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In-Box Review
135
MAZ 537 Tank Transporter
MAZ 537 G Intermediate Type With MAZ/Ch MZAP-5247G Semi-Trailer
  • 20071228102828

by: Steve Cruickshank snr [ BARV ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction
The MAZ 537 vehicle has been well documented over the past months …enough to say that its origins are from the 1950’s and in service from 1960 in various forms to the present. This particular vehicle ,the MAZ 537 tank transporter version , has been enthusiastically awaited from Trumpeter by many in the modelling community.

kit contents
The box art jumps out and hits the senses and is nicely done. The box is substantial with 7 packets containing 12 sprues and another small box of hidden delights for a total of 551 parts. Also included is a colour chart and, I must say, a very well-presented and spacious 28-page build instruction booklet reminiscent of the older Airfix style.

The small box contains and protects the cab, engine cover which is nice and crisp with fine molded ‘louvers’ , a pack of ‘wishbones’ for the suspension, 9 large tractor tyres, and 9 small trailer tyres, 2 brass photo etched frets, and a packet of masks for the windows. The tyres are nicely molded in a soft ‘rubber’, I wonder if they will ‘bulge’ when loaded?

Review
The parts are molded with neat spurs from sprue to the parts which should make separation easy. Ejection pin marks are few that I see at first look being mainly on the sprue-ribs and those seen will be hidden inside parts.

The Traction Unit consists of 3 packets containing 6 sprues. No ‘flash noticed but care will need to be taken mating up the long hull as this will be the back-bone that everything hangs on ,especially with 8 chunky clearly defined tyres to line up. The ‘clear’ pack contains the window and light lenses----even the reflection lines are on the headlights, and the brass etch then finishes off the parts.

The Trailer Unit consists of 5 sprues in another 3 packs and no warping noticed . First dry-fit of top and bottom of the ‘bed ‘ is good and sharp. Brass guides for the deck are provided on the second brass fret with 8 smaller tyres to round it off. I did notice large ‘pin marks’ on ‘goose-neck ‘and bed but these will not be seen as they are under the main frame of the bed and on the inner sides of the ‘neck’ and may or may not be worth the effort to fill and sand.

The instruction booklet is spacious and very clear with a page showing all the part on their relative sprues-- we will see how accurate it is later - and the color chart is concise with the basics. I know that already some comments have been made, elsewhere ,of discrepancies in the length of the trailer and the size of the tyres but I dug out my drawings and compared it with a scratch build I have done and they look well within acceptable dimensions. This is something that I will not be able to answer definitively until it is built but I do not have an issue with it personally.

Conclusion
Overall the kit is one that has been long awaited and I'm enthusiastic about building it to more closely evaluate the fit and dimensions. At first glance it appears to be a well thought-out kit even though the cab itself lacks some detail and there may be paint issues with the tyres. It is a pricey kit but given it's size, within reasonable limits.

A Build Log is available via the Forums to evaluate the kit parts and assembly.
SUMMARY
Highs: Euphoria at having the kit available now may be giving me a false sense of elation ..but I think this seems a well thought out kit –clean --well presented and the “feel” says it will be nice to build
Lows: If I am being really critical –lack of detail in the cab is surprising ,considering the nice dashboard ,and possibility of paint troubles with rubber tyres are the only things that stand out at the moment ...we shall see when it is built
Verdict: My personal feelings are of a well worth buy and should be excellent fun to build …if the carpet monster is kept at bay Prices seem to vary but not exorbitant for such a large kit
Percentage Rating
90%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 00211
  Suggested Retail: $120 USD / 60GBP
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Mar 13, 2008
  NATIONALITY: Russia
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 90.00%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 84.63%

Our Thanks to Stevens International!
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 Steve Cruickshank snr (barv)
FROM: SCOTLAND, UNITED KINGDOM

Retired Ex WOII...REME Ex Armored Corp Mech Eng

Copyright ©2017 text by Steve Cruickshank snr [ BARV ]. 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

Mmmm! Niiiice!!!
MAR 14, 2008 - 06:37 PM
Is there going to be any PE sets for this soon.Was this used in the 10 year fight when russia was in afgan.Or did Iraq get any of these. Before we became the police force instead of the OIF invasion.what other armies used this also.. Happy Modeling Tom
MAR 16, 2008 - 03:55 PM
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