Can anyone tell me the proper .50 Cal Machine Gun mount (including
pedistal) as used on Cdn/British LVT4's in NE Europe '44/'45. I'm hoping
that they're available in the Academy #1384 Machine Gun Set. A link to a
photo would be great. Thanx in advance. Eddy
The Academy set is great and has a wide variety of mounts -- but only
for the mount up and not the lower section or pedestal.
Here's a review I did about a year after the kit was released.
Cookie Sewell ***Kit Review: Academy 1/35 Scale Kit No. 1384; U.S. Machine Gun Set;
102 parts in dark silver grey styrene; price $7.00
Advantages: Absolutely gorgeous kit of its chosen subjects, providing
enough parts in one box to upgrade one to four models; included
accessories and positionable parts a plus
Disadvantages: air cooled M3 type .50 caliber weapons an odd choice
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all modelers using US pattern Browning machine
This has to be one of the best selling kits on the market, or Academy
has not been bright enough to send a sufficient number to the US. It
has taken me over a year to finally find and pick up a set of these
weapons, and while the wait has been frustrating the kit is worth all
of the word of mouth about it.
US weapons have fared poorly with model manufacturers over the years,
as in the early days "play value" meant that the machine guns had to
be (a) simple and (b) sturdy. When kits began to become more
sophisticated with the release of the first Tamiya Military Miniatures
series kits in 1968, however, nobody made much of a change in their
machine guns except to make the barrels thinner. Most of the Browning
M1921 series guns - the M2 or "Ma Deuce" being the most common with a
heavy barrel - suddenly found themselves without controls such as
handles and in possession of a conical heat shield around the barrel/
breech junction. The M1917A4 - the lighter .30 caliber versions -
fared as badly, with no handles on most iterations or a stumpy or too
thick barrel. They also far too often came with their mounts molded in
Later, as modelers complained about poor or inaccurate details, the
details began to improve. M2s came with twin grips, and some even came
with cocking handles; the .30s came with separate mounts, but most of
them were still inaccurate. Resin and white metal manufacturers soon
took over the market for accurate auxiliary armaments.
This kit was the second of its type to come out - Skybow had released
its .50 caliber gun and vehicle mount first - but was immediately
cited for doing far more to get things right and also to provide more
guns in one package than the resin kits.
What the kit provides are two complete M1917A4 .30 caliber Brownings,
two of the M2 (M3) type aerial guns with perforated barrel jackets,
and two M2HB .50 caliber guns with a variety of options.
The .30s come with both the ground mount, a fixed turret pylon mount,
and the "rocker" mount options (one of each) as well as a folded
tripod and seven ammo cans. Due to some confusion in the directions
(these are steps 4 and 5a/b) you must pay attention to what you want
and how you want the guns to look.
The M3 style .50s come with short, simple mounts and separate
"butterfly" triggers, grips, and charging handles. These are covered
in Step 3.
The M2HB types have several options for various periods - barrels
with quick change/carrying handles, barrels without them, and barrels
with the recent addition of the flash hider. There are two of each in
this case, so you have lots of choices. They also come with two
different style mount cradles (simple and complex), separate feed
covers, charging handles, "butterflies" and grips, two kinds of
ammunition trays, and a ground mount tripod or fixed vehicle mounts.
Six ammunition cans are included.
Academy also includes a set of decals in both white and yellow for
the ammo cans, so that it is as complete a kit as one could want, and
at this price is a good deal. Ammo belts are included, and the box art
does indicate which ones are WWII period and which ones are postwar.
Overall this is one of the best products going of this type, and had
they had a category for it this year at AMPS 2004 would certainly have
won a Gold Medal for "Injection Molded Accessory of the Year for