Resin Conversion Parts for Sherman Kits
Armour Brigade Models

Catalogue No.: ABM001 - Early Style 105mm Sherman Howitzer Turret
ABM003 - Early Production 47 Degree Glacis M4 Upper Hull Conversion
Scale: 1/35
Media: Resin
Review Type: In-Box
Rating: Highly Recommended

Reviewed by Cookie Sewell

S u m m a r y

Contents: ABM001 - 47 parts in tan resin, one turned aluminum gun barrel
ABM003 - 30 parts in tan resin
Price: ABM001 around US$20
ABM003 around US$15
Advantages: New manufacturer, but excellent workmanship and execution of kits
Disadvantages: May not seem "different" enough for some modelers
Recommendation: For all late war US fans and "Shermaholics"


F i r s t   L o o k

One of the surprises at AMPS 98 was the debut of the first new kits from a new manufacturer – Armour Brigade, a Canadian company. This company, whose staff includes researcher Sid Arnold and AMPS master modeler Dave Dean, has recently formed and chose AMPS 98 to release its first production kits.

It must be noted up front that the people who run Armour Brigade and the folks from Chesapeake Model Designs (who is the US distributor for Armour Brigade) are good friends, and the camaraderie and interaction between the two show up in Armour Brigade's products. The two kits that were provided by Armour Brigade for review are nearly indistinguishable from CMD products in their quality.

The terms they have used for these two – "early" – caused one well-known researcher to immediate condemn them as "wrong" without even looking at them. Fatal mistake, for the two products are dead accurate and are exactly what they portray themselves to be. His skewing on their identification apparently turns on the word "early" – which he equated to slope-backed single hatch turrets and 56 degree early hull Shermans. If one reads the direction – "whatta concept!" – the reason that the term "early" was used for the turret is correct. The first production howitzer tanks had the split-ring commander cupola (since it was felt that the vision cupola would not be needed for what was felt to be a self-propelled artillery piece and not a tank) and were missing some of the armored covers for the various sights. Later versions were updated, and the kit includes the vision cupola for an updated tank.

The early production hull is pretty much the same. It is the first production model of the 47 degree welded hull with most of the standard M4/M4A1 features. The major differences externally between an "early" and a "late" hull have to do with the drivers' compartment ventilator and the presence or absence of vents for the grouser storage bins at the rear of the tank. Ergo, any comments that these kits are "inaccurate" in that sense are wrong and should be ignored.

Like CMD, fit is as close to an injection molded plastic kit as one could desire, and they do have a lot of flexibility. The turret is designed for use on either the Tamiya M4A3 or the DML POW-CWS-H5 M4A3 kit (to turn it into a pure howitzer vehicle less the flame-thrower). It includes a partial interior with a full gun breech, and all parts are crisp and precise in their molding.

The hull is designed for the Italeri M4A1 kit, but with some work could probably be adapted to the Tamiya M4 chassis. It comes with all of the major "bits" needed, but as is noted in the very complete directions, it will
require some fine wire and Model Kasten wing nuts to match the details which the designers planned for the kit. If not, the Italeri parts can probably be used with no major problems.

Overall, these are excellent efforts and always welcome by "Shermaholics" like myself. It's always nice to see a new company appear, and one with this level of quality will be around for some time to come.

Kits are available from either Armour Brigade Models, PO Box 35163, Westgate PO, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1Z 1A2, or from Chesapeake Model Designs, PO Box 393, Monkton, Maryland 21111.

Review by Cookie Sewell, April 1998.
Visit Track-Link for the best of Armour Modelling.
Page Created 28 April, 1998.
Last updated 22 July, 2003.

More Shermans on HyperScale:
Sherman Firefly Construction Feature in the "Armour Archive"
Sherman I Construction Feature in the "Armour Archive"

Back to HyperScale Main Page

Back to Reviews Page