ICM 1/35 Soviet Regimental Artillery Horse Transport (1943-45)
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||Does not include artillery|
Horses in World War II were used by the belligerent nations for transportation of troops, artillery, materiel, and, to a lesser extent, in mobile cavalry troops. The role of horses for each nation depended on its military strategy and state of economy and was most pronounced in German and Soviet ground forces. Over the course of the war Germany and the Soviet Union employed more than six million horses.
Considering the numbers used in combat during WWII, it is surprising that there have not been more kits that feature horses in them. To be sure, they have not been forgotten as most model makers of military vehicles have had them in their catalogue from time to time. This new kit from ICM is the first time I've seen so many in the same kit.
Molded in their usual brown and grey plastic, this ICM kit contains four horses, two riders and the Soviet Universal Limber. No artillery piece is included. The molding is superb with no flash, no ejector pin marks and no sink areas that I could fine. Of the three large and two small sprues, two of the large ones are dedicated to the horses and their harnesses. Yes, even the harnesses (well the attachment bits that go to the linber) are included in the kit, though one will have to be very careful when removing them from the sprues as they are rather long and thin. The flat sections on the horses themselves are either molded on or will have to be scratchbuilt. I suggest using Evergreen flat strips of the proper width, or even heavy paper to duplicate these. There are saddles for the two ridden horses and the two riders are properly equipped with separate items as are appropriate. I should mention that I like the way the horses are molded. The heads are solid, separate molds with separate ear sections. The tails are also separate so that one can deal with the seams without these getting in the way. Legs are also solid sections that are molded onto each body half.
The other three sprues are in grey are for the Universal Limber. This is equally as well molded as the rest of the kit. It has the current convention of having the wheel/tire assembly in layers to eliminate the need to remove the circumferal seams that are found on standard kit tires/wheels and also provides a realistic depth to the tread.
You get two very different sets of instructions for this one. The instructions for the Limber are pretty much your standard ICM kit type with nicely done graphics and color information using Model Master paints. The ones for the horses and riders are different in that they look more like artist's sketches than standard computer drawings. In this set of instructions, the parts are shown already assembled with each of the parts shown in place. Same for the rider figures. No decals are supplied as none are needed.
A rather different but welcome addition to the ICM kit line-up and one that I think will sell better than most would suppose.
Thanks to Squadron Products for the preview kit. Get yours today at your local retailer.
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