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GAZ-05-193 Staff Bus

MiniArt 1/35 GAZ-05-193 Staff Bus Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review February 2016 Manufacturer MiniArt
Subject GAZ-05-193 Staff Bus Scale 1/35
Kit Number 35156 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-Etch
Pros Beautiful detailing Cons See text
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $61.99

First Look

GAZ-05-193 Staff Bus Kit
GAZ-05-193 Staff Bus Kit
GAZ-05-193 Staff Bus Kit
GAZ-05-193 Staff Bus Kit

The Gorkiy Automobile Factory was established in 1932 as a joint venture between Ford Motor Company and the Soviet Union. Established in Nizhny Novgorod, GAZ (Gorkovskiy Avtomobilnij Zavod) produced a number of Ford designs before modifying those designs to meet Soviet Army requirements. The GAZ-AA was based upon the Ford Model A light truck and by adding an additional axle and heavier suspension, this rendered the GAZ-AAA 2+ ton truck. This GAZ-AAA was a 4x6 that entered production in the mid-1930s and continued through the early 1940s. This vehicle, like many others, were pressed into wartime service with the Soviet Army in the Great Patriotic War (World War II) and captured examples were likewise put to work in the Wehrmacht.

MiniArt is back with this interesting variant of the GAZ-AAA which uses the GAZ-03-30 body shell with a bulkhead dividing the driver from the rear compartment which is configured as a mobile command post with seating for several personnel, radio set, and a folding work table. The kit is molded in light gray styrene and presented on 32 parts trees plus two trees of clear parts and one fret of photo-etched parts.

Construction starts with the chassis and it is highly recommended that you take the extra time to square and align the frame so the model will sit properly after assembly. If you have a jig for this job, so much the better. The same care will be needed for the twin-axle assembly to again ensure that the model is square. Each of the tires build up from seven disks, three on one half and four on the other. These go around 12 wheel hubs to create the ten wheels and two spares used by this truck. These separate tires and wheels will make painting much easier.

Once the chassis is built-up and the drive train installed, the truck cab goes together next. This is followed by the shelter and finishing steps. Among the features and options of the kit:

  • Highly detailed chassis and suspension
  • Highly detailed engine and drive train
  • Detailed engine compartment (right down to the hoses)
  • Hood can be positioned closed, partially open, or fully open
  • Cab doors can be positioned open or closed
  • Nice command post interior w/folding table, lamp, and storage cabinet
  • Wall-mounted radio set can be posed open or closed/covered

Markings are provided for one version in Soviet Army service circa 1942-43, and one captured version circa 1942. Painting instructions are provided using MIG paint colors which are fine for those that use MIG paints. MiniArt used to provide painting instructions for many different paint brands and it would be nice to see MiniArt return to that solution for those modelers that do not have or do not use MIG paints.

Here is another work of art from MiniArt Models. This kit will build up into a very detailed model of this old Gazified Ford Truck. As a standalone model, this will be a nice contender on the contest table, but with the addition of figures and a nice display base, this model can be the basis of a great diorama or vignette.

My sincere thanks to MiniArt for this review sample!