129 parts (99 parts in grey
styrene, 27 etched brass, 2 tan DS plastic track runs, 1 length of
twisted steel wire)
retail price estimated at US $11.95
Amazing amount of detail in a 1/72 scale
kit; very nicely done with new parts breakdown showing it was not
pantographed; DML discovers weld beads!
Highly Recommended for all Shermaholics and
1/72 scale modelers
In this day and age many modelers
greet a new Sherman kit with the same sort of lackadaisical attitude
that non-German modelers greet another Tiger kit – nice, but not my
cup of tea. But this little gem is something new, a really great
model of a late-model ("Wet" stowage) Sherman with a unique way to
breakdown its parts and a really great looking kit.
First off, DML is to be congratulated for FINALLY discovering the
hull weld beads on Shermans! No trenches, just petitely raised weld
beads all around the upper part of the hull. That alone makes the
kit worth investigating, for it is the first one so far to get it
The model is an early production version of the late Sherman – VVSS
suspension, 47 degree ("big hatch") hull, T-23 style turret with
commander's vision cupola and loader's split hatch ring mount for
the .50 caliber machine gun, early style exhaust deflector, and
choice of either an M1A1 gun with thread protector or the later
M1A1C with muzzle brake; both of the latter are "slide molded" so
they have hollow bores.
Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:
The hull has two odd holes in the
bottom which appear to have something to do with the preassembled
variants (perhaps the base mounts for the pre-assembled ones; they
are too small for screws). Barring that, the upper hull is again
"slide molded" in one section and has the mounts for the side
shields on it with bolt holes clearly visible. The smaller tools
(e.g. mattock, tanker's bar, and axe) are molded in place, but the
remaining ones are separate.
The suspension is unique, as it does not copy that of the larger
Sherman kits. The bogie assemblies consist of a VVSS spring set, a
bogie outer section with an "upswept" return roller molded in place,
, a rear section, and a twin road wheel set with the rear section of
the articulating arms molded in place. Net result is that with only
four parts you get a nice, neat finished bogie assembly. The wheels
are the "cast" type with covers in place; likewise it comes with
solid (e.g. matching) idlers and "solid" ring drivers.
The tracks are T48 type with rubber
The turret consists of a top and bottom with the pistol port molded
in place, but the cover left separate. This is again a "slide
molded" part to get the detail resolution. (Note that everything
with a casting number except the mantelet has one, even though you
will need a jeweler's loupe on some of them!)
The turret is quite complete, with
a very nicely done machine gun with parallel heat jacket at the rear
of the barrel and separate spade grips.
The etched brass parts replace some of the detail parts provided in
styrene, such as the front fender tips, the rear luggage rack, and
some of the tool racks. The parts are called out on the directions
with blue for parts to be trimmed or removed and a mustard color for
the brass parts to be installed; this is quite helpful as the
directions are thankfully in black and white and parts are thus much
easier to see.
Markings and finishing instructions are provided for four vehicles:
761st Tank Battalion (The "Black Panthers," an African-American
unit), Task Force Rhine, Germany 1945; 760th Tank Battalion, US 5th
Army, Italy 1945; 19th Tank Battalion, 9th Armored Division, Belgium
1944; and a captured Sherman, Aschaffenburg, Germany 1945.
Overall this is a really decent rendering of a Sherman, and I can
only hope that DML goes back now and fixes the "trenchline" welds in
their 1/35 kits!