The Second Sherman from Dragon and it is not a disappointment, although I am sure it will be to some but that is another story ! This time Dragon have released the M4A1 early cast hull dry stowage 75mm version.
The kit has a new lower hull than the M4A3, this time minus the screw holes. The upper hull is nicely detailed and has a nice fine cast texture to it, again the tools are moulded on it will be difficult to change these without destroying the fine cast texture, There is however one major fault with the kit, it is missing the fuel filler cap on the LHS behind the turret, there should be two caps with the missing one being in the same place as the RHS cap. Both hatches are open.
The turret is in two halves with the periscopes as separate items to be added, the gun mantlet is a multi piece affair as is the commanders cupola with a total of 31 parts for the turret alone some of these are the PE periscope guards and other attachments, the light guards are again provided as plastic or PE parts with the periscope guards being PE only. The extra armour for the sides and turret are provided as separate pieces this give the option of fitting them or no should you want to model a different vehicle, it also suggests the other versions are on the way.
The kit provides plenty of spare including the excellent 0.5 cal MG, gun travel lock and various other parts, all lift rings and lights are separate
The suspension is the same as in the M4A3 with the same fixed bogies
Two sets of track are included the rubber chevron type and the steel cleat, both very well detailed
the PE fret includes all the light and Periscope guards plus various other fixtures and fittings, this time they have not included the useless PE lift rings, but they have included a PE cullins hedgerow device, I am not sure about this, but I will reserve judgment on it until it is built, although I feel that PE is too thin for the device.
Decals are provided for 4 vehicles in 1944 and all in France, two are from the Normandy area and one from Omaha beach, the decals are well printed and thin.
This is a very nice and complete kit, the only fault with it is the missing fuel cap. the kit scales out to the dimensions I have, the fine cast texture is well done. Knowing Dragons record on improving kits I expect that the missing filler cap will be rectified in the future.
M4 Sherman in Action Squadron/Signal Armour No 16