- Product/Stock # and Price:
- Workshop – 72022, $43.00
- City Building – 72019, $62.00
MiniArt is a Russian, I think, company that has produced a line of 1/72 scale buildings. These could be of use not only to the small scale modeler, but also to the model railroader as well.
I received two kits to review, a Workshop (72022) and a City Building (72019). I am reviewing them together due to the manner in which MiniArt has chosen to make them. Both very sturdy boxes contain multiple multi-colored sprues of interchangeable parts. By this I mean, for example, there are two or three different wall sections that can be assembled in many ways to produce several walls of varying appearance. The same holds true for roof and foundation parts. Anything specific to a given building fits within this system. The parts are held together by keys and rabbets, are nicely molded, and have good detail. Many of the parts are quite delicate and thinly molded.
I started with the Workshop model, as it was the simplest. In it, some of the keys and rabbets didn't line up or fit. I had to snip several off completely to get parts to line up. In addition, all those interchangeable parts have to be carefully cleaned up so that the multitude of seams they produce are minimized/eliminated. The roof panels are joined at a butt joint but the plastic is quite thin, so there's not much to glue. MiniArt's solution is to provide a piece that fits onto the back of the panels and onto tabs on either piece to pull them together for a tight fit and reinforced joint. The problem on mine was they did not fit well and did not close the gap. However, the roof parts joint didn't matter in the long run, as the two gable ends of the building provided were the wrong ones. They did not match the parts shown in the instructions or in the diagram of the kit's parts and, thus, did not fit the keys on the top of the building. Nor did the roof panels fit on them, the panels being a quite a bit shorter. I stopped assembly at this point as the model was unbuildable. There was no address provided to request replacement parts, so I'm afraid this project came to an end. I have not ventured into the second kit, but with similar engineering, I would expect similar challenges.
These kits look very nice and the interchangeable parts probably make for economical production, and, to be fair, what I could get together after some aftermarket engineering fit OK and looked like it would turn out fine. The painted examples on the box tops are very nicely done, indeed.
Thanks to MRC for providing the review samples of these kits and to IPMS-USA for offering the opportunity to review them.