Dragon 6378 US ARMY TANK RIDERS 1944-45
Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 scale ‘39-‘45 Series Kit No. 6378; U.S. Army Tank Riders 1944-1945; 258 parts (230 in grey styrene, 28 etched brass).
Advantages: nice new set of figures with US “Gen2" styling; weapons selection very nice
Disadvantages: some modelers not happy with “busy” assembly of Gen2 figure sets
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for any model who wants to “populate” an American tank model
For some time now all that DML has produced has been very nice and extensive sets of German figures using “Gen2" technology – more detailed figures, with some etched brass and slide-molded weapons sets of a very high order. With this set DML has now happily returned to “other than German” subjects with a set of American infantry in suitable poses to mount on the back of an American armored vehicle.
The figures are in nicely relaxed poses, all in late war uniforms with field jackets and “paratroop” boots. Two are sitting with their legs stretched out so that one could pose on each side of a Sherman engine deck. The other two are kneeling on both knees; this isn’t suitable for an “in action” vehicle portrayed as in movement, but they have the right look of wary Joes peering around the side of the turret for trouble.
Each figure follows the more detailed “Gen2" regime – 17 parts consisting of head (2), torso (2), legs (2), boots (2), hands (2), collar (1) and coat skirt (4). The figures themselves come with an M1 helmet with the fine mesh camouflage holder cover but six plain helmets are included on the generic US kit sprue. Small details for the figures include M1 grenades and smoke grenades, separate field jacket epaulettes , ammo pouches and bandoliers (the pouches have snap seals, the bandoliers only cloth folds) and brass straps for the helmets and slings. You will have to heat – anneal – the latter to get them to bend into shape for assembly.
The excellent artwork and painting instructions from Ron Volstad make the kit much easier to assemble and finish, but someday DML should give thought to waterslide transfers (decals) with stripes, “US” stencils, and unit patches for finishing off the figures.