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Built Review
135
Machine Gunner, USMC
Machine Gunner, USMC, Afghanistan 2012
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by: Mario Matijasic [ MAKI ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction:

Scale figures depicting US Army troops from the recent conflicts in Middle East are easily found, both in plastic and in resin. However, modern USMC figures are quite rare and one of the loudest pleas aimed at figure companies has been to release more Jarheads in 1/35 scale.

Assault Models recently offered a new batch of 1/35 scale miniatures, with six of those representing USMC wearing the latest garb and gear. This review covers the USMC Machine Gunner, the figure sculpted by the talented Dmitri Shevtsov, and a pair to the figure reviewed here: link.

Review:

Machine Gunner, USMC, Afghanistan 2012 (AM-35006) is packed in a nicely designed plastic box, with the parts safely secured in a zip-lock bag. The front of the box features an image showing assembled but unpainted model. However, Pavel Ilyin recently painted the miniature and the kit is now supplied with the painted boxart image (as seen in the header of this review).

The kit consists of 10 pieces:

- body,
- right arm,
- left arm,
- left hand,
- head,
- helmet,
- weapon (2x),
- weapon accessories (2x).

The pieces are molded in grey resin and the cast is absolutely flawless, featuring a ton of incredibly sharp details perfectly delivered in scale. Although the assembly might seem a bit complex at first, guys at Assault Models did a splendid job engineering the kit parts... the fit is top-notch and the figure goes together quite easily. I would suggest attaching both arms to the torso first, dry-fitting the weapon grip into the right hand and then optimally positioning the left hand with weapon bipod.

The figure depicts an USMC machine gunner walking. The first thing to notice is the pose; the figure is well balanced in an incredibly realistic posture... in my opinion this is the best rendered pose in the entire Assault Models figure catalogue. The figure wears Marine Corps Combat Utility Uniform (MCCUU) and Scalable Plate Carrier (SPC). SPC was fielded to combat units operating in Afghanistan as a lightweight alternative to the Modular Tactical Vest (MTV). The SPC features a heavy machine gunner loadout: two 200-round pouches, two M16 double magazine pouches, first aid kit pouch, grenade pouch, triple M16 open pouch and a small utility pouch, plus a hydration pack on the back. All this equipment is cast on the SPC, as well as M16 three-point weapon sling. The figure also wears knee pads pulled down to his ankles and sports the secondary weapon secured to the drop leg platform on his right thigh. As for the headgear, the figure wears Lightweight Helmet (LWH), the current combat helmet of the USMC.

The figure is armed with M240B, a 7.62mm machine gun deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. The weapon features a handguard with heatshield to provide thermal protection to the operator and Picatinny rails on the receiver cover and forearm, which serve as attachment points for different optical systems and target illuminators. ELCAN M145 Machine Gun Optics is cast on the weapon, while the carrying handle and bipod are supplied as separate pieces in this kit. I wish the set also included a 7.62mm ammo belt, which could then be draped around the weapon, similar to what the references of the marching USMC machine gunners show.

Also, the figure sports an M16A4 around his shoulders. The weapon features flat top upper receiver with an integral rail and rail adapter system (RAS) handguard consisting of full length quad Picatinny rail. This kind of M16A4 is designated MWS (or Modular Weapon System) as the system offers soldiers flexibility to configure their weapons with accessories required to fulfill an assigned mission: the upper receiver rail provides an attachment point for optical devices while handguard could be fitted with various laser designators, forward grips, tactical lights or bipods. The weapon in this kit is equipped with ACOG sight and forward grip.

Conclusion:

This figure is one of my favorites in the entire Assault Models miniature range. The sculpt is absolutely amazing, with very impressively rendered walking pose. The cast is perfect and, as far as my references show, all the details on the uniform and equipment are accurately delivered in scale. The kit consists of 10 pieces, but flawless fit of the pieces makes the figure easy to assemble.

Altogether, I can't recommend this figure enough. It really is a work of art.

Click here for additional images for this review.

SUMMARY
Highs: Beautifully posed, flawlessly cast with tons of details all around, easy to assemble... Very close to perfection.
Lows: NVG mounting plate on the helmet seems a bit small.
Verdict: Highly recommended.
Percentage Rating
96%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: AM35006
  Related Link: Assault Models website
  PUBLISHED: Feb 11, 2016
  NATIONALITY: United States
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 93.37%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 94.92%

Our Thanks to Assault Models!
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 Mario Matijasic (Maki)
FROM: CROATIA HRVATSKA

You wonder how did this addiction start? I was a kid when my dad broght home a 1/72 Concord airplane; we built it together as well as couple of other airplanes after that. This phase was just pure fun: glue, paint, decals in no particular order... everything was finished in a day or two. Then I disc...

Copyright 2019 text by Mario Matijasic [ MAKI ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.



Comments

Wow, what an incredible build! It's really amazing that the figure holds the bipod of the M240 in its left hand, the right hand does hold the trigger grip, and all the pieces line up to make that M240 rest on the Marine's back. That is a really tricky engineering challenge and I'm glad Assault Models really succeeded in getting this pose correct. Your build is "proof positive" that everything lines up and that the figure DOES closely match the CAD drawing. Amazing!
FEB 12, 2016 - 02:48 AM
Pete, this is a traditionally sculpted figure, there were no CAD drawings of this miniature. Mario
FEB 12, 2016 - 01:59 PM
Fantastic! What are those things on his ankles, on the outside of the boots?
FEB 12, 2016 - 02:54 PM
Knee pads. Putting the pads on ankles gets them out of the way when not needed. Mario
FEB 12, 2016 - 03:23 PM
   

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