Military Vehicles

Reviews of products for scale military vehicle models.

Russian AT-T Artillery Prime Mover

Published: May 25th, 2017     
Russian AT-T Artillery Prime Mover
Reviewed by: Marc Blackburn, IPMS# 42892
Scale: 1:35
Company: Trumpeter

Joining Trumpeters growing fleet of prime movers, this kit is their latest addition. The AT-T is a tracked vehicle, sharing the same components as a T-54. The kit and markings are for one vehicle. Molded in the now customary grey Trumpeter plastic, there are ten sprues in the kit of which three are the tracks and two are the rubber road wheels. It includes one fret of PE, clear parts and one sheet of decals. The parts are nicely molded, but there are some prominent mold lines on some of the smaller parts that must be taken care of.

Construction begins with the engine and drive train. Since the radiator grill of the cab is open, you can see the engine. Trumpeter did not skimp on the detail and the engine is a kit in itself. Since the engine flaps cannot be opened on the cab (at least without some surgery), you really don't need to super-detail the engine. The instructions are clear and the engine and drive train went together without a problem. Similarly, the lower hull also went together quickly. There's a little bit of play in the idler arms, but nothing that is out of the ordinary.

T-34/85 Running Gear Late Type

Published: May 21st, 2017     
T-34/85 Running Gear Late Type
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Scale: 1/35
Company: MiniArt Limited

Background

For the past couple of years, MiniArt has been producing some exquisite, super detailed kits of Soviet/Red Army armored vehicles from the Second World War and immediate post-war period. The company has decided to take various components of these kits, and repackage them as "Up Grade" sets for the kits of other model companies. In the case of the set under review, MiniArt has taken the running gear (road wheels, idler and drive wheel, plus tracks) from their T-44 tank kit, and reboxed them as T-34/85 Late Type components.

What's in the MiniArt Box

  • 21 sprues of gray plastic parts

There is no printed paper instruction sheet for this set included with the parts inside the box. Instead on the back of the kit box is printed a schematic showing the sprues, and the construction information. A painting guide is also provided on the back of the box, covering the following paint brands: Ammo by Mig, Mr. Color, Testors, and Vallejo. The parts included on the sprues are beautifully detailed, without sink marks, ejection pin marks or flash.

Opel Kfz. 305 Ambulance

Published: May 21st, 2017     
Opel Kfz. 305 Ambulance
Reviewed by: Jim Pearsall, IPMS# 2209
Scale: 1/72
Company: Italeri

The Opel "Blitz" truck was produced from 1930 to 1975. It was used as a commercial vehicle, and when the Wehrmacht needed a reliable and fast truck, the Blitz was chosen. In 1937, the Nazis had Opel build a factory at Brandenburg, which turned out over 130,000 Blitzes, until the RAF stopped production in 1944 by bombing the plant.

This kit is the ambulance version of the Opel Blitz. The ambulance had a transportation box on the back to handle casualties.

The Kit

There are two sprues, along with a clear sheet for windows, and a decal sheet. One sprue is for the chassis and cab, the other is the ambulance box. No PE, no resin, no problem.

The model is fairly straightforward to build. There's a frame section, the cab, the ambulance box, the wheels, and some detail parts. The kit is a reissue of the ESCI ambulance from the 1970s. The molds have been reworked, as there 's no flash, and the parts are pretty well molded.

T-54-1 Model 1947 Soviet Medium Tank

Published: May 19th, 2017     
T-54-1 Model 1947 Soviet Medium Tank
Reviewed by: Andrew Birkbeck, IPMS# 27087
Scale: 1/35
Company: MiniArt Limited

Background

The T-54/55 series of Soviet tanks are the most important tanks to see operation in the Cold War era, if for no other reason than sheer numbers: some estimates put total production at over 100,000 units. This series of tanks have also been used in almost every conflict of the second half of the 20th century, large and small, beginning with the invasion of Hungary by Soviet forces in 1956, the Arab-Israeli wars of 1967, 1973, 1982, the Vietnam war from 1967-75, the Iran-Iraq wars of 1980-88, the conflicts in Afghanistan, the Yugoslav Civil wars, and conflicts across Africa. This new, super detailed kit from MiniArt represents the initial production variant of the T-54 which started rolling off production lines in 1947, but suffered from a great many teething troubles. For a superb blog on the T-54, please check here: https://thesovietarmourblog.blogspot.com/2017/01/t-54.html

Churchill Mk.IV AVRE

Published: May 16th, 2017     
Churchill Mk.IV AVRE
Reviewed by: Mike Lamm, IPMS# 50139