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In-Box Review
135
SdKfz6 resin wheels (uncommon)
Road wheels + 1 spare wheel for Sd.Kfz. 6 (uncommon off-road tread pattern) + QW mask
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by: Bill Cross [ BILL_C ]


Originally published on:
Armorama


introduction

It seems like every week a new German halftrack kit is announced or released. Bronco has issued two Sd.Kfz.6 kits: the odd-ball “Diana” that was apparently only used in North Africa with the 605th Panzerjäger Abteilung in North Africa in 1942. It will be followed shortly by an Sd.Kfz.6/2 sporting a 3.7cm PAK antitank gun (and pulling an ammo trailer!). Now Trumpeter has jumped into the fray with an Sd.Kfz.6 sporting a PAK 37.

All this interest in the Sd.Kfz.6 is somewhat surprising, since it was really a failure in the larger scheme of things. More expensive to build than the three-ton Sd.Kfz. 11, and only slightly more powerful, production was stopped in 1943. The remaining vehicles were then used as AT gun platforms with the PAK 36 the most-common variant.

But just in time to fix the the ho-hum wheels of the Bronco kits and the vinyl ones used on Trumpeter vehicles is QuickWheel's release of two versions of their superb resin road-wheels-plus-painting-mask sets for the Sd.Kfz.6. One is the so-called “common” tread (reviewed on Armorama here) and this set has a wavy, “uncommon” variety.

what’s included

The set includes the usual matching road wheels, one spare tire and two sets of hubs, plus the vinyl masks that make painting Quick Wheels a snap. There is also a sheet of historical and modern photos that includes a guide for assembly.

the review

The Quick Wheel resin replacement sets are some of the best resin wheels in the hobby, and rival the “big guys” in detailing, clean casting and few or no air bubbles (the bane of many resin products). They are meticulously-researched, and give modelers a choice of different tread patterns or manufacturers (where established historically). This uncommon tread pattern is just that—you won’t find it on many surviving photos where a tread pattern is discernible. The common pattern tire will work for all varieties of Sd.Kfz.6, but the uncommon one will not work for the “Diana” kit. From the photos supplied by QW, it would appear this pattern was used only on the artillery towing version not yet released by any manufacturer. But check your historical sources before ordering.

As for the quality of the wheels, there’s no way styrene can compete with the crisp detail of resin, including a slot for the air valve nipple and the manufacturer’s logo and stenciling. The tread looks like something reduced from 1-1, and the spare already has the lug bolt holes pre-drilled, meaning there’s nothing else needed for adding a spare tire. For one this good-looking, I’d wire or bolt it to the back of the vehicle as a field modification so it shows.

The set offers two wheel hub options: smooth and a drop lug bolt (see photos at right). As we often advise here on Armorama, check your historical references before making your choice.

painting

It’s no secret I am a big fan of Quick Wheel products because I hate making my own masks. With a basement full of kits, why do I want to spend time on something so boring when QW makes masks for most major vehicles, especially those where masking is a pain in the butt? German tracked vehicles especially have highly-detailed rubber tires on their bogey wheels, and painting them by hand never looks as good as using a QW mask. If you’re one of those modelers who prefers to make your own masks, I salute you. For me, I’ll take the QW solution any day, and I hope QW will bring out masks for the bogey wheels soon.

conclusion

The front tires on the new Bronco kits are decent, but two-piece styrene halves simply can’t offer the sharp detailing of these resin replacement ones. And with Trumpeter's vinyl tires, you can't really paint them or weather them properly, as the plastic resists color, especially acrylics. Switching the kit parts with one of the Quick Wheel sets will significantly increase the realism and accuracy of your build, and the masks will make painting them almost painless. The only question is whether you want the common tread pattern or the uncommon one?
SUMMARY
Highs: Excellent detailing and those easy-to-use masks!
Lows: A bit limited in application, since it's an "uncommon" tread pattern, but a good variant for variety.
Verdict: Highly-recommended, both for quality and the opportunity to vary the style of tread pattern on your vehicle.
Percentage Rating
90%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: QWX-025
  Suggested Retail: NA
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: May 02, 2011
  NATIONALITY: Germany
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 90.08%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 88.69%

Our Thanks to Quick Wheel!
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 Bill Cross (bill_c)
FROM: NEW JERSEY, UNITED STATES

Self-proclaimed rivet counter who gleefully builds tanks, planes and has three subs in the stash.

Copyright ©2019 text by Bill Cross [ BILL_C ]. 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

These wheels are among the best resin castings I've seen. The pour plug is almost non-existent and you don't have to worry about making sure that part faces the ground.
MAY 02, 2011 - 08:32 AM
Brian, I'm not sure what point you're making. The tires are, when compared to most other resin makers, pristine. I suppose if someone is planning on doing a "showroom new" vehicle, the imperfections you identified (which are not present on my review samples) could be an issue, though they could easily & quickly be cleaned up. The problem for most resin products I see are obvious bubbles in the actual casting surface, soft details and large pour plugs that sometimes can't be removed without leaving a noticeable indentation or that require you to hide them as the part of the wheels that touch the road. These castings are almost OOB ready to use. If you have specific objections (other than the price), then it would be helpful to state what they are. Saying "These pattern suggest the master was 3D printed" doesn't tell me whether that's a good thing or not. QW is aware that their stuff is pricy. The same "knock" is often made on Archer Transfers. My reply is "near perfection comes at a price." Whose wheels are, in your opinion, superior? Is anyone else even making replacement wheels for the Sd.Kfz.6? I wouldn't want to use the Trumpeter vinyl wheels, I know that much.
MAY 03, 2011 - 04:26 AM
When I've needed AM replacements I have been buying Hussar's resin wheels because of their excellent quality. These wheels look just as good, and perhaps better in aspect of the small details. I did have one question, are the wheels/rims cast as seperate pieces and inserted into the tires by Quick Wheel?
MAY 03, 2011 - 08:26 AM
The wheels come as one piece. I don't know how they are cast, but I'll ask QW.
MAY 04, 2011 - 02:32 AM
Great, thanks Bill!
MAY 04, 2011 - 02:45 AM
An excellent (and hopefully accurate) description on the process is given here, which I would imagine is the same for these wheels: QW Staghound Tires
MAY 04, 2011 - 02:53 AM
following your example: bubbles Uploaded with ImageShack.us border="0"> guess you have to ask for refund lol unless those pics are stolen too just like those you used before and you simply haven't seen any of those sets you are trying to "compare". How many times was that close up of sd.kfz 6 wheel magnified? 20 times? more? What sizes do both wheels have? What height/width are the letterings on both "compared" wheels? I take they are the same since you can say which are worse or better lol. (is that even the same scale? ) Anyway - I may not have exactly that set from qw but I used their masks and I can explain you why wouldn't any discs work for those or any other. TBH I assume you can figure it out yourself if you weren't trolling... If you care so much about audience why wouldn't you discuss items you actually own/tried? lol try your imagination and you just may find out that not everybody likes to make everything USUAL Please take a picture of the same close up (I assume you know what it is) of the considered to be better wheel. Otherwise take your trolling somewhere else
MAY 04, 2011 - 05:44 AM
Thanks James, I think that answered my question(s)
MAY 04, 2011 - 07:23 AM
Brian, you are, of course, entitled to your opinion. That's why we have reviews. You are also welcome to submit your own review of this or any QW item. To your points as I understand them: 1.) Casting technology: I asked QW if they wished to discuss this, and they have chosen not to. I know your company makes AM upgrades, so I can't fault QW for preferring not to step forward. If they change their minds, they can post here. 2.) Defects: I don't know what samples you've had in your hands, but the samples submitted to me for review are as good as anything I've seen from Hussar, and superior to most other resin makers in a variety of ways, including smaller pour plug, clearer casting details, and little or no clean-up. You seem to feel they're defective, so I invite you to step up to the bar. Posting photos of other manufacturers is comparing apples to oranges unless you have someone doing an Sd.Kfz.6 wheel. 3.) Price: These wheels ARE more-expensive than other wheel sets (though most AM wheel sets only include two wheels, not the spare with pre-drilled lug bolt holes. You also get a quick mask for all three wheels. Are the masks "hi tech"? The packaging says "advanced technology." Is there someone else producing anything similar? Eduard's masks, for example, are simple kabuki tape that you have to place accurately on the wheel. These masks are easy-to-use and virtually fool-proof. If you don't think that's a good deal, then you're entitled not to buy them. I happen to think it is, so we'll let the members and readers make up their own mind.
MAY 04, 2011 - 07:25 AM
   

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