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In-Box Review
135
Mig Productions M1114 review
Review of Mig Production's new M1114 Iraqi Army Humvee
  • A1_Box

by: Jeff Edgar [ USARMY2534 ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction
M1114s were built as an overhaul of the M1025 armament carriers starting in 1995 and resulted in greater armor protection and payload. They have seen service in Bosnia and Kosovo prior to the beginning of the War on Terror. They also participated in the initial invasion of Iraq, but in limited numbers. The growing threat of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and other explosive threats as well as the increase in unconventional warfare has led to a rapid expansion of uparmored Humvees, with the M1114-series taking the lead. The Iraqi government, in its effort to rebuild its Army, purchased a large order of M1114s, arming them mainly with DShK .50 cal Russian machine guns or PKM 7.62mm machine guns.


what's in the box
The box was mailed direct from Mig Production Studios in Spain and took a couple weeks to arrive, par for the course for me with things coming from Europe. It arrived in a small cardboard box and opening it was like a demented Christmas gift: secured in a ton of packing tape it still contained all the joy of opening a present on Christmas morning – even if it took me five minutes to do so. Inside, among all the packing peanuts was another small, firm cardboard box with Mig’s logo and a picture of the kit printed on a sticker that sealed the box (A1). Opening this box you get more peanuts firmly protecting the kit. (A2) The conversion parts come in 4 bags of various sizes filled with cream-colored resin parts and a large PE fret.

The set contains all the main parts necessary to build an M1114 as far as 2005-early 2006ish or a current Iraqi Army (IA) Humvee (A3). Anything prior to when Frag 5 doors were added and you are pretty much good to go. This includes the original M1114 conversion, MIG’s Aggressive pattern wheels (which were previously sold separately), and a mostly Photo Etch turret. The Russian DShK .50cal machine gun for the IA Humvee is included.

Also included was the same instruction sheet from the original conversion as well as a separate sheet for the PE turret. In an oops moment, the original instructions sheet says that the wheels are sold separately. (A4, A5, A6_1a, A7, A8, A9, A10). The only problems I have had was two of the tiny door handles fell off the pouring block while a third is barely hanging on.


Quality
Going through the bags, I was impressed with the quality of detail. The aggressive wheels are excellent, though care must be taken to differentiate the front wheels from the rear wheels and the modeler will need to add the hubs from the Tamiya kit (A6_2a). The casting is definitely improved from the original kit. A good example is in the armored roof. Many have said that there was warping of the roof. Mine was minimal on the original, but there seemed to be none in this sample. (A11) Also you can see the improvement in the quality by comparing the air conditioner from the original and the newer versions.


Turret
The turret shield, which has become the overall standard for US Army Humvee, is mostly Photo Etch. Included is the frontal armor shield and the shield that covers the sides and rear of the gunner. There are three resin pieces included: a beam that connects the sides together, a mount for the front shield, and a pintle mount for the DShK or another mount for a US M2 or Mk-19 (which you’d have to get from the Tamiya M1025 kit or another AM set like Blast Models).

I was surprised that there was more detail on the armor than I expected. Making the turret armor is like making a mini PE kit. There are brackets and rivets to be added. A pro is that the rivets are included, a con is that the rivets are very, very tiny and there are many of them. The instructions are also not very clear where all the rivets go, so photo reference are a must. I am also not convinced that the photoetch is to scale in thickness with the real armor, but I don’t know the thickness of the real armor to compare. By eyeball, I do believe that the frontal armor is to scale.

I have yet to build the turret, so check the forums soon for that. I have included a couple pictures that Mig Jimenez gave me of what the completed turret should look like.


Iraqi Army Humvee
Included in the conversion is a DShK .50 cal to make an Iraqi Army Humvee, which is generally the main armament. A PKM can also be supplemented, but is not included in the kit. This is a first for any kit manufacturer, which is a plus. On the downside, there are no instructions on how to paint an IA Humvee nor any of the decals you would need. However Echelon decals has a set for the M1114 that are a must have. Not only included are decals for numerous US Army M1114s, but some IA Humvees as well. Iraqi Humvees are just as different as US Humvees, so photo references are going to be needed to accurately build one.


Conclusion
As a final note, on later production kits, Mig Jimenez has told me he will replace the resin side armor under the doors with new ones in PE, but, says Mig, “it never will affect to the final product (well, it will have more quality) or final price.” As my sample was an early production, it did not have this, so I can not comment on it other than the resin ‘armor’ does give a hefty look to the Humvee and made it look like it had been uparmored; I wonder what the PE will look like.

Overall this appears to be a pretty good kit. All a modeller would need to do to make a US Humvee is to not add the DShK. In the past I’ve had trouble finding the original conversion and the wheels available and in one place, but no more. However, you pay for it. Blast Models puts the kit at $60.49 USD. Buying all the original conversion and the wheels separately would combined cost you $47.84, but I wonders though if you’d end up paying for more if you add Shipping and Handling. Plus you’d have to scratchbuild the turret and find another DShK if you wanted an Iraqi Humvee. Its not perfect – no kit is – but it is a great start and a welcome addition. I want to thank Mig Jimenez for graciously providing me with this sample.
SUMMARY
Highs: Improved casting. First kit featuring Iraqi Army Humvee. Combined conversion and wheels plus new photoetch makes this very tempting for all Humvee builders.
Lows: Photoetch of some parts may not be better in resin, instructions are sometime vague, Including Shipping & Handling, this can be quite expensive.
Verdict: Overall, this kit is worth buying and will build into a great kit. You aren’t going to find a one-stop kit to building an M1114, but you are going to be much closer than ever before.
Percentage Rating
85%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: MG35269
  Suggested Retail: $60.49
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Sep 09, 2007
  NATIONALITY: Iraq / لعربية
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 85.00%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 86.99%

Our Thanks to MIG Productions!
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 Jeff Edgar (USArmy2534)
FROM: INDIANA, UNITED STATES

I am 25 and live in Indianapolis, Indiana (next to Muncie). I am a graduate of Ball State University with a major in history (specializing in modern military history). I currently am a Second Lieutenant in the Indiana Army National Guard serving as a Platoon Leader in the 76th Infantry Brigade Com...

Copyright ©2017 text by Jeff Edgar [ USARMY2534 ]. 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.


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Comments

Nice review. It seems like a good basis for a few vehicles. I'm still bewildered by the different armor arrays, so I'm guessing different gun shields are available as well. They appear a little different in these: My biggest concern is the A/C louvers, which face forward on the side, and rearward on top. The top one curves around the hatch a bit as well. Not sure by the photo if the cast piece captured the look:
SEP 08, 2007 - 09:33 PM
Jeff Good review. I already bought this kit from Blast and found the same issues with the old M1114 upgrade compared to the newer one, great to see that Mig has evolved. Brave of them too to choose an obscure variant. Now if someone will tackle the massive doors and handles of current M1114's or even better the M1152's we'd be up to date. Thanks Jeff and thanks Mig. Bill
SEP 09, 2007 - 06:51 AM
Thanks Henk for putting up with all the technical problems and seeing it through to the end. You are truely a hero of Armorama Yep, the intake louvers are facing forward. I went home and checked it out this morning. They are small, but its noticable that they face forward. However those are the same gun shields just with a slightly different paint scheme. It was nice for Mig to make an obscure variant, but because its easy to make into a US variant, it really isn't that much of a risk to make. I too truly hope to see an M1151/52 sometime soon from a manufacturer. Jeff
SEP 09, 2007 - 02:06 PM
This is a great review and it helped me decide to purchase the kit. Happy Modeling Tom
FEB 17, 2009 - 08:37 PM
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