Modellers have become more demanding over what they want added to their models recently; however the financial situation of the last few years has affected what modellers are willing to pay for those upgrades they add. One of the items that is often added to vehicles are individual track links; however due to reduced incomes an alternative to caste metal tracks was looked for and injection moulded plastic tracks became more common. Bronco Models
is one of the companies that have started to satisfy the desire for injection moulded workable tracks.
This product is packaged inside one of Bronco Models
end opening card boxes. Inside of this box you will find a single plastic bag, inside of which are three more plastic bags that contain the three sprue types that make up the product. The sprues consist of;
- 8 x brown sprues of track pads and guide horns
- 16 x brown sprues of link pins
- 2 x grey sprues
The first thing that struck me with this product from Bronco Models
, is the weight of the plastic included with this product, it is nearly as heavy as a standard model. The parts are cleanly moulded with no obvious faults and the gates between the moulded parts and the sprues are small. The inclusion of the later style drive sprockets is a nice inclusion, but better still Bronco Models
has supplied the parts for altering the M26 by Tamiya and Hobby Boss and the M46 by Dragon Models Ltd to the later version.
The design of the parts that make up these tracks has allowed Bronco Models
to make the track detail very realistic, and as far as I can see accurate. I have included some images of an M46 in the Bovington Tank Museum collection that has the T80E1 track type fitted. Bronco Models
has provided enough links for 92 track links per run and the instructions on the rear of the box indicate that each run should consist of 85 links, so this does provide you with a good number of spares.
The most important thing I have discovered with the workable track link sets from Bronco Models
is that the parts must be thoroughly cleaned up after removal from the sprue, and due to the number of parts that does take time. I know we all know the importance of cleaning parts up before assembly, but I also know that human nature means we take short cuts if they are open to us. Failing to clean up all of these parts will make your life miserable and affect the result that you can achieve with this product. You will also note the dent in my finger from gripping and cleaning the track pads, and so I suggest you clean up some parts and then do something else for a while.
First thing to remember; In order to retain the workable aspect of these tracks glue has to be used very sparingly. That said I remove the track pin part of the kit from the sprues and clean up the parts as needed. I then remove the separate guide horn parts and join both parts together. The track detail on the shoes is specific to the left and right of the tracks, in order to avoid a mix up I remove pads for only one side of the track and inner face of course. The mating surfaces of these parts have an offset nipple and receiver. I add a small amount of glue to the receiver and then match the two parts together, I then ease the two pieces apart a little and insert track pin and guide horn into the slots. After this is done it is easy to deal with the other side once the run is complete.
I have found this approach the most successful at retaining the workable aspect of the tracks.
These tracks if care is taken during assembly do make for very realistic results, they do not have the weight aspect of the white metal tracks and so track sag where necessary needs to be imparted after being added to the model. Do not let anyone tell you these are a quick and easy option, as they are not; they do however really look the part and I like them. This is one of those products where the result can vary wildly dependant on the time and effort you put into them.