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I’m sure I’m not the only one who has ever looked at a kit and said, “That looks easy. I’ll just whip that together in the next day or two.” That’s pretty much what came to mind when I looked at the Value Gear Sherman Engine Deck Set. After all, how hard can it be to paint up some stowage and slap it on a tank? You can guess where that idea went.
This particular set, Engine Deck Set #13, contains the following eight individual resin pieces specifically designed for the Sherman:
As an avid reader and collector of WWII related books, I am always on the lookout for material that presents unique perspectives and experiences from this era. Finding this book, Barbarossa Campaign in 1941 Hungarian Perspective fits right in.
Author Peter Mujzer is a devoted historian who has served in the Hungarian armed services and is a consummate student of its history. Prior to this book, he has published 10 additional works, specifically on the Hungarian armor, equipment, and battles of WWII. For this book Mujzer states, “…I would like to introduce our readers to the first major campaign of the Royal Hungarian Army fought against the Red Army in Ukraine from July until November of 1941.” It only takes a cursory flip through the pages to realize what an expert like Mujzer calls an introduction, is way more than that to the average reader.
The DO-335 was designed as a heavy fighter for the Luftwaffe, and featured a pair of DB-603 engines, one mounted in the nose, and the other mounted aft of the center of gravity, with its propeller located behind the tail surfaces of the aircraft. This push-pull arrangement eliminated the drag usually associated with a second engine, and allowed much higher speeds. It was intended to counter the British DeHavilland Mosquito, which was causing severe problems for the Luftwaffe in attacking German night fighters trying to counter the RAF’s night bomber offensive. There were several prototypes built, each differing in minor details. Some were single seat, while others were two seaters intended for night fighting, although few, if any, were equipped with radar. The aircraft had an impressive performance, but very few were built, and they never went into Luftwaffe service units, as the war ended too soon.
This set is designed to provide replacement parts for Hobby Boss’ 1/72 A-4F Skyhawk kit. As with most of SAC’s landing gear sets, the metal parts are intended to be one-for-one replacements for the kit parts. The set consists of the nose gear strut, port and starboard main gear struts and retraction/extension arms for all three of these.
Like the kit part, the nose wheel is cast with the nose strut. SAC has also cast the nosewheel steering (part C21) as part of the strut, however as the arms on this part are very thin, they are easily bent, so take care around them. The set also includes the retraction/extension actuator for the nose strut, however, as the actuator is very skinny, it is easily deformed and when I first looked at it, I thought it was a brake line as the one in my set was pretty curvy.