Trumpeter 1/72 M113A2 APC Kit First Look
By Ray Mehlberger
|Date of Review||January 2008||Manufacturer||Trumpeter|
|Kit Number||7239||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Neat subject. Good interior detail||Cons||Not told what units markings represent|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$14.95|
The M113 is an armored personnel carrier family of vehicles in use with the US military and many other nations.
It is a fully tracked vehicle capable of limited amphibious operation in lakes and streams, extended cross-country travel over rough terrain, and high speed operation on improved roads. The M113 family has many variants and modifications that are used in a variety of combat and combat support roles. Approximately 80,000 units of all types have been produced worldwide making it the most widely used armored fighting vehicle of all time.
Although not a tank, or even designed as a fighting vehicle, the M113 was the most utilized armored vehicle of the Vietnam War. It inspired newer generations of more heavily armored and armed infantry fighting vehicles. Yet it remains in front-line service and production in the 21st century, and the M113 was recently declared the best in a television comparison of "top 10" armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles.
The kit comes in a tray and lid type box. The box art is a photo of the model made up with Red Cross ambulance markings on it. A side panel shows a 3-view illustration of the M113A2 in these same markings. Another side panel has a one paragraph history of the vehicle, in Chinese and English and a top view of the vehicle in a camouflage scheme.
Inside the box is a sealed cello bag with 5 light tan trees of parts and a single hull bottom part inside it. There are also lengths of black vinyl rubber band type tracks and the decal sheet in this bag. Each of the trees of light gray parts and the decal sheet are in further smaller cello bags. The decal sheet has a protective cover on its face to prevent it being scratched. Very thorough packaging, for sure.
The instructions complete the kit’s contents.
The instructions consist of a single sheet that accordion folds out into 8 pages.
The first page of the instructions begins with a side profile drawing of a M113A2 with the white lettering IFOR and the number 10 in white on the sides (one of the two marking options offered on the decal sheet). This is followed by international assembly symbol explanations and decal application instructions, all in Chinese and English.
Page 2 has the parts tree drawings on it.
Pages 3 through 7 give a grand total of 10 assembly steps. In step 10 the assembly of the 50 cal machine-bun and its mount is shown. I kind of doubt that the ambulance version would be armed? However, the photo of the model made up on the box art has this gun in place. Anybody know for sure?
Page 8 has a 5 view marking and painting illustration of the IFOR scheme (mentioned earlier). The overall color is called out as RLM 79 sandy brown. You will have to refer to the box arts for the decal placements and colors of the ambulance version, as it is not shown on the instruction sheet. We are not told what outfits these 2 marking schemes represent. The ambulance has a wave pattern of olive drab over the sandy brown. It has Red Cross markings on both sides of it and on the front and rear. There is black numbers on a yellow rectangle on the right front fender that says IA2-6-I. On the left fender (as you face the vehicle) is NO. 76 in black lettering, also on a yellow rectangle. These marks are all on the decal sheet.
Large part tree, letter A, holds: the road wheels, drive sprockets and idler wheels. (28 parts)
Large part tree, letter B, holds: the patterned inner floor plate, bulkheads, hull roof, head lamps, 50 cal machine-gun, cupola, hatches, engine and transmission parts etc. (29 parts).
Smaller letter C tree holds: rear fender boxes, lamps, engine air intake panel etc. (8 parts)
There is no letter D parts tree.
Small letter E parts tree holds: side skirt parts (2 parts).
Small letter F parts tree holds: the vehicle’s nose plate and 4 other parts. However, other than the nose plate piece (F1), I cannot find the other 4 parts portrayed anywhere in the instructions. I suppose they are excess.
The single hull bottom part, the black vinyl tracks and the small decal sheet complete the kits contents.
This is a neat kit of a much used modern APC. The detail is really nice, both inside and out.
Highly recommended to modelers of modern AFVs.