In-Box Review
HO scale
Arable land
Arable land
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by: Roman [ BIZARRE ]

Noch is a well-known company from Germany that has enormous range of products for railroad modelling but not only for it. Even though they produce items for 1/87 (H0) scale they can be adjusted without trouble for larger scales like 1/72, 1/48 and even 1/35 (depending on the item).

Here we have an item from Natur series, new line that is dedicated to realistic landscape creation. Feel free to browse the complete catalogue on Noch website to see different meadows and fields while I will share my thoughts on the set 07450 “Arable land”.

The “Arable land” set (ref 07450) is made of hard foam and comes packed into hard clear plastic blister. The blister also contains 10 static grass tufts and everything is stapled to colorful cardboard backer (slightly larger than A4 sheet). The backer has information on the Natur series as well as directions on how to use this particular set. Moreover, the images of other products are supplied together with supplementary information like sizes and catalogue numbers.

The Arable land itself is a piece of hard foam with preformed texture of recently ploughed land and can be featured together with different tractors for H0 scale diorama or scenery as shown on the product image. The surface is said to be hand painted and you can easily see the slight variation of earth tones that are replicating different layers of earth (slightly wet/dried). The total size of the piece is 21x19 cm which is equivalent to 18,27x 16,53 meters of real land. As stated on the package the material can be heated with a hair dryer to bend appropriately to desired area. Smaller pieces can be easily cut off from the sheet using a sharp hobby knife or other sharp cutting tool.

As for the usage in other scales I see no problem with it and they can be combined with other scenery/groundworks. Here you can see it together with 1/72 Ft-17, 1/48 SU-152 and 1/35 Panzer III. However, if you would like to position a tank or other vehicle inside the field of ploughed land you would have to make track marks or tire marks using a modelling clay or similar forming material with further painting. I also tried using dry pigment on the part of the products and it required no fixative to adjust the color.

The tufts can be glued into the field to show remains of grass or on a side, depending on the aims of the individual. There is a slight variation in the grass tone from green to dried yellow.

This is a good product from Noch that can be used “as is” for H0 scale or adjusted to other ideas like 1/72, 1/48 and even 1/35 scale. The surface of the foam looks as ploughed arable land and well painted. Cutting is easy and colour can be adjusted depending on your needs.
Highs: Ready to use piece of arable land, easily can be adjusted, cut, and repainted.
Lows: 10 tufts might not be sufficient for stand-alone scenery, however, these sets would be used on larger pieces of scenery/diorama and modellers would have sufficient tufts/matts for vegetation.
Verdict: Highly recommended for H0. Can be used for other scales as well, depending on the needs.
  Scale: HO Scale
  Mfg. ID: 07450
  Suggested Retail: na
  Related Link:  Manufacturer's website
  PUBLISHED: May 28, 2015

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About Roman (Bizarre)

Copyright ©2021 text by Roman [ BIZARRE ]. All rights reserved.


I think Biggles has a point, to a point. In order to make tire/tread marks, you'd have to chisel off the top layer of sod or cut out completely, the "lanes" your tires/treads are going to make. Then go back and fill in with the stuff Roman mentioned, hoping that the texture & color matched the original. Sounds like more work than it's worth if you plan to set a vehicle on it. Though it could be useful for small sections on a dio where no vehicle would be located.
MAY 29, 2015 - 04:54 AM
I am not quite following you guys. I think I wrote exactly the same in the review text. No?
MAY 29, 2015 - 06:04 PM
If you have to go to that much work, you may as well just scratch the entire bit with a blob of Celluclay. Cheaper, and you can make it whatever size you want.
MAY 29, 2015 - 07:21 PM
Those who ever went with their (tracked) vehicle through a field will know that the tracks do show very clear. So, texture and colour do not have to match with the surroundings. I think it is a usable product. Thanks for showing and reviewing it!
MAY 29, 2015 - 10:51 PM
Paul, Thanks for this. That is what I was going to bring up; I've noted around construction sites and recreational vehicle areas that, unless the machine churns up ground moistened recently, that the disturbed ground can look very different to what is just below the surface. F'instance, around here, we have that bright orange clay. But after it bakes in the sun a few days, it lightens up; drive across something rough enough to disturb it and you will have orange tracks across tan ground. I see the same scene in our garden - hoe a furrow days after it was disced and the furrow dirt looks different than the undisturbed area. Likewise, run something across disturbed ground and it compacts, which can make the color seem different. That's because of the way light reflects. About a minute into this video you can see that (what isn't covered by grass) surface dirt is lighter than the churned dirt: LINK An even better example is the header photo of this article: LINK So create your own tracks on this model and one does not have to exactly match the product color to be 100% authentic.
MAY 30, 2015 - 06:22 AM
I can't find the tank show featured here back last summer, one that had many photos of M10 Achilles; I recall it had several images of what i am trying to describe. However, the first few photos here kind of shows what I mean in my previous post. Note along the edge of the dirt that it is lighter than where the treads have been: LINK
MAY 30, 2015 - 06:47 AM
This is probably the best example of how tank tracks can change the apparent color of dirt by either churning it up, or smushing it down: LINK
MAY 30, 2015 - 07:06 AM
1/48 scale model on a piece of "Arable land" from that review.
JUN 13, 2015 - 02:44 PM
Roman, Looks realistic to me! I've been meaning to write again (and post a photo) - churned earth packed by heavy vehicles can also be lighter in color. At a construction site is a path of the dozers and earthscrapers; the freshly dozed dirt is a sienna but where the tracks and treads have rolled over it, it is a buff.
JUL 02, 2015 - 05:44 AM

Click image to enlarge
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