Guideline Publications - Military Modelcraft International April 2022
Military Modelcraft International is a monthly magazine devoted solely to armor models, but unlike other armor modeling magazines it also covers the historical aspect of armor models built in that month's issue; this month's issue devotes ten pages to the development and use of tanks in America 1917-1920. That's 10 out of 90 pages, or 1/9 of the total page count. That's a sign of a magazine that takes its subject seriously.
Although it is published in the United Kingdom, those of us in the USA can subscribe in two ways - either the physical magazine, which is available for a six-month subscription rate of $70 ($11.66 an issue), a 12-month subscription rate of $125.00 ($10.41 an issue), a 24-month subscription rate of $230.00 ($9.58 an issue), and a digital subscription rate of $35.00 ($2.91 an issue). Although those prices seem high, if you compare them to other armor magazines, they don't publish every month and they have fewer pages. One nice thing about digital magazines is that you can usually expand the smaller photos so that you can actually see some of the details that are not visible in the print magazines.
Table of Contents - Quite the Variety!
Managing Editor David Grummitt leads off this issue with brief comments in the Forum addressing the war in Ukraine and how awful it is. Enough said.
The News at the Front section covers in eight pages the latest releases from model, figures, after-market, paints companies including FC Modeltrend, Evolution Miniatures, Heavy Hobby, Academy, Ammo by MIG, Panzer Art, Sovereign 2000, Miniart, Plus Models, Iwata, and Gecko Models. Quartermasters Stores gives the reader two pages of thumbnail photos and a brief description and cost in UK pounds of additional kits, figures, tracks, and other aftermarket accessories.
The first article covers the scratch-build of a paper tank, KV-4 KTTS, by Roman Yarlykov and Igor Kuleshov. The five page article starts with the already built model pictured both before and after painting, with most of the article concerned with the different paints and weathering materials used, and only a brief description of the actual construction.
The second article, by Ramón Segarra, covers the build of the 1:35 Academy M4 "Calliope". Again, the majority of the article and accompanying photos deals with painting and weathering, although there is a brief mention of some of the aftermarket kits used. Mr. Segarra mentions that he had to source reliable diagrams to model the cables going to the rocket tubes, but does not provide a link or reference for the reader, which would be a nice touch.
In the third article, Mr. Grummitt gets his hands on a nicely rendered 3D-printed model kit of a 1:48 MK. VII "Liberty" tank from FA Miniatures. After a brief history of this behemoth, he moves on to a nice description of the quality of the 3D model by the Polish company FA Miniatures, and then on to the clean-up and assembly of the very few parts, and painting, resulting in a beautiful model of a historic tank.
Armour in Profile presents a ten-page article on Tanks in America, 1917-1920, next, which provides a brief historical review on the establishment, organization, training and deployment of the fledgling US Tank Corps, accompanied by period photos and color profiles, with Vallejo Model Air paint references. I had never heard of the Ford M1918 3-ton tank, much less that a M1917 6-ton tank named "Little Zeb" tried to ascend Pike's Peak. There are other interesting historical references that would make great vignettes or dioramas.
As a nice follow-up to the Armour in Profile article, Mr José Brito builds two 3D-printed versions of the Ford 3-ton M1918 tank, using 1:35 FC Modeltrend kits. One of the kits is described as similar to a traditional model in that it has many parts, while the other is a simpler kit with just "a handful of pieces". As Mr. Brito points out, 3D kits allow modelers to build unusual subjects that would never be kitted by major model manufacturers. True, very true. Over the eight pages of the article, Small Beginnings, Mr. Brito shows the construction, painting, weathering, and construction of the two bases of each version; I appreciated that he discussed how to remove the parts from the print supports, as I have had problems with that for 3D-printed aftermarket kits of tool straps and other small parts.
The one page Armour in Detail provides a nice set of period photos of the Ford 3-Ton M1918 - more vignette and diorama ideas!
Jose Luis López builds Tamiya's 1:48 scale Nashorn, and does a nice job of describing the build, painting, and weathering of the kit, which he obviously thinks very highly of. However, he also mentions the lack of detail in the fighting compartment - lack of MP40 racks, MG-34, ammo, periscopes, and stowage canisters.
In what may prove to be a timely article titled "A Cold Killer", Kevin Ottens builds the 1:35 Zvezda BMPT Terminator 2 kit. After a brief description of the real vehicle's manufacture and armament, Mr. Ottens compares the Zvezda kit to Meng's, then moves right into the construction and painting with AK Interactive Real Colors. Most of the photos cover the painting and pre-shading, shadows, pin washes, color modulation, camouflage, and adding both mud and snow effects. All very nicely done and explained in the brief captions accompanying the photos.
Armour in Action, a very informative seven-page article by Ralph Zwilling, describes in photos and texts a wide variety of winter camouflage used by different NATO nations during the multinational exercise Allied Spirit XIII held at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany in January and February 2022. That's some fast processing to get all that information ready for an April issue of a model magazine! There are some very unique and interesting camouflage ideas here - chalk, paint, netting, white fabric, and vegetation.
The prolific Mr. Grummitt wraps up this month's issue with a three-page review of seven books - although one of them deals with German U-Boats in WW II!
Highly Recommended for Beginner to Advanced builders. You get lots of tips on painting and weathering, as well as brief reviews of new releases, and what looks to be the wave of the future - 3D model companies and their products actually built up so you can see the quality and ease of construction. As always, here is a link to the Guideline Publications website www.guidelinepublications.co.uk and US customers can subscribe to MMI and pay in US dollars at www.guidelinepublicationsusa.com
Thanks goes out to David Grummitt and Guideline Publications for this review magazine.
Reviewed by Joseph "Mac" McDaniel
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