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M10 USSR (Lend-Lease) Kit

Academy 1/35 M10 USSR (Lend-Lease) Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review October 2018 Manufacturer Academy
Subject M10 USSR (Lend-Lease) Scale 1/35
Kit Number 13521 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-etch
Pros New tooling Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $56.00

First Look

M10 USSR (Lend-Lease) Kit
M10 USSR (Lend-Lease) Kit
M10 USSR (Lend-Lease) Kit
M10 USSR (Lend-Lease) Kit
M10 USSR (Lend-Lease) Kit

Originally developed as part of a mobile tank destroyer force in 1941, the M10 was composite solution to a complex problem. The US Army used a modified M4 Sherman chassis to transport a 76mm (3 inch) anti-aircraft gun in an open-top turret. The US was not the only ones to adapt an AA gun for anti-tank duties, the Germans used their 88mm AA gun against British and US armor in North Africa with devastating results.

This latest release from Academy uses their early M10 tooling to represent the surplus M10s shipped to the USSR under the lend-lease program. The kit is molded in a forest green styrene and is provided on ten trees, plus the upper and lower hull, one tree molded in gray styrene, one fret of photo-etched parts, and two runs of black vinyl track. The detail is finely molded and there does not appear to be any flash on any of the parts or trees. Ejector pin marks are mostly limited to areas that will not be visible when the kit is assembled, but there are a couple of spots that will need attention, primarily on the inside surface of the turret.

The M10 features a very detailed driver's and radioman's compartment, inner hull stowage, and ammunition racks. The turret is also beautifully detailed with the 76mm main gun, secondary armament, and turret stowage. The suspension and road wheels are very nicely executed.

Among the features and options:

  • Detailed road wheels and suspension system
  • Detailed transmission
  • Detailed driver's station
  • Detailed radio operator's station w/radio set
  • Positionable crew hatches
  • Ammunition racks with ammo tubes
  • Grouser racks on the rear hull sides
  • Choice of photo-etch or styrene light guards
  • Nicely detailed M7 76.2mm main gun in open-top turret
  • .30 caliber and .50 caliber machine guns on turret-top pintles
  • Nice selection of external stowage gear and pioneering tools

New with this release is a set of Soviet Army crew figures produced by Master Box. These figures include driver and four crewmen in various poses. While the set was designed for the T-34, these figures can be arranged in the turret as shown in the box art or in whatever configuration you'd like to portray.

As you can see in the accompanying photos, this model was designed for the modeler from the start - there are no holes in the lower hull for motors, switches or battery stowage. When assembled, the lower hull mates solidly with the upper hull leaving no unsightly gaps (and daylight) as was the case with the older Tamiya kits. Options in this kit include two styles of drive wheels and return rollers, two different styles of towing loops, two different types of towing hitches, positionable driver's and radioman's hatches, and even an additional 30 caliber machine gun to augment the 50 caliber. A complete set of ammunition is provided (stored in tubes in the hull and stored at the ready in the turret).

Numerous other details are also provided including canteens, lanterns, and even a Thomson submachine gun. A complete set of pioneering tools are also provided. The only minor drawback that I can find in this kit involves the pioneering tools, actually where they mount. The rear of the hull has silhouettes molded to show where to place the tools, and while this might be helpful for some, it will need to be removed with a little light sanding.

My sincere thanks to MRC for this review sample!