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In-Box Review
135
Leichttraktor Rheinmetall 1930
Leichttraktor Rheinmetall 1930
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by: Darren Baker [ CMOT ]


_ORGINPUB:
Armorama

Introduction

Following the end of World War One Germany was forbidden to build tanks and armoured vehicles, but that did not stop the Germans working on tank designs. These early tanks were usually trialled in Russia, but this again was quickly forgotten by Germany who called these new tanks tractors; I suspect in an effort to hide their efforts from the Allied countries that forced the treaty of Versailles upon them. The Leichttraktor Rheinmetall 1930 was trialled but never went into production; I am led to believe that this was due to it being unable to take the gun that it was intended to have.

I have to say that I have been really looking forward to the release of this model from ICM as it is the only tier 1 tank from World of Tanks that I have retained and still take out from time to time. So letís take a look at what we get here.

Review

This release from ICM is packaged in the usual manner, of a cardboard tray with flip top lid, and a separate card lid with an image of the product printed on it. Inside there is a single re-sealable plastic bag containing all the parts for the model. Loose inside the box is an instruction booklet, with the decals nestled inside for protection. In the bag are two further bags containing rubber tracks and a clear sprue. There are five grey sprues, three of which are identical due to containing the parts for the suspension and wheels. Many of you will be aware by now that I am not a fan of putting everything in one bag and the fact that one of the pins for mounting the return rollers was broken and had to be repaired is proof of my concerns.

I have to say here and now that I am itching to build this model more than any other kit I have had in some time, so forgive me if I swoon a little over this little tank. The hull of the tank is a box like structure that is not an appealing shape, but ICM has done a great job of replicating the detail on the model that was present on the limited number of photographs that are available of the vehicle. The engine and crew hatches have been supplied as separate parts and so if desired could be left open provided the modeller is willing to tackle an interior for the model. I am also pleased to see clear lenses for the main lights on the vehicle. The exhaust for the model has a good degree of detail on it and even has a hollow end present. My concern here is that the ribbed section of the exhaust has been produced in two halves and I am dreading having to hide joints seams, but I am hoping the rusty appearance favoured by many modellers will easily hide such issues as may be present.

Moving onto the wheels and suspension I found two distinct wheel set ups, one is open sided and has fewer ground wheels and at least one larger wheel at the front station similar to that of the Valentine tanks. The version offered here has a large shield over the suspension and has twelve ground wheels of the same size that reminds me of the Hungarian tank designs. I will say that as the wheels are on separate sprues and as ICM likes to offer a full range of vehicles I expect to see the other version within six months. Mudguards are present on this vehicle and ICM has used a method I have seen elsewhere in that the underside is tapered to give a visual impression of a thinner profile.

The tracks for the model are as mentioned earlier in vinyl rubber and requires that two lengths for each side be attached to each other. The detail is very good and reminds me of the wooden block tracks seen on World War One gun tractors. Providing these tracks are a snug fit they will look quite reasonable as they do not appear to have track sag in the images of the vehicle I have found online. I cannot comment on as yet if these tracks can be easily glued together or will require an alternate approach.

The turret has been moulded in two halves and has separate side hatches, I like this as a figure could easily be displayed in situe. The reason for this is that ICM has supplied a good breach for the main gun and the machine gun or more accurately the Maxim gun. The main gun has been designed to allow it to be elevated. The main gun is a single piece except for a small section near the muzzle that replicates the needed hollow look.

ICM has supplied a three colour camouflage pattern listed as for Leichttraktor Rheinmetall Germany 1930, but I would have expected an all grey finish or a brown and grey finish. So I will leave that argument to yourselves to fight out as I look forward to the build. I will say that some images do seem to indicate a three colour pattern being present.

Conclusion

This is a model I have been really looking forward to since it was announced and it has not disappointed. I was a tad upset at a part being broken but it was easily repaired. I really like that clear lenses for the lights were included rather than trying to paint plastic to represent lenses. I am suspicious of the finish and so will be looking online for further guidance. SO all that is left to say is where did I leave the glue and snips?
SUMMARY
Highs: Well moulded detail in the plastic that all appears accurate.
Lows: I would prefer a different approach to the tracks if for no other reason than painting and weathering vinyl is difficult.
Verdict: A model that I am really looking forward to making a start on. Nice one ICM.
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 35330
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Apr 14, 2019
  NATIONALITY: Germany
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 87.04%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 84.66%

Our Thanks to ICM Holding!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Darren Baker (CMOT)
FROM: ENGLAND - SOUTH WEST, UNITED KINGDOM

I have been building model kits since the early 70ís starting with Airfix kits of mostly aircraft, then progressing to the point I am at now building predominantly armour kits from all countries and time periods. Living in the middle of Salisbury plain since the 70ís, I have had lots of opportunitie...

Copyright ©2019 text by Darren Baker [ CMOT ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of Model Shipwrights. All rights reserved.



Comments

Aaaarrrgghhhhh...... Rubber bands .... Maybe if I let it sit in the stash long enough there might be aftermarket tracks .... / Robin
APR 14, 2019 - 10:00 AM
Too right! Those tracks are pretty sad by modern standards. The complete lack of any discernible detail on the inner surface is positively 1960s. Ouch.
APR 14, 2019 - 10:11 AM
Unless the real things were rubber bands but I sort of doubt it. Was industry at that time able to make rubber band tracks? The US half tracks had rubber bands ....
APR 14, 2019 - 10:47 AM
Ill be honest and say that I think you could get away with them and if a preferential offering is made later could easily be swapped out.
APR 14, 2019 - 11:24 AM
Regarding possible paint schemes... Some sort of tricolor-with-edging (or painted-in separating boundaries) would, I think, be very likely for this vehicle in the time-period it was trialled in. 1930 was definitely in the "inter-war" period. Historically, the Germans had applied both soft-edged and bounded hard-edge schemes to their domestically-produced artillery and tanks (such as the AV7), as well as to aircraft during WWI. Camo schemes were in use with the "Reichswehr" during the early 1930's on trucks and artillery, and the 4-color "Buntfarben-Anstricht" schemes were applied to the first "tanks" (Pz. 1a) adopted starting from late 1933. German armored vehicles and artillery switched to using the dark grey base-coat with 1/3 brown bi-color scheme in 1938 - so the late 30's would be the period when one might reasonably expect all-grey vehicles in German service - not so likely in 1930. Historical photos of the Rheinmetall LT in ca 1930 show that both Rheinmetall and Krupp trials tanks sported evident camo patterns.These would be "pre-formal Buntfarben-A scheme" bi- and tricolor schemes. So I would probably plan on doing a camo scheme on one of these, were I to challenge its rubber-band tracks "Stylistically-speaking", a camo scheme is appropriate. Whether the exact colors used in 1930 match what this kit's color-scheme calls for is another question entirely... Note that both Rheinmetall-Borsig and Krupp fielded trials-versions of the "LeichtTraktor" - and the RM-B version was seen in two different wheel-configurations and with and without wheel-covers. The mud-chute side-plates covered the 8-small-wheel w coil springs suspension RM-B design. The alternative RM-B suspension was 4 larger wheels with different leaf-spring sets. The Krupp version was pretty different in hull and turret design and suspension, and used the mixed-size road-wheel set - with photos showing it w and w/out complete and partial mud-chute side-plates. And camo patterns included both hard-edge and soft-edge / sprayed types, per numerous photos, of both types. I can imagine at least 3 - maybe 4 - different Leichttraktor kits coming along... 2 RM-B versions featuring the 2 different suspension systems, and 1 or 2 Krupp versions, featuring Krupp w/ and w/out mud-chute side-plates (however, the Krupp version(s) will need a new hull and turret along with its different suspension system...) On a different, "comparative technology", note: The different suspensions seen in the photos all later appeared in the Pz.III development... And it's pretty interesting that both RM-B and Krupp utilized an "engine-forward" design - sort of reminiscent of the British WWI "Whippet" tank - coupled with a rear-crew-entry hatch and a rear-mounted turret... Notably, both format features essentially vanished from German tank design, which moved to driver-forward, engine-rear, turret-mid forms for WWII. And... An interior kit would be just the cat's meow! There are some pretty good photos showing some of that interior, so... :-) Cheers! Bob
APR 14, 2019 - 12:18 PM
umhum, lots of dirt & muck can hide a lot of nonexisting details
APR 15, 2019 - 12:59 AM
Well Hats off to ICM I say! Rejoice - it's not another bloody Tiger or Panther. Not separate track links? Well dear God - how about we suck that up and actually model the damn thing. With the chance of a decent colour scheme - the Reichsheer version of Buntfarbeanstricht - if I've got that right) - this could be a really interesting model on the display tables. Thanks Darren - this could be a great little model; one can only hope for a Grosstraktor follow up. Brian
APR 15, 2019 - 08:38 AM
   

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