Cyber-hobby 1/35 LVT-4
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||Value Pack boxing with figures. Reboxed Italeri kit|
The Landing Vehicle Tracked (LVT) was a class of amphibious vehicles introduced by the United States Navy, Marine Corps and Army during World War II. Originally intended solely as cargo carriers for ship to shore operations, they rapidly evolved into assault troop and fire support vehicles as well. The types were all widely known as amphtrack, amtrak, amtrac etc., a portmanteau of amphibious tractor.
The LVT-4 was a mid-war development of the original LVT. The engine was moved forward and a large ramp door was added to the rear, allowing troops to exit from the rear of the vehicle. This innovation also greatly facilitated the loading and unloading of cargo. Some vehicles received armor kits. It was by far the most numerous version of the LVT, with 8,351 units delivered.
Here is another nice Cyber-hobby orange series value kit. One of the neat part of these value kits is that they generally come with a set of figures. This not only provides the builder with a quality kit at a most reasonable price, but also provides figures that allows Dragon to reduce its inventory or get additional use out of older molds. This particular kit includes figure set 6038 for Iwo Jima Marines, something that fits right in with the kit itself.
So let us take a look at the kit. First of all, the molding is very nicely done. I found no flash or bothersome sink areas on any of the parts. There are only 170 parts in this one so it is not one of those super-detailed kits one often finds from Cyber-hobby/Dragon. Not to say that there is not a lot of detail, just that the nature of the kit is that there are not a ton of parts. The kit provides standard vinyl tracks with each side made up by combining two lengths together.
There are quite a few road wheels on this one so be prepared to spend some time cleaning and painting them. The kit includes a number of hand holds on the upper hull. Four guns are in with the kit. Two .50 cal with shields for the front of the vehicle with two .30 cal versions on the sides. All are pintle mounted. Missed one. There is also a forward hull mounted gun.
As these vehicles were used for both cargo and troops, there are seats on the inside that can be built either up against the sides or folded down. Some modification to the kit parts will need to be done for the folded down position. Also variable is the rear ramp. This can be built up or down. A section of string is provided to represent the cable for the lowered position or you can use two plastic lenghts that are also provided. With the latter, it seems as if one can have the ramp movable between either position. Most modelers I know eschew moveable features and generally choose one position or the other.
Markings are provided for two vehicles, both in olive drab. The box art LVT with the yellow bands is from Iwo Jima in 1945. The second option is devoid of these bands, but named Slough and used in the Netherlands during 1944. Painting and marking information for the figures are provided in the full color instructions.
For those of you who missed this kit the first time around or just want another to build, here is your opportunity. It really is a fine deal and thanks to its relatively simple construction, is one that will not take months to finish.
Thanks to www.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview kit. Get yours today at your local shop or have them order it for you.
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