Military Vehicles

Reviews of products for scale military vehicle models.

U.S. M113A1 ACAV

Published: December 11th, 2017     
U.S. M113A1 ACAV
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Scale: 1/35
Company: AFV Club

Background

As a young man in the late 1960's living in Canada, each weekday night I used to watch "The CBS Evening News" with Walter Cronkite. This was my window on the world, so to speak. And it seemed that almost every night the first thing that I saw through this window involved "the war in Vietnam". Mr. Cronkite would tell me how many US troops had been killed or wounded, and then I would see a video clip from a correspondent in Saigon, or in some rice paddy somewhere in the countryside. Vietnam, I thought, was a place I didn't EVER want to visit. Often in the background of the television videos, there were TWO objects regularly seemed to appear at some point during the newscast. One was a helicopter, often many, and the other was an M113 APC. These apparently, were the chariots that the Americans rode into battle, be it on the ground, or in the air.

Sturmgeschutz

Published: December 10th, 2017     
Sturmgeschutz
Author: Thomas Anderson
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Company: Osprey Publishing

Initially deployed with German forces in 1940, Sturmgeschutz (Stug) assault guns were purpose-built fully tracked armored fighting vehicles designed to support the infantry during the initial assault on enemy positions, especially useful for knocking out strong points such as bunkers. When the Germans invaded Russia in 1941 in Operation Barbarossa, they got a nasty surprise with the appearance on the battle field of heavily armed and armored Soviet tanks such as the T-34/76 and KV-1. The Stug assault guns were discovered to be excellent tank destroyers. They were quicker and cheaper to produce than tanks, making them a good "bargain" on the battlefield. As the war progressed, the Stug was up-gunned to deal with ever more lethal Soviet tanks, and spread across the battle fields as German industry struggled to keep up with tank losses.

For anyone interested in modeling World War 2 German armored vehicles, the name Thomas Anderson should be well known. He has spent years researching these vehicles and is himself a modeler, having published numerous articles in various modeling publications, as well as authoring a number of German AFV books.

M60 Main Battle Tank in Action

Published: December 6th, 2017     
M60 Main Battle Tank in Action
Author: David Doyle
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: Squadron Signal Publications

David Doyle's latest book continues to expand on Squadron Signal's long standing In Action series that initiated back in 1971. This is a completely updated and expanded edition over Squadron's earlier Armor in Action number 23, a 50-pager on the Patton by Jim Mesko that was published in 1987. This 2017 release is essentially a new book, encompassing 80 pages.

IDF M3 Halftrack Nord SS-11 Anti-Tank Missile Carrier

Published: December 3rd, 2017     
IDF M3 Halftrack Nord SS-11 Anti-Tank Missile Carrier
Reviewed by: Max Welliver, IPMS# 50498
Scale: 1:35
Company: Dragon Models

Dragon, in its Six-Day War series, has already produced a 1/35 scale kit of an Israel Defense Forces M3 halftrack, and now another interesting variant is available for modelers. This new kit features an M3 with Nord Aviation SS-11 wire-guided antitank missiles, which was done to strengthen the offensive capability of IDF halftracks. This kit will attract a lot of interest when sitting in your model display.

Opening the Box

This sturdy Dragon box is filled with lots of plastic, a lot of it going to the spares bin.

The kit includes:

  • 15 sprues molded in light grey plastic
  • One sprue molded in clear plastic
  • One small square of photo-etch parts
  • Small brass length of chain
  • Slide molded drive and idler wheels packaged in a separate baggy

The kit also includes decals for two vehicles:

  • Unidentified Unit, 1967
  • Unidentified Unit, 1967

Hmmm, after doing research, I only found only two pictures of the vehicle with the missiles mounted, so I am not surprised to see two unidentified units...

M9 ACE Photo-etch Set

Published: November 30th, 2017     
M9 ACE Photo-etch Set
Reviewed by: Ben Morton, IPMS# 47301
Scale: 1/35
Company: Hauler

The M9 Armored Combat Earthmover (ACE) is a highly mobile armored tracked vehicle that provides combat engineer support to front-line forces. Fielded by the United States Army, its tasks include eliminating enemy obstacles, maintenance and repair of roads and supply routes, and construction of fighting positions. (Wikipedia)

Takom released a 1/35th scale model of this vehicle in 2015. That kit has been reviewed elsewhere and one of the minor shortcomings of that kit (and there are few) owes more to the limitations of injection molded styrene than to anything else. The oversized and out of scale headlight covers being one of those items that is first to come to mind.