by: Adie Roberts [ ]
Nearly forty years ago on Christmas day 25th, December 1979 large numbers of Soviet Airborne Forces began to land in Kabul after the Afghan government had secured a treaty in December 1978 that allowed them to call in Soviet forces to help shore up the newly elected pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. Nearly 100,000 Soviet soldiers took control of major cities and highways. The rebellion was swift and broad, and the Soviets dealt harshly with the Mujahedeen rebels and those who supported them, levelling entire villages to deny safe havens to their enemy. Foreign support propped up the diverse group of rebels, pouring in from Iran, Pakistan, China, and the United States.
The Mujahedeen fighters soon concentrated attacks on Soviet motorcades, which tended to be very vulnerable to small arms fire as well as mines laid on the roads. All the vital activity of the Soviet and Afghan troops and of course the Afghan state as a whole relied heavily on these convoys getting through, making them a target for all the rebel groups.
In keeping with their now tried and tested packaging of colourful artwork lid of thin cardboard. A much thicker cardboard box inside with a flip-up lid, this makes travelling from shop to your home even with the most not so careful courier or postal service, seeing your model kit arrive in good condition. Personally, I would like to see other manufacturers using similar boxing.
Inside are four model kits a Ural-375D, Ural-375A, ATZ-5-375, each in their own individual sealed bags, a further sealed bag inside each of the four model kit bags hold the clear plastic parts giving them some extra protection against scratching.
Four separate instructions and four small decal sheets make up the rest of the contents.
First impressions, it has to be said they look very good with a lot of detail for a small scale kit
The first ICM kit I have opened is the Ural -375D Army truck is a general purpose 4.5 ton 6x6 truck, which is on two main sprues, one of them medium in size light grey in colour, the larger sprue is black in colour, two further small black sprues carry the wheels and a further clear sprue for the windows
Looking at the grey sprue first, which is the flatbed of the truck, which carries good detail showing joints ridges and plating, the sides of the flatbed carry some interesting detailing with the upright supports and side plating. (some of these trucks were wooden panels) looking under magnification it is possible to see some small plates with rivets and or bolts that hold the sides on. A small tailgate with grab handles for climbing into when closed or opening and closing the tailgate. Two small tail light housing and two pairs of mud flaps more or less finish the sprue.
The larger black sprue contains the internal parts of the cab, the chassis, drive gear and further external parts. The chassis itself is good, the plastic bends but does not feel brittle or too thick, the drive shafts are good and look how they should look, but show more detail under magnification. The suspension is a leaf spring type and is quite good detail it even has a detailed separate fuel cap! The drive system itself, thinking of the scale here is pretty dam good with each drive shaft connecting to each separate drive axle internally, there is also a partial gearbox. Mounting and fitting for a fuel tank, exhaust pipe and bracket for the spare wheel holder. The internal parts of the cab are perhaps a little bit more basic than its big brother in 1/35th scale that said what is there is still good the dashboard has raised areas that represent speedometer and other readouts gear stick, steering wheel driver's seat and bench type passengers seat complete the internal parts.
The cab of the truck again in the light grey plastic comes as one whole part, for which I think the detailing of it is pretty good, the plastic is quite thick and ridged which personally I like as it will be very sturdy once connected to the chassis. For the scale, it has everything that it should have and maybe more with good detailing for the headlights housing it even comes with some clear plastic lights! Doors, handles, and bonnet all have raised and recessive detailing in the mould giving a good sense of what each part is, the front grill first look I thought it was perhaps a tiny bit too thick however when looking at the real thing it actually looks nearly identical with perhaps the tiniest bit of scale issue.
The wheels and tires are in two parts (halves) but seem to join without too much in the way of issues they have separate wheel hubs that add detail to the whole wheel and tread is good enough
The clear sprue has one piece back window two side windows have a tiny recessed line that will fit flush to the support in the side doors (nice touch) two-piece front screen which seats at a slight angle to the front of the cab. The clear plastic for this appears to be quite thick and has some distortion when looking through it. Finally is the headlights themselves which I mentioned earlier I think this is a great addition and just goes to prove how far most manufacturers have come with their design and moulds.
The second ICM kit is the ATZ-5-375 Fuel bowser contents of the kit are one medium light grey sprue, one cab also light grey, one large black sprue, two small black sprues and one small clear sprue.
The chassis is exactly the same as the Ural 375D as are the tires and clear sprue so I will be reviewing the bowser part of this kit only.
The bowser has some nice detail including a non-slip surface on the walkway along the side of the tank; the rear panel of the bowser has some minor recessed panel lines and raised rivets which all add to the detail. I particularly like the top hatch with detailed fuel caps, riveted circular outside, the fuel bowser body itself has recessed lines raised traps and moulded fuel pipework makes further good looking detail. Two moulded fire extinguishers that for their size certainly look the part some pipework and handrails make up the rest of this sprue.
The third truck is the Ural 375A Command vehicle the contents of this kit one light grey cab, one medium sized light grey sprue which is for the command minor interior and exterior parts, one light grey body main part of the command vehicle, one large black sprue the same as the previous two, two small black sprues and finally two clear sprues.
The main body of the command vehicle has some recessed and raised panel lines that represent one side door and double back doors this gives some nice effects. A large telescopic aerial that has good detail for its size, some panel boxes that fit underneath the body of the command vehicle
The last kit is the BTR-60PB two light grey small sprues carry the internal detail and exterior parts of the BTR, one medium black for the tires.
The body of the BTR (also light grey in colour) was loose in the bag; I really like the look of the upper part of the hull which holds plenty of detail. There are various raised parts such as hatches and doors some really nice rivet details on the top and back of the top part of the hull.
The lower hull looks to have some partial interior to it which looks good the driver's position has quite a lot to it, which is a shame as it won't be seen that easily.
I moved away from 1/72nd scale aircraft and armour as I got older and started to realise that the 1/48th scale aircraft carried much more detail, however, I have seen some fantastic 1/72nd scale kits in recent times. This ICM kit offering certainly carries its fair share of detail, it might not be 2018/19 BTR-60BP was new tooled in 2005, and the Ural 375D Army truck in 1999 yet they are still very good. The boxing of this kit contains four kits Ural 375D Army Truck, Ural 375A Command Truck, ATZ-5-375 Fuel Truck and the BTR-60BP makes this a very nice set.