This is the 2nd review of the new Resicast
Tank Riders, this time focusing on Tank Rider with Bren, kit 35.5605. The 1st Tank Rider was Reviewed here on Armorama
The figures were sculpted by Pete Morton, and those featured on the card inserts were painted by Christopher Nachtergael.
So lets have a look at what you get.
The figure comes packaged in the standard Resicast zip bag with a card insert depicting the finished figure to aid painting. The figure itself is contained within a further zip bag for extra protection. Also included with the figure is a small paper insert containing a picture of the 4 new figures positioned on the front of a Sherman Tank, again to show possible positioning when finished. Besides the picture of the 4 Tank riders is a small piece of text :
“These universal tank riders can be fitted to any vehicle (Churchill, Comet, Sherman,...) However to obtain a correct fit we suggest that the underside be adapted to the appropriate vehicle.”
This figure comes posed in a sitting supported position, right leg extended and left leg slightly raised. The kit art shows the figure seated on top of the co drivers hatch of a Sherman tank. The figure is shown holding a Bren gun rested across the body. This is perhaps not the best location on the tank for him to sit, as I doubt he would have been allowed to obscure the vision of the co/driver, but one never knows!
Cast in the familiar light grey resin used by Resicast, the figure appears free from any damage other than a small air bubble under his left thigh, an easy fix. The quality of the casting looks excellent. The figure consists of 10 parts; the body cast as a whole, separate arms, head, Bren gun and stand, short stabbing bayonet, water bottle, small digging tool and back pack.
Dressed in what appears to be a good representation of Battledress Serge 37/40, the uniform has the right number of pockets in the appropriate places, although the rear of the trousers show a hip pocket on the left and right, not a style I have seen before. The uniform has nice folds and creases and the pose looks very natural. Around the neck is a small camouflage scarf.
On top of the uniform the figure wears a skeleton set of 37 Pattern Webbing, consisting of belt, left and right ammo pouches and braces. The webbing is very well done and buckles are where they should be. The figure is designed to sport a back pack and the straps for that are present over the shoulders and at the sides. So a very small amount of work would allow you to model this figure with out without the additional kit. Slung over the left shoulder and hanging across the right ammo pouch is a 50 round bandolier of ammunition containing the correct 5 pouches of ammunition.
The arms come as two separate items and are designed to hold a good representation of the Bren gun. The right hand is attached to the pistol grip of the Bren and the right arm has a small recess to accommodate a good fit. The Bren gun is very well done with good detail, although you will need to drill out the barrel end for better detail. The detail on the hands is also very good. To accompany the Bren gun you get an open bipod, although I feel a closed version might have been more appropriate. There are raised details of the shoulders of the arms for the Unit and Divisional patches, so no need for transfers unless you want to add them.
The head, also a separate item, comes with a sharply cast, interesting looking face with excellent detail. On the head is a MK II camouflaged helmet with added hessian. The face is that of a young man with his mouth slightly open. The helmet is tilted slightly to the right.
To complete the figure you get a short stabbing bayonet, (not required as far as I know), water bottle in a carrier, backpack with a ground sheet tucked under the top, plus a small digging tool for the rear of the webbing. All these items are nicely done, although the buckles on the digging tool holder are a bit weak, but present nonetheless. So either full battle order or skeleton order is doable. What’s missing from the gunner is the small Bren Wallet often carried by the gunners.
Clean up should be minimal with only 3 small pour stubs to remove on the main figure and the casting blocks on the remaining parts, a sharp X-acto blade and file is all that will be needed, to quickly clean up the figure and get to building and painting.
Normal precautions apply when working with resin and sharp objects!
This is another very useful Tank Rider from Resicast The pose looks natural for a seated/supported soldier. I have tried the figure out and he fits well on a number of locations around the tank. Given that the direction of his pose is left orientated he would also be useable at ground level by the edge of a wall or vehicle, so he could also double as a more action type figure.
I would have liked to have seen the inclusion of a closed bipod for the Bren gun and the small wallet carried by the gunners, but these items are not critical. With the inclusion of the 50 round bandolier I wonder if this chap started out as a Rifleman, again not a major issue, just an observation.
I like the separate kit, allowing more options in the finish, and this figure should also be useable in the winter Italian campaign.
The overall level of detail is excellent. This one should bring joy and pleasure to figure painters and diorama builders alike, whether added to your tank/vehicle or used in a ground action type diorama. Another excellent addition to the Resicast range.
Thanks to Resicast
for providing this figure for review.