Tuesday, October 8

We review: MiniArt's 1/35th scale Hungarian Tank Crew..

We have not seen much in the way of Hungarian combatants during WWII – I mean compared with the other Axis powers' representation in model kits you would think they weren’t there. Hungarians however served a large part in the conflict and so MiniArt have produced these new tankers to match the new kits from Bronco made specifically it seems for them – or the other way around – not too sure – but let’s have a look at them and build them up for you to see their true worth.


Hungarian Tank Crew
BOX: 260x162x35 mm
Kit contains 47 parts/ 5 figures.
Available from MiniArt’s Distributors

Up until recently there has been little in the way of Hungarian fighting troops and especially tank men from the Second World War in 1/35th scale. Resin has filled the gap but hey it isn’t usually cheap and has it’s own set of unique issues. Though one thing resin figures are is they are a good quality.

Hungarian Tanker's Coat - study it..

This single box contains two sprues and a black and white construction sheet. The sprue numbers are on that sheet and their instruction method is on the back of the box.
The back of this box serves as both a construction and painting guide. Colours are given in many different shades – in fact pretty much any model colour you use – you will need a lot of brown leather for this set! But before we get into heavily into leather (so to speak) let’s get into plastic as a “gateway” drug.
The plastic on the sprues is well moulded with not to much flash at all. Seams in the jackets, at the waist, and arm joints where the natural separation where the joins on these figures are which is smart engineering. There are a few coats which hang low over the legs which join at the waist – leaving a long uninterrupted flow on the back of the tankers.
The one thing that is a no-no and I don’t know why this was done was the mould seams are straight down the middle of the faces. Without careful carving you could do some damage and need some “plastic surgery” to fix the erroneous cut. We did not have this problem when putting ours together. More of a cautionary than a red flag really.
The five tankers are all in distinctively different poses - let’s have a look at them all separately..

Figure A – the officer with hands in his pockets

This officer is standing with his legs together with his hands in his pockets of his leather coat.
Under his heavy protective coat he wears his tanker’s tunic with insignia visible on his collar. There is some depth in this coat as his hands in his pocket are pushing the coat forward a little so the “leather“ looks natural and heavy but still flexible. On the figure’s back the wrinkles of both of his jacket and his pants are naturalistic and impressive. The jacket does indeed look like it is worn OVER the uniform and not a part of him. Layered is the word I am after. His cavalry breaches hark back to an earlier time as do his high boots.

Figure B – Tanker in protective helmet holding… something

….Could be a horse – could be a steering wheel or anything else – a turret hatch maybe? But his hands are pointed downwards like they are resting on something…handlebars?
The motorcycle rider - tanker, is wearing an all over protective leather tanker’s uniform. Done up all the way down his body the waist is the main joint in this figure and it will need a push down to settle without a gap. He packs a LARGE pistol pouch on his right hip which can be unused or not – your choice. The thick lined pants and jacket cover this tanker so fully you cannot even work out which boots he is wearing.
On his head is the distinctive headgear of the Hungarian tanker – the Model 37 with larger flaps which covered the ears – it must have been hard to hear anything in a tank - nothing a kick in the shoulder wouldn’t fix!

Figure C – “Mr Nonchalant” leaning against something..

This figure looks like he is waiting for a bus – or watching something happen – he does not look like he is going to get engaged in the action anyway..

He is seen with small soft cap on his head over which his goggles cling to his head. He has full length leather overalls on broken only by a leather belt with a large pistol holster again attached to the belt on the right hand side.

Interesting here are the straps around his legs which almost act as galoshes and his britches.

Figure D – “Come here”

This tanker wears a cloth overall similar to a Russian tanker’s summer overall, the knee pattern is the same as the Russian “onesie.” This soldier is seen motioning to someone to come or look in his direction. On my figure though the hand is a bit mangled – it looks more like he is pointing to the side rather than gesturing to come hither. It almost looks like it is broken off so maybe this is what happened – I certainly never noticed it until I took these shots.
He has the earlier tanker’s helmet with the flap on the back instead of covering the ears. His ears are covered by his radio headphones whilst his pistol holster is held up by the leather strap around his shoulder.
He has a charming smile if I could comment on that – and other than the hand is a good fitting and looking replica.

Figure E “The thinker”

This dude almost looks like he is on the loo! He is sitting very passively leaning forward whilst his arms rest on his knees/legs.

This soldier wears a different headgear as well – a cloth padded number uncommon to Hungarian tankmen in my experience of looking for references. It almost looks like the soft soviet skull caps.

He is seen in a pair of cloth overalls with his thick and short tanker’s jacket covering his upper torso, pistol on his right hip he is leaning slightly forward.
There are some nice folds in his jacket and pants, it would be better for his cuffs to be looser as in the Boxart but as he is he fits well and looks pretty good.

Here are the gang together…
So there you have it – a solid bunch of figures tough not outstanding. Some of you may stick with the resin but the more adventurous and rice conscious will opt for this set. With a little careful carving and painting this set could look very good sitting in amongst your new “Toldi” or “Nimrod” tanks

Adam Norenberg

Thanks to MiniArt for sending these figures for review!