by: Darren Baker [ ]
In this review I will be taking a look at a series of Russian motor troops which represent Tanks very early figure releases, in fact if the identification codes represent Tanks release schedule this is the 13th set of figures to be released, unlucky 13?. This set consists of two figures which can be used individually or with any number of the six 2 figure sets available in the same vein. The sets are designed to be used on or around Russian armour of World War Two.
The figures in this pack are in the standard white card box with a colour print showing the figures assembled and painted on the front. Inside the box there are two clear zip lock bags with the parts for each of the figures together in each bag. Both figures are moulded in a tan resin and consist of:
• Torso and legs moulded as one
• Two arms
• Flat top head
• Water bottle
• clip magazine canvas pouches
• Personal weapon
Moulding detail of both of the figures such as facial features and hands is of a very high standard which will allow the more skilled figure painters to achieve a very lifelike appearance. Uniform detail is good throughout with nice crease detail and no obvious issues at all. The moulding all appears to be free of any of the issues that can affect resin such as air bubbles or distorted parts caused during the curing process but there is, of course, a limited amount of flash that will be easy to remove.
Figure 1 depicts a soldier in an all our run which is not the easiest stance to make look realistic. the figure is wearing the appropriate summer uniform, with some nice detail work having been done to represent the belt buckle and buttons on the shirt. There is some minor mould seams inside the crutch area that will need cleaning up but otherwise is a very clean torso and legs. This figure is armed with a Mosin-Nagant M1891 and is also supplied with four ammunition pouches in pairs. The other personnel equipment supplied with this figure consists of a water bottle and a satchel. One area that concerns me with this product is the pour plug location of the helmet, which being dead centre of the top of the helmet may create issues with removing it cleanly.
Figure 2 is depicted in an upright semi run/trot like stance which has resulted in a left leg that looks odd or too long. This figure is again depicted wearing the appropriate summer uniform with fair detail, but this is my least favourite figure due to just looking odd. This figure is armed with a Pistolet-Pulemet Shpagina obrazets 41 with drum magazine. The figure is supplied with a drum magazine ammunition pouch, water bottle, and satchel. Another possible problem with this figure is again the helmet which has the same location for the pour plug.
A large proportion of my reviews of these early Tank Russian figures has been copied and pasted from the first reviews I wrote, I make no apology for that as it has only been done were appropriate and to my mind shows the level of quality running across this range of figures. Moving on the level of detail is enhanced via the use of some very nice undercuts where needed on the uniforms with the exception of the cuffs. The undercuts around the cuffs may be possible with more modern moulding techniques but I suspect that this would lead to a number of figures arriving with their hands broken off, this could be overcome by supplying the hands as separately moulded items with long pins representing the lower arm and wrist but on the whole these figures are fine not withstanding my concerns about figure two in this set.
An area that Tank could possibly improve on these figures is the bottom of the boots which while where applicable an instep has been included no other detail has been replicated. I am aware that some footwear had no tread pattern with the only detail being the nail heads and stitching visible from the construction process that is not always the case. The fit of the figure parts that I have checked where they have been broken from the pour plugs during transit is very good and should not concern anyone.
During the course of writing the reviews of these early Tank figures something that has struck me is that moulding quality from Tank is of an exceptionally high standard. Looking at the early figures and some of their very latest the only real quality difference is in the finesse of the areas such as the hands. Moulding quality is for the most part excellent with the only issues encountered in any of the tank figures I have reviewed being one figure with some air bubbles and a poorly cured rifle.
Taking everything into consideration I have absolutely no trepidation in highly recommending these figures to you.
Pictures of the built and painted figures are from Tanks website.