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Asuka: M4A1 76mm Sherman
tatbaqui
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Posted: Saturday, July 20, 2019 - 05:48 PM UTC


Released end of June, the latest Sherman kit from Asuka.

Read the Full News Story

If you have comments or questions please post them here.

Thanks!
Kevlar06
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 05:20 AM UTC
The built up model certainly looks nice, has anyone been able to compare it to the Dragon kit yet? One thing I like about the Dragon kit is it comes with individual track inks How do the vinyl ones compare in this one?
VR, Russ
berwickj
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 06:50 AM UTC
Usually I always use indy tracks, but I really like Asuka vinyl tracks. They're the only rubber band tracks I use.
M4A1Sherman
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 08:47 AM UTC
Thank You, Tat, and Hi, All!

OK, guys! Let the comparisons between M4A1 76mm (Wet) kits begin!!! There are now several different kits of the same-type/model Sherman out there, so there is certainly enough to talk about among Sherman fans!

As for myself, I was never much impressed with the old ITALERI/TESTORS kit, and my feelings about the DRAGON kit weren't very much better. I have two of the old ITALERI/TESTORS kits and two of the DRAGON "Operation Cobra" M4A1 "76s". As Russ mentioned, the DRAGON kits have "indy-links", whereas the ITALERI/TESTORS kits had/have rubber bands, or I should say 2 runs of one-piece vinyl Tracks. These were somewhat stiff, but in all fairness, the latest ITALERI re-box of this kit has Tracks which are manufactured in a more flexible vinyl composition. The biggest things I don't like about the DRAGON "indy-links" is that the detail is just a bit "soft": and the "Pads" are loaded with "knock-outs", more commonly referred to as "ejector-pin marks". The term "knock-out" was/is plastic injection-molding industry jargon, or "slang" if you will.

I can't comment on the ASUKA offering because I do not have one "in-hand" in order to do so. John has said that he likes the ASUKA vinyl Tracks, and I can only add further that judging from past ASUKA Sherman kits of other types, this one will probably be the "Top Dog" of 1/35 M4A1 76mm (Wet) kits until something "better" comes along, which isn't entirely out of the realm of possibility...
barkingdigger
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 09:07 AM UTC
I don't have the DML kit, but unless it is the only one of their Shermans where the hull parts actually fit together, then my guess is this Asuka kit will knock spots off of it!

I have a soft spot for the old Italeri kit, but there are a lot of small details left off, so again the Asuka kit will be better. Still, I will be using some of the Italeri kits in the stash eventually, along with a very full spares box...
M4A1Sherman
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 09:16 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I don't have the DML kit, but unless it is the only one of their Shermans where the hull parts actually fit together, then my guess is this Asuka kit will knock spots off of it!

I have a soft spot for the old Italeri kit, but there are a lot of small details left off, so again the Asuka kit will be better. Still, I will be using some of the Italeri kits in the stash eventually, along with a very full spares box...



Hi, Tom!

Thanks for mentioning the somewhat poor fit (LOUSY, actually) of the parts in the Lower Hull of the DRAGON M4A1 76... I forgot to mention that, so apologies to all...

Not being afraid of anything that ASUKA makes, I will have to dig my wallet out again after ordering a BRONCO RAM kit earlier today, and get one of these, as well...

PS- I might add that the bad fit of the Lower Hull parts can be "somewhat" covered up with an application of "mud" in certain places, thereby "disguising" some of the obvious faults of the kit. (sigh)
Bravo1102
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 11:13 AM UTC
Where are the periscope guards? Are they not included?

And why is rubber shoe track painted rust?

tangodown
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 11:39 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Where are the periscope guards? Are they not included?

And why is rubber shoe track painted rust?




This^
russamotto
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 12:44 PM UTC
In the other Asuka kits I have built, there were no periscope guards. On the flip side, you get jerry cans for stowage, which is nice. I'd like to get this kit as I don't have an M4A1 in any flavor and only have experience with the Italeri kit. From other Dragon M4 kits, my opinion is that Asuka does some things better, Dragon others. Asuka instructions are far better and easy to understand, and they include a small form for the etch light guards.

The vinyl tracks are two piece per side, soft and very flexible so they are easy to put on and remove for painting and weathering. You can even run them across the bench or over the carpet to test your suspension. I have wondered if this would help with some weathering aspects like driving it through mud to get some buildup. Like most rubber materials, paints don't stick particularly well so if you do any weathering it should be the last step on the model.
Nate_W
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 02:53 PM UTC
This is the one I've been waiting for. I've been holding off building a Sherman since I got back in and when doing research I saw this on the horizon for Asuka.
TeamNutmeg
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 03:55 PM UTC
Also, for those weighing Asuka versus Dragon, the current release of the Dragon kit now comes with DS tracks, not the individual links from the original release of the kit. Whether that's a plus or minus is up to you.
multibank17pdr
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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 - 07:23 PM UTC
Hello

May I also mention Tamiya M1 Super Sherman (35322) which is easily backdated to an M4A1 76mm Wet VVSS by skipping the cover over the siren at the front and checking if the US version you're interested in do have the exhaust deflector (part K22) at the rear.

Also the T23 turret provided is with oval hatch. and it is not without fitting issues (both halves don't fit extremely well). Many will also complain about the old VVSS boggie and some parts dating back the first Tamiya M4 kits. But the new hull and turret have very nice surfaces.

While the Dragon 6083 kit try to represent an earlier type from operation Cobra with both hatches circular. But Steve Zaloga had showed that it is an ASF foundry type while it should be an USC type.
Steve Zaloga gave all explanation to correct it in his Osprey book, Modelling the US Army M4 76mm Sherman.

Hope this help.
M4A1Sherman
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 03:00 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Where are the periscope guards? Are they not included?

And why is rubber shoe track painted rust?




Hi, Steve!

Re: The Periscope Guards- Maybe the guy that built the model broke them all or maybe he forgot to add them..?

It should also be noted that there were "later" Shermans that didn't have Periscope Guards, and some of these Guards were added as "field-expedient" items...

Re: The "RUST"-colored Tracks- Maybe the guy that built this thing didn't realize that the Tracks were supposed to have RUBBER Pads..? DUH!!!

Or maybe, just maybe, whoever painted this thing meant to convey "dirty" Tracks, and used "Rust'-colored paint to do it with..?

Don't know, but this isn't the first time that manufacturer's photos have displayed "mistakes" and/or omissions...
M4A1Sherman
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 03:05 AM UTC

Quoted Text

In the other Asuka kits I have built, there were no periscope guards. On the flip side, you get jerry cans for stowage, which is nice. I'd like to get this kit as I don't have an M4A1 in any flavor and only have experience with the Italeri kit. From other Dragon M4 kits, my opinion is that Asuka does some things better, Dragon others. Asuka instructions are far better and easy to understand, and they include a small form for the etch light guards.

The vinyl tracks are two piece per side, soft and very flexible so they are easy to put on and remove for painting and weathering. You can even run them across the bench or over the carpet to test your suspension. I have wondered if this would help with some weathering aspects like driving it through mud to get some buildup. Like most rubber materials, paints don't stick particularly well so if you do any weathering it should be the last step on the model.



I don't like vinyl Tracks in ANY shape, form or color. Me, for A/M Indy Links or plastic "Link & Length" Tracks, anytime...
M4A1Sherman
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 03:37 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Also, for those weighing Asuka versus Dragon, the current release of the Dragon kit now comes with DS tracks, not the individual links from the original release of the kit. Whether that's a plus or minus is up to you.



The "advantage" of the older-issue (6083) DRAGON M4A1 76mm (Wet) "Cobra" kit was the inclusion of "Indy-Link" Tracks, warts and all. There are still plenty of these older DRAGON M4A1 kits around that can be picked up for a little bit over half the cost of the ASUKA Shermans.

"DS" Tracks being included IN LIEU of the "Indy-Links" in the newer-issue DRAGON M4A1 76 kit, in my opinion, have just taken this kit DOWN a few pegs. That, added to the now-higher prices which DRAGON is charging for the newer-issue kits, has taken away any advantage that could have been weighed against the ASUKA kit. My vote goes to the ASUKA kit in this respect. However:

I will still have to spend the extra money for an "Indy-Links" Track set, a "proper" PE set and metal Main Gun and MG Barrels in order to bring the ASUKA kit up to my own personal standards. So here's the "personal-conundrum" for me:

Should I just go ahead and spend the extra bucks in bringing my, (in my opinion), "marginal" DRAGON M4A1 76 kits which I already have in my possession "up to snuff", or should I spend the money in doing nearly likewise with the new ASUKA kits???

Guess I'll have to do a cost & labor study...
Scarred
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 05:01 AM UTC
Maybe it's not rust but dust/dirt. I'be been places where the dirt is almost rust colored and coated the tires kinda like those tracks.
Bravo1102
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 05:24 AM UTC
Look very carefully and closely you'll see only the track links are dusted with the brown. The links stored on the rear are that brown. But the end connectors that do rust quickly are clean. Nope, it's mistaken track rust on rubber tracks.

And the painting of the tank on the box top is mis proportioned. The perspective on the front of the hull doesn't match the turret in fact the edge of the turret ring overhangs the side of the tank. But that's a painting and doesn't affect the bits inside but reflects poorly on the art director.

And I want to do another M4A1 76mm as I'm reading Spearhead about the 3rd armored and that's what they used complete with the logs on the side.
alanmac
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 05:39 AM UTC

Quoted Text



And the painting of the tank on the box top is mis proportioned. The perspective on the front of the hull doesn't match the turret in fact the edge of the turret ring overhangs the side of the tank. But that's a painting and doesn't affect the bits inside but reflects poorly on the art director.




Box art "inspiration" taken from this picture.

alanmac
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 05:43 AM UTC
For those interested there was a lengthy post which "debated" this release, and its accuracy, culminating in the guy who works as a consultant to Asuka saying it was a kit he put forward and the thinking behind it.

Its the thread I got the above picture from.

https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/missinglynx/asuka-m4a1-76mm-is-out-t320046.html#p1564758
Bravo1102
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 06:40 AM UTC

Quoted Text


Quoted Text



And the painting of the tank on the box top is mis proportioned. The perspective on the front of the hull doesn't match the turret in fact the edge of the turret ring overhangs the side of the tank. But that's a painting and doesn't affect the bits inside but reflects poorly on the art director.




Box art "inspiration" taken from this picture.




Obvious to me what the artist missed. The angles are off on the perspective and the track proportion is off.

It happens, especially with such a difficult angle.
alanmac
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 07:57 AM UTC
[quote][quote]
Quoted Text



And the painting of the tank on the box top is mis proportioned. The perspective on the front of the hull doesn't match the turret in fact the edge of the turret ring overhangs the side of the tank. But that's a painting and doesn't affect the bits inside but reflects poorly on the art director.




Actually I disagree, and overlapping both images in Photoshop I get a near perfect match on nearly all counts. Granted the image is rotated slightly but other than that its as I said a near perfect match.

russamotto
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 09:28 AM UTC
The photo is interesting. Metal tracks and partial side skirt in place. Another M4A1 off to the side. I thought somewhere I had seen this photo caption stating the division was newly arrived in the ETO and getting their tanks set up. 12th armored maybe?
nsjohn
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 11:09 AM UTC
The photo appears in Dennis Olivers book on U.S. Shermans North West Europe 1944-1945. The caption says it is from the 20th Armored Division, and was taken in Feb 1945 which had landed in France just a few days before.
Bravo1102
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Posted: Monday, July 22, 2019 - 10:58 PM UTC
[quote][quote]
Quoted Text


Quoted Text



And the painting of the tank on the box top is mis proportioned. The perspective on the front of the hull doesn't match the turret in fact the edge of the turret ring overhangs the side of the tank. But that's a painting and doesn't affect the bits inside but reflects poorly on the art director.




Actually I disagree, and overlapping both images in Photoshop I get a near perfect match on nearly all counts. Granted the image is rotated slightly but other than that its as I said a near perfect match.




You're right. Thank you. It was distortion from my last eye surgery.
M4A1Sherman
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Posted: Wednesday, July 24, 2019 - 02:34 AM UTC
Thanks for this link, Alan!