Answer T-50 light tank

Discussion in 'First Impressions Kit Reviews' started by charliec, Aug 21, 2004.

  1. charliec

    charliec Active Member

    Model: T-50 Light Tank
    Publisher: Answer
    Copyright/Ident: No. 10-11/2003 Modele Kartonowego Fana
    Scale: 1:25
    Format: Printed A4 booklet
    Designer: Grzegorz Molenda

    The T-50 was designed as a T-26 replacement. However, even though it was a technically excellent design, production difficulties with the engine, the cost of the tank and its role being fulfilled by Lend Lease Valentines
    and the much cheaper T-70 meant that only 66 were built. Some were deployed against the Finns in 1943.

    Six pages of cardstock, 1 1/2 pages of frames, 1 1/2 pages of diagrams and 1/2 page of history and Polish instructions. The instruction diagrams are limited to a 3-view, perspective view of the hull and turret framing and a series of cross sections for suspension components. Printing is fine and accurate there is no sign of inaccuracies or colour bleeding.

    My overall impression of this model is that it is well designed and executed. If I have complaints they are more about detail rather than the overall design.

    The hull is constructed from the usual 1mm card frame - however because of the multiple sloped armour plates of the T-50 this is more complex than usual. There is no modelled interior. Interestingly the designer has chosen not to supply numerous roll up parts for axles, etc but specifies the sizes and numbers required along with the wire parts. This seems to me to be a sensible solution to avoiding the page or so of roll up parts.

    The main 45mm gun is adequately modelled with the gun elevation quite well designed. I think the gun mantlet would be more realistically modelled by building up multiple layers of thin paper rather than the "curved card with edge" technique used.

    The suspension of the T-50 was the usual for Russian light tanks - torsion bars. The spacing and alignment of the torsion bars has been accurately modelled - unlike many models. The swing arms are not accurate when compared to photos of existing T-50s (there are 2 left) but the originals were quite fine and would not be easily modelled in card.

    The tracks are modelled both as two bands or individual track links. It looks to be a serious challenge to cut out the individual links - the width of card left after cutting out drive slots, etc is less than 1mm. I have a concern that this model might be an example of the accuracy of computer design is expressed at the expense of buildability. There are lots of very small, fine parts in this model - the volume of these might make this an unreasonably difficult build. There has been a discussion of this issue in the "Realm of Armour" forum.

    There is, to my knowledge, no other T-50 model in production. I'm very much in two minds about this model - I like the design and its execution but have concerns about how difficult it is to build.

    Instructions: B
    Paper quality: A
    Level of detail: A (if you don't want an interior) B otheriwse
    Printing quality: A
    Artwork: B (no weathering)
    Value for money: B+ (there isn't another T-50 around)
    Skill level: Intermediate (mostly on part count)
  2. charliec

    charliec Active Member

    I've added images of the Answer T-50 kit to the review.

    I haven't had any feedback on the utility of retrofitting reviews with images so I guess in the absence of complaint it is acceptable.



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