This in the box
preview covers the Plastic Solider Company (PSC) rendition of the M4A1(76) Wet,
used by UK forces as the Sherman IIA. This is the cast hull Sherman with the big
hatch driver's hatches, radial gasoline engine, and T23 turret with 76-mm
M1 higher velocity, longer barreled gun. and ammunition bins in the floor
surrounded by liquid to inhibit ammunition fires. This version of the Sherman
served primarily with US Army forces as well as French, Polish and a small
number with UK forces in Italy.
Funny about an
"in the box preview", I had to take it out of the box to
review it, I hope that is not cheating?
First I like to
check and make sure what is portrayed on the box to check it with what is
listed as being in the box, and what is actually inside. This type of box art
seems typical of PSC kits. In the box painting we see a round edged cast hull
with the open big-hatches for the driver and co-driver. The turret appears to
be an accurate rendition of the T23 turret. To the left is another Sherman
with hedgerow cutting prongs mounted on the bow. After looking at the parts my
assessment is that this box art reasonable matches what is in the box.
bottom-right of the box it notes the supposed scale and that there are parts
for three complete M4A1 models in the box.
The rear of the
box is typical of the PSC kits I have and has painting instructions, and a
painting of an M4A1(76) in Polish markings. I recognize this painting from an
Osprey Vanguard book on the M4A1(76). No markings, i.e. decals, for this or
other vehicles are included in the kit.
There are three
sprues of injection molded plastic parts in each box, each sprue holds about 33
pale olive green parts including the track lengths that will need glue for
assembly. The parts and assembly are very similar to other PSC Sherman model
kits. There are no resin or etched brass parts, and no decal markings. There
is one commander figure that fits in one of the two open turret hatches.
holds all the parts for an M4A1(76) model. The tracks (lower right) are done
similar to how several other makers are doing it, molding a long top and bottom
run of track; I wish Italeri wargaming kit tracks were designed like this.
Both turret hatches can be assembled open but there is only one crew
half-figure. The cupolas are designed as tubs that slip down into the turret.
The hull big-hatches are molded closed.
The lower hull
sides have the VVSS suspension and idler wheel molded in though the outer part
of the sprocket is separate. Overall the kit is simplified compared to a
Revell or Dragon Sherman but is easy to assemble, the fit is good and it is an
improvement over other Sherman gaming kits.
Below is a back
view of the sprue to better see the cupola and other parts. The bottom hull is
molded as a one piece tub. The parts have no numbers; they should not be hard
to figure out.
compare the big hatch M4A1 upper hulls and turret at far right, with the
Trumpeter and Dragon kits. Like with the other PSC "1/72" Sherman
kits I have looked at, this one looks a little large for 1/72. The Trumpeter
and Dragon kits I am pretty comfortable with as being pretty close to 1/72; the
PSC M4A1 I assess is closer to 1/70 or 1/68 scale if that matters to you. The
PSC details are very good for a wargaming kit but not quite as accurate
compared to the Trumpeter and Dragon kits.
what came with the kit and it is obvious they are for the M4A1(75) kit KIT
Number WW2V20004, not for this M4A1(76) with the T23 turret and big hatch
hull. To compensate I have made some notes and crude drawings of what the
instructions should look like.
If I were to
try and detail this into a passable display model I would: replace the gun
travel lock, simulate a cast texture on the turret and hull, replace the
lifting rings with one made from wire, add a tow cable, replace the tools on
the engine deck, add etched brass parts like headlight guards, replace the hull
machine gun, drill out the gun muzzle, add the machine gun storage rack to the
rear of the turret, and replace the PSC outer sprocket part with an extra from
a Dragon or Trumpeter kit.
As a wargaming
kit this is a pretty good representation of an M4A1 big-hatch Sherman and better than other gaming models. With some work this
can be made in to a decent display model. I find this a great kit for a
beginner and to practice detailing skills on. And there are three full kits to
a box. I do give PSC credit for making a thrifty way of supplying the wargamer
and beginner modeler with respectable Sherman models.
 The Sherman Design & Development, Son of Sherman, Volume 1, The Ampersand Group Inc. (2013)
 M4 (76mm) Sherman Medium Tank 1943-65, Osprey New Vanguard 73, Steven Zaloga (2003)
Preview sample purchased by the author.
Plastic Soldier Company products are available at