The quality of the etching is first class with clean etchings and the usual bending lines where applicable. There are many very fine parts included in some sets that will require careful handing when removing from the frets and adding to the model.
Set HLX48065 is the basic detail sets and also includes the engine screens
available separately as set HLX48066 if this is all you need.
The set contains all the finer details parts that do require you to firstly cut off the moulded on detail from the Tamiya parts but this shouldn't be a big problem.
All the tool mounting brackets and clips are included for the two hull side racks, the barrel cleaning container, fire extinguisher and rear mounted jack.
Other details included the barrel travel lock completely replaced with etched parts as is the Cupola MG mounting and the rear exhaust shrouds and brackets with additional parts for the inner crew hatch handles and latches along with the engine deck intake screens as mentioned with very finely rendered screen mesh.
Set HLX48066 contains just the engine intake screens with the four rectangular and two round screens that have finely rendered mesh as well as the retaining bolts in the corners of the rectangular screens. These easily fit over the intake grills on the Tamiya kit without the need for any alterations.
Set HLX48067 has the front and side fenders to replace the kit parts and requires you to cut off the kit fenders and side mounting brackets to take the etched parts.
The front fenders have the strengthening ridges that require you to 'press' out with a fine ballpoint pen or rounded toothpick to form the raised ridges and also have the separate mounting brackets attached to the front of the hull.
The side fenders include the underside mounting brackets that are also used to attach the Schürzen included in set HLX48068 and there shouldn't be any problems fitting the etched fenders as assembly is quite straightforward.
Set HLX48068 has the twelve individual Schürzen (side skirt) panels and these fit to the etched brackets included in set HLX48067. If you use this set without set HLX48067 you will simply attach the Schürzen to the Tamiya brackets for a very simple update set.
Set HLX48069 has the two rear hull mounted Kisten (storage boxes) that have the boxes completely in etched metal with the X stamping that has to be embossed with a fine ballpoint pen or rounded toothpick to form the raised ridges and soldering would be the best method in assembling the boxes for a robust finish.
Also included are separate top lids with separate hinges and latches as well as separate hull mounting brackets fro excellent detail definition on the boxes. Being metal will also allow realistic damage to be included if you wish.
These sets provide a compehensive update to the Tamiya kit with just about every detail included that can benefit from etched parts and as mentioned offering the sets individually allows you to pick and choose the amount of detail you wish to include.
Thanks to Jan from Hauler Shop for the review set.
Page created February 21, 2006