Being fresh off of the review of the 1:72 scale MiniArt “Building w/Garage”, kit #72031, we now have the “City House” kit, #72030. This is a model of a typical European multi-family dwelling. Like the previous kit, this kit represents a complete, undamaged building and not a ruin. It is also all injection molded styrene with none of the vacuum-formed parts found in some of their 1:35 scale releases in the same genre.
The 13.5’” by 10.5” by 2.25” box is the preferred top and bottom (lid) type. There is a nice artist’s rendition of the building on the box top which can serve as a helpful painting guide, although colors can ultimately be left to the imagination of the individual modeler. However, considering the weight and quantity of the box contents, and like the last kit, I felt that the box top was a bit flimsy, although this one has managed to stay together thus far.
Upon opening the box, you’ll find one big, clear poly bag stuffed full of 331 multi-colored parts, attached to 72 actual separate sprues. If you go by the parts map, it would be 106 sprues - but a number of them are attached, so I’ll go with the 72. Parts are molded in a brick red color (for the brick wall areas), orange (for the roof parts), white (for window frames) and brown (for door frames and doors). There are no clear parts supplied for window glass panes, but that should be an easy fix with some clear acetate or plastic sheet. All of the supplied parts are used in construction. There is no provision for interior details.
The instruction sheet is printed in full-color on a good heavy gloss finish stock tri-folded to an 8.5” x 11” format, which clearly lays out 36 assembly steps over six pages. There is a parts map, but no color call-outs.
As I mentioned before, this kit is not a building ruin, but rather a representation of a fully functional, undamaged edifice. Due to the large number of parts, it is also not a kit for beginners or the faint-hearted. The parts count alone warns you of this. Even still, due to the well laid out instructions (if you follow them) you should have no problem with assembly. Parts are all cleanly molded and ejector pin marks appear to be limited to inside or unseen surfaces. Detail on the parts is delicate and superb for 1:72 scale. I really like the way the brick work looks.
The various parts assemble into sub-assemblies or modules, which are then all brought together - a logical method. The parts fit appears to be good and with patience and care, you should have a fine looking piece of work.
While parts are molded in colors that are representative of their purpose (like brick red for the brick wall parts) one could, theoretically, not paint the kit. However, this model really would do well to have a nice, thoughtful paint and weathering job. Again. colors are up to you, but the box top art is a good starting point. The results you get from this kit all boil down to the time and patience which you put into it, since the kit itself is quite nice.
If your latest diorama idea calls for a building like this one (or any of the others in the MiniArt small-scale line) I can definitely recommend this kit as I did the last one. It too is not cheap, but I feel that it does give excellent value for the dollar - everything that you need to make a great looking building is in the box.
Sincere thanks to Model Rectifier Corporation (MRC) for supplying this review sample and to IPMS-USA for allowing me to do this review.