Saturday, July 12

Review: New rubber before you Schwimm? Replikant Technologies Schwimmwagen tyres and wheels in 35th scale..

The Volkswagen Schwimmwagen – whether it be in the VW166 short version from Tamiya/ Italeri or the longer VW128 we have just seen from AFV club they both have one thing in common – rubbish anaemic tyres that don’t really capture the look of the fat tyres often used in service. Replikant Technologies from Spain wants to fix this case of anorexia with several types of new fat tires to match the ground these amphibious vehicles frequented – let’s have a look at them…
Review: Schwimmwagen Type 166/128 Wheels 
Replikant Technologies
Scale: 1/35th
There are four different versions made in different packages: Inflated, Deflated, Bulged & Burst
Having owned a few of these small VW’s from Tamiya/ Italeri with the thin plastic wheels, and the new Schwimmwagen typ128 kit from AVF club with it’s plastic hub and rubber thin tyres I was never really very satisfied with the look of these vehicles once they were made. They look too tall on the wheels and the tyres just too thin in comparison with pictures of the original.

Not happy Jan!  – especially when you compare them with some of the pics of these in service with fat tyres in the mud and dust from Russia to western Europe to the Med and even the DAK cars from the Desert like the Beetle and the Kubelwagen which needed bulged tyres to get across the sand…
Replikant Technologies has sent us their resin replacement tyres in 35th scale. We have several of the types here which cover all of their releases – in all there are thirteen sets in all going from one wheel to four in a box – they are sold in these breakdowns..

350100 Schwimmwagen Spare Wheel (1 wheel in set)
350110 Low Sagged Front and Rear Wheels (4 in set)
350111 Low Sagged Front Wheels (2 in set)
350112 Low Sagged Rear Wheels (2 in set)
350120 Sagged Front and Rear Wheels (4 in set)
350121 Sagged Front Wheels (2 in set)
350122 Sagged Rear Wheels (2 in set)
350130 High Sagged Front Wheels (2 in set)
350131 High Sagged Rear Wheels (2 in set)
350140 Deflated Front Wheel (1 in set)
350141 Deflated Rear Wheel (1 in set)
350150 Burst Front Wheel (1 in set)
350151 Burst Rear Wheel (1 in set)

Now these thirteen different sets can be used on the Schwimmwagen type 166 type 128 as well as the Kubelwagen and the VW Beetle as they all share the same rim size. notice the two different types of wheel hubs. These are moulded separately in front and rear flavours as you see here with the wheels and tyres
And the real thing in comparison...
The resin supplied is an easy addition. The tyres and wheels are cast in one piece which solves a lot of fiddly cutting and gluing of the thin wheels. There is a little flat spot in each wheel where they are removed from the casting block but this will be the bottom of the wheel anyway so no-foul no-harm there.
The cream resin is free from any flaws or bubbles and the casting is of top quality as the tyres notches are very squared off and even in the smallest bit of tread the quality is the same as the ticker parts. The tyres look really chunky and they suit the low squat silhouette of this vehicle so much better.

The difference in the wheels is made by Tamiya is seen here – if you like thin wheels well more power to you – these did get issued as well – I just like these a lot more

And the AFV Club Rubber wheels – these are thick but the tread is of a new pattern and the tyres sit on the rims pretty much like they are of a different size.

Here you see the very nice detail in the deflated tyre and the rubber with the burst rim showing damage that you would have to try and scratch-sculpt yourself before this release.

The tyres sit on the bonnet of my schwimm pretty well and it looks just the right thickness. It isnt in the right position but from this quick mock up you get a feel for it
I have to say I'm really impressed with these sets – I now have the option of finishing off my Type 128 in a muddy terrain which really didn’t suit the rubber type I had with the kit. This is the one part of the kit I would have changed so it’s great for these to be available.

The fact that there are so many choices as well adds a lot to the weight of the argument. You could have a choice of any of these on your vehicle at the one time depicting a damaged, flat or regular wear on your Schwimmwagen or any other VW type car.

These are going onto my build poste-haste!

Adam Norenberg

Thanks to Replikant for these wheels – you can get any of these thirteen sets via the Replikant Technologies website