Trumpeter released the BTR-60P in May 2011. This inbox review is about the contents and the quality of the kit parts. A first quick look shows a highly detailed kit and it seems like it will be an easy build. The kit has over 450 parts (!) on 18 sprues, photo etch is included and clear parts for the lenses. Before I discuss the model, a short history of the BTR-60P would be appropriate.
The BTR-60 is the first vehicle in a series of Soviet eight-wheeled armoured personnel carriers. It was developed in the late 1950s as a replacement for the BTR-152 and was seen first time in public in 1961. The armour on the hull is made out of welded steel and it provides protection against small arms fire and shrapnel. Frontal armour can withstand 7.62 mm bullets from any range. The rest of armour protection can withstand 7.62 mm bullets from a range of 100 m.
The BTR-60P had an open-roofed crew and troop compartments, which was deemed to be a serious disadvantage. This weakness could easily be exploited. As the vehicle lacked a roof even the simplest of explosives could take out a BTR-60P. Because of that a new version, designated BTR-60PA, entered production in 1963. It had an armoured roof, though the capacity was reduced from 16 soldiers to 14 soldiers (Wikipedia, 2012).
Contents and review
The kit comes in a very sturdy cardboard box. When opening the box the first attention will automatically go to the upper and lower hull as these are the biggest parts in the kit. One of the most important aspects in assembling open roofed models is the fitting of the upper- and lower hull. This is because both parts should be kept separated to ease painting of the interior. In this kit the upper and lower hulls fit perfectly, and this makes our painting efforts a little bit easier. The lower hull is beautifully cast without any sink marks. Some little flash is found on the cast weld seams, but this is easy to remove with a sharp blade. The bottom is nicely detailed, but unfortunately not visible at the end.
Exterior lower hull (Steps 1-8)
The manual starts with the assembly of the running gear, taking up the first 8 (!) steps. At first glance the parts seems to be very crisp and are nicely cast, however - and I found this a challenge - the parts do all have small seam lines. This should be an easy fix, but the parts used for the running are all very delicate and due to all the curved shapes of the parts - it makes a very time-consuming job. Definitely not the most fun part in my opinion. (Especially when you consider that the running gear is hardly visible when the wheels are attachedÖ) The drive shaft (part A17&A18) is undersized so you should replace it with a larger diameter plastic rod.
The running gear is not difficult to assemble, but is takes more time and effort than you might think. It is a little disappointing that after the assembly very little is seen when the wheels are attached.
Interior lower- and upper hull (Steps 9-19)
After the running gear assembly the manual continues with the interior of both the lower- and upper hull. One area that will definitely attract viewersí attention is the driverís compartment. This compact area is nicely detailed with radios, seats and driverís panel. Thereís plenty of scope to add additional wiring and other details. It is definitely worth giving the driverís compartment extra attention as the vehicle itself is not that exiting to look at and viewers will automatically peek into the driverís compartment.
Exterior upper hull (Steps 20-23)
To be honest, there is nothing much fancy about the upper hull. Most of the parts are directly glued on the hull and it lacks difficult assemblies. Compared to the running gear assembly, this stage is peanuts.
DShK & Tyres
Iím wondering why Trumpeter included a DShK machinegun as this is not the usual secondary armament of the BTR-60P? Including a PKT, the SGMB or the PKB machine guns would be more appropriate. Instead Trumpter included a DShK. The DShK set comes from the T-62 model and I can be very short on this: buy yourself an aftermarket item. The DShK from the T-62 has sink holes, flash on the barrel fins and molding lines. Off course you can fix this but the DShK machine gun takes in a prominent place on the model, so it attracts directly viewersí attention and with this in mind I would buy a quality aftermarket set like Tank or RB Model. It is worth the investment.
What you often see (in older kits) is a very annoying and difficult-to-remove seam line in the middle of the tire. These tyres fortunately do not have any of them. The wheel hubs fit in very easily and are connected with a polycap on the hull.
The BTR-60P is a good quality kit. The casting is good and some parts are very delicate; however all parts do have seam lines and this is a time-consuming job to fix. Especially the running gear parts are very small and delicate and much effort will go in fixing this. Donít be fooled, this is not a shake & bake kit! When youíre looking for an interesting project, get yourself one. You donít see this model very often at shows and on internet forums, so you will sure have attention!
ReferencesArmorama thread with good images of BTR-60
kit on Trumpeter website