 1 of clear plastic, and a nice decal sheet. The plastic is molded crisply with just a little flash and few sink marks, but there are a few pin marks to clean up. The clear parts are nice, and the decals a printed cleanly and in register.