new kit
FAMO & Sd.Ah.116
Schwerer Zugkraftwagen 18t "FAMO"
und Tiefladeanhänger für Pz.Kpfw.Sd.Ah.116

Tamiya 1:35th Scale Kit No.35246

Review by Terry Ashley

What you get?:
This kit is the same basic FAMO from kit No. 35239 (see full build review here) and so I won't spend time on this, but will concentrate on the new Sd.Ah.116 Trailer. This is almost a kit in itself, so lets see what you get in the box. Speaking of boxes, this box is the same dimensions as the M26 Dragon Wagon box except for being 10mm deeper. You need one that big to hold nearly 800 parts.

The Trailer bits (additional to the FAMOs 402 pieces):

The kit:
The parts have the same superb fine detail and flash free moulding as with the FAMO kit.
The trailer is basically broken into three sections, the front assembly, the centre platform and the rear steering assembly.

As you can imagine from the number of parts, the front and rear sections are quite complex with many parts. Careful reading of the instructions is a must, if you follow these there shouldn't be any problems.

The engineering is superb, the front two wheel bogies turn in unison with the main coupling bar through a series of metal rod steering arms. It is essential to fit these in the right positions and right order, as I mentioned - read the instructions.

All the wheels are attached using the usual poly caps, with each wheel hub being made up of 4 pieces as well as separate brake drums.

A nice touch is the inclusion of the plastic card sheet from which you cut thin strips to use as air tank securing straps giving a very realistic appearance.

The rear driving assembly is equally complex, yet straightforward to assemble. The wheels steer using the same metal rod arm assemblies. The winch box has nicely detailed drive chains as we saw on the M26 kit. Also featured is a nicely detailed driver's compartment and again the use of plastic strip for the air tank securing straps.

The centre platform section has an upper and lower section which traps two lengths of thicker metal strip between them for great strength, all the major assemblies are also secured using self tapping screws to make an assembly that's not going anywhere.

The lengths of chain supplied are used to attach your load to the trailer, the perennial problem of how to tension these chains on a kit has been solved by Tamiya engineering.
The rear assemblies securing the chain pivot on a small plunger fitted with a spring resulting in permanently tensioned chains, brilliant.

Obviously you can assembly the whole trailer either fitted together with a load or with the rear unit separate while loading or unloading a vehicle, the possibilities are endless.

Four new figures are provided representing a Sturmgeschütz crew, three sitting and one standing, these have nice uniform detail and can be positioned anywhere on the trailer or FAMO as you wish.

Markings are provided for 3 vehicles, one in Panzer Grey, and two in the Dark Yellow, Red Brown and Green cam scheme. There is also extensive decals for the red/white safety markings along the sides of the units as well as about a dozen stencil placards positioned around the trailer units.

This is simply a sensational kit and one that won't be put together overnight.
It lifts the art of injection moulding to a higher level, you really have to see the kit to fully appreciate the current level of Tamiya kit making.

Yet there are those who still aren't happy and bitch and whine that these kits cost "too much" (that's in between bitching that other kits "have many errors"). To these people, I simple say you don't have to buy if you don't want too and are welcome to sit in the corner whining while the rest of us get on building these great kits and enjoying what modelling is really all about.

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Decal Sheet
Schwerer Zugkraftwagen 18 ton and Variants FAMO "Bulle" (Sd.Kfz.9)
Nuts & Bolts Vol.12
FAMO 18t
The Military Machine
By Stefan König
ISBN 3-9805216-4-8
German Halftracks 1909-1945
Book 6
Walter J. Spielberger
Ground Power Magazine
No.070 3/2000

GALILEO Publishing Co.,Ltd

Page created December 6, 2000

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