Sino-Soviet border conflict
Demanaski (Zhenbao) Island
This model added to kgwings.com on November 10, 2010
In 1956 the Soviet Union made a decision to convert all rifle and mechanized divisions into new motor rifle divisions. Two vehicles were developed to meet this requirement, one would eventually become the heavily armed BMP-1 and the other would become the lighter and less expensive BTR-60.
BTR stands for Bronetransportyor (literally "armoured transporter"). The original BTR-60(P) began production in 1989. It had roofless troop and crew compartments which held two crew and sixteen fully equipped soldiers.
In 1963 production began on the BTR-60PA which had an armoured roof. This reduced the amount of soldiers carried to fourteen. The crew consisted of a driver and a commander.
The engine compartment is at the rear of the vehicle where two six cylinder gasoline GAZ 49 engines propel the vehicle. The BTR-60 is fully amphibious and moves in water propelled by a single water-jet mounted at the rear of the hull.
No interior is included in the kit so I modifed some leftover crew and troop seats found in my spare parts box. Fortunately you can't see much of the interior so I only had to "suggest" that the correct parts are in place.
ACE included a 12.7 mm DShK 1938/46 heavy machine gun and two 7.62 mm SGMB general purpose machine guns in the kit. I chose the single 7.62 weapon as the most likely load for the period.
Having the option of open hatches is a really nice feature of this kit, the only thing that could have made it better is if interior parts had been included.
The trim vane is molded too thick so I sanded it down to a more realistic thickness.
The rubber/vinyl tires included in the kit are excellent and really add to the realism of the kit.
I'm very happy with how the subtle weathering turned out although I'm starting to feel the need to let loose and build something extremely dirty next time.
For a short run production kit, the detail is surprisingly well done.
Excellent photo etched parts are included for the three firing ports on each side of the hull. All other guards, foot steps and hand grips must be created with small gauge wire.
Overall this was an enjoyable build and a great addition to my collection.
Kit: ACE #72161
This kit retails for around $13.00 (US) which is pretty much inline with other kits of this scale in today's market.
Decals provided for Soviet Army during Soviet-Chinese border conflict March 1969, Soviet Guard Unit early 1970's, and East German Peoples Army early 1970's.
Included in the kit are 101 styrene parts molded in white. 8 vinyl/rubber tires. 1 decal sheet and 1 instruction sheet.
Ace model produces short run kits that usually require extra effort to assemble and this one is no exception. Assembly starts with the a fairly detailed undercarrage consisting of more than half the parts in the kit. The soft vinyl/rubber tires are excellent. The main hull is comprised of 3 parts which will require test fitting, sanding and filler. The front troop hatch and both driver's hatches are molded separate and can be positioned opened or closed.
Three machine guns and mounts are provided in the kit, all of which are fairly well detailed. Pioneer tools are molded separately.
No footsteps or hand rungs are provided but the instructions indicate to make them out of wire and show their correct position.
Overall it's a fairly simple build if you don't mind all the extra sanding and filling.
After Market Parts Used: None
I used small gauge wire to build headlight guards, hand and foot holds. I used spare driver seats and bench seats to fill out the interior. I used scrap stryrene to complete the inside of the water intakes (otherwise you can see through the hull).
This kit builds into a very nice looking BTR but because it is a short run kit with parts that require cleanup and careful test fitting it is best suited for modelers with experience.