The Chevrolet G7107 truck served during WWII and after. The vehicle saw service on both the Eastern and Western fronts. The truck was provided to the Soviets under lend/lease and proved extremely popular with Soviet forces, proving to be rugged and reliable. It was even put to use by the Soviets as a Katyusha rocket launching vehicle. On the Western front huge numbers of trucks were required to provided everything from a cigarette to tank parts and fuel at the front. As the Western allies advanced quickly to Germany, the extensive lines became longer and longer resulting in the need for thousands of trucks to transport supplies from the ports where they were landed to the troops that needed the items that had been unloaded. This offering from MiniArt Models provides the modeller with the truck, a driver figure and a fuel load destined for the front.
This offering from MiniArt is provided in a card tray, with separate card lid. Inside is a single plastic bag containing all of the parts for the model, plus another bag inside that one containing the decals and clear parts for the model. Compliant number One - I really do not like finding decals packaged with injection moulded parts, due to the risk of damage to the decals themselves. The photo etch for the model, is protected by a card envelope which is something I highly approve of. An examination of the model parts reveals no real areas for concern, beyond the removal of some fine parts without damaging them. On the plus side access to the parts is good.
The chassis of the truck is a multi-part construction that will require a meticulous placement of parts to ensure that it is assembled in the correct orientation. Due to the cross members, basically being straight bars in simplified terms this will prove harder than you may suspect - so take you time and get it right, or you will struggle later if it is out on alignment. The chassis of this model, by it very important it is to get this right. The leaf spring suspension is single piece mouldings, but there are seam lines that will require to be cleaned. Some of the parts added to the model, such as fuel tank and battery box, are extremely well detailed and it is a pity that when stood on its wheels details such as these will be hard to see. The axles provide the modeller with an idea of the finesse of this kit, due to the metal U-clamps that secure the rear axle to the leaf springs, which are obviously very finely moulded parts. A suggestion on my part, would be to get some 0.5mm metal rod and use the plastic parts as a template, and using the rod as a replacement part.
Moving to the oily parts of the model, and MiniArt has provided a highly detailed full engine, that consists of a very high number of pieces and they have even remembered to supply all the parts for application to the fire wall between the engine bay and cab interior. Complaint number 2, is that I do not believe it is possible to show the front wheels turned without surgery. With that complaint said the detail in this area is exceptional. The only parts a modeller will need to add, is the wiring and tubing that should be present with the modeller who likes to go the extra yard, being able to add details such as fuel and brake lines.
The cab of the model, caught me out, as the interior of the roof is a separate part to the exterior. The doors are provided with separate door cards and door furniture, which adds a nice level of detail and MiniArt has even gone to the extent that they show you in the instructions that the door windows can be shown wound up, down or anywhere in-between. Interior detail for the cab, is of a high standard with decals provided for the instrument dials, and even a rear view mirror. The vent for allowing air into the cab, can be shown open or closed. One of my pet hates is present inside the cab, which is a featureless seat. Anybody who has stuck their head inside a military truck, will know that the thing with a life of its own is the seat. The grille details on the side engine panels, are actually moulded open, which is a particularly nice detail. The front window of the cab can be shown extended into its open position, but I am a little unclear as to how the photo etch wiper blades sit on the open window. The lights on the vehicle are provided with clear lenses, and the hood can be shown open or closed with MiniArt even provided the support arm for the hood when in the open position.
The cargo bed for the model, is provided by flat panels to which you add the support rails and quite a lot of photo etch, while no indicated in the instructions showing the tailgate down, should be a relatively straight forward process. The chain for supporting the tail gate is provided by MiniArt with proper metal chain, and photo etch clamp detail. The supports for the mud guards and for the vehicles tools are all provided in photo etch, which should please the high end modeller greatly. The tyres and wheels are both injection moulded construction, with the tyres having good tread detail, and manufacturer’s marks.
The items that I consider as optional items, are provided in the form of eight 200ltr fuel/oil barrels. The barrels are in two different styles, as regards to rib pattern, the lids or bottoms (Whichever you would like to call them) are also provided with two different options, and to top it off you get four manual fuel pumps and nozzles, only requiring you to put the tubing in the middle. Perhaps you could show a vehicle re-fuelling itself. The figure provided in the set, is one that I have seen previously, and shows a figure stepping on to the running board prior to entering/exiting the vehicle. The uniform is made up of loose fitting dungarees, and jacket. A holstered side arm with shoulder holster is provided. The hat is the woollen style cap with brim, and has exceptional detail in my opinion. The face detail on this figure is very soft on one side, as so worthy of replacement, although I find the hands and finger detail to be good but could still be improved with a little clean up.
MiniArt has provided four finishing options for this release, and these are as follows:
12th Air Force, 86 FBG, Kobra north, Cape Bon Peninsula, Tunisia, 1943
1st Signals Battalion, 1st Armoured Corps (7th Army), Sicily, Italy, August 1943
US Military Police, 7th Army, France 1944
US Army Service Forces, 9th Service Command, January 1945
A number of decals have also been provided for the fuel cans, which is a nice inclusion.
This offering from MiniArt, is a very high quality representation of a Chevrolet G7107 truck. Which should reach the high expectations of even the most discerning modeller. The fuel containers, and driver add a nice additional extra, and as far as I can see the only parts a modeller will really need to add, are some cables or lines. The negatives are minimal, as regards what is provided with the packaging being my biggest concern. In all other regards, the ability to show the hood, doors and tail gate open, as well as MiniArt providing the supports for those options garner high points from me.