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135
Bronco's M1A1 155mm Howitzer built

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Let me preface this by saying I know nothing about artillery, other than how to call for it to bring a bad day to the enemy. So, that being said, if I identify the nomenclature of a part incorrectly, I apologize.

overview


Now, Iím not a big fan of towed artillery kits, but this is one exceptional model regardless of the subject. There are several features that can be made to actually operate to some degree. The breech and breech block assemblies work, with the exception of the opening lever, but the breech block rotates into the breech and can be made to lock just as on the real thing. The recoil mechanism functions, the elevation gears rotate and the trails can be displayed either open or closed. The spades used when firing can be installed and removed from the trails. Due to some errant glue, a couple of parts of my build donít operate, but would have done if I hadnít got glue in the key areas.

the build


As nice as this kit is, I still ran into a few snags along the way. The first occurred in step 5 while installing part B27. There are two photo etch pieces that are installed with this. I opted to leave mine off and install them later once the build was complete to avoid damage. Well, once everything is together, it is near impossible to access where the PE goes and it is in such a non-visible place you wouldnít see it anyway. Suffice to say, mine is missing.

The sight assembly in step 7 is one of the more complex builds of the model. There is a lot of clean up of attachment points and minor seam lines, but patience pays off with an superbly detailed sight. Again, more PE is attached here, but I added it after completion to avoid damage during the remainder of the build. Step 10 deals with the assembly of the recoil springs (Iím guessing thatís what they are) and these are tedious. I have never seen injection molded springs like this and they are about the coolest thing ever. The attachment points and seam lines made for a difficult clean up, but they look OK. The guide rods for the springs are another matter. They are very delicate and bent easily during their removal from the sprues. A better option might be to replace them with styrene rod of the same diameter. The build then progressed well until step 15.
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About the Author

About Matthew Quiroz (Red4)
FROM: CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES

After a several year break from the hobby I have happily returned to it. Slowly, but surely getting my mojo back.


Comments

Thanks for that review, Matthew! It was enough to make me order my issue! I can't wait to be able to start it! IUt's definitely going to jump the cue! Cheers, Guido
JAN 17, 2012 - 05:57 AM
No problem Guido. It is a really nice kit. Just be sure to look over the instructions carefully in those few spots I stumbled on. "Q"
JAN 17, 2012 - 01:02 PM
Nice article Matthew.
JAN 17, 2012 - 01:38 PM
Thanks Dave, much appreciated. "Q"
JAN 19, 2012 - 01:45 AM
This is a very nice build review Matthew. I feel much more comfortable handling the small kit parts after reading through this. Cheers
JAN 31, 2012 - 04:36 AM