as a manufacturer of 1/35 kits needs no introduction. What has recently changed though is their introduction of a range of figure sets to compliment their vehicles and guns. I previously reviewed their 17pdr Gun Crew here on site:
17pdr Gun Crew
For this review I'll take a look at the new offering from Bronco of the British/Commonwealth AFV Crew (CB 35098).
The set comes in a professional looking box. On the front are the manufacturers details and colour graphic representations of the contents. On the reverse of the box are the build instructions, tree shots and a suggested painting guide.
The set comes sealed in a plastic sleeve and consists of two trees of light buff plastic parts, each tree containing the parts for 3 figures. The make up of the parts is standard as for most plastic injection figures with separate legs, upper torso, head, arms and accessory equipment where necessary.
The set has been designed to compliment Broncoís Humber Scout Car Mk I and Humber Armoured Car Mk IV, but should be perfectly useable on other AFV vehicles.
Four of the figures, (figure A, B C and D), come dressed in cold weather clothing in the form of Pixie suits. Although I havenít built these yet the order of dress appears to be correct with only minimal seams to be tidied up. Each figure is of 6 basic parts, separate legs and arms, upper body and head.
Figure A is designed to sit atop the vehicle and depicts a crewman with wireless headset and microphone, looking off to the right. Both uniform and facial detail look sharp to me and the build should result in a good generic figure. Both the microphone and headset are moulded to the right hand/head respectively so you should only need to add some wire for the cable. The Pixie suit is belted so no additional equipment is provided and head gear is a standard beret.
This depicts another crewman, again designed to sit atop the vehicle but this time with the right arm raised to rest on the Bren gun. Similar in dress and construction to figure A this would allow you to add a two man crew to the top of the Humber Scout Car. Head gear is in the form of a beret. Both facial detail and uniform detail are very good.
Again of similar construction this time the figure is designed as a driver for the vehicle: an all important aspect where open top vehicles are concerned. Head gear is also the standard beret, and the uniform detail looks correct.
As with the other three, make up is the same but this time the figure is designed to be standing up from inside the vehicle with the left arm resting on the side of the Scout Car. As with figure A this one comes with a set of headphones worn over a beret.
In general for figures A, B, C, and D:
All the winter crew have nice folds and creases in their uniform. As far as I can tell in this un-assembled state the uniforms look very accurate. The faces are all nicely sculpted and should be very acceptable for plastic figures. Clean up looks minimal and these should all build up well. The body proportions of the figures look good. All wear berets and ammo boots with 2 of the heads wearing headphones over the beret. The poses look perfectly natural and the result should be a grand set of crew to be used.
Figure E brings a change in uniform for the commander of the Scout Car in the form of 37/40 battle dress with the pleated pockets. This looks well done and the figure wears a 37 pattern belt moulded to the upper torso, with a pistol holster and a set of binoculars being provided as separate items. Under the neck of the battle dress the figure wears a shirt and scarf around his neck, and also wears anklets and ammo boots. This figure is similar to the original offering for the Humber Scout Car which I believe was a resin figure.
To complete the set figure F also provides a crewman in battle dress, this time with a leather jerkin and wearing putties. This one has similar features to several other British/Commonwealth crewmen in so much as he is posed standing with his left leg over his right, left hand in his pocket drinking a cup of tea!
The front of the leather jerkin comes as two separate pieces and is designed to be worn open exposing part of a 37pattern belt, with a good set of brasses on display.
In general for figures E and F:
Again the individual heads are nicely done, uniform detail looks correct and both have good body proportions. Nice natural folds and creases in the uniforms, and good overall detail mean that these two should also paint up very well.
This set provides a very useful range of crew members for either the Bronco kits or other AFVs of your choice. It is excellent to see Bronco producing crew sets for their vehicles and artillery and I am sure these will be a very welcome addition for Allied modellers.
Iím not a great lover of the Pixie suit, but having been stuck out of the top of a 432 in Germany from late Autumn through early Spring, cold winter clothing is a must. It's not that long ago that 1/35 Scale British plastic injection tankers were pretty much a pipe dream so this offering is a very welcome addition.
All the figures are well sculpted, have accurate detail and should build up easily. Simple, unfussy figures are both quick, fun to build and paint and these should be no exception giving modellers a choice of crew finish for their kits.