The NC-1 (later
called NC-27) was one of the last derivatives of the FT-17, but not
a very successful one.
Compared to the FT-17, the hull was up-armoured, a completely new
track assembly used and a more powerful engine installed. The turret
remained basically unaltered, housing either a MG or a 37mm gun. The
tank was only used by the French for testing, and according to my sources one specimen was
exported to Yugoslavia, Japan, Greece, The Netherlands and Sweden.
(The latter is preserved in a Swedish museum.) Some sources claim (but this is more disputed)
Belgium also got one vehicle, while others claim that Poland got 24
that were fitted with thicker side armor. Belgian historians on the other hand are pretty sure that Belgium never got one.
Japan got ten and called it the Otsu-Gata
Sensha. It was the only country ever to use the tank in anger, which
happened in China in the early 1930s. They installed a new gun, improved
the armor and installed an indiginous engine.
The kit mainly consists of a solid
resin hull, two track assemblies a turret and some smaller parts.
All are very crisply cast, without any warping. Preparation work will
mainly consist of removal of the casting carrots and filling in the
occasional air bubble, although these bubles are rare and mostly found
in harmless places.
A manual is not provided (always a weak point for Modell Trans), so
you will have to go by the drawing and the pictures that are provided
and (possibly) the walk around found on the net. Once the parts have
been cleaned up and you figure out where to put all of them, assembly
should be as quick as superglue can dry.
Marking options are not provided, nor
are decals, and as information about this tank is sparse (to say the
least) you will have to use some artistic licence.
Parts are included to build the Otsu-Gata,
but these are limited to the gun. Modell Trans does not show how these
are to be used, so you the pictures on the net will have to resolve
that issue. My guess is that you can use these parts to represent
a vehicle with either a Japanese MG or a canon.
As the Otsu-Gata was also re-engined, one is left to wonder if this
modification brought external differences with it. The impression
I have from pictures is that the slope of the engine compartment was
more pronounced (compare the
photographs on the Landships site, paying particular attention
to the tow ring), which would basically rule out the option of building
this kit as a Japanese specimen, at least if one believes the gun
and engine were changed at the same time.
On the other hand, I still have to see a clear side view of the Swedish
specimen to ascertain how correct the slope of the engine deck is
for that particular vehicle. It might just be that the slope was the
same for all NC-27 variants and that it is only an optical illusion
that led me to believe that the Japanese vehicle has a different engine
deck. This would mean the slope in the kit is wrong for all versions.
Also note that the Yugoslavian tank
seems to have worn a completely different type of track and that sources
claim that the Polish examples had thicker side armor, without any
indication how this would have changed the appearance of the tank.
An article on OTW on how to convert the NC-27
yourself can be found here:
Sample kindly provided by Modell