Review - Tamiya 1/48 scale CCKW US Army Air Force Fuel Tanker

Kit Review: Tamiya 1/48 Scale Kit No. 32579: U.S 2 1/2 Ton 6 x 6 Airfield F
uel Truck; 153 parts (143 in olive drab styrene, 8 clear styrene, 1 length
of vinyl tubing, 1 section coated wire); price US$37.99
Advantages: nice new kit of this popular vehicle in this scale; wide opport
unities for conversions and use in multiple situations
Disadvantages: nothing major noted
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all GMC fans as well as aircraft modelers
Like other manufacturers, Tamiya likes to introduce new versions using pro
ven kit parts to expand their offerings and cover more bases. This nice lit
tle kit is based on their CCKW cargo truck kit (No. 32548) but adds or repl
aces 84 parts from that kit.
This kit is a nicer effort than the relatively stripped down CCKW kit in t
hat it comes with all that it needs to in order to replicate its subject. T
he original driver figure is included and now two others are added, one man
in a helmet and one in a soft cap handling the hoses.
This kit replaces one of the problems in the original kit - a diecast chas
sis which required screws for assembly and made building a "clean" model mo
re difficult, as well as any conversions nearly impossible without scratchb
uilding a new chassis.
The model provides the "hard" cab with optional position doors and an open
section of the pumping facility on the tanker with two hose reels and two
nozzles. While basic this is nicely details and includes the pressure tank
and a fire extinguisher.
Cab detail is on a par with older 1/35 scale kits in that it has all of th
e lever controls and the wheel but no foot pedals (even absent from the flo
orboard due to an oversize mount for the steering column.) The driver and s
tanding figure with helmet are neatly done but come with leggings, which li
mits them to WWII applications.
The wheels have been simplified as only the front wheels have an interior
side to them, as the rear wheels are simply stuck together and the spare is
likewise missing the backs side. The driveline in this kit has been cleane
d up for assembly via cement and glues to the chassis vice the screws of th
e original. The entire driveline is one piece less the springs.
The kit comes with two finishing options, both in basic olive drab. It is
either USAAF in France or USAAF in France June 1944. Both trucks have white
markings but no unit codes (one has an ace of spades, the other white patc
hes with nothing else).
Overall this kit is a good one and can be used for dioramas well into the
1950s. I do wish they had offered a yellow or red scheme for it though.
Cookie Sewell
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