DML 1/35 U.S. Rangers Normandy 1944 - Premium Edition Kit First Look
|Date of Review||May 2006||Manufacturer||DML|
|Subject||U.S. Rangers Normandy 1944 - Premium Edition||Scale||1/35|
|Kit Number||6306||Primary Media||224 parts (191 in grey styrene, 28 etched brass, 5 DS plastic)|
|Pros||'Pumps up' older kit with state-of-the-art parts; four new character heads very useful||Cons||One of the older basic DML kits whose figures are more static than recent poses|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$14.00|
Dragon continues its series of "Premium Edition" kits – older kits with new state-of-the-art sprues and parts added – with this set of Rangers which were first produced in 1994 as Kit No. 6021. The original 80-part kit is now joined by DML's new "GA" equipment and "WA" weapons sprues, as well as a new American etched brass fret and four totally new heads made from DML's unique "DS" glueable vinyl-like plastic.
To recap, the original set of figures had four rangers from the Pointe du Hoc with charge bags, an M1 with rifle grenade, a BAR and a Bangalore torpedo section. All figures come wearing the special D-Day assault vests as well. The poses were good, and it was one of their first breakout figure sets which demonstrated that DML was serious about doing good, useful figure sets for modelers.
But in comparison with today's DML figures, which now comprise up to 17 parts for the human factor, each one here consists of only six: legs, arms, torso and head. While some modelers like this as it is not as "fussy" to assemble, there is a loss of some fidelity in doing figures this way. Enter the new head sets, which appear as good as any after-market set going and will give much more "personality" to the figures. Two are bareheaded and two are designed to take a helmet or the "ranger" cap included in the original set. A helmet with camouflage netting is included on the DS sprue.
The new parts consists of the "GA" set which covers the ammo pouches and canteens as well as holsters and first aid pouches. The original weapons sprue is included (primarily for the M1 with rifle grenade) and other "WA" sprues are provided, giving two M1 rifles, a BAR with different stock with butt monopod, bipod and accessories, an M1A1 Thompson, and an M1 carbine with magazines and accessories. The "WA" weapons are all "slide molded" with open bores and the rifles and carbine give a choice of open or closed bolts.
The brass fret is unique to this kit and provides the requisite straps for all weapons and helmets, and the carry straps for the charge bags for explosives.
Overall this is a good older set now made better by the additions, and re-release will help modelers who are looking for rangers or other D-Day figures get the ones they want.
Thanks to Freddie Leung of Dragon Models USA of DML for the review sample.