A few posts ago I mentioned that I had bought a whole company of Polish 7TP tanks, plus six extras for the dw version, from Battlefront via Element Games. It was now time to build the little blighters.
The jw single-turret versions are very easy to build: all you have to do is add a commander and hatch to the top of the turret, the gun to the front of the turret, the correct turret base plate to the main body of the tank, and then the tracks to either side.
There is, however, one thing to watch out for. There is a spot on the left hand side of the hull, towards the front, where the resin is very thin and very weak. Fully six of the twenty-two models I constructed either came out of the packet with this bit chipped away, or broke there as I glued the left hand track on.
Here's a picture to show what I mean:
Now with the turret on, and after painting, these gaps probably won't be noticeable on the tabletop, but it's enough of a hole to make me think about reaching for the green stuff. Six out of twenty-two tanks broken in this way (about half out of the packet like that, about half caused by me until I realised how careful you need to be) isn't a very good score from Battlefront.
In my earlier post, I did mention that building twenty-two of the same type of tank would be a good opportunity to check quality control. You've got the above weak resin spot, but were there any more problems?
Well unfortunately there were. Two of the twenty-two had genuine mis-casts or breakages, as shown in the pics below:
So if we count half the tanks with the weak spot gone (i.e. blame me for the other half) and add the two shown above, that's five out of twenty-two packs or 22% damaged items.
22% or about one in every five.
That's much worse than I was expecting.
So, Battlefront, and it gives me no pleasure at all to say this, you have an amazing range of great-looking kits but, given availability of the tank I want, I will always go for Zvezda and/or Plastic Soldier Company before you: not because I particularly like plastic tanks, but because your quality control is so rubbish. Simples.
Here's a final picture of the end of the build:
Vis Lardica is a website devoted to wargaming and military history, with a special emphasis on the company-sized rulesets produced by the TooFatLardies: I Ain't Been Shot Mum (WW2); Charlie Don't Surf (Vietnam); and Quadrant 13 (science fiction)
Welcome to Vis Lardica, a not-for-profit website mostly dedicated to the company-sized wargaming rules produced by the TooFatLardies, but encompassing my other gaming interests as well.