by: Rowan Baylis [ ]
CMK have recently released a beautifully sculpted 1:35 resin crew figure to accompany their German WW1 25cm schwerer Minenwerfer (heavy mortar).
The figures arrives in a simple blister-pack with a card backing and the sample set reached me in perfect condition. The kit comprises 7 parts, with the figure broken down into 4 pieces - the torso, head, left hand, with the right cast integrally with the shell that the crewman carries on his shoulder. 3 more pieces provide a spare round encased in a wicker carrying "basket" with separate handles.
The casting on the sample kit is essentially perfect. I couldn't find any surface blemishes, and noted just one tiny bubble inside the figure's right elbow. This will only take a moment to remedy. The parts are attached to substantial casting blocks, but removing them was very simple (I've left the torso attached to its plinth to make painting simpler) and clean-up afterwards was minimal. The resin used is easy to trim and sand.
The parts of the figure fit together perfectly and there's no adjustment or filler required at the joints.
Sadly, CMK don't credit the sculptor, which is a real shame, because I think his or her work is superb. Boasting a classic period moustache, the figure is full of character, stooping and grimacing slightly under the weight of the 25cm round. The wickerwork effect on the spare round is very precise and regular, so I imagine this has been CAD produced.
Backing up the kit is a simple set of instructions that show the breakdown of parts, along with a sketch of the completed figure that serves as a basic painting guide. The latter may be good enough to get you started, but you will want to find further references for more details (e.g. the sketch doesn't even pick out the cap badges). Matches for Humbrol paints are provided, but of course it's simple to cross-reference to other ranges to suit your own taste or local availability.
ConclusionI'm very impressed by CMK's German artilleryman. The sculpting and casting is immaculate - so good that it's enough to convince even a dedicated propeller-head like me to start practising my figure-painting sufficiently to do it justice! I would recommend this figure without hesitation to anyone building a German WWI artillery vignette.
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