Saturday, February 2, 2013

Vickers Medium Mk. II Tank

Fresh off the work table (and still waiting for a coat of matt varnish) is a Vickers Medium Mk. II tank for my VBCW armies:
This is a 1/55 resin kit produced by Copplestone Castings. It comes without instructions (or decals), but assembly was easy to figure out after looking at photo references. It is fairly detailed (though not completely accurate in dimensions) and well designed.  However, I cannot say the same about the casting quality.

When I opened the kit, I found the decks above the treads were warped, and had to spend some time heating the resin in water and carefully trying to bend them back into position.  The kit also suffered from some large bubble holes in very obvious spots that were tricky to fill.  If you look at the rear of the tank in the photo above, you can see a prime example in the bottom of the curved feature behind the side machine gun.
Another issue I have with the kit is the treads.  Rather than make a left and right tread, they have created a universal piece that can be used on either side. While in theory this is fine, is results in really poor casting.  The treads had a lot of pitting and flash under the tread edges that could not be easily removed without risk of breaking the thin tread edges. They also made the fill point for the tread molds the rear of the treads,  resulting in an oddly appearing flat spot with lack of tread detail as you can see in the two photos above.

Here is the Mk. II next to an Artizan figure and a Lanchester armoured car, also produced by Copplestone.  While no giant, it is a reasonably sized piece.

Overall I think the Medium Mk. II is a fun looking tank and I'm glad someone was willing to produce it for gaming table. And while I think I ended up with with a reasonable model, the casting quality really lets the kit down and I'm not sure I'd buy any more of them unless that was resolved.

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