Scale M4 Sherman Tracks
Reviewed by Brett Green
RHPS Models' premiere releases are individual-link Sherman tracks.
RHPS have sensibly chosen two styles of Sherman track not currently available in individual-link form. They are the T51 Rubber Block track and the T49 Three-Bar Cleat track.
The sets are supplied in a high-grade styrene. Thirty sprues enclose six track blocks each, and another thirty sprues contain twelve end connectors each. Each link is made up of one track block with two end connectors. A small instruction sheet is packed in the clear plastic bag.
Moulding quality is first rate. The medium-grey colour and quality of the plastic is similar to the offerings of the best Japanese manufacturers. There is absolutely no flash present on my samples. Detail on the end connectors is superb. The flat sections of each track block have a ghost of a sink mark, but this will likely disappear under a coat of paint. There is not even a hint of a blemish on the facing side of the Three-Bar Cleat track block.
I assembled a dozen links from the Three-Bar Cleat set. The parts presented no challenge to remove from the sprue. Careful slicing with a sharp knife will minimise or even eliminate any further cleanup.
I placed a length of adhesive tape (sticky side up) on a cutting mat and positioned the twelve track-blocks facing side down on the tape. Make sure that each track block is pointing in the right direction when you position them - it'll be too late once the glue has dried! A pair of tweezers was used to place the end connectors on each side of the track blocks. There is sufficient tension for the pins on the blocks to hold the connectors in place before the glue is applied. I brushed liquid glue across the join between the blocks and connectors after I had dry-fitted the twelve links. Don't fiddle with the drying track length too soon - the liquid glue may have weakened the base of the vertical guide-horns. After ten minutes the length may be positioned on the vehicle.
The finished product looks great.
When building your Sherman, remember that their tracks were "live" and therefore did not display the same slack as tracks on German tanks.
Some patience will be required to assemble the eighty-odd links per side, but the effect will be well worth the effort.
Highly recommended to all Shermanoholics.
RHPS Models can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or at
PO Box 906
Massillon, Ohio 444648
Phone (330) 837 1031
Thanks to Robert from RHPS for the samples.
Review Copyright © 1999 by Brett