ARM: Review - Bronco 1/35 scale WWII US Light Weapons and Equipment Set

Kit Review: Bronco 1/35 scale Kit No. AB3558; WWII U.S. Light Weapon & Equi pment Set; 92 parts in grey styrene; price US$19.95
Advantages: nicely molded equipment very useful in accessorizing vehicles o r dioramas
Disadvantages: M2AC not that common with ground troops
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all US or postwar MAP vehicles and forces
    Over the past 40 years there has been a quantum improvement in accessories for military vehicles and figures. Rifles have gone from oversized and clu msy objects to clearly discernable variations of the weapons they represent . Machine guns have gone from single parts with perhaps a stick-on ammo can to very detailed models in their own right consisting of up to 12 parts an d on occasion etched brass parts. But as they have improved, many manufactu rers no longer provide them with their kits and anyone wishing to fit out a vehicle needs to seek out the proper weapons and kit.
    While DML, Trumpeter and Tamiya have offered several sets over the years, other manufacturers are now offering their own take on weapons. This one is from Bronco and is suitable for either US forces or anyone receiving Milit ary Assistance Program aid for the period 1942 to about 1958.
    Two of each kind of weapon are included, to wit: M2AC .50 caliber air cool ed machine gun with its tripod, ammo can, belt of ammunition, and fittings; M1919A4 .30 caliber air cooled machine gun with its tripod, ammo can, belt of ammunition, and fittings; M1 Garand, with and without bayonet fitted; M 1918A1 .30 caliber BAR; M1903A4 .30 caliber sniper rifle; M3 "Grease Gun" s ubmachine gun; M1 Thompson Submachine Gin with 20 and 30 round box magazine s; Bazooka with one rocket each and muzzle caps; M1911A1 .45 pistol both lo aded and unloaded after firing last round; Mk. 2 "pineapple" hand grenades; and a 60mm M2 mortar with base, sights, and two mortar bombs each.
    Also included are six US helmets, six canteens, two belt and two shoulder holsters for the .45 pistols, two pairs of 7x35 binoculars, four backpacks, a laundry bag and a rolled tarp.
    Most of the choices are excellent other than the air cooled .50, which was not very common in ground units unless "liberated" from crashed US aircraf t. A standard M2HB is a better choice. But the gun comes with a total of ei ght parts and is well detailed.
    None of the weapons other than the four machine guns and the mortar have t he bores molded open, but a .30 bore in scale is about 0.008" in diameter s o that is understandable!
    The set even comes with a nice set of directions vice the "stick here" bo x art common for this sort of accessory.
    Overall this is a pretty good deal for the money and offers some nice upgr ades to older kits.
Cookie Sewell
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