by: Charles Reading [ ]
In the box
Another of Miniart's wide choices of European structures, the "Corner" is a diorama base with a building corner ruin, sidewalk section and a section of cobblestone street.
The kit is presented nicely in a 9.5"X13.5"X 2.5" (345x240x60 mm) high gloss, sturdy box.
When opened, the box contains two injected sprues, two sheets of vacu-formed parts and one page of instructions printed on both sides
With all Miniart releases they supply the architectural features that normally don't come in a plaster/ceramic kit. The injected parts are common to some other kits so you get a bunch of extra pieces for future scratch builds. One sprue has windows and frames, a wooden door, shutters, cellar doors and ornamental iron fencing. The second sprue has a street lamp, ornamental wall sign hanger, downspout & hangers, a barn door with hinges.
Considering the sparseness of this kit (a small section of the corner of the building) you will use one of the window/window frame, the gutter spout and the street lamp. That leaves a lot of extra stuff!
Of the two vacu-formed sheets the first has the base plate and a broken wall section. The second sheet has three wall sections.
editor update: The base piece street section measures 6.5"x7".
I was fortunate enough to attend the Miniart seminar at the IPMS Nationals where the owner, designer and builder/finisher of Miniart was giving a demonstration on 'how to build' his product. Ironically he was using the kit that I am reviewing today as a demo.
In spite of not having his own tools and glues he cut out all the pieces and assembled them within about 1/2 hour.
Here are the essentials: You need a heavy scriber (something sharp and sturdy) to scribe the lines several times right along where the molded section meets the flat sheet. Break the pieces off when scribed. Try to get a completely flat surface on the edges...sand the cut out pieces against a large flat surface. Using a gel type plastic glue, mate the edges and apply pressure so a little of the softened plastic squeezes out at the seams (kinda like building an a/c). Do sub assemblies and when everything is together clean up the seams with a small emery board or the like.
If there is a weakness for the kit it is in the directions. Maybe I'm just inept at following 'the universal language' of pictures? If you (1) follow the sequence of the directions and (2) have good mating surfaces (3) use a glue that doesn't flash off too quickly; you will have an inexpensive yet nicely rendered building section to paint and weather to your preference. Visit the Miniart website for examples of painted up kits.
These kits (Miniart structures) have been selling with a Dragon figure kit included as a bonus at various web stores for quite a while now which even sweetens the deal. I have no idea how much longer this "promotion" will last.