ARM: Review - DML 1/35 scale British Expeditionary Force France 1940

Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 scale =9139-=9145 Series Kit No. 655=
2; British Expeditionary Force France 1940; 96 parts (83 in grey styrene, 1=
3 etched brass); pre-order price US$16.95 via Dragon USA Online
Advantages: nicely done set of figures with full coats and excellent new Vi=
ckers gun
Disadvantages: use of heavy coats limits usefulness of the set
Rating: Highly Recommended=20
Recommendation: for all Commonwealth fans
In a surprise move DML has now released a nice fresh set of four Commonwea=
lth figures from what appears to be the =93Sitzkreig=94 or =93Phony War=94 =
period of the BEF deployment to France in 1940. It consists of an officer i=
n a raincoat (NOT trenchcoat) and three =93squaddies=94 in greatcoats manni=
ng a Vickers .303 water-cooled machine gun.=20
The figures follow the DML format =96 six parts consisting of head, torso,=
arms and legs =96 but as all are in winter garb their coat skirts are sepa=
rate parts. Each skirt consists of three or four parts, all with nicely thi=
nned edges, and all designed to simulate the positions shown on the box art=
. The officer is kneeling and pointing with a stick, the gunner sits wrappe=
d around the rear trail of the Vickers, and the =93other numbers=94 are pro=
ne, one feeding the gun and the other with rifle at the ready to provide co=
The Vickers gun is of the =93smooth=94 jacketed variety but comes with exp=
ansion/feed tank (the hose must be bent to fit by the modeler as it is mold=
ed integral with the tank), three ammo cans, a belt of around 50 rounds, an=
d the lock and brace. It has the recoil booster in place but as it is in th=
e middle of the sprue does not come with a clean molded bore. The carrying =
straps and handles are provided as etched brass components, but they will n=
eed annealing to be twisted to shape as shown. A section of what appears to=
be spare hose (W9) is also provided.
This kit also uses the disappointing Photoshop style artwork which has beg=
un to appear on other DML sets of late. It shows a Universal (=93Bren=94) C=
arrier with two soldiers covering the deployed team and appears to combine =
reworked shots from WWII with reenactors. The back of the box is little hel=
p in finishing them (they assume you use GSI Creos Mr Color!) nor is the wa=
shed-out color of the figures any help. DML really needs to spend more time=
on supporting their products.=20
Overall this is a great new set, but due to the early war winter setting w=
ill be of little use other than very early in France, Norway, or some of th=
e operations in Greece.=20
Thanks to Freddie Leung for the review sample.=20
Cookie Sewell
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