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ICM Horch 108 Typ 40

Ukrainian manufacturer ICM expands its catalog of 1/35 scale softskin military vehicles with a Horch 108 It represents a later version than the old Italeri kit; the most noticeable difference is the location of the spare tire inside the crew compartment.

The kit includes a detailed frame and engine, clear lenses for the headlights and spotlights, and rubber tires. The instruction book features clear assembly diagrams and color profiles for painting and decaling.

Decals are provided for four subjects, three in dark gray and one in panzer yellow. All color references are for Testors Model Master paints.

Assembly starts with the engine. Watch the position of the exhaust manifold (A62) in Step 2; the tail goes to the rear (I put mine on backwards).

I didn’t spend a lot of time on the engine because there’s no option to display the hood open.

Although the frame is molded as a single part, the suspension and drivetrain are complex with many nearly identical parts.
Take your time and double-check the instructions during each step to ensure correct placement. It’s easy to turn the frame around or upside down. (Ask me how I know.)

The two-piece curved springs are fiddly to assemble but fit well and look great. I managed to get the delicate brake lines off the sprue without incident, but the exhaust pipe broke into four pieces during cleanup.

I left the wheels off the frame for painting, but noticed the frame seemed a little off-kilter. More on that later.

The fit of the multiple body panels is so good that no filler was required. The separate doors can be posed open. The trunk doors are also separate, but you’ll need to scratchbuild an interior to pose them open.

ICM doesn’t provide a spare-tire rim; instead, you use one of the regular wheels with nuts molded on. I improved its appearance by drilling out the bolt and the center hole, leaving a little rim to match a photo I found on the Internet.

There is no lip on the wheels to aid tire alignment, so take care installing them. I carefully lined up the outside edge of each wheel flush with the tire and flowed thin super glue into the join from the back.
The only fit issue I ran into was the hood (B9). I thinned the rear of the part and filed the lip of the firewall cowl to improve, but not perfect, the fit.
I left the seats, guns, and spare tire out of the interior until painting was finished. I painted the frame and body separately, spraying them with Tamiya German gray, then joined the subassemblies.
To correct the chassis alignment, I glued the two lowest corners — front right and rear left — and left them to dry. Then, I inserted thin sheet-styrene shims between the frame and floor pan until all four wheels touched the ground.

Post-shading and weathering finished the body. The wood parts were base-coated with Tamiya desert tan. Then Van Dyke brown and raw umber artist’s oils were applied for the grain.
The windshield is hinged to be movable, but mine would not stay upright without being glued.
I completed my Horch in about 23 hours. The model closely matched the dimensions in David Doyle’s Standard Catalog of German Military Vehicles (Krause, ISBN 978-0-87349-783-1), coming up about an ⅛" short.

The small, delicate parts and complex suspension rule out beginners, but moderately experienced modelers should have no trouble producing a stunning replica of this important vehicle.

Note: A version of this review appeared in the December 2015 issue.
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