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In-Box Review
135
Type 59
Type 59 Early Production
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by: Darren Baker [ CMOT ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction

MiniArt really went to town when they released the T-54 Tank and then rapidly covered a hoist of T-54 and T-55 tanks both with and without interiors; so I guess it will not surprise many of you to see the Type 59 release from MiniArt. The Type 59 can be said to be a Russian sheep in Chinese wolfs clothing being an almost direct copy of the T-54 minus aspects like the search light and as I understand it some simplification of parts.

Review

This offering of the Type 59 from MiniArt is packed in the usual thin cardboard tray and separate card lid; this is up to general storage but will not cope with the rigours of the postage system. Inside there is a loose instruction booklet and the parts in a single plastic bag containing two further plastic bags with the model parts in them and a further bag inside one of them containing the clear elements and decals. There is also photo etch elements in a card sleeve. With the contents being supplied in a single bag does mean that the contents are subject to bend, but in my case I found the parts went back into shape a while after being released from the bag. Looking at the contents I was unable to find anything that would cause alarm for a modeller other than the bend present in some parts when released from the bag.

This offering from MiniArt of the Type 59 does not have an interior, but due to the crossover of parts from previous releases there are some interior elements used in this release. The lower hull has separate side walls and these could be difficult to correctly angle, but MiniArt has included the firewall between the crew compartment and engine bay. There are some holes that need to be made in lower hull and a good guide has been supplied as regards location, but MiniArt has not supplied the drill size required. I like that details such as the escape hatch and drainage locators have been replicated either moulded on or as separate parts on the lower hull.

The torsion bar suspension has been made workable if it is an aspect you require for display, but if you donít require the working aspect I would secure it with glue. The detail present here is especially good with it almost being a shame that it will be hidden for the most. All of the road wheels, idler and drive cogs have been produced with the ability to rotate after assembly, but I see little point in this unless you are investing in workable tracks for the model. The tracks supplied by MiniArt are very well done with excellent casting marks on the outer face. These have been supplied as individual track links and so will look natural and will allow for the articulation of the suspension if desired.

The upper hull has been replicated in several parts and it is this approach that has allowed MiniArt to reproduce all of the various tanks in the family at a reasonable cost. The lights and their protective frames on the front armour plate have been well tackled, but it will require great care to avoid breakage of parts due to their finesse. The drivers hatch is well done and despite there being no interior detail as regards this area it could be open with a figure placed to hide the absence of interior. The engine deck is constructed from several parts and so take care to get them correctly placed. Photo etch has been supplied for the four air intakes screens and that is a nice inclusion even if it is becoming a more common aspect in current models. The result of all this should be a very well detailed hull with nothing obvious missing that I can see.

The mudguards are a very busy area of this model due to the mounting of the fuel tanks on the right mudguard and storage on the left. Make a point of looking through the instructions covering the mudguards as there are some parts that need to be removed and a number of holes need to be drilled, again MiniArt has not supplied the needed drill size for this task. The fuel tanks have a very good level of detail throughout and I especially appreciate the effort that MiniArt has put into the fuel lines which are an important aspect of the area. There are quite a few photo etched clamps that need to be added to the fuel lines which will require care when placing. The left mudguard is where the tools are mounted and a number of storage boxes. In my opinion it is the mudguards that are the most eye catching aspect of the hull. The exhaust is made up or four parts that has enabled MiniArt to produce a very realistic finish.

The turret of this offering is surprisingly involved considering that the interior is minimal. There is an excellent level of interior hatch detail meaning leaving these open will only require a figure to fill the hole. The periscopes for the turret have been supplied as clear parts which I like to see. The exterior of the cast portion of the turret has a very nice subtle texture present that I really like. The breech of the main gun has a nice level of detail with my only complaint being the machine gun which will need the muzzle drilled slightly to improve its appearance. The heavy machine gun mounted on the roof also has an exceptional level of detail such as the drilled muzzle thanks to slide moulding and MiniArt has also included an ammunition belt made up of fired and unfired rounds.

The main gun barrel has been made as a single piece and slide moulded resulting in a very pleasingly finished item. The canvas cover at the base of the main gun is an optional part as there is a separate part to represent what is hidden under the canvas. In the belief that most will go for the canvas due to it being the most visually pleasing; there is good moulded detail present that is enhanced by the use of photo etched securing bands. There is a canvas secured to the rear of the turret; the bands holding the canvas in place are again photo etched parts.

When it comes to finishing the model MiniArt has provided seven finishing options covering vehicles in use with four different countries. The options break down as follows:
Chinese Peopleís Liberation Army, Present Day
Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran Ė The Iran Iraq War, Early 1980ís
Albanian Army, Albanian Border Area with Kosovo, April 1999
Chinese Peopleís Liberation Army, Present Day
Chinese Peopleís Liberation Army, Present Day
201st Tank Regiment Viet Cong, 17th Parallel, March 1972
108th Tank Regiment 43rd Army Corps of the Chinese Peopleís Liberation Army, Sino-Vietnamese War 1979

Conclusion

This offering from MiniArt in 1/35th scale of the Type 59 is a very nice model from what I can see. I am impressed with how many luxuries have been utilised; by luxuries I am thinking about the working suspension and wheels, the individual track links, the parts covered by photo etch and the high level of detail present on the turret roof heavy machine gun. MiniArt has made good use of slide moulding with the exception of the interior turret machine gun. I appreciate that MiniArt has provided painting information with products from 9 different producers. I like that tanks in the service of four different nations have been covered.
SUMMARY
Highs: Excellent overall detail that with care will result in a great model.
Lows: Internal turret machine gun has no recess in the muzzle.
Verdict: A great model to add to your collection for those that like the armour created after World War 2.
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 37026
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: May 11, 2019
  NATIONALITY: China / 简体
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 87.04%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 85.88%

Our Thanks to MiniArt!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Darren Baker (CMOT)
FROM: ENGLAND - SOUTH WEST, UNITED KINGDOM

I have been building model kits since the early 70ís starting with Airfix kits of mostly aircraft, then progressing to the point I am at now building predominantly armour kits from all countries and time periods. Living in the middle of Salisbury plain since the 70ís, I have had lots of opportunitie...

Copyright ©2019 text by Darren Baker [ CMOT ]. All rights reserved.



Comments

Thank You, Darren! I like it! WHAT! No remarks or comments from anyone besides me..?
MAY 14, 2019 - 05:02 AM
   

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