by: Ed Burgess [ ]
The Hyster road roller is a familiar sight around construction sites. It was first produced in the 1970Ďs and is still in service. It weighs about ten tons, and one can fill the rollers with fourteen tons of water for ballast. The C-350 model sports a three-cylinder engine for 80 horsepower. PlusModel has given us a resin model of a machine ubiquitous in both civilian and military compaction.
Like other PlusModel kits I have built, the kit is tightly engineered and free of molding failures. There are several large parts. The two rollers are heavy hunks of resin, and the frame is blocky and strong. After that, things get smaller and you have a total of 94 parts, four of them clear, plus a short copper wire. There is a good deal of flash, most of it inconsequential. A small decal sheet provides the ĎHysterí name and some generic numbers. An even smaller photo etch sheet has two grills, the fan, and some very small and fragile strips. Instructions come in the typical Plusmodel booklet containing line drawings of the construction process and a single color picture of a civilian paint job. The box has a picture of the Hyster in MERDC camo. Three other color schemes are shown as B&W line drawings in the booklet.
I started the build by washing the parts to ensure there was no mold release on them. Next, a bit of sawing to remove the mold stubs from the larger pieces. PlusModel puts the part numbers on the stubs, so you donít want to cut off any that may present a later identification problem.
One problem presented itself at this point. The smaller roller, the steerable front one, should have a rim protruding around both ends. This rim was badly chipped and several pieces broken off. On one end more than half the rim is gone. Due to the thinness, curvature, and visibility of this detail it will be difficult to fix. The rear roller is also damaged, but less so, a few very visible chips missing.
Proceeding with the build, you find a few large parts, and a host of tiny ones. Some are fragile, but I havenít found anything broken except the three grab handles, which are easily replaced with brass rod. Parts are mostly easy to cut off the stubs, and while there are a few small bubbles the molding quality is excellent. One caveat--many of the locating holes, where they exist, are too small and require drilling. Some parts have no locating tabs.
The engine is a detailed gem, with 39 pieces, nearly half the kit total. It needs a little wiring, which is not shown in the instructions. I suggest using tape of some sort instead of photo-etch for the belts. Unless you leave the engine cover off, or at least unsecured, it will be invisible, but itís too intricate to waste and could be an eye-catcher at contests. Leaving the cover unglued might be a good idea anyway, as I had to really force it down over the engine, which led to distortion and some gaps to fill.
I adjusted the hydraulic steering piston to show a slight turn to the right. Installing this part prevents the front roller from steering. The two rollers can be left to rotate, but my advice would be to fix them in place. The rollers are heavy, and I think youíd risk damage transporting the model.
The instructions, unadorned line drawings, work for most of the build. Part 32, holding one of the fan belt wheels, will not fit as shown but does work if rotated 180 degrees. Locations are unclear for some parts. I found the scrapers that clean gunk off the rollers to be confusing and very delicate. I replaced the too-thick copper wire with brass rod.