Friday, November 25

Dual Build Review of a historic scene: Neucraft Models WWII US Army Lieutenant & Red Army Female Officer

Neucraft have several new figures in their exclusive ranges from different sculptors, today we are reviewing the pair in a quite historical photo of a US GI and Soviet female officer in the 1945. We look at each of the figures and build them to see what they are like in our review..

Dual Build Review:
WWII US Army Lieutenant and Red Army Female Officer
Neucraft Models
35004S
1/35 scale resin figure kit
Sculptor: Qing Yi
Painter: Han Dong
$23.50

WWII US Army Lieutenant
Neucraft Models
35004
1/35 scale resin figure kit
Sculptor: Qing Yi
Painter: Han Dong
$11.90

WWII Red Army Female Officer A
Neucraft Models
35005
1/35 scale resin figure kit
Sculptor: Qing Yi
Painter: Han Dong
$11.90

When a new company starts making 35th scale figures that look good, have some nice detail and are easy to make we usually take notice. Even more so when these figures fill a niche. This set of two single figures from Neucraft seem to fill out all of those boxes. They look promising, have easy - to minimal construction, and the subjects - they cover some non-combatants. In scenes that have no shooting in them, this is a good thing to have in your desktop armoury. The fact that you could use these surrounded by US or Soviet vehicles adds that much more appeal.

But where did the inspiration of this set come from? A historical WWII picture that shows the meeting of the Soviet and US forces in Czechoslovakia in 1945 is a well known inspiration for the sculptor. Specifically two Russian Red Army female officers talking to 1st Lt. John Tate of Middleton, Maryland in Ăšjezd Kammen, Czechoslovakia. Tate belonged to the 26th Infantry Division, 3rd Army, and the photo was Taken just after the war on May 12, 1945
There are plenty of pictures like this , some very funny - but I know I like to see the history behind a sculpture if there is some, and this meeting of nations is some very good inspiration.

The Figures:
These two figures from Neucraft are sold as single figures or as a set. We will look at them both singularly and then as a set and how they match with the picture they were inspired from. OK, Let's start with Ladies first...

WWII Red Army Female Officer A
35005
1/35 scale resin figure kit
Sculptor: Qing Yi
Painter: Han Dong
$11.90
This female officer of the Soviet Red Army comes in a cardboard box that is filled with bubble wrap from Neucraft. They do protect their figures in the mail, and this one arrived safe and sound. Not that there was really anything to break off - she come completely put together, and her pose is such that none of here is really "sticking out" enough to break.
One part in a light colour resin that is kinda off cream grey is in the box. Interestingly the fully formed detail is all there, nothing is skimped on in detail we see already. She even has the nice "dress" shoes that were probably not at all the usual for a female soldier to wear in any but a behind the line situation.
While her comrade in the picture wears a tunic and skirt, this officer of the Red Army is wearing a one-piece dress, This is taken in at the waist, in a fashion that was similar to the men's uniform I suppose, but being a woman I am sure it attracted more attention with all of those male soldiers around.
Back to the figure - she is wearing a BIG grin, almost too big, but the sculptor carries it off here. Her details on the dress are quite prominent so easy to pick out when painting. The watch on her wrist, the buttons on her dress, the folds in her sleeves and dress are all very nicely carried out. The details of her hair, ears, fingers to the buckles on her shoes are all pretty good. Not the sharpest figure ever in detail, but one very nicely sculpted and easy to finish off nicely.


WWII US Army Lieutenant
35004
1/35 scale resin figure kit
Sculptor: Qing Yi
Painter: Han Dong
$11.90
This figure is of a US GI - those of us in the know ( with a decent search engine) will realise that this fellow was US Army lieutenant 1st Lt. John Tate of Middleton from Maryland. He was lucky enough to be present when the ladies of the Read army arrived - much to the displeasure of one of the onlookers behind him who I think had some gas that day?
He is again cast in a grey/cream light coloured resin. this time though the construction has ramped up 100% - he now comes in two parts if you can handle that! The M1 Carbine the soldier carries strapped to his body is a separate part, and to us it looks pretty good. 

We simply stuck ours on to his back and it fit so well we didn't need to glue it. It just needs a little clean up around the trigger ("where is it?") and you are ready.
He wears a typical M1 Steel helmet, a wool shirt and a cloth belt on his waist with a medical pack and ammo for his carbine in two pouches.
The woollen trousers meet his gaitered boots at the ankle. The impressive skill of the sculptor comes out again in the wrinkled gathering of the woollen replica resin at his elbows, sleeves and all over on his pants from the knees to the trouser logs. The depth in material and weight is shown off very effectively.
You can see as we walk around this figure that his casual body language is nicely shown by his hand on his hip. note on his back his water flask wrapped in cloth and his binocular case draped over his back. His attention and eyesight was directed directly front and centre!
Again the wrinkling of the clothing is evident here and the whole look is pretty nice isn't it? Buttons, clasps on the belt, fingers and overlapping cloth.


WWII US Army Lieutenant and Red Army Female Officer
35004S
1/35 scale resin figure kit
Sculptor: Qing Yi
Painter: Han Dong
$23.50
These two certainly do match the photograph we have looked at don't they? all we need to fill out this scene is the less glamorous Red Army comrade and that cranky old bloke on the left in the background to make the whole scene!
OK so that is them both made up (didn't take too long did it?) I can say that apart form the ease of construction there was nothing really to sharpen up on these figures before they are ready for undercoat and then paint. The details on both of the soldiers is quite nice - not the best ever but nicely done nonetheless. Better than my painting could render them anyway!

The scene is a cool one to replicate, and if not you can always do with two more non-combatants that are not pointing, reading a map or shouting heroically - just having a conversation. Isn't that what life is all about?

Great work.

Adam Norenberg

You can get these figures - singularly or together as a set - from NeucraftModels Webstore on sale now.
Here they are all painted up - notice the dual lieutenant's bars on this male figure have since been removed before they got to market - these are the originals painted up on the Neucraft Models website.