SMK 1/87 Kraz-255B1 Soviet Army Truck

KIT #: 87005
PRICE: $15.95 from
DECALS: Several options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken


AvtoKraz Holding Company is a well known auto maker in more than 60 countries. It is known for its powerful, reliable and simple to operate heavy-duty trucks. The company has manufactured approximately 800,000 heavy-duty trucks for its semi-centennial automobile history. Model range of automobile machinery of Kraz trademark consists of 25 base models and more than 150 modifications of 2, 3 and 4 axle vehicles with the wheel arrangement 4x2, 4x4, 6x4, 6x6, 8x4 and 8x6. Among them there are dumpers, truck tractors, platform trucks, timber and log trucks, chassis for special equipment mounting as well as trailers. Tanks and fuel oil tanks, wide range equipment used in oil-and-gas, mining and timber industries, construction, road and municipal services can be mounted on Kraz chassis. Due to their high technical capabilities, Kraz trucks have been adopted by many armies around the world.

The KrAZ 255B-1 is one of those and subject of this kit. This 6x4 was developed from the KrAZ-214 and production began in 1965. After a 20 year run, the last rolled off the assembly line in 1985 at the Kremenchuck Autotruck factory in Ukraine. Even today, thousands of these trucks are in service with both military and civilian operators.


Here we are with yet another HO scale military truck. This time from SMK in Ukraine. This one is quite nicely done in a variety of colors with many of the parts in a small bag and not on sprues as we are most accustomed to seeing. There are some rather large ejector towers that will need to be removed, but nothing major. The cab is provided with seats and a steering wheel. There is a somewhat thick clear piece for windows so any detailing will be pretty well unnoticed.

The kit comes with a full chassis that is quite nicely detailed. The transfer case and transaxles are well molded and especially so is the rather delicate looking spare tire carrier. This is a flat bed truck with stake sides and a full, closed canvas top. The top can either be simply pressed into place or left off as one chooses. There are no side seats or anything else for the inside of the bed. The kit provides seven vinyl tires that are well detailed.

Instructions are nicely illustrated and provide part numbers (which is a bit odd as there are no real sprues). Each sub-assembly is shown in the major construction step in which it is to be used. There is no color information provided in the build portion of the instructions. That is saved for the camo and markings section. This truck has a black chassis, Russian Green body and khaki canvas top. Humbrol paint references are provided. The small decal sheet seems to be for all KrAZ trucks so not all markings will apply. There are several country badge markings for the door and one simply chooses the one to be use. No other decals seem to be used aside from a license plate. The decals are fairly well printed and should be no trouble.


As 1/144 is a good scale for big planes, so 1/87 would seem to be a good one for trucks. It definitely won't take up a ton of space and the detailing is such that I think you'll be pleased with the result.


Kit instructions

April 2009

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