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In-Box Review
135
Bedford QLB
Bedford QLB Bofors Gun Tractor
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by: Rick Cooper [ CLOVIS899 ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction

IBG Models from Poland has recently released their fourth different version of the famed Bedford WWII truck in 1/35th scale. This most recent version in the QL series is the B version, tasked as a gun tractor for the Bofors gun and crew and known simply as a QLB.

Contents

The kit comes packed in the same sturdy cardboard slip cover style box that IBG Models has used for all of their previous releases. Inside you will find four large (11” x 8”) gray sprues, one smaller clear sprue with all of the windscreen and window glass, and a perfectly registered decal sheet with markings for one of two vehicles; a QLB from 1st Battery 54th Light AA Artillery Regiment 11th Armored Division, France 1944 or a Bedford with the 1st Light AA Artillery Regiment, Polish 1st Armored Division in Western Europe in the winter of 1944/45. Of course you also will find a 20 page, black and white, set of instructions in 41 steps for building the kit.

Review

The Instructions are provided in a CAD drawing style with arrows running here and there for where parts go. Some of the parts placement is easy to see, some are a bit more intuitive, and others are a bit more difficult. If it is something that is not clear sometimes latter steps in the process will give you a better idea of correct placement. My biggest beef with the IBG Models instructions however is how dark they are, hopefully yours eyes are a bit stronger than mine and it won’t prove much of an issue with your build. I do appreciate the full page parts map that IBG Models includes for each of the sprues, it does make locating that small bit somewhat easier.

As this is the fourth version of the Bedford, IBG Models has made good use of previously released sprues; everything from the spare tire forward as well as the entire chassis is the same as the previous releases. The long and short of it is that the sprues A and B are the same as in all previous releases. These provide the build-up of the rather sparsely outfitted cab, the nicely detailed engine, the robust chassis, and the well rendered tires and wheels. Alan McNeilly has pointed out that the included tires are actually a post war type, but ToRo models has just released two sets for the kit that can be found here Live links it just depends if you prefer to run on Dunlop or Firestone tires! The only addition here from the earlier kits is the inclusion of the power take off and drum for the gun’s winch. For another look at the earlier release of the kit take a look at Jim Rae’s Armorama review from last year here Live links, my build feature here Live links or Jim Starkweather’s First Look video review here Live links.

The new rear of the vehicle clearly shows the advances that IBG Models has made from the first Bedford to this one. Detail is much finer now; hinges, rivets, hasps, catches and latches are all greatly improved from the previous releases. The crew compartment is still utilitarian and cramped but so is the real thing. The kit does suffer from molded on tool holder disease with the axe and the crew’s SMLEs will need replacing but other than that the crew compartment looks good.

The rear compartment is well and truly stuffed with lockers and ammunition boxes for the Bofors; this looks like it could be a real dream come true for a super-detailer who wanted to open up some of the lockers with the gun crew’s equipment or to toss in a case of 40mm ammo in the outside boxes. I would not be the least surprised to find a PE set with some replacement boxes in the near future if they are not here already. Inside you will also find some nice renderings of 3 separately molded pick mattock heads and handles, as well as the spare wheel for the gun. I don’t have the Bronco kit of the British Bofors gun so I can’t actually check to see if the wheel is a match but I did check here for Darren Baker’s review of the Bronco reference of the Bofors gun which shows that it only misses some of the interior tread of the wheel and that can be seen here Live .
I plan to grab the Bronco kit the next time I see a good deal as it includes the spare barrel and the case that should be in the back of the Bedford as well as ammo cases just for fun.

The back end of the vehicle also includes the new winch system for the gun as well. The fairleads placement is a bit tricky as the instructions can be a bit sketchy, a swirl of arrows here and there but the final illustration of the completed assembly makes it easier. One small missing detail that would be an easy inclusion is the cable for the winch. The canvas tilt for the rear compartment finishes off the build of the kit as a three part structure that looks good but it is missing strap tie-downs which also appear to be an easy fix.

Conclusion

Another nice kit from IBG Models of a vehicle that was previously un-kitted in styrene. Yes; the sprues and some parts are overly thick, some of the detail is missing or a bit soft, but it is in our hands to make of it what we will. Most modelers will be thrilled that this is now available, with all the great kits of so many varied subjects now kitted out I say, laissez le bon temps rouler!


SUMMARY
Highs: Great new addition that has never been done in plastic. Provides a great basis for as much detail as you want to throw in.
Lows: Instructions are still on the dark side with some confusing arrows indicating vague parts placement. Crew weapons will need replacing.
Verdict: Recommended. No more grumbling about overly engineered chassis and frame, a Bedford QLB is here!
Percentage Rating
90%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 35018
  Suggested Retail: ~60.00 USD
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Nov 23, 2014
  NATIONALITY: United Kingdom
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 88.70%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 81.13%

Our Thanks to IBG Models!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.
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About Rick Cooper (clovis899)
FROM: CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES

I have been modeling for about 30 years now. Once upon a time in another century I owned my own hobby shop; way more work than it was worth. I tip my opti-visor to those who make a real living at it. Mainly build armor these days but I keep working at figures, planes and the occasional ship.

Copyright ©2017 text by Rick Cooper [ CLOVIS899 ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of TankRat's. All rights reserved.


Reader Reviews
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Comments

lol those crew weapons look like muskets. The kit looks great.
NOV 23, 2014 - 05:33 AM
hi Darren, Thanks for the extensive review. Mine came in last Friday! A very well filled carton box, which offers a lot of fun for an acceptable price. Young modellers: IBG gives you value for pocket money! Though The first thing I had to do is emailing IBG for a better instruction leaflet ( to be received via email to avoid weeks of waiting!) since there is absolutely no detail visible. Using the indtructions for the QLR I build, I could get started this weekend with the cabin and the crew compartment. With the help of the Part of Poland etch set for the QLT, this model becomes an eye catcher, espessialy the cabin, since the engine will be partially visible. Hopefully, the etch sets for the various QL versions do show up soon so we can improve the typical parts such as, for this version, the business part. The lack of detail at the inside does not botter me too much. Artillery crews tended to cramp their trucks with all sorts of stuff that could turn out handy at some moment. Not only military goods, but also crates with food, stoves, clothing and alike. I found quite some stuff in my spart part box which finally will be drafted into service. One thing is a pitty, the slided roof cover is fixed closed. Nothing unchangable, with Evergreen L shaped strip and some flat sheet this part can be build open to give better sight into the crew part. Does anybody know which version of decals the Bronco Bofors, English version, requires? All together a nice model with quite some potential and for sure hours of fun. And maybe we can convince IBG to build the aircraft tanker version in 1:35 so we get some other colours in our show cases!!!!!! (IBG crew, please, get started !!!!)
NOV 23, 2014 - 06:01 AM
This is the one I've been waiting on the most. I was checking Eduard's site to see if they had gotten around to any PE upgrades yet but nothing from them so far. Paul, how was the Part Set? Thanks Al
NOV 23, 2014 - 06:24 AM
Hi Alan, The Part of Poland set is very usefull for the cab. Though the fenders do take some time to get right. I have used the open windows for my QLR. It takes ages to get the fiddely openers on the right spot! Also, the wheel hubs are better looking, also it has the , in the box missing, direction indicator. But, as stated before, quite some parts are not used since the biggest part is intended to super detail the cargo box of the QLD In general, it is worth the money, but a model typical set would be much better. For my QLB I intend to purchase resin wheels and a resin driver. Anyone already used one?
NOV 23, 2014 - 09:00 AM
Thanks Paul. Al
NOV 23, 2014 - 09:49 AM
My build is going forward rather well. However, the plastic sometimes drives one crazy since it is very soft and cures rather slow, which creates challenges in the construction of e.g. the multi part axles. One has to watch very carefully that all remains in one line. My experience is that it is wiser to wait a whole day with relevant parts, such as the frame, the axles and the springs before continuing. (which makes it all really a patience test ) Which leaves one time to find reference on the web about colors and details. Some questions which turn up are: 1. Does anyone know if there were tractors without the manhole in the roof? 2. Did the cabin doors have (other colored) panels? 3. How was the wooden box in the crew compartment secured? Enjoy your weekend, P.
NOV 28, 2014 - 12:58 AM
Hi guys, Anybody out there, who is willing to send me an email copy of the building instructions of the QLB? Mine are very dark copies, not showing any detail. I mailed IBG but after weeks not respond. Thanks in advance, Paul
DEC 12, 2014 - 02:30 AM
After some days of "fighting" with the specialties of the plastic used by IBG, it dries very slowly and remains soft very long I have finished the frame, the cabin and both the crew compartment and the load box. All together, it results in a fine model, certainly worth the money. Though IBG should pay a bit more attention to some missing items like the direction indicator, window whipers and towing shackles. Maybe an improvement on their next version!? Time to start detailing. I purchased some PanzerArt 40 mm Bofors ammo boxes. However, I could not find the colour for these boxes. Who can advise me about it? Are there pictures on the web, since I believe to have seen some yellow text on them as well? Thanks in advance, Paul
DEC 28, 2014 - 12:15 AM
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