The jerrycan was developed before the Second World War in Germany, under the strictest secrecy, in order to allow AFVs to carry extra fuel so that they did not need to wait for supply lines to catch up. It was so secret, German soldiers were actually ordered to destroy the cans to ensure that they were not captured. It contained about 20 litres/ 5 gallons of fuel when filled, and an innovative feature was that it could not be filled up all the way when the can was level. This resulted in an air pocket at the top, allowing the can to float in water even when full. Its cap could be sealed airtight without any tools, a feature that its American counterpart lacked.
The jerrycan also had a built in spout for pouring, another feature the American can lacked. The German jerrycans were far superior to the Allied fuel containers, and the Allies knew this. The British and the Americans started to mass produce almost exact copies of the German pattern jerrycan, but before this took place, the Allied soldiers supplemented their inferior fuel cans with the German jerrycans.
This set includes two identical sprues containing about 100 parts to build:
• 16 German jerrycans (4 with water lettering, 12 with fuel lettering) • 6 200L/55 gallon fuel drums • Two hand pumps • Two stand pipes
The jerrycans are made up of four parts: Two halves of the can, one part for the handles, and one part for the spout and lid. The spout and lid are molded as one part, meaning that the kit cannot make a jerry can pouring its contents without some modification. There is some finely done lettering on one half of the can, which says either Wasser 20L 1943 Wehrmacht (for the water can) or KraftStoff 20L Feuargefahrich (for fuel). I am fairly sure that the fuel can should say Wehrmacht and have a year on it, so this detail has been omitted. There is no PE included in the kit for the central weld seam between the two halves.
The fuel drums are also made of four parts: Two halves (Oh, yay! Seam filling!), and the top and bottom lids. Two of the drums can be built with the hole in the lid and/or the side open, as these holes are molded open on some of the parts. There is fine lettering molded on the top and bottom lids, reading (for the top) "200L”, and for the bottom "60 EA'" followed by a number that is different on each part (the two sprues are identical, so there are two 2 drums with the same number). If the modeler wanted to build these drums open, then they would have to remove the two large knockout marks on the inside of each half. The drums also have some dents molded into them.
The pipes and pumps look alright to me, but check references to determine if they are correct for specific applications.
Instructions and the painting guide are on the back of the box. They are very simple, and I had no difficulty in building.
I test built one each of the fuel drums and jerrycans, and had no unreasonable problems. The jerrycan went together perfectly, and the fuel drum only required me to remove one of the location pins to get the two halves aligned.
Highs: Nicely done lettering, low price, simple assembly.Lows: Drums in two halves, no PE for welds on jerrycans, incorrect lettering on fuel cans.Verdict: An affordable set of decent looking fuel drums and jerrycans that would look good in any WWII era vehicle's stowage.