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Takom Russian army tank transporter

Review of the 1/72 scale armor kit with scale thin doors
RELATED TOPICS: ARMOR
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Following up its 1/72 scale U.S. M1070 heavy equipment transport, Takom released another great small-scale tank transporter, the Russian MAZ-537G with ChMZAP-5247G trailer. Produced between 1959 and 1990, this combination has moved everything, including tanks, rockets, and tractors, and served in Chernobyl, Iran, and Afghanistan among other locations. Given so many options for modeling and painting this kit should be a welcome fit in many collections.

Construction began with the main tractor frame and transmission. Small parts were tight and crisp; Takom continues to impress me with this kind of molding, finding the perfect balance between a lower parts count and separate details. The frame and cab built quickly and without issue. I liked that Takom molds each door and window as a single unit, keeping the doors and windows scale thin.

I wish the kit included even a little engine detail. Although it’s mostly invisible, the engine compartment is empty.

The trailer builds just as smoothly as the truck itself with the major sections of the frame and bed being large slide-molded parts. The kit provides the option to pose the trailer’s support legs stowed or lowered and the ramps can be left movable. The trailer looks great when finished and it’s just begging for a T-55 or bulldozer to haul.

I painted the truck and trailer with Tamiya acrylics. At some point, I scratched the windshield and, rather than polishing the blemish out, I added to it to make it look more like a rock chip or bullet hole to hide my mistake.

I spent a little less than 30 hours building and painting Takom’s Russian tank hauler and it would make an ideal weekend project for any modeler. Or it could easily be taken to the next level with a little more work, such as replacing the solid grab handles with thin wire, opening hatches, or adding an engine. I really enjoyed building this kit and see myself building another in the future.


Note: A version of this review appeared in the October 2019 issue.

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