Archer Fine Transfers
M4 81mm Mortar Halftrack
41st Armored Inf., 2nd AD. April 1944
Review by Terry Ashley

Following the release of the Cyberhobby M4 81mm Mortar Halftrack (kit #6361), Archer Fine Transfers have released this sheet for markings of the later M4A1 81mm Mortar Halftrack of the 41st Armored Inf., 2nd AD in April 1944.

This does require some updating of the Cyberhobby M4 kit to bring it up to the M4A1 standard and the set instruction sheet includes a list of the updates required. Basically this is the addition of the later removable head lights which you may have left over from the previous M2 kit and the relocation of the mortar base and the fabrication of additional mortar ammo boxes.
The side jerry can racks are already included in the kit as are the rear side mine racks with both of these used on the M4A1 but not on the earlier M4, remember you have to remove the moulded on jerry can racks from the kit for an accurate M4.

The quality of Archer Fine Transfers sheets is well known and these are no exception with clear clean printing even on the smallest lettering with the appropriate yellow markings for the 2nd Armored Division vehicle which is quite well documented in various references. Archer's also have a large image available on their website showing the vehicle interior to use as reference if you don't already have the image.

The trick to getting a perfect result when applying dry transfers is to ensure the model surface is perfectly clean as any finger oils or dust can effect the way the transfers come off the backing sheet and adhere to the model surface.

Application is very simply by positioning the sheet over the model for open flat surfaces or cutting out the marking from the sheet to position for more hard to get at places and then lightly burnish the marking with a suitable tool from an empty ball point pen to purpose burnishing tool from an arts shop.

I found the transfers came away from the backing sheet very easily and adhered well to the model surface with the backing paper laid over the marking once applied to press the transfer firmly in place.

If you want to apply the transfers in the conventional water slide manner you just need to apply the transfers to clear decal sheet and then apply as with normal water slide decals but this really defeats the advantages of dry transfer decals.

This sheet provides making for a well documented M4A1 Mortar Half-track for a nice alternative to the kit markings with the alterations required on the Cyberhobby kit being well within most modeller's capabilities providing you have a spare set of detectable headlights.

Well printed and easy to use, these sheets will appeal to all Allied models for a different finish to the Cyberhobby kit.

Highly recommended 8/10

Archer Fine Transfers

See the M2/M3 Halftrack Subjects page for reviews of other Halftrack sets.

Thanks to Woody Vondracek of Archers Fine Transfers for the review sets

Page created June 27, 2007