In-Box Review
Watchtower and Stuff
Watchtower and Stuff
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by: Carlos Martin [ VARANUSK ]


Macone has reproduced a watchtower that can be often seen on Middle East Military bases. This one has been modelled following the ones in Iraq. They are quite simple and consist on several cylinders of concrete, with side openings on the top one, and a roof.

The model comes in a well packaged, sturdy, box. All parts are wrapped in bubble wrap and empty spaces filled with foam.
There are three plates for the base, floor and roof of the tower and three cylinders. All of them are made of acrylic resin, which already has a similar texture to concrete.
There is also a plastic disc with threaded pattern, to make the metallic floor.
Some items that can be seen often on the exterior are included as well, like concrete barriers, cones or tires with rubble to block the access.

The kit

The kit is really straightforward to build, just pile the parts supplied and glue. It does not matter if the joint is not perfect, real ones are not. All parts come clean from casting blocks so it is literally a matter of minutes to have it ready to paint.
For further detailing, It is possible to add four metal loops on the corners of the square plates, that are used to lift them.
Also, the acrylic resin used allows easy damage with the tip of a blade. You can see the "before and after" that took me less than a minute.
Once assembled, the base is 70x70mm and the total height, 190mm. It is possible to add also an additional ring, sold separately, which takes the top to 250mm.

The set comes also with several other items. There are three concrete barriers, one of them of 85mm and the other two of 57mm long. They are made of acrylic resin as well.
There are also six cones, three of them realistically crushed, one barrel and three tires piled and filled with rubble. These last items are made of the usual resin.


With a total height of 19 cm (or even 25 if you add the extra ring) and being a really quick build, this kit can add a lot to a Middle East Scene. In fact, it needs only a couple of figures and will be already eye-catching.
The quality is really good, with no bubbles or warping, and the acrylic resin provides a nice texture suitable for representing damage easily.

Note: The same tower is available also at 1/48 scale and can be seen here.
Highs: Ready to build in minutes. Excellent casting. Acrylic resin provides a realistic texture. Other small items included.
Lows: None noticed
Verdict: Nice and large model for a scene center piece.
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: MAC35179
  PUBLISHED: May 04, 2020

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About Carlos Martin (varanusk)

My main interest is German vehicles and guns, and I like spending time researching the vehicle and the options for the camo once I have chosen a subject. Sometimes I go for specific and rare vehicles, of which only two or three photos are known so it takes me a lot of time to figure how everything w...

Copyright ©2021 text by Carlos Martin [ VARANUSK ]. All rights reserved.


This is very interesting in that it got me thinking; sadly (for the product concerned) I am not a modern era modeller, but dwell in the auspices of the Cold War - which is where I was thinking (!) This is a blatant thread hijack/tangent I know, but I just wonder if this manufacturer could be persuaded to make one of the East German towers, the cylindrical type which I think are known as BT-11. Of course, it may not be especially marketable but I would love one! Keep up the good work MacOne. Brian
MAY 06, 2020 - 06:09 AM
I like that idea as well; variations of the towers that girded the Berlin Wall would also be appreciated. Hint. Hint.
MAY 07, 2020 - 02:40 AM
There is a kit of the BT-11...1/43 paper model, but a kit none the less. They don't look like they would be too difficult to scratch up in 1/35. You could start with a piece of PVC pipe for the stand and sheet styrene for the upper part. Coat it all with Mr Surfacer or the like to give it that concrete texture. Here is a site that lists dimensions of the towers and the watch platforms, etc. A BERLIN WALL WATCHTOWER Page 10 at this site has a really good scale drawing of one. You could build a dio using a section of the wall from the AFV Club Berlin Wall set too.
MAY 07, 2020 - 03:13 AM
Gino, Thanks for all that; all very evocative when, as a 17 year-old soldier I was sent for a briefing North and South of Helmstedt. I remember a minibus full of young soldiers like myself, all newbies to BAOR. The Inner German Border was a revelation, and not in a good way! All that effort to keep a people in. It made a huge impression on me and perhaps that was the purpose; so at least, if it came to fighting, we'd arguably know what for. I can still recall that rather misty, gloomy Autumn day with a couple of the towers (BT-11 type) visible, a Robur truck around 100 meters away and 2 Border Guards only 20 meters or so in front of us, clicking away with their cameras while we were lectured to by a member of the British Frontier Service. I don't know quite why but I felt somewhat sorry for the Border Guards and I mustn't have been the only one as a couple of the guys threw some cigarette packets over the border to them (when the BFS officer wasn't looking). Anyway, long story short; it may well be possible to scratch such a tower, as you say perhaps using the 1:43 version as a plan, but to be honest: those subtle dimensions of the top, where the windows sort of flare out, I don't know. I find my self pushed to cut a straight line in plastic card. I can embellish a model, add the odd resin replacement part, but scratching, I just don't know. Anyway, thanks for the input, and again, apologies for such a thread hijack. As for the Berlin Wall sections, I'm actually in the process of finishing a small dio using them, the Panzershop Trabant, and the excellent figures from Valkyrie. But if only that tower.... Brian
MAY 07, 2020 - 05:40 AM

Click image to enlarge
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