Sunday, July 9

A little tug straight out of the box? ThunderModel's Clarktor-6 details + CAD's & art

We are all after more vehicles & accessories for much neglected 32nd scale aircraft. Thunder Model provides us with just the ticket with this little tug - the Clarktraktor-6 for your WWII - fairly modern era dioramas. We look at both the real thing & the kit info in our preview...

A little tug straight out of the box? ThunderModel's Clarktor-6 details + CAD's & art

US tug CLARKTOR-6 Mill-33 Heavy Duty Airfield Tractor
From Thunder Model
1/32nd scale
Kit No #32001
 100 parts in injection moulded plastic
Photo-etch & decals for 5 versions
The subject: The  Clarktor-6
The “Clarktor” was introduced into service in 1926 and was designed as an aeroplane tug for use at airports and was renowned for its small size. The Chrysler six-cylinder 230-cid flathead gasoline engine of 62 horsepower, and a three-speed 'crash' gearbox allowed the Clarktor 6,  with a wheelbase of 4 feet 11 inches, to travel at a top speed of 15 mph.
The USAAF and the Royal Air Force would eventually utilise this small but incredibly valuable specialty vehicle in the majority of battle zones. It would also travel to sea and be employed on aircraft carriers, proving its adaptability.
The first Clarktor 6s went into production in 1942, and by the end of the war, Clark had produced hundreds of different freight handling vehicles, including a request for more than 1,500 Clarktor 6s from the British Royal Air Force. These were made in a variant known as the "BH," or "British Heavy," and were sent to the Ministry of War Transport for the RAF under the Lend Lease Act.
It could handle all types of aircraft, including the Lancaster and Halifax, the B24 and B17, both of which were in the 16 tonne range when empty and had a maximum take-off weight of 29 tonnes and 32 tonnes, respectively, but were still well within the vehicle's capabilities. Despite its small size and weight of just over 2 tonnes, it had a drawbar capacity of over 2 tonnes and a towing capacity of 90 tonnes. 
The Lancaster could be handled by the Clarktor 6 due to its maximum takeoff weight of 31.25 tonnes and empty weight of 16 tonnes. The truck was employed in the Pacific Theatre to transport B29 bombers, which had an empty weight of 31.85 tonnes and a maximum takeoff weight of 62.9 tonnes.
After World War II, the vehicle remained in use and saw action in subsequent wars, notably the Korean War. It was available to transfer jet aircraft there, including F-86 "Sabres," for repair and maintenance. Throughout the Cold War, Clark vehicles were employed to transport crucial supplies during the 1948–1949 Berlin Air Lift. They were eventually superseded by more contemporary tractors.
There are currently a handful in service, but for the most part, the survivors are taken to vintage military vehicle exhibits by car enthusiasts who are interested in them.

The Kit: Thunder Model's 1/35th scale US tug CLARKTOR-6 Mill-33 Heavy Duty Airfield Tractor
This kit is the first in Thunder model's 1/32nd series of kits. A great subject to enter this scale as many modellers who love 1/32nd scale are always screaming out for more accessories in this scale. An aircraft that saw action in WWII, through to Korea and sometimes beyond is a smart choice.
The kit number TM32001, named: "US Tug Clarktor 6 Mill-33" looks like a very simple, cheap and effective kit. The feature set includes:

-Accurately reproduced to the highest detail standard
-Optional engine side covers
-Full engine and under chassis
-Three plastic sprues with 100 parts in injection moulded plastic
-Clear parts
-Finely reproduced silicone tires
-Photo-etched detail sheet
-Five marking option decal for USAAF and the RAF service, with instruments placards

We do not have a release date yet, but as soon as we do we will let you know...

For more information on their kits, you can check out the Thunder Model Website