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Rome at War

Published: December 30th, 2018     
Rome at War
Author: Osprey Publishing
Reviewed by: William O'Malley, IPMS# 46473
Company: Osprey Publishing

This book chronicles the Roman soldiers and generals that shaped the Roman Empire by wars and conquests, from expansion, to its decline and fall. Color photos, maps, and photos illustrate the disciplined and highly trained army that conquered a vast empire comprising the known world. 

Four sections of the book describe the development and wars of the Roman army:

  • The Early Republic 753-150BC
  • The Late Republic 150-27BC
  • The Early Empire 27BC-AD235
  • The Late Empire AD235-500

A chronology of Roman Empire wars and empires, and an index of significant warriors and battles are also provided. 

The chronological organization of the book nicely portrays the training and tactics developed for the Roman soldier, and also describes their commanding generals and emperors. The maps illustrate the various stages of the Roman Empire's growth and decline. Color photos, mostly of statues, further portray key figures. The color paintings create a vivid image of the soldiers and their battles, first for the Roman Republic, and then for its Emperors.

Bundeswehr. German Military Men, Present Day

Published: December 30th, 2018     
Bundeswehr. German Military Men, Present Day
Reviewed by: Brent Bristow, IPMS# 48487
Scale: 1:35
Company: Master Box Ltd.

Over the last few years, Master Box Ltd. has produced numerous figure kits of varying scales and genres. Many of these can be used to enhance automotive or military vehicles, and some, such as their fantasy and sci-fi line, can stand on their own. For this out-of-box review, I will be looking at the Master Box release of Bundeswehr. German Military Men, Present day in 1/35 scale.

The kit includes five full figures, each of which have detailed uniforms and equipment consistent with the era. The poses for each are different enough to distinguish them from each other. Each figure is comprised of 7-13 plastic parts, depending upon the pose and the amount of gear. The basic parts for each include a torso (molded in 1 part), a head, two arms, and two legs. Two of the figures have a hat that is a separate part, while the other 3 have the hat molded onto the head.

USAF Crew Chief - Marshalling

Published: December 29th, 2018     
USAF Crew Chief - Marshalling
Reviewed by: Damon Blair, IPMS# 49062
Scale: 1/32
Company: Videoaviation

VideoAviation.com has come up with another wonderful diorama accessory with this new kit. One of the most important jobs that a crew chief has on the flight line is the safe taxying of aircraft from or to their parking spots. Modern United States Air Force (USAF) crew chiefs wear reflective vests to highlight their visibility to the aircraft's pilot.

This is a four-piece resin kit, with both arms and the head molded separately. The figure comes molded in the "This Marshaller" pose, which is the very first signal that a pilot will get before any taxying or other aircraft movement happens.

Molding is fantastic, with just a minimum of seam lines to clean up. Most of these lines are cleverly hidden in the folds of the uniform, but there are a few that do stand out a bit - but a file makes quick work of them.

I chose to represent myself as an active duty crew chief with this kit. The uniform is molded as a modern USAF uniform, although it is easily backdated to the Battle Dress Uniform (BDU) that was the standard during my time in the USAF. An addition to the figure for marshaling large aircraft would be to add orange paddles to the hands.

USAF Crew Chief - Vietnam

Published: December 29th, 2018     
USAF Crew Chief - Vietnam
Reviewed by: Damon Blair, IPMS# 49062
Scale: 1/32
Company: Videoaviation

United States Air Force (USAF) crew chiefs work tirelessly around -the clock to ensure aircraft are available for missions, especially in combat zones. VideoAviation.com has captured this spirit of "Can - do" with their latest offering.

The kit contains 12 parts for two figures and a Vietnam-era flight line fire bottle. The standing figure has doffed his shirt, something that would be quite understandable in the hot tropics combined with constant combat sorties, and aircraft that needed around-the-clock maintenance.

The fit of the parts is excellent, and seams clean up quickly and easily with files. My only problem with fit is with the standing figure, whose arms didn't quite fit properly into place, and required just a touch of putty. My recommendation would be to dry-fit the figures into place on a diorama before gluing the arms into place.

E.R. Engels II. LeRhone (with Skis)

Published: December 29th, 2018     
E.R. Engels II. LeRhone (with Skis)
Reviewed by: John Noack, IPMS# 23017
Scale: 1/72
Company: Omega Models

Designed and built by Russian engineer E.R. Engels, the Engels II was a parasol-winged monoplane flying boat first flown in 1917. Designed to fly using wing warping rather than ailerons, the aircraft was at one time the fastest flying boat in service. An egg-shaped pod held the fuel tank and structure for the 120 HP LeRhone rotary engine. Armament was a single, fixed 7.62mm machine gun mounted in the nose. The graceful parasol wings incorporated sharply downswept tips that served as floats.

Omega's kit, produced in the Czech Republic, is a limited run all-resin product that presents challenges best left to the experienced modeler, but with care and attention creates a diminutive gem of this one of a kind design. The box contains several "wafers" of parts that must be carefully separated from a large resin plug. In retrospect, I strongly suggest some way of maintaining the identification of each part after removal and cleanup, as many of the shapes are pretty similar once removed from their bases.

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