M51 Super Sherman

Manufacturer: Exokit; Kit # 7224

This is my first Exokit vehicle kit, and I am both impressed and disappointed at the same time. The disappointment comes from the fact that Exokit based this kit on the very poor Revell (Matchbox/Mongram) M4A1 Sherman, and consequently, the dimensions of this model are all wrong. In addition to the hull and turret being too small, so are the road wheels, a little bit. But they are closer to the correct size than the giant wheels in the Hasegawa HVSS kit. The return rollers and idler wheels are much more accurate in size. Despite the poorly shaped turret (because of the original Revell part), this kit actually scales out much closer to 1/76th than 1/72nd, so those of you who prefer that scale should be very happy with this model.

As far as the quality of the kit is concerned, the casting and molding, the detail, the optional parts, I am very impressed. The wheels and tracks are molded as a single piece for each side, but they are very detailed, and look good. There are numerous small parts, all molded very well, and highly detailed. Options include open hatches, a couple of machineguns, storage boxes, separate pioneer tools, and a lot of hull stowage items. The only molding flaw in my sample is the gun barrel, which is warped in two different places. I really wish that Exokit would have based this on the ESCI Sherman kit instead. As it is, in order to make an accurate model from this kit, I will likely use an ESCI M4A1 hull with the Exokit wheels and tracks (along with a modified engine deck). I'm not sure what to do about the turret. The only other M51 turret I own is from Commander Series, which doesn't have open hatches. But it would look better than the anemic turret included here.

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