is a Russian figure company with a long experience in manufacturing high quality miniatures. Employing very talented sculptors, Viktor Antonov, the owner of the company, built quite a reputation on local market by producing figures representing modern Russian Special Forces operatives. At first, all the figures under ANT Miniatures label were done in white metal… recently however, Viktor recognized resin as the new medium for his 1/35 scale figures and most of ANT Miniatures releases in this scale are now produced as resin kits.
This review describes ANT Miniatures’ Gunner of Spetsnaz of FSB, Russia (35-32)
The figure arrived very quickly from Moscow, safely packed in a firm cardboard box. The box features nicely painted box art picture but it does not list the sculptor or the painter. I found that info on ANT website: the sculptor of this figure is Pavel Sapotsky, author of most 1/35 scale ANT Miniatures modern Spetsnaz figures, while the painter is Pavel Ilyin. Two additional photos of painted figure are supplied in the box; one shows the figure from the front and the other from the side. Zip-lock bag containing resin figure parts is additionally protected inside bubble wrap. The kit consists of 6 pieces:
- full body with legs and head,
- right arm,
- left arm,
- weapon parts (3x).
The parts are cast in grey resin and are almost completely clean of any casting imperfections; there are no air bubbles, but I did notice a seam line going along the left boot. The seam is not pronounced and with some careful sanding the problem is easily solved. Take your time when cleaning the weapon parts from resin pouring blocks as those pieces are very delicate.
The fit is absolutely perfect. Both arms feature protrusions which are designed to ease their positioning on the torso. There is almost no possibility of misaligning the parts and if placed correctly there is no visible gap between arms and the torso. The right hand is cast with the weapon, ensuring a tight grip. The hand fits well to the right arm, with the weapon carrying handle fitting nicely to figure’s left hand, too.
The figure represents a Spetsnaz soldier of Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) riding on a BTR-80. Due to good connections of sculptor with the Russian Army, the figure and equipment are extensively researched and detailed to highest standard. The figure wears “Tropik” BDU, a variation of the older soviet VDV airborne troops uniform. This particular uniform system is typically issued to Russian Special Forces units and it features number of additional modifications over the regular uniform which improve security, functionality and accessibility of the system. This uniform can be issued in a variety of camouflage patterns but the box art shows it in “Smog” pattern, a Russian copy of British DPM. Over the uniform, the figure wears “Redut” Assault Body Armor, which is the standard body armor worn by FSB operators, and carries SPOSN SMERSh webbing. The SMERSh is Russian version of ALICE harness setup, but it also includes MOLLE loops allowing custom attachment of various pouches. The SMERSh webbing configuration sculpted on this figure consists of 2 large PKM ammo pouches (with side grenade pockets) and buttpack. A drop leg holster carries a side weapon on the right thigh. The figure sports RYS assault helmet, designed specifically for Russian FSB special units. RYS is based on the K6-3 helmet but features optimized protection structure and integrated headset system with the microphone boom on the right and radio station wires attachment port on the back protrusion of the helmet. The Special Forces look of the figure is further enhanced by the knee pads, assault boots and fingerless Storm gloves.
The sculptor did a great job on this figure… The uniform looks really nice with folds that have a very natural feel to them. The body armor is perfectly rendered with amazing details on SMERSh webbing. Tactical gloves and knee pads add to the realism of Spetsnaz operative and, as far as I can tell, all the equipment is accurately depicted in scale. I also have to compliment the head sculpt with facial details well defined.
The figure is armed with PKP "Pecheneg", a gas operated, belt fed, air cooled 7.62x54mm machine gun. Standard 100-round ammo belts are fed from special steel boxes which can be clamped under the receiver. Fitted with a skeleton buttstock and with folding bipod attached to the gas tube below the barrel, the Pecheneg is intended for use as a squad support weapon. Pecheneg is actually a modernized PKM machine gun: it is more accurate than its predecessor due to a heavier, non-removable air cooling barrel with radial cooling ribs and a handle which eliminates the haze effect from hot gases, keeping the barrel cooler thus making the weapon more reliable. Pecheneg is also capable of mounting telescopic sights which can additionally increase accuracy. The weapon is currently in use by Russian Army Spetsnaz.
The Pecheneg supplied in this kit looks really good. It consists of three parts; main weapon body, ammo container and bipod. The pieces are very delicate so be careful when cleaning them. Be sure to add the weapon sling to the completed figure… the PKP is a heavy weapon.
This is the first ANT Miniatures 1/35 scale resin kit I got and I must say I’m very much impressed with it. The figure is superbly sculpted in a well balanced pose, cast almost perfectly and very easy to build. The details of the uniform and equipment are nicely executed in scale. In my opinion the quality of this kit can be easily compared to the best Russian figure manufacturers: Evolution Miniatures, Bravo6 or Minisoldiers.
Be sure to check out other ANT figures on their website:
My thanks to Viktor from ANT Miniatures for this review sample.
Camouflage Uniforms of the Soviet Union and Russia (Schiffer Publishing)