by: Kevin Brant [ ]
During World War 1 there was use of chemical warfare on both sides, hence the requirement of gas masks by soldiers. ICM having previously released a set of World War 1 infantry, have now released a set of figures wearing gas masks.
3 Plastic Sprues
2 Instruction Sheets
The parts for this kit from ICM come inside a single plastic bag within the box. The three sprues provided consist of a main sprue with the figure parts, a small sprue with the heads and gas mask parts, and a third sprue containing gear and weapons. The overall molding of the figures is well done, with good uniform definition including straps and belts. The figures parts are very similar in layout to most kits, legs, torso, arms and heads all separate.
Known that ICM had released a previous kit of World War 1 French figures, I compared the figures in this kit. I did find that these figures are the same figures that are included in the first release(Kit N0.35691). The only difference in this kit is the inclusion of the small sprue with parts making up the heads wearing gas masks, and two additional arm pieces to change the look of two figures. With that said, they can still be a useful set of figures to show an action during a "gas attack". And I must add that the molding of the gas mask does look good.
The third sprue is also well done and contains individual equipment, including helmets, and assorted World War 1 French weapons. The weapons include the Hotchkiss machine gun, Chauchat, Lebel-Berthier rifles, some with bayonets attached and more. Other items include mess tins, sheathed bayonets, canteens, mugs, etc. All these items look useful not only for the figures, but as accessories for vehicles or dioramas.
Having the firgures, I though I would have a go at putting a couple together. Overall the fit was pretty good. But based on the design on how some of the arms, a v-groove, attach, it may make re positioning them a little more work. There is also a bit of a fit issue for where the overcoat folds over at the bottom. This will require careful fitting, clamping, and a little filler. Also some of the personal equipment that is to be attached does not fully align with the molded straps on the figure. This may take a bit more work to correct if so desired. I found with some gentle carving of plastic and placement, the gap can be reduced a bit.
For the instructions, they look to be well laid out and standard to most figure sets. There are paint references for both Tamiya and Revell colors for the figures, and Model Master colors for the weapons and equipment.
Overall this looks to be a nice figure set from ICM. The combination of World War 1 figures with gas masks can prove useful for a diorama or vignette to capture the image of World War 1. The moldings look to be well done, with some minor fit issues, and the inclusion of the full weapons sprue should make your "spares box" a little happier. I would definitely recommend this kit for the subject and good looking figures.