Modelik Valentine Mk IV Light Tank

Discussion in 'First Impressions Kit Reviews' started by charliec, Sep 5, 2004.

  1. charliec

    charliec Active Member

    Model: Valentine Mk IV
    Publisher: Modelik 7/98
    Scale: 1:25
    Format: A4 Booklet
    Designer: Ryszard Maj

    The Valentine was a private venture by Vickers-Armstrong in 1936, it was originally rejected by the British authorities but later accepted for production at the start of WW2. It was used extensively in the Middle East and by the Russians. The Red Army thought it was the best Allied tank supplied to them by lend-lease - they liked the Valentine, or rather the Canadian built version, so much the production lines were kept in place explicitly to build Valentines for the Red Army. The Valentine was progessively up-gunned and up-armoured throughout it's service life.

    There has been comment in the armoured vehicles forums that many AFV models are in fact based on plastic models. If I can interpret the Polish text correctly this model is based on a Dragon plastic kit. The model represents a Valentine of the 40th Armoured Regiment in North Africa, 1942.

    Eight pages of A4 cardstock, 3 pages of frames and other parts on 80gsm, 1 page of vehicle history (in Polish) and 5 pages of construction diagrams and Polish text. The instruction diagrams are better than the usual for Modelik kits of this vintage. Whilst the construction diagrams are not as good as modern kits they are much better than for the PzKpfw IVG of the same vintage.

    This model is based on handmade drawings so the line widths and general precision expected of computer generated drawings is missing. I have the impression that using a plastic model as a basis for the paper model has some unfortunate consequences. It seems as if there are some of the paper/card assemblies are exactly modelling plastic parts - in effect some parts of this kit seem excessively complicated without any particular reason for the complexity.

    Print quality is qute good, although the yellow-orange colour doesn't seem right for British desert colours. There are slight problems with colour registration but it seems as if the colour is uniform across the part pages.

    The Valentine used a Vickers suspension - this is quite convincingly modelled even though it takes a fair number of parts to model each suspension component. The track is modelled as two bands - unfortunately the bands are solidly coloured in grey whereas inspection shows that there's quite a lot of cutting out to do on tracks. This isn't a show stopper but just an irritant.

    The hull frame for this model is quite complicated mostly because the original Valentine had a complex hull form with a number of changes of cross-section along the hull. The hull top seems to be well designed and unlike the Cromwell the Valentine had a number of storage boxes to reduce the external stowage of tools, etc. The turret design includes an elevation mechanism and the turret design looks like it will be quite rigid and simple to put together.

    I think if you've built a couple of models then you should be able to tackle the Modelik Valentine.

    I'm very much in two minds about the Modelik Valentine - there isn't another Valentine model around - but the design techniques used make me somewhat uncertain about how the model is going to fit together. It would have been nice to get option to build the Mk IX with the 6 pdr (57mm) gun. I think it would be a good move to scan and recolour this kit to approximate desert camouflage better and also to add some weathering.

    Instructions: B+ (good diagrams)
    Paper quality: B
    Level of detail: A
    Printing quality: B+
    Artwork: B (weathering would be nice)
    Value for money: B
    Skill level: Beginner to Intermediate
  2. charliec

    charliec Active Member

    I've added images to the Valentine review.



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