Mig Productions
BK1125 Bronekater Soviet Armored Motorboat
1:35 #MP 35-253

Review by Terry Ashley
Mig Productions
Model by Mig Jimenez and image couresy of Mig Productions

Mig Productions showed they weren’t afraid to venture into new ground with the recent BJ44/45 Technical series and have now released a limited edition full resin kit of the WWII Soviet BK1125 Armored Motorboat “Bronekater” which at 65cm long in 1:35th scale makes quite an impressive model.

The BK boats were used between 1939 and 1945 on all European fronts from Austria to Stalingrad and in all rivers and were armed with different combinations of turrets and KATUSKA rockets for bombardment with the model depicting a boat with three 12.7mm machine gun turrets from the T-28 or T-35 tank and a 76.2mm T-34 Model 1941 main turret.

The BK boat had a 10 man Naval infantry crew and were transported by train to move the units from a river to river and was specially designed to cross tunnels and bridges on board train wagons.

The Soviets used these ships in frontal attacks against other land tanks or enemy infantry with those armed with KATUSKA rockets for bombardment against fortifications or cities (Vienna in Austria was bombed with these ships).

The BK boats can be painted in 4 different camouflage schemes:

The kit is cast in 192 light cream resin parts with thin thread for the railings and antenna, two lengths of heavy and light chain, a short length of wire plus a full colour instruction sheet.

The quality of the resin casting is excellent with the large hull and deck sections being perfectly cast without any warping and the smaller parts free of any air holes or other blemishes to provide a good starting point.

The parts have the usual casting blocks to be removed which is quite normal for resin sets and shouldn’t pose any problems with a number of parts cast so that you don’t need to fully remove the casting blocks such as the gun turrets and top deck sections which reduces the workload somewhat.

The main hull is divided into three sections, the forward, centre and rear hull/deck sections with the lower hull sections cast partially hollow to reduce the weight a bit with the separate upper deck sections that then fit into the lower hull.

The casting blocks of the upper deck sections cover the full length of the deck undersides but don’t need to be removed as they are designed to fit into the lower hull sections as is. But you may need to trim a bit a excess resin to get a good sit and trial fitting will determine this and it’s a lot better than having to remove the entire casting blocks.

The lower hull sections have the full hull and are not just waterline which will allow more opportunities for displaying the model with the casting blocks on the bow section being on the underside centreline and easy to remove while on the other two sections there are quite large casting blocks on one end that will take a bit to remove with a razor saw making sure you don’t cut off the locating plugs on the centre section.

Locating plugs and holes on hull sections
Mig Productions
These large locating plugs on one end of the each section fit into corresponding holes on the other sections to make for a more robust join and also helps line up the sections. There will still be some trimming and filling of the join lines but these can be simulated as weld joins so you don’t have to fully eliminate these like normal joins.

Mig Productions
Model by Mig Jimenez and image couresy of Mig Productions

The details on the hull sections is well done with panel welds and additional armour panel rivets and will come up very well with careful painting and weathering as Mig shows with the box top painted model and there is also the screw and rudder under the stern if you display the model on a stand (not provided).

The welds and panel details on the upper decks are also well done and again will benefit for careful painting to bring out the details.

The other larger parts are the raised aft decking which will require you to shave off some of the lower casting block so it sits evenly on the deck sections and this can take some time but is the only area where the casting blocks get in the way.

The central wheel house has the four separate wall panels, roof and inner bulkhead with the front panel including the wheel and instruments but you will need the test fit the wheel house sides and make some minor trimming to get the precise fit but nothing out of the ordinary for a large resin kit.
The two wheel house doors and front window ‘flap’ are separate and can be left open to show off the interior details while the railing around the wheel house roof is bent to shape from the thick wire provided using a resin jig supplied so you get this the right shape.

The gun turrets are quite straightforward with the T-34 turret cast solid almost in one piece with just the top hatch, mantlet and gun as separate parts with well defined details including very fine lifting eyes while the machine gun turrets are a single solid casting with separate MGs and both can be fitted without the need of removing the lower excess casting resin.

All of the other details and fittings are the usual array of items for any ship model with the deck railing posts provided in resin with the twine and chain used as applicable and the larger chain for the sea anchor plus separate handles for the aft locker doors, numerous other fittings and a few rope coils (in resin) for the deck and the main antenna array with the twine used for the aerials and a large exhaust pipe on the rear decking.

Images of assembled model
Mig Productions
Model by Mig Jimenez and image couresy of Mig Productions

Once the three hull/deck sections have been joined together as described above with either thick cyanoacrylate or epoxy resin for strength and the aft decking and wheel house assembled the rest of the parts are all quite small and not difficult but will be time consuming as drilling out the holes in the railing posts for the twine ‘railings’ will take time but the end result looks very convincing.

These are in the form of a large double sided single sheet all in colour with the parts layout for easy identification and step by step photos of the model during construction showing the parts in place and called out by number. These photos are not overly big but as mentioned once the main assembly is completed the remainder is just the many detail items and careful study of the photos should alleviate any problems.
There is also a small painting guide with photos of the finished model to aid in the painting and weathering process.

This is a nicely detailed model with well cast parts and the assembly is fairly straightforward but is not for the inexperienced resin modeller as some work will be needed on the larger parts assembly. The model is basically a floating tank and should appeal to both armour and ship modellers who what something a little different and at 65cm long will certainly be impressive.
As the kit is a limited edition it could well become a collector’s item so if you are interested it may be worthwhile to get in early when the kit is available in early June.

Recommended for those wanting something different.

Resin Parts
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Hull Sections
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Other Resin Parts
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Thanks to Mig from MIG Productions for the review sample.

Page created 1 June 2005

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