KIT: Tamiya 1/48 US Infantry set
KIT #: 32513
PRICE: $13.00 MSRP
REVIEWER: Bill Michaels
NOTES: 15 figures and accessories


 Quoting directly from the kit’s instructions: 

 “The US Army’s WW2 military campaign was based around its company units. At the core of these units were squads consisting of no more than twelve soldiers.  Each squad included a Sergeant ranked squad leader, a Corporal ranked assistant squad leader, a machine gunner, and riflemen.  The most recognizable uniform worn by US troops during WW2 was the M1941 field jacket, based on a civilian jacket design, and the M1943 field jacket (modified version of the M1941).  Featuring four large pockets, the M1943 was developed in order to standardize military uniform and was supplied to soldiers from late 1943.  However, due to production delays, the M1941 continued to be used widely by many troops. Crews of US armored vehicles preferred to wear the warm and functional “tanker’s jacket”.”


 I bought this kit because to go with my burgeoning collection of 1/48 scale US armor.  A nice feature of the kit is the fact that it includes 15 different figures, with no repeats.  Two of the figures are tank crewmen, while the other thirteen make up an infantry squad.  The figures are all molded in combat action poses—shooting, running, crouching, etc., except for the tankers. 

 The figures are nicely molded, and most of them are made up from 4-8  pieces, not counting weapons.   In addition to the figures themselves, there is a large collection of infantry accessories—helmets, canteens, entrenching tools, packs, pouches, weapons, etc..

 The instructions show each figure, with complete color callouts of the various uniform parts.  There are no decals- so none of the figures get any rank or unit patches on their uniforms

 My only complaint is that the tank crewmen are not full figures.  The driver figure is only molded from above the waist, and the standing commander figure is cut off at mid thigh.  As a result, neither figure really fits well in my M-10.  (Though I guess you could use them in the Sherman.) 

 The kit includes two unique sprues of figure parts, and two identical sprues of accessories:  helmets, weapons, canteens, pouches, etc.   The squad is well armed—there is a bazooka man with a loader, a .30 cal machine gunner with loader, a rifle grenade man, a BAR (Browning Automatic Rifle) man, and several riflemen.  Three of the riflemen are wearing heavier winter uniforms, with long coats and gloves.  The rest of the figures in the set are wearing regular uniforms.

 It is not immediately obvious when looking at the sprues which figure is which, as they are broken down into so many parts.    As a result, a photo of the sprues doesn’t really show much—just lots of little bits- arms, legs, torsos, heads, weapons, etc.  Instead of the usual photo, I’ve scanned a couple of pages fomr the instructions, so you can get an idea of the poses and the number of parts per figure.  Note that the figures can be assembled wwearing either packs or ammo belts. 


 Conditionally Recommended—buy it if you want combat troops for a diorama.    

 However, I originally bought the set because I wanted a figure to put in the turret of my M-10, and hopefully a couple of troops to ride on the hull.  The figures in this set really aren’t in tank-riding poses, though.   (Tamiya’s Russian infantry set has some figures in these poses.)  However, this set isn’t worth the money if all you want is the armor crewmen. includes two tank crewmen.   

 I’ll hang on to the set though.  Because there are so many parts,  I’m sure I’ll find a use for it someday. 

 Review kit from the local shop, courtesy of a Christmas gift certificate from my dear wife.  (Thanks again, dear!)

February 2006

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