ARM: DML 1/35 scale Armored 1/4 Ton 4 x 4 Truck w/Bazookas

Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 ?39-?45 Series Kit No. 6748; Arm ored 1/4 Ton 4 x 4 Truck w/Bazookas - Smart Kit; 171 parts (127 in grey sty
rene, 40 etched brass, 4 clear styrene; pre-order price US$31.99 via Dragon USA Online
Advantages: new mold kit of a popular subject; makes good use of slide mold ing
Disadvantages: some shape problems; ejection pin marks on body; very high p rice for small kit
Rating: Recommended
Recommendation: for all Jeep fans
    DML has now modified its ?Armored 1/4 Ton 4 x 4 Truck? kit (a Willys M B to anyone not worried about copyright infringement and nasty comments fro m Chrysler) to mount a part of WWII bazookas on a special mount that replac es the M2HB mount of its predecessor (Kit No. 6714)
    This kit retains all sprues from the previous version but now adds the baz ookas and a new fret of etched brass. exchanges a number of sprues from the first kit for ones that more accurately represent the US model of the vehi cle as a standard model. It comes with the back seat, top bows, and more of the details visible on the normal vehicle; this one also offers a folded w indshield with a canvas cover as a new sprue. The body is slide molded with all but the rear plate in one go. There are some serious injection pin mar ks on the bottom of the body and under the fenders, but other than the fend er wells I don?t think most modelers will bother with removing them.
    The frame is also one piece with all braces and the rear ?bumperettes? molded in place. A so-so tow hook is also molded in place on the frame, bu t as the opening section of the military hitch is provided (part B45) as a separate part it will probably look better when assembled.
    The drive line is typical of modern kits, axles with differentials and a s eparate differential cover, separate shock absorbers, steering links and a tie rod. The transfer case comes with the front drive shaft in place but th e rear one is a separate part. The wheels are conventional front half with all tread/rear insert type (staggered tread pattern) and separate brake dru ms. Springs are the usual type, but the skid plate comes with the muffler a ttached (part B41). Note that hard-core Jeep fans noted the wheels on the f irst kits were not correct and had the wrong shapes to the dish portion; th is one appears more accurate but I leave it to the fans to sort it out. Als o it comes with a new grille, and the fans also noted the first ?cutaway ? one had the blackout lights in the wrong place. This one appears better but again I leave it to the faithful.
    The engine consists of 15 parts and looks the part, and it comes with a se parate radiator. This consists of three main parts, but it also has the hea dlights and blackout lights attached. These take clear lenses (for those wh o wish to use them) and must be installed before the radiator is mounted to the body. It also comes with an expansion tank (part B21) but no hoses are provided to connect them.
    All seats have separate pads and backs, and the controls are very complete , to include pedals.
    The bazookas that form the vehicle?s armament consists of two parts each (slide-moulded tube and separate breech/guard ring section) with a welded- up field mount that fits on a standard machine gun pedestal mount.
    The etched brass for this kit now appears to match the directions and show s somebody reread those for the machine gun equipped kit.
    A nice box art painting by Ron Volstad gives a good view of the finished v ehicle.
    One painting and marking option is offered: 60th Infantry Regiment, 9th In fantry Division, Ardennes 1945(OD with no stars and USA W2046010-S registra tion number). A ?number jungle? sheet of Cartograf decals is provided f or the latter.                 
    Overall this is not a bad kit and the better attention paid to the directi ons is a good sign. With the specialized armament package and etched brass armor it is becoming a better value than the previous two kits.
    Thanks to Freddie Leung for the review sample.
Cookie Sewell
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