Bronco 1/35 QF 25 pdr Field Gun with Limber

KIT #: CB35046
PRICE: $41.00 SRP
DECALS: Several options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Includes photo etch frets


The Ordnance QF 25 pounder, or more simply, 25-pounder or 25-pdr, was introduced into service just before World War II, during which it served as the major British field gun/howitzer. It was considered by many (mostly British) to be the best field artillery piece of the war, combining high rates of fire with a reasonably lethal shell in a highly mobile piece. It was the British Army's primary artillery field piece well into the 1960s, with smaller numbers serving in training units until the 1980s. Many Commonwealth of Nations countries used theirs in active or reserve service until about the 1970s and ammunition for the weapon is currently being produced by Pakistan Ordnance Factories.


This is at least the third boxing of very similar artillery pieces, being issued as the 17 pounder and the Pheasant, so there will be many similar parts. This one has the 25 pounder barrel and also includes the ammo limber. As such, there are seven sprues, with two of them, for the limber and ammo, being identical. You also get two photo etch frets and a section of string.

As you might expect, this is not an EZ build kit. Bronco prides itself on providing a lot of detail with its kits and this one is no exception. Most of the photo etch, for instance, is used for some of the really small parts that includes the various levers used to open and close the breech, bits for the azimuth and elevation controls and many, many more parts. As we've seen in some of their other kits, there are bolt and rivet heads molded onto one of the sprues. These are to be removed and placed on various parts of the kit. This seems a bit much, but the locations on which they'll be placed are areas where mold seams will run through the part and it is much easier to attach a new bolt head than clean up a mold seam going through one.

One of the decisions the builder will need to make fairly early in the construction sequence, is whether to build this one in the tow or the firing position. This is particularly true of the carriage as it will require the large firing ring to be either on the ground under the gun or stowed up against the trail. Step one chooses which barrel assembly to do so one really needs to decide early on to make either an early or late version.

Detailing for the gun itself is superlative. Every item that is on the real one is accurately portrayed in the kit. Everything from the breech to the barrel to the recoil mechanism is there. Instructions are the usual Bronco booklet with areas of interest highlighted in color and detail drawings to help locate parts. In fact, the booklet is thicker than usual as there are actually two separate sets of instructions depending on whether you do the early or late version of this gun. I have to say that had I not looked through the instructions several times, I would not have caught that little detail.

The limber could easily be a kit in and of itself. Each of the various ammo boxes has ammunition to install in it. One could make each box able to be pulled out separately if one wanted.

 Color information from a variety of sources is also provided. The decal sheets are pretty much data markings for the included ammunition and ammo boxes. You can either paint your gun in a field green as shown on the box art or a desert tan shade. There is a sheet for gun numbers and badges, though nothing is identified.


 This is the most complete and complex kit of Bronco's line of British field pieces yet. It will require patience when building and due to all the small bits and photo etch, it is more appropriate for an experienced modeler. The resulting model should be a real beauty.


November 2011 

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