is a company featuring a very impressive 1/35 scale figure portfolio, with most of the miniatures sculpted by Dmitri Shevtsov, one of the best figure sculptors today. However, the company recently decided to break out of their comfort zone and try something new and original… 3D scanning.
3D scanning is a process of making a three-dimensional “selfie”, which is then processed, scaled and 3D printed. The end result is a miniature copy of a real person, with a level of realism which cannot be matched even by the most talented figure sculptors.
Machine Gunner, the US Marine Corps (AM35012)
is the latest release from Assault Models, and their second 1/35 scale resin figure manufactured using 3D scanning technology. The 3D scanning process for this particular figure can be seen here: link
The figure is packed in a hard plastic box featuring an image of assembled and unpainted figure. In the meantime, the image of the digitally painted figure appeared on Assault Models website and the kit is now supplied with painted boxart image (as seen in the header image of this review).
Inside the box is a zip-lock bag containing parts cast in grey resin. The kit consists of 4 pieces:
- upper torso,
- lower torso,
The pieces are cast in grey resin. The cast is really good, but upon higher magnification I saw some seam lines which need to be carefully taken care of. Carrier blocks are large, but easy to remove without damaging the parts. The figure engineering seems a bit strange at first, particularly the separation of upper and lower torso. However, these two pieces fit really well with only minor putty work needed to make things perfect. The torso aligns nicely with the legs. I had some difficulties adjusting the head to the torso, having to recreate an indentation on the bottom of the head piece which should fit the corresponding protrusion on the torso. Some dry fitting was necessary to get the head in the optimal position, as well as some putty work to fill in the gaps.
The figure represents an USMC machine gunner in a relaxed pose, with the weapon cradled in his arms. The figure is depicted wearing the latest USMC garb and gear: Flame Resistant Organizational Gear (FROG) uniform, Improved Modular Tactical Vest (IMTV) and Lightweight Helmet (LWH). All the equipment is cast on the IMTV: SAW/utility pouch and M4 double magazine pouch on the front, assault pouch on the right side, SAW gunners pouch on the left side, and large hydration pouch on the back. Also cast on the figure are first aid pouch, flare pouch, two grenade pouches and a large dump pouch, all attached to the battle belt. The LWH features helmet light and NVG mounting plate, as well as a piece of equipment that I wasn’t able to identify… perhaps a part of weapon cleaning kit or something like that?
The figure is armed with M249 Squad Automatic Weapon (SAW). It features a shorter barrel, Picatinny rails for the feed tray cover and forearm, 100-round soft pack and a buttstock based on the M4 carbine design. The ELCAN M145 scope is cast on the weapon, as well as the folded bipod and AN/PEQ-15 laser illuminator.
Machine Gunner, the US Marine Corps (AM35012) is developed using 3D scanning and delivered with rapid prototyping technology, and the perfection is evident in just about every aspect of this kit… from the anatomy and the pose of the miniature, to astonishing details on the uniform and equipment. Altogether, this kit really is something special and offers a glimpse into the future of figure production.