M915A1 US Gun Truck
Minimanfactory Kit No. MMF 35004
1:35th Scale

Review by Terry Ashley

Following on from their initial full resin kit of the M915A1 Line-Haul Tractor (Kit #MMF 35001) Minimanfactory have now released this full kit of the M915A1 Gun Truck as used in OIF.

The gun truck conversion consisted of a large armoured box installed in an M101 trailer which was fitted to the rear of the truck with additional armoured plates added. The weapons ring from the M1114 HMMVW was added to the top of the armoured box allowing the use of the cal.50 M2HB, M249 SAW or Mk.19 Grenade launcher with additional protection for the gunner provided with the M113 ACAV style gun shield.

The M915A1 Gun truck was used in and around Baghdad although the actual number of conversions is unknown as I have only seen photos of the one vehicle coverted.

The kit:
This full kit of the M915A1 Gun Truck uses many parts from the M915A1 Line Haul Tractor (Kit #MMF 35001) as you would expect with additonal parts for the Gun Truck conversion with the review below also being from the previous review with updated comments on the new parts.

The kit consists of approximately 200 parts in light cream resin, 10 tyres in black vinyl material, 9 in clear resin and a large etched fret, two brass parts for the cal.50 M2 barrel/cooling jacket and a sheet of photo film windows as well as an eight page instruction sheet for another full multi-medial kit.

Etched and other parts
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The quality of the resin casting is excellent with very few if any blemishes such as air holes and more importantly there is no warping on any of the parts in my kit with the full length chassis being perfectly square and flat and the single cab casting is also perfectly square with detail on the inside walls and roof for an impressive casting. The addiitonal large arnoured box and trailer are aslo perfectly cast without any warping or blemishes to deal with making assembly that much easier.

There is some resin ‘film’ type flash on some parts with the chassis and cab having the most, but this actually looks worse than is on first look with it being quite fine and easily removed with a pass of the trusty #11 blade.

Some other parts such as the radiator grill and large bull bar have by their design resin film inside the grills that again is quite easy to remove with the #11 blade and most other fine film is quickly dealt with but there is also some very fine castings that will require care when removing any film present.

The quality of fidelity of the castings is best summed up with the large fuel tank which includes the securing straps in the single casting and after removing the fine resin film inside the straps an impressive piece results.

Detail of fuel tank after cleanup

As mentioned the full chassis is in one piece cast perfectly square and this makes for a sound footing for the rest of the kit such as the front and rear suspensions made up of finely cast components that fit together without any problems with locating lugs on the chassis to ensure the springs fit evenly on both sides.
The rear suspensions if assembled carefully allows the two sets of wheel bogies to articulate along the lines of the real thing and are quite detailed with springs, sway bars and additional brake cylinders and could be detailed with the addition of the brake lines from wire or tubing.

The two large differentials are also nicely detailed with additional drive shafts and steering linkages on the front wheels with the separate axle mounting allowing you to reposition the front wheels easily by adding small wire pins to the holes already included in the suspension parts.

The kit provides a full engine made up of 22 resin and 2 etched parts including the large radiator and again the parts are cleanly cast and there are small locating pins and holes on some parts that make assembly very easy for a resin kit. You will need to study the instructions carefully and numbering the smaller parts with a fine pencil before removing them from the casting blocks will make things easier but more on the instructions later.

The large radiator has excellent detail on both sides and this fits into the equally large front radiator grill with the etched mesh trapped between them and obviously will have to paint the insides pf the radiator before fitting the etched mesh.

On the chassis there are locating ridges that fit into corresponding mounting on the engine to ensure the engine is attached at the right position with the radiator also fitting neatly to the front of the chassis.
The huge engine hood is provided in a single large casting or as five separate panels allowing you to show the hood open to expose the excellent engine and obviously there is additional wiring and plumbing that can be added to the engine to fully detail this if it’s to be exposed?

The main cab has a full interior that includes the two large seats with excellent cushion texturing, the driver’s foot pedals and gear levers between the two seats as well as the instrument panel detail nicely engraved with separate steering wheel and steering column. On the front bulkhead are additional details with the fit of the floor into the one piece can casting not posing any problems?

The two doors are separate and have details on both sides allowing you to show these open or closed with the main windscreen, door glass and rear window supplied on the photo film sheet that you carefully cut out and fit in place.

Additional details for the cab include etched windscreen wipers and extremely intricate rear view mirror mounting frames that are quite delicate and will need care during assembly.

The wheels have separate rims and brake drums with just some fine resin film to be removed from the rim lightening holes before assembly which is quite straightforward with the tyres fitting very snugly to the rims without any gaps around the edges to deal with.

The tyres themselves are cast in more of a soft resin type material rather than the traditional vinyl as it is quite easy to cut away the casting blocks and the resin film in the middle of the tyre with a sharp scalpel blade. The tread pattern on the tyre is well defined but there is a cutting scar left after removing the casting block but this can easily be hidden at ground contact after fitting the wheels.

The normal fifth wheel assembly and spare wheel are not fitted to the gun truck leaving space the M101 trialer to be added to the rear chassis.

The large fuel tank and smaller air bottles carried either side under the cab have additional etched crew steps as there are for the rear of the front fenders that add some nice detail definition to the kit as does the etched heat shield added around the side exhaust pipe which is made up of three resin pieces fitted together to form the complete pipe running from the engine and this has a revided top section to deivet the exhaust gases away from the weapons ring.

Additional etched parts are provided for the rear mud flaps, the rear view mirrors and fender light guards with the cab side grab handles added from wire (not included in the kit) as well as smaller fender attachment strips with these parts adding to the overall good impression of the kit.

Gun Truck Parts:

The main gun truck parts are the large armoured box which is cast full hollow and perfectly square without any hint of warping and just some fine resin film to be removed from the openings for the weapons ring and rear entry door. The detail on the box is very well done with nice weld beads and plate segments with the separate door also blemish free and can be shown open or closed as you see fit.

The M101 trailer is also perfectly cast with excellent crisp detail and again no hint of warping with the casting block easily removed and there are additional etched parts for the side tie-downs loops as well as brackets between the chassis and trailer for added detail.

Added under the trailer is the chassis frame and this too is cast perfectly flat and square with excellent definition on the inner I beam detail with just the casting block and some very fine resin film top be removed. The fit of the chassis to the trailer is made easy by the lack of warping and there are 4 small locating pins on the chassis that fit into corresponding holes in the trailer to ensure you fit this in the right position.

The fit of the armoured box into the trailer is also goo but I cut away the raised ribs on the floor of the trailer where the walls of the box went to ensure it sat snugly in place. Added behind the box are two triangular support plates and these required a little beveling on the edge that meets the box to give a better fit but that was the trimming needed.

The top weapons ring is again nicely cast with just some fine resin film to be removed and there are alternate hatches provided, one in the closed position and the other with the top lip folded for when in the open position as well as mountings for the cal.50 M2HBMG and the M249 SAW included in the kit.


You are provided with the two weapons as mentioned, the cal.50 M2HBMG which has the receiver cleanly cast in resin with etched rear handgrip frames with resin handles plus a twp part machined brass barrel and perforated cooling jacket. The barrel looks very similar to the Lionmarc barrel (set #LM10028) and it may be this has been used with this kit?

There is no cleanup needed on the brass parts with the detail on the cooling jacket being very well done with the correct taper and four rows of lightening holes captured nicely as well as the two rear indentations with the size matching various available 1:35 plans to within acceptable tolerances.

The barrel details are also nicely done with the notches around the front of the cooling jacket attachment included and assembly is very straightforward by just slipping the barrel through the back of the cooling jacket which sees a nice snug fit at the front and you are ready to fit the barrel to any applicable gun.

The muzzle bore hole on the Lionmarc barrel was oversized and the bore hole on this barrel is reduced in size but is still slightly too big when compared to photos on the actual cal.50 bore but is not overly so and not that noticeable.

There is one thing to watch during fitting as there is nothing at the back of the cooling jacket to hold the barrel in place and it flops about until you have glued the cooling jacket in place on the gun which is a little disconcerting when trying to align the barrel to the kit gun receiver.

A notable omission is the ammo box mounting and you have to use an ammo box and mounting from elsewhere to finish off what is a nice looking gun overall.

Metal cal.50 barrel parts
Image of barrel bore hole and the actual bore hole for comparison
Note the loose barrel fit at the back of the cooling jacket
requiring care during assembly


The M249 SAW is cast in one piece with very good details and after carefully removing the fine resin film around the casting is ready to paint and add to the mounting without further ado.

The large ACAV gun shield is in brass as are the shield mountings for good scale thickness and this is easily added to the pedestal mount without any problems while there are additional steel plates (well resin actually) to fit as walk ways over the rear truck wheels and rear of the chassis with photos showing the rear plate is used for personal gear stowage.

One thing to note is there is no interior to the armoured box and if you intend to add a gunner figure you will have to fit a shelf from pladtic card or the like for him to stand on and it may be best to leave the door closed to hide the bare interior.

I dry fitted many of the larger truck assemblies and smaller items such as the engine and radiator parts as well as the cab and suspension with all parts fitting together very well for a resin kit with only some minor trimming needed here and there. I didn’t assembly these parts fully as I want to build this kit later with the additional details mentioned instead of ‘as it comes’ for this review although the new armoured box and trailer has been fully assembled with excellent overall fit of the parts.


These differ from the photo type instructions of the first kit and are now line drawings of the various constructions sequences and while not exploded view drawings they are easier to follow than the photo type.

Each part in the diagrams is called out by number but there is no overall part layout diagram and it is best to number each part with a fine lead pencil as you prepare them for assembly so as to lessen any ID problems.

As mentioned the illustrations are easier to follow but it’s still important to study all the sequences carefully before commencing assembly to avoid any problems and also to test fit before any cutting or gluing.

Overall this is another excellent kit with high levels of resin casting and detail on the parts with the work needed for cleanup and during assembly a lot less than on a some other full resin kits I have played with due to this excellent casting quality.

The lack of any warping on the larger parts makes the assemblies even easier as you don’t have to worry about making corrections to the parts as well as fitting them correctly and as mentioned I didn’t encounter anything out of the ordinary for a resin kit during the dry fitting and assembly.

The kit is quite impressive due to it's size and will be a "must have" for Gun Truck fans as well Modern modellers in general as it is an impressive kit as resin kits go.

Highly recommended 8/10
Resin parts:

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Detail images
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Prime Portal


Armoured/Gun Trucks of the US Army in Iraq
American Special #3002

64 Pages
147 colour photos
English text

WWP US Army Truck Tractors
Present Vehicle Line No.3
Wings & Wheels Publications.
Published by RAK, Czech Republic.
ISBN 80-86416-08-9
108 pages all in colour.

Thanks to Minimanfactory for the review set.

Page created July 1, 2008