by: Alan McNeilly [ ]
Introduction The strength of any army lies in the efficiency of the support arms that re-supply and equip it to fight. The best fighting soldier is not much use without arms, ammunition, food and all the other things he needs to be an effective combat soldier.
During World War II, given the locations of the campaigns all supplies had to be shipped, or flown in and then transported to the rear echelons for distribution to the troops. A wide variety of trucks and lorries were used for this function and attached to these lorries were often a wide variety of trailers, some specialist in their nature and some general service type trailers.
This is a look at the Resicast kit 35.1174, the 4.5 ton flatbed GS trailer often towed by 3 ton lorries. The model was mastered by Luke Davis from an original found in a farmers field near Wimbourne in Dorset.
overview Packed in the standard sturdy Resicast box, the kit parts come in 4 separate plastic zip bags, the trailer bed and chassis are separate items and to finish of the trailer you get a small set of PE. The box top shows an example of the completed, but unpainted kit, manufacturer's name, and product details. To accompany the set you get an older style set of instructions in the form of an 8 page A 5 booklet.
Instructions: Page 1 contains a listing of the kit and PE parts. Pages 2 to 7 contain the build instructions and page 8 contact details for Resicast and a form to submit if you have any missing or damaged parts. The pictures in the build instructions are B & W but of good clear quality and show the build steps of the kit in a logical sequence. There is no written text to follow so careful study of the instruction pictures will be required. The instructions would benefit from a re-print in a new clearer style especially as so few references are available for this particular trailer.
Part Quality and Packaging: The kit is cast in a light grey resin and seemed free from any damage or air bubbles. The trailer bed and frame are nicely detailed and should only require the removal of the pour plugs which shouldnít be a problem with a sharp razor saw. The inside of the frames are filled with a thin film to help strengthen them and prevent warping so this will need removed with a sharp X-acto blade.
Inside the box you get the flatbed and frame as separate items plus 4 Zip bags of parts and a further plastic zip bag containing a small PE fret.
Bag 1 contains the 4 mudguards and the Dolly for the trailer. The dolly frame also has a thin film of resin between the supports and around it that will need cleaned up as well as removing the pour plug. The instructions show a good B & W picture of the part so you should not have any difficulty in knowing which bits of film to remove. The mudguards are nicely detailed and finished and will also need careful removal from their pour stubs.
Bag 2 contained the suspension arms for the front and rear of the trailer parts G and H respectively along with the break cylinders, brackets and end parts. Unfortunately both my H parts had broken off the plug leaving part of the suspension arm on the plug, so a fix will be needed there. Also contained in this bag are 15 small blanking plates marked as part L which are chassis brackets, but it is not clear form the older style instructions where these belong.
Bag 3 contained the front and rear axel, parts N and M, Part D the turntable and Part O the towing hook along with part S the tow bar. The tow bar also has a thin film for protection that will need removed. Also in this bag was Part Q the trailer headboard, which is nicely detailed with the iron support bars on the front.
Bag 4 contained the 4 road wheels plus the spare tire. These are beautifully done although the instructions donít indicate the position for fixing of the spare wheel!
The final zip bag contained a small fret of PE plus a length of brass rod. You get PE parts for the mudguard fixation plates, lower front frame, rear frame, left and right support, rear plate, rear break cylinder support, bracket, dolly break cylinder support, front panel reinforcement and break mechanisms part a and part b, plus 14 tie downs. The brass rod is for the various brake pipes that need to be added.
Conclusion This is an excellently detailed kit. There are quite a few small parts that will make up the finished kit. The parts are all well cast with no air bubbles or obvious warping that I can see. The road wheels are beautifully done and of the correct type for the trailer. The accuracy level should be spot on having been measured from the real thing and I canít fault the detail on any part of the kit.
On the down side, the suspension parts H have very fragile ends, both of which had snapped off on my example. Broken resin parts are normally reasonably easy to fix but I may need to get replacements in this instance if I canít get a strong enough bond.
Whilst the B & W photographs in the older style instructions are very good, they are not always well marked so careful study will be required when building the kit to ensure no bits get left off.
There arenít that many reference pictures around of this particular type of trailer and I am indebted to Luke Davis for the source references for the review and future build.
This is a very useable kit that would add interest to any 3 ton lorry you are building or work on itís own in a diorama type situation. Loaded or unloaded, with or without a towing vehicle this is a neat kit and a welcome one given the complete absence of British trailers in 1/35 plastic. These trailers would have been used to carry anything form general stores to mounted searchlights so there is a lot of opportunity for an individual style