The kit is the interior fixtures for a black smith shop. The box art tells a decent story of what this kit is all about. It should reproduce the main features of a black smith shop: work bench, a charcoal forge (or smithy), an anvil, tools, and a smoke exhaust.
The kit contains 22 resin parts and photo etched sheet.
The kit on its own is a good looking kit. You have everything you would need to fit a black smith shop or even a portion of a full workshop/machine shop.
The pieces are typical Plus Models resin. The resin is not a very hard and comes in a gray color. The resin blocks are cast in good locations and should be easily removed with little or no fixing. You will have to be careful as some parts are delicate. The 90 degree angle on the legs, and the tools will be the challenging parts. A good sharp razor saw is a must to prep this kit.
The detail on the parts is well cast. The pieces held the detail well. There were no broken pieces, all the legs were intact, and the smaller pieces were in place. I didn’t see any bubbles or gaps. The long flat pieces are all very flat and do not show any signs of warping.
The wood pieces show nice wood grain. This may sound simple; too many pieces produced by various manufacturers that are supposed to represent wood are simple flat resin. These, by Plus Models, do not let you down in that way.
Other details to note are the charcoal details, drawer pulls, and vice details.
The model looks very straight forward. There is an instruction sheet that outlines assembly in ‘exploded-view’. It helps because there are a few smaller parts that would take some creative testing to see how they would go together if the instructions weren’t there.
The workbench is roughly scaled out to 875mm (34.4 inches) high, which is within normal limits. The width scales out to be 2177mm (85.7 inches) wide, again within normal limits.
The forge is 875mm (34.4 inches) high by 665mm square or 26.1 inches. Again it looks like a normal scaled down forge.
The tools in the PE sheet are basic tongs for holding hot projects. They come in different lengths and look to be good representation of the real thing. The long ones scale to be 665mm and short one are 420mm long. It would have been a nice to have some other tools in PE, not just tongs.
After a bit of research on black smith workshops I would say that this kit is a decent kit. It represents the basics of a shop: a forge, anvil, tongs, and a workbench.
This kit will fit in a WWII era diorama with the kit parts supplied. After reviewing a lot of black smith shops and the equipment they had I would say that this kit would support a shop up through the 1950’s. It could also be used in a ‘non-main stream’, non-industrial black smith shop through current times. My rational for this is that the forge is one with an electric fan. The fan is the air supply to keep the flame well oxygenated and as hot as possible. This equipment existed during WWII so this kit is not inappropriate; it would have been a newer shop during WWII. In looking at the longevity of black smith shops they tend to last a long time and are ‘kept in the family’ for generations. Because of this longevity the kit can support shops up through 1950. In certain situations it would also support a diorama in current period settings.
The kit is a good, basic one that will add nice detail to a workshop. It is not engineered to be for a specific building which is good thing. It could be added to another ‘kit’ building or you can scratch build a simple shop around this kit.
The time range this kit addresses is a nice subjective property. Being able to extend across a wide range of time periods helps this kit ‘fit’ in more projects.
Another benefit of this kit is that it is not so specific that it can also work to support a workshop that is not just a black smith. A general workshop could use the workbench and if the forge was positioned in a non-prominent position.
Highs: Good solid kit, nice detail. Good PE addition. Not quite a must have, but close.Lows: The PE tools could be a bit more varied.Verdict: Great detail, lots of project uses.
About Scott Lodder (slodder) FROM: NORTH CAROLINA, UNITED STATES
I modeled when I was a teenager. College, family and work stopped me for a while. Then I picked it back up after about 12 years off. My main focus is dioramas. I like the complete artistic method of story telling. Dioramas involve so many aspects of modeling and I enjoy getting involved in the ...