by: Todd Michalak [ ]
Adding to the ever growing collection of cast resin accessories from PlusModel is one of their latest releases, Milling Machine no. 437. Often in the world of modelling we are posed with the problem of needing to fill that void in a diorama or vignette. For this reason, PlusModel consistently creates new accessories for the modelling community.
The Milling Machine from PlusModel is based on a universal design of milling machines used in the early 20th century up until the present. These were multi-directional cutting tools (milling) capable of cutting various shapes and designs into numerous materials. Typically these machines would be set up in workshops and factories.
This kit comes packaged very well in bubble wrap and Ziploc type baggies all in an end opening cardboard box. There is 29 grey colored cast resin parts, a small sheet of photo etch parts and a small decal sheet.
As with most cases that I have seen, the cast resin parts from PlusModel are very clean. There was only one small air bubble I found and any associated flash on the parts is merely residual from the casting process and left little to no seam lines in most cases.
The bulk of the kit is large pieces of cast parts of the Milling Machine. The base and main housing is a one-piece casting. There are several small molded parts incorporated to this piece including the motor mounting plate, transfer, table acme screw and cleanly molded name plates. The only place that will require a little clean-up is on the table height adjustment plate on the side of the piece. A quick sanding is all that is needed though.
The peripheral items like the table, end plate, electric motor and table slides are all molded in one-piece constructions. There are several cast handle pieces for the various controls on the milling machine. All of these handles are finely detailed.
As I mentioned above, there is a small sheet of photo etch parts included with this set; mainly brackets, dials and handle shafts. The cast resin handles I previously mentioned attaché to the photo etch swing arms to create the various handles. There is a small length of soldering wire that is used for the electrical hook-up for the machine. As part of the kit, PlusModel has supplied a small decal sheet. There are only three decals offered, all are generic placard found on the original equipment.
Well there is not a whole lot to the construction of this piece. Of course parts need to be removed from their casting blocks and a small amount of clean-up is needed where they were attached. Some of the smaller parts have residual flash that will need to be carefully removed but there is very little effort that will be needed as the flash is extremely thin and pretty much pops off when touched.
The fit of the parts is excellent. On parts such as the drive belt housing and motor, there is a precise fitting to them so the motor falls on the mounting plate to line up with the bolt pattern on the plate; this works out perfectly.
One of the more difficult parts to the construction is the marrying of the photo etch and resin handles as both are very small to handle. These delicate parts do add a great deal of detail to this model.
I feel that the Milling Machine from PlusModel is a finely made resin accessory. The details are excellent and all of the molds are clean and crisp. For those of us who build the occasional diorama a kit like this milling machine would fit very well into any factory scene or anywhere you can dream up to use it in. All of the parts are cleanly molded and have nicely detailed features. The pricing seems a bit high judging by the size of the model but the quality more than makes up for the cost. I would recommend this kit to anyone having the need for shop equipment accessories in the modelling ventures.