by: Danny Wennekes [ ]
Originally published on:
All troops need solid communications. Since wired communications are more reliable and more safe than wireless communications, a real life military scene will often show the use of operator reels. Specially when showing defence positions in a WWII front-line scene, you can't avoid the use of wired communications.
With this in mind, I think the set can come in very handy when you have planned to build such a scene.
The Package, a sealed plastic bag, contains :
1 set of Photo Etched parts
1 set of resin parts (the centres of the reels)
1 Instruction sheet
The package contained all the materials to make :
2 Large size operator reels
1 Medium size operator reels
3 Small size operator reels
2 Static reelholders
2 Portable reelholders
The contents of the package looked good. The resin was undamaged and the photo etched parts wheren't bent.
the resin parts
I'm going to be absolutely honest with you, and tell you that I was very disappointed with the resin parts. The parts depict wire on a reel, but I find it very little more than tubes of resin with some vague wireprints on them. Although the basic shape is quite simple, a tube with wire rolled on it, the company didn't manage to produce a sharp looking casting. The parts have some flash and show signs of something that looks like a mold seam. That "mold seam look alike" is very hard to repair with the use of a knife, sanding paper or sanding pads. It would take ages to repair the damage.
I feel it's better to throw the resin parts away and make some new centreparts yourself. That can easily be done by taking a piece of evergreen tube (or the back of an old pencil or whatever thin tubing you have within reach) and wind some thin copper wire around it.
the photo etched parts
I've seen several Plusmodel kits that contained Photo Etched parts. In all of them the PE parts where of high quality. This kit is not different from the previous ones I've seen.
The photo etched parts look very good and they all have sharp details.
My conclusion is that the kit can be very well used in dioramas and vignettes. It really gives some extra detail to a scene. When you decide to make your own, new, centreparts for the reels, your reels will look like in real life. Therefore I think it's a great addition to a diorama or a vignette, but you need to put in some extra time on the centreparts. I also missed the handles and the axises of the reels. Ofcourse it's very simple to create these on your own by using a stretched sprue or a piece of wire, but it would have made the kit more complete when they included these pieces.
The instructions are complete, but a bit hard to read here and there. Perhaps this is because English isn't my native tongue. Anyway, I managed to build the with the use of the instructions, so they are good enough. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt on this one.
The Photo Etched parts make this kit, while the resin parts break it. The resin parts really dragged down my overall rating and.... that's a shame. When Plusmodel is able to improve the resin parts in this kit, the overall rating can easily be lifted to an 8 or even a 9. I know they are able to do this, since I've seen some of their kits that had very difficult resin parts that where excellently casted.