Book Review
Gaz-67B (Topshots 11011)

by: Jim Rae [ JIMBRAE ]

The subject

With many subjects, history has a tendency to 'marginalize' them and concentrate on he more prolific or more 'glamourous' subjects. This is certainly the case if one compares the Willys Jeep to it's Soviet conterpart, the Gaz-67 "Chapayev... The project was given fresh impetus in 1941, with a remit to produce a light vehicle with a good cross-country capability. Two rôles were envisaged for the vehicle. light reconnaissance and as a light towing vehicle for the 45mm AT gun. The vehicle was conceived in the design bureau of the Gorkiy Automobile Works (GAZ) and entered production in fall of 1941. Evolution of the Gaz-64 continued during and after the war with production finally coming to an end in 1953. No less than 62,843 examples (of various variants and configurations) were produced in the 12 years of it's production life...

The book...

Topshots 11011, GAz 67B , is written by Albert Osinski. The book follows the established pattern for this series, being published in B-5 format with 44 pages, 180 photos (b w & color) and a number of reproductions from the original technical manuals... Text is in English with a (limited) summary in Polish. An additional bonus with this (and the other books in this series) is the inclusion of a small decal sheet covering the book's subject:

This is quite a common practice with some of the Polish publishing houses and acts as a nice 'bonus'..

The subject of the photos are, as is common nowadays, various (well) preserved examples in private ownership. This, on reflection, is perhaps peferable to some of the examples in (public) museums as the private owners of military vehicles to tend to put an extraordinary degree of 'authenticity' and work into restoring them into their original 'factory-fresh' condition. The quality of the photos is first-rate, reflecting an attention to detail that only a fellow vehicle-restorer or modeller would wish to include. Fortumnately the author has chosen to include the vehicle with the canvas top 'up' and down. The former is particularly useful as with vehicle was much used in inclement weather conditions and although canvas is not exactly impermeable, it would offer a tiny amount of protection from the elements. Much detail is included of the sub-frame and particular attention is paid to details such as the braking and suspension. Another vital aspect for the modeller are the large amount of detail photos of the engine - again as much detailer as the 'super-detailer' could wish for with important details such as the electrical wiring and the fan-belt covered in painstaking detail. The drawings are useful as well, showing as they do, an exploded view of items such as the supension leaves and their structure.

What IS missing, are scale plans, hwever, this is not a major issue as the quality and profusion of the images, more than compensates for their lack...

The 'devil' is undoubtedly in the detail in this extraordinarily useful book...


The "Chapayev. is undoubtedly an attractive subject for the modeller and although there is only one (to my knowledge) kit of the subject in 1/35th from Tamiya , it is however another of those nice, but if not elderly, at least middle-aged kits which really benefit from some serious 'updating'. Kagero's book provides the reference material to go as far as one would wish in producing a more up-to-date model of an attractive and ubiquitious subject. It would also help greatly in dealing with some of the more 'simplified' details that are all too present in the kit. A simple and cheap addition to the library of any soft-skin modeller and one which will undoubtedly bring rewards in a finished model.

Highly Recommended

Acknowledgemnts and further details..

Firstly, Armorama, would like to thank Squadron for suppling this (and many other) review samples..

Secondly, to see this and the other books in the series, the publisher's website can be seen here: Kagero Publishing Website

The Polish publisher, Kagero has a number of useful and inexpensive reference books in its catalog. One of the most useful (amongst the many series it publishes) are the 'Topshots' series which concentrate on a particular vehicle or Aircraft and cover it using the 'walkround' type presentation...
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:1
  Mfg. ID: ISBN: 83-89088-81-9
  Suggested Retail: Around $10
  PUBLISHED: Dec 13, 2005

About Jim Rae (jimbrae)

Self-employed English teacher living in NW Spain. Been modelling off and on since the sixties. Came back into the hobby around ten years ago. First love is Soviet Armor with German subjects running a close second. Currently exploring ways of getting cloned to allow time for modelling, working and wr...

Copyright ©2021 text by Jim Rae [ JIMBRAE ]. All rights reserved.


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