Vickers E Light Tank

Manufacturer: Mirage (Kit No. 72603 & 72604)

Many of these parts are the same as included with their earlier 7TP kits. Most of the comments below are also taken verbatim from the earlier kit preview.

Sprue A contains the sprocket wheels, fenders, pioneer tools, wheel supsension units, and miscellaneous details. The sprocket wheels are amazingly detailed with superb bolt detail, and very fine, and in-scale sprocket teeth. The detail on everything is fantastic. Bolts are numerous, and everything is very well molded. There are some sink marks on the wheel suspensions, but they are easily accessible for fixing with putty.

This scan shows two wheel sprues, front and back, but only one comes with each kit. Like the sprockets, the idler wheels are very detailed.

Lower hull and return rollers. Beautiful bolt detail everywhere. The return rollers are very well done. There are some sink holes behind the sprocket wheels, but will not be visible after the wheels are attached. If you wish to model a diorama with the wheels off, you'll need to fix those, but there is abundant detail also molded there, where it also will not be seen unless you leave off the wheels.

Sprue V is new to these kits, and has the upper hull and most of the detail parts. As you can see, there are some parts unique to each version here, plus some optional parts. All vertical plates are molded flat to allow for good bolt detail. Panel lines are recessed, and hatch handles are molded as separate parts, but they may be a little heavy, and should probably be replaced with bent wire. Storage boxes have separate lids so can be modeled open. Front driver's hatch is also molded open. Engine access hatches are molded shut, but with the flat parts layout, it should be easy to open them up if you wish to add an engine (not included).

This scan shows two turret sprues, but only one comes in each kit. The left sprue is for the Mk. B (twin turret) kit, and the right sprue is for the Mk. A (single turret) kit. The turret hatches are molded open, again with separate handles. They've even included the gun breaches, thereby providing some detail inside the turrets. This is the only part of the kits which lack bolt detail - around the turret sides. I guess they could have chosen to mold the curved sides of the turrets in two halves, but even then, it would be difficult to add the bolt detail to the curved surfaces.

The tracks are a very soft, stretchable, and flexible vinyl, very reminiscent of the old Matchbox tracks. As you all know, I normally despise this style of track, but given their flexibility, I have hopes that they will actually work quite well. I've been surprised before. They are also very well detailed, as you can see in the following scan:

These tracks are definitely better than the tracks included with the Skif T-26 kits, and even better than the metal tracks in the Modelkrak resin kits. Luckily, PART has recently released etched replacement tracks for the Vickers series of tanks. We have around 20 [resin and/or plastic] kits which can benefit from tracks in etched brass.

The decals are very thin, with a matte surface, and are sharply printed. The instructions are also some of the best printed, and most comprehensive guides I have seen in a model kit.

These are amazing kits, and I highly recommend them.

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