by: Robert Burik [ ]
the vehicle The M1130 is the command variant of the Stryker family. It is used as a brigade command vehicle, battalion command vehicle, S3 TAC command vehicle, RSTA squadron command vehicle, battalion S3 vehicle, and tactical air control party (USAF) vehicle. It is very similar in appearance to the Stryker ICV, but has a second power entry hatch located on the right side hull, a slightly reconfigured rear portion of the hull roof, and of course the added antennas for the command variant.
Folks may wish to refer to my review of the AFV Club M1130 as a comparison.
THE KIT Just like the other offerings from Trumpeter - and AFV Club - there is no non-slip surface on the kit. Some issues, like the strut guard covers, have been fixed from the original ICV kit, but others still remain, like the incorrect position of the DVE. Many will be thankful for the inclusion of add-on details like MRE boxes, Coke and Pepsi cases, water bottle cases, colored paper pre-cut to use as straps seen on the hull sides, MOLLE packs and three crew figures.
The main components of the hull remain the same. It still has some softer detail compared to the AFV Club kit. The tires have been updated by Trumpeter and now have the Michelin lettering embossed on them. However, the wheel hubs are still very basic and soft in detail. As noted, the strut guards are corrected using PE. Also getting the PE treatment is the exhaust deflector, which is now being used even on Strykers without slat armor, along with the wire cutters and the can holders on the rear of the hull.
Even though the RWS was updated with PE rain guards for the lenses, and the proper inclusion of the lens cap holder, it is still soft in detail, with the smoke dischargers being the most anemic along with the actual weapons themselves - .50 cal machine gun Mk 19 grenade launcher.The front winch assembly is the same softly detailed part from the original ICV offering, as are the poor light clusters.
A nice touch is the inclusion of the driver's windshield kit which is seeing wide use in Afghanistan at this time.
Of course, it is the antenna suite that makes the vehicle stand out. Trumpeter provides the choice between the Conical Logarithmic Spiral Mobile (CLSM) antenna and the X-blade antenna.
DECALS The decals are for two vehicles from the 2nd Cavalry Regiment stationed in Germany. Both options include crew member names on the left side of the hull.
CONCLUSIONS Highs: The basics are there along with interesting detail such as the stowage and pre-cut straps and driver's weather kit. Trumpeter took the criticism of the original ICV kit and fixed some shortcomings.
Lows: The DVE still remains in the incorrect position in front of the driver. The RWS was corrected in some respects but still is soft in detail. The tires were updated with lettering, but the wheel hubs are still poor.