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Sherman Mk.V 'Tulip'

DML 1/72 Sherman Mk.V 'Tulip' Kit First Look

By Cookie Sewell

Date of Review July 2007 Manufacturer DML
Subject Sherman Mk.V 'Tulip' Scale 1/72
Kit Number 7312 Primary Media 201 parts (153 in grey styrene, 46 etched brass, 2 DS plastic track runs)
Pros Continuing the versions of the Sherman and tracking the 1/35 scale DML offerings; very nicely done rockets and racks Cons Size of etched brass parts borders on the ridiculous
Skill Level Intermediate MSRP (USD) $13.98

First Look

DML's latest Sherman release gets them back on more stable ground with a nicely done Sherman V (M4A4) with the 60-lb rocket launcher option.

Attaching rockets to tanks has been an ongoing program by various nations since the beginning of armored vehicles. The Soviets had probably the most extreme version in which they essentially created rocket-powered 120 kilogram bombs and attached them to the sides of the turret of a BT-5 and called it the BT-5TT – TT for "tankoviy torpedo!"

During WWII the British were a bit more rational (one note of observation is the "Murphy's Law" corollary that if you attach explosives outside of your tank they can blow you up too!) and used much smaller 60-lb rocket projectiles. The idea was to provide overwhelming firepower at point-blank range against bunkers or infantry barricaded inside a building. The 60-lb rocket projectile warhead had the same basic impact and damage capability as the 5.5" gun so was extremely lethal at short range.

DML has now taken their Sherman V (M4A4) kit and added the rocket launchers to it. As before this basically combines the A, B and C sprues from the Firefly kit (details and mid-production VVSS suspension with welded road wheels and "straight" return roller arms with pillow blocks) with their M4A1 turret, as well as the two DS plastic British pattern steel chevron (T62 style) track runs.

The hull is beautifully done with "Slide Molding" providing the side details as well as the top and front/rear ones, including very petite weld bead details (less casting numbers!) and other niceties such as the fender/sand shield mountings. The turret likewise has been "Slide Molded" as has the gun barrel which has a hollow muzzle. Everywhere one looks are fine details such as bolts, screw heads, weld bead, etc.

All of the armored applique panels are included, three hull, one turret and the Firefly patch, but in this kit that is ignored. Again, the trailer hitch remains molded in the stowed position on the side of the rear doors, but unless you are planning on using an ammo trailer that is pretty minor. All of the crew hatches and the pistol port are separate parts and can be shown open or shut. There is no interior detail in the turret.

The transmission cover is the "bolted" three-section type with separate bolt flanges, which is normal for portraying this component, and has a choice of cast in or etched brass "ears" for the tow shackles. Other etched brass components include the taillight lenses, light guards, part of the tool brackets, and in the RP (right puny) department, the locking tabs and ears for the hatches. (These are maybe 0.5 x 1.0 mm.)

Surprisingly DML has not included the fenders/sand shields for this model of the Sherman, as they were more commonly used by Commonwealth tankers than Americans. Considering it would be a good idea to use etched brass for this, the omission is a bit odd. Another oddity, probably based on the "mix and match" sprues, is that for this kit they provide TWO M2HB .50 caliber machine guns, but neither one is used. Go figure.

The rockets come with two brackets, a two-piece launch rail, and rocket warhead/body and separate tail fin section. These have credibly thin fins and appear to be pretty much on the money.

Markings and finishing instructions are provided for three different tanks from the 1st Armoured Battalion, Coldstream Guards, Germany, 1945; all are in olive green with a choice of three different numbers (white 2A, white 2B or yellow 9B.) The complete markings for one of three tanks are provided on a small targeted Cartograf sheet.

Overall this is a nice little kit and unlike the unfortunate 105mm turrets uses one of the best of the DML efforts, now enhanced with the rocket racks.

Thanks to Freddie Leung of Dragon Models USA for the review sample.

Sprue Breakout:

  • A 38 M4A4 hull details
  • A 28 M4 75mm turret with M34/M34A1 gun mount
  • B 41 M4/M4A1 75mm Sherman details
  • C 30 Mid-production VVSS suspension
  • D 2 M4A4/Sherman V hull
  • D 14 60-lb rockets and racks
  • X 2 DS plastic tracks (T62 type)
  • MA 46 etched brass