Wednesday, November 23, 2016 - 12:41 PM UTC
Academy is releasing a new M4A3(76)W from the Battle of The Bulge with new tooled parts.
The kit is expected to be available this month of November, and will come with a new engine deck, late version VVSS and accessories.

It has also photoetch parts, and T48 duckbill tracks. Other features include rotatable turret, adjustable main gun elevation, hatches can be assembled opened or closed. Among the accessories are jerrycans, ammo boxes and additional tracks
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Outside of the suspension (introduced a couple of years ago in the M36B1 kit) none of this kit is new. It's just a new mix of the same parts. So the shape wasn't wrong ten years ago in their earlier kits, it's not wrong now. It compared favorably with the Dragon Shermans. But as we all know if it is Academy it is crap. They don't do anything correct when it comes to armor. And it's still not a Bergepanther.
NOV 24, 2016 - 09:18 AM
i like Academy kits.
NOV 24, 2016 - 09:02 PM
I like 'em too-- especially for conversion and diorama work-- I bought the M4A1 with calliope which is another "new" kit. It is intended for a diorama of a tank from the 714th tank BN in the Philippines. There's a review of that kit here on Armorama somewhere. It's not a bad kit, is half the price of Asuka/Tasca and Dragon Shermans (if you can find them), and has some not bad accecceories (i.e; an open breech M2, choice of running gear, additional rivets and hull numbers, etc.). No denying it-- it has a few warts like the weld seams, but overall not too bad since it will be re-worked anyway. The tracks (which I probably won't use because of the grousers) are nicely detailed and are gluable with cyanoacrylate. I guess it comes down to this-- if you want a reasonably priced Sherman and aren't afraid to do a little work, buy the Academy kits-- if you want something out of the box without much work, go with somebody else, but frankly, I haven't found many "perfect" out of the box kits lately. Academy lets you cut up the plastic without feeling guilty about paying the high price. VR, Russ
NOV 24, 2016 - 10:03 PM
Having drunk from the Asuka/Tasca well many times, any other would taste very bitter
NOV 24, 2016 - 11:15 PM
And others must either drink the bitter water or go thirsty. I might as well insist on Dom Perignon to drink as an Asuka/Tasca Sherman for all the good it will do me.
NOV 25, 2016 - 07:11 AM
Like anything else I guess IMO no Sherman kit is without its faults. Asuka/Tasca don't seem to gave the rough texture of a Sherman casting, lack casting numbers and don't have rotatable periscopes (and at least some don't come with photo etch things like periscope guards). Dragon kits, well they have that old Italeri style suspension, many of the transmission covers are a bear to get to fit right and I hate their drive sprockets. Academy as has been pointed out have their faults, especially their track. I haven't done the more recent Tamiya M4A3E8 but their earlier Shermans had their problems as well. So it's really up to what you want to pay, what you can get (the Dragons and Asukas seem to go in and out of production, the Dragons really quickly. Sometime in 2017 they're supposed to re-release their M4A3 (75) and when they do I think I'll buy around 5 [I always wanted to have a platoon of them in the same scale]) and what you're willing to correct. Fortunately there are work-arounds for all the various faults with the various kits.
NOV 25, 2016 - 08:05 AM
I forgot to mention the Academy kits have photo etch guards and the periscopes are separate items for each hatch (on these "new" releases anyway"). VR, Russ
NOV 25, 2016 - 11:15 AM
And in some of the recent kits you get several extra periscopes and vision cupolas if you want to update any older Dragon or Tamiya kits you have cluttering up your stash.
NOV 25, 2016 - 11:54 AM
Well I'm one of those guys 'on a budget', so I can't afford Asuka/Tasca. I'm glad Academy is making these kits and just ordered the cheapest box of this Sherman I could find...
NOV 25, 2016 - 10:12 PM

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