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In-Box Review
135
CMP C15TA Armored Car
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by: Kevin Brant [ SGTRAM ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

History

The C15TA was designed and built at the request of the British, who due to high demand, were unable to acquire sufficient numbers of the White M3A1 Scout Car. General Motors came through with a design based on the CMP(Canadian Military Pattern) chassis using an armored hull. The C15TA was assembled in the GMC plant in Oshawa, Ontario with the armor body built by the Hamilton Bridge Company in Hamilton, Ontario. Production starting in August 1943, but due to labor unrest, full production did not start until January 1944. By D-Day, 596 C15TA’s were delivered with the first 250 going to the British, and in September 1944 the Canadian First Army began issuing the vehicles to units. By June 1945 GMC Oshawa delivered 3,961 C15TA’s to both British and Canadian units.

the kit

Enter the Mirror Models C15TA, a multi-media kit featuring plastic, resin, PE, and wire. When the kit arrived, I was a little surprised at the size of the box, small. But the box is packed, containing 5 sprues of differing gray colored plastic, two bags of small resin parts, 5 resin tires, 3 frets of photo-etch, bits of wire of different gauges, decals, and a CD with instructions. I will state up front that this kit is a true craftsman kit, not designed for beginners.

The parts are not packed in, what we think is normal sealed bags, but zip-lock bags. Looking over the plastic parts, they are well molded, with good detail. I did notice there are plenty of ejector marks, with quite a few that will need to be filled and/or sanded during construction, as they will be visible upon completion. I found the plastic to feel a little soft, but this may be due to the thickness, or should I say thinness of the plastic, which looks to be scale thickness.

The kit contains numerous resin parts, a lot adding the detail to the plastic frame and body. The resin parts are well cast with great looking detail, but a lot of pieces have some flash that will need to be cleaned up. The detail on the resin parts is well pronounced and very well done. The parts are loosely packed, and the instructions will have to be referred to identify part numbers.

Three fret of photo-etched parts are included, containing large and small detail. Some of the large detail includes the anti-skid pattern floors and cargo boxes. Smaller details include grab irons, mount points, and etc. The PE is well done, with great looking face detail. The kit also includes a few lengths of silver and copper wire, as well as a couple of pieces of plastic rod.

The decals are well printed in color, with markings for 3 vehicles. While most look to be crisp and in register one of the vehicle war numbers has the bottom part of the ‘8’ filled in, based on a reference diagram I have seen of this vehicle, this is incorrect. Also see below about accuracy.

Instructions:
This is a first for me, the instructions are a 37 page PDF document delivered on a CD. Builders will need access to a computer with Adobe Viewer to read the instructions. The instructions are in full color, with pictures of the model building process as opposed to build diagrams. The instructions do not necessarily show a step by step construction, but they provide a picture of the finished subassemblies, which some may find a little different.

A nice addition is pictures of the real vehicle are included as reference during the building process. There is plenty of description to go along with the pictures to assist the builder along the way. As mentioned this may not be a kit for beginners, some knowledge of model building will be needed.

Summary

From first glance at this kit, it seems to be a very fine kit, a great replication of the C15TA. The overall quality of the parts look great, as I have not built the kit, I cannot comment of fit. But from look of the instructions and parts, it does not look like fit will be an issue. As for the accuracy of the kit, and review of many reference images, the model seems to be an accurate reproduction of the actual vehicle. Also noted are the rear passenger seats are not included, but have recently been released by L.Z. Models as an add-on that will have to be purchased separately.

The big issue is the decals are incorrect, being the Canadian markings are not really useable. First off the Formation sign for the 5th Armored Division should not be as red as it is, should be more of a reddish-brown. As for the markings for the non-referenced vehicle, I am not sure what unit they should be, noting the Formation sign could be 2nd Canadian Infantry Division, but the Unit sign would be wrong , as it should be a green over blue background and should be a ‘41’ not ‘43’, being the 8th Reconnaissance Regiment(14th Canadian Hussars). As for the British marking, I am unsure.

Overall, the model itself is a great looking model, well detailed, and well-engineered. This kit will build into a great looking representation of the actual C15TA. Other than having to replace the decals, the Mirror Models kit of the C15TA is a great kit, and I highly recommend it.

Note about the decals, I have contacted the Mirror Models, and they are aware of error with the decals, and they are working to fix this issue in subsequent releases. There was no word if they will replace decals for kits already shipped.

As for a good reference for the vehicle, a while back I reviewed “The C15TA in Canadian Service” from Service Publications, this is a great starting point to learn more about this great looking vehicle.

Service Publications C15TA review

Kevin has started a Build Log on the forums to see how this kit goes together.

SUMMARY
Highs: Great multi-media kit, lots of details. Well engineered multi-media kit.
Lows: Decals for Canadian vehicles incorrect and will have to be replaced, lots of ejector marks to be dealt with.
Verdict: Great model, will build into a great looking C15TA, highly recommended.
Percentage Rating
80%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 35100
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Nov 18, 2012
  NATIONALITY: Canada
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 88.35%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 87.81%

Our Thanks to Mirror Models Ltd.!
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 Kevin Brant (SgtRam)
FROM: ONTARIO, CANADA

I am an IT Consultant and father, with a passion for plastic models. I mostly prefer 1/35 Armor and 1/48 Aircraft. My main interests are anything Canadian, as well as WW2 German and British Armor and Aircraft. I have been building models since I was a young kid, got away from it for awhile, but r...

Copyright ©2017 text by Kevin Brant [ SGTRAM ]. 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

I got this a few weeks ago, and it looks fantastic, multi media is right, Libor has added every type of plastic resin and metal anyone might need to make it as detailed as you want... but anyone that has met or talked to Libor knows he is a mad scientist of scratch building and detailing... I want to pile stowage all over this one... and I look forward to seeing more models from LZ in the future.
NOV 18, 2012 - 12:18 PM
Many thanks for nice review Kevin, and all for your feedback. Truly we did not notice error in references we used for decals, and like said, these will be printed in correct shortly and sent to everyone on request to replace them. I have also learned a lot on our first release - Otter kit does not have any ejector mark at all, and you might have noticed also it is full plastic kit except resin radiator and wheels (here I believe the resin wheels are the best option to produce nice and detailed wheels for the kit) and so will be the others - full plastic kits. And because plastic injection technology has still limits like wall thickness and so on, and I simply cannot be happy with sheet metal fender thick in reality some 3cm, which is even too much for light armor, there still will be available PE parts together with additional details, but offered separately. For me in person details are most important part of the kit, and they make difference between scale model and toy... All upcoming kits will have printed instructions, while hi-res PDF photo manual is available to download from our website. Cheers Libor
NOV 18, 2012 - 08:38 PM
Good Review I have the kit and it is better than other companies offers from the past. The decals are the only draw back. 5th Armd Div was maroon with yellow/gold leaf. The blue 43 should belong to a CZ unit. Research will be needed to get the right unit down with the correct markings. Care should be taken when looking at examples that are still around as they might have post war modifications. CD instructions are fine, print them off and you have a paper copy to work with. Plan to make mine an ambulance version...... Anthony
NOV 19, 2012 - 11:12 PM
Also if it hasn't been mentioned the style of maple leafs are wrong also. Still going to get one though.
NOV 20, 2012 - 09:42 PM
Anthony That is one issue about the examples, most are museum restorations, and I have notice some, if not most, are incorrectly marked. And most of the war images are black and white, and difficult to see the markings. As for the ambulance, that will be nice to see. I have some images of the one on the Canadian War Musuem if you are interested. Kevin
NOV 21, 2012 - 07:08 AM
Stevens International Distributors in New Jersey carries Mirror models, so the local hobby shop should have them on the shelves, if not they can order them. HobbyTown USA in Columbia SC has it on the shelf! Keith.
NOV 21, 2012 - 08:35 AM
Well lets just say I had it on the shelf for less than an hour....... Zoooom gone, sold at $50.00 US. Nice kit by the way... Now waiting for the Otter to become available... Keith.
NOV 21, 2012 - 07:30 PM
@ Keith: Any chance of getting Stevens to provide the LZ Models No. 35414 "1/35 Detail set for C15TA Armored Carrier" and No. 35419 "1/35 C15TA backseats"? These add the PE front fenders, the internal glass wind screen, rear seats, and some other details. (LZ also says they have a vacuform canvas cover that will be available soon.) On the LZ Models' website, Stevens Int'l is listed as a US distributor, I've checked the Stevens' website, but these LZ products aren't listed. I can't find anyone else in the US listing them either. So, is there any chance of getting Stevens to order these up? About the model: I'll second all of the earlier comments about the detail and potential - it should be a great build of a very neat subject. Printing out the instructions killed the ink cartridge on my printer, though, so more conventional paper instructions will be welcome if they come with the Otter kit. I'm looking forward to starting the C15TA... Just need to find a nice No. 19 radio set for it. Anyone have one from the Bronco Staghound that they're not using? Happy modeling!
NOV 22, 2012 - 10:22 AM
I just got the first 2 in this week, depending on how well they sell, I will likely be getting the subsequent releases. Libor is apparently going to tackle the CMP 30 as well at some point! Anyway, you can find them here on my website: http://www.elmcityhobbies.com/shop/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=3_287&zenid=42314c4e1c134fdd07c39c00f4635f3b
NOV 22, 2012 - 11:03 PM
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