by: Pat McGrath [ ]
IntroductionThe British six pounder anti tank gun debuted in the North Africa Campaign and went on to be used by British and Commonwealth forces and by the US, as the 57mm A/T gun, on nearly all fronts until the end of the war. I donít think they were supplied as Lend Lease to the USSR, though Iím open to correction. Resicast have previously released, I believe, four versions of the 6 pdr and have now produced this version of it in its towed configuration.
The KitInside the usual strong cardboard box are five zip lock bags containing 39 resin parts and a small pe fret. The kit also comes with an A5 12 page instruction booklet.
The most significant thing about this kit is that the main body of the gun, including the breech, axle and part of the gun shield and barrel, comes as one resin piece mostly covered in tarps. So you get no detail around the breech such as the gun sight or elevation wheels etc. The large block comes with a small stub of a casting plug on the bottom which needs to be removed. The barrel, which is also resin, comes with the muzzle brake wrapped in a cover.
The casting on all the parts is quite sharp and pieces like the front gun shield and the side gun shield are commendably thin and I could find no air bubbles. The detail on pieces like the ready rounds and the ammo boxes is also very crisp. The small pour plugs on the wheels are attached to a slightly flat spot which can be positioned as where the wheels touch the ground. The wheels also have a small amount of flash which can be removed by a stiff tooth brush.
A word of warning; be careful when handling the thin parts or removing the smaller parts from their plugs. The resin is not brittle but the attachment points are very thin and can snap. I managed to remove some very small parts from their plugs just by taking them out of the bag and was then faced with identifying them by their b/w photos in the instructions. It is possible when handling thin pieces like the gun shield to bend them out of true, so again be gentle.
I test fit some of the parts such as the barrel and the gun shield sides. The barrel simply slots into a recess in the gun body. The same goes for the gun shield sides and the trail legs.
The main building work to be done is on the ends of the trail legs with the locking mechanism and the spades. Because the kit is adapted from Resicastís previous release the parts are not numbered sequentially and going through the instructions I see that some parts; (11),(12), (15), (17) are not mentioned in the Key to the parts on page one. Although it should be simple enough to do, the instructions do not show the wheels being attached.
Some of the photos of the spade and locking mechanism assembly are a bit unclear. The detail is hard to make out because the pale colour of the resin doesnít photograph well in black and white. A possible way for resicast to get around this in the future would be to increase the contrast of the photos or to prime the kit and give it a wash of a dark colour to make the detail stand out. I havenít built many artillery pieces, but when I have I make sure to gather photos of the real thing to help with the assembly. Luckily there are lots of walk around photo references for the 6 pdr online.
When news of this release was first posted on Armorama there was a comment from Geoff Baines (UK Geoff) about the tread pattern on the tires. Iím not an expert on British tire tread patterns but I think Geoff is right and the raised chevrons should be as wide as the recessed ones. I had a look at as many photos as I could find and while some of them showed different patterns, none of them showed skinny raised chevrons as in the Resicast kit.
Apart from the wheels the kit matches all the references I found for the 6-pdr. As well as the gun itself, some stowage for the towing vehicle is provided. This consists of some fuse boxes, metal ammo crates and a pile of small packs cast together, topped by some tarps to represent the gun crew's gear.
ConclusionThough not without its faults the kit should build into a nice representation of the 6 pdr in its traveling mode.Itís an interesting kit in that you get to build an anti-tank gun without all the detail around the the breech. True Artillery aficionados (-I donít know, that word just came to me) will probably prefer to build a 6 pdr with all parts visible, but this kit will, I think, find a place in some interesting dioramas. It should go together well and is a less complicated build than the other fuller Resicast versions, and also much cheaper.