Articles

Italeri - German Motorcycles (6121) _________(BRF)

 

Manufacturer Italeri
Scale 1/72
Set Code 6121
Year 2010
No. of Figures 16
No. of Poses 6
Additional Items Two BMW R75
Size Tall
Material Soft Plastic
Colour Cream
Flash Level Low
Glue-ability Excellent (Superglue gel)
Convert-ability Difficult
Optimal Period 1941 – 1945

 

Review   

Motorcycles sets out as a special attraction in any scale and when it comes to WWII German motorcycles, those definitely occupy a particular place, many of the models created almost 70 years ago still  running in the streets. In the1/72 scale there exist few offers in the field, Atlantic, Armourfast, Hasegawa, El Viejo Dragon and lastly, Italeri depicting several of the most common WWII German motorcycles. Unfortunately, many of those model-kits emerge over-scaled and so it is Italeri’s versions presently reviewed.

One of the most illustrated models in the scale is the famous BMW R75, a legendary vehicle seeing action on all fronts as heavy motorcycle. Specific to BMW R75 was its side-car, but there might appear versions without and both models are here portrayed by Italeri.   

The model is marketed in the standard Italeri 1/72 box featuring as artwork two BMW R75 with riders in close poses with those encountered inside. Anyway, the back of the box provides an image with all the eight poses proposed as well as instructions for assembly and a painting guide

Launched in 2010 the kit incorporates four sprues repeated one time, motorcycles and figures being delivered on separate spures. The one for the soldiers accommodates eight minis while the other takes in the parts necessary for putting together a solo motorcycle and one with side-car as well as two bases for those. Figures are cast as single pieces and motorcycles assembly is fast and easy. Made of Italeri’s SSM plastic, a soft but sturdy material glue-able with super glue gel, the motorcycle pieces excellent go together via a pin and hole system, insuring a great catch, so adhesive is not mandatory. Still, for increased stability and if the motorcycles are going to be moved quite often, then it should be better gluing the parts. For the solo motorcycle a single piece has to be set, namely the one including the tank and handlebar while for the side-car bike, except the same part, has to be added the side-car, the third wheel as well as the spare one.

The BMWs proposed by Italeri are some of the best mass-production motorcycles in terms of details and it is a real pity these are a hair over-scaled. Wheels perfect crafted, handle-bars featuring nicely shaped brakes, great tanks and impressive engine sections are made available by the sculptor who succeeded to create impressive model kits, especially considering the scale. No decals for the license pates are offered, by the numbers can be either painted or taken from some Dragon decal sheets.

Obviously, on two BMW R75, one with side-car and another without, could take place maximum five troopers but the set offers an extra one as option for the side car. Likewise, for drivers and back passengers there are offered four riders, but the assembly guide let us know that one of them represents an option for the back passenger of the BMW R75 with side-car. However, the manufacturer instructions can be easily disobeyed, the hobbyist disposing the riders as he wishes. Nevertheless, bearing in mind that the kit proposes four motorcycles, giving optional figures for the riders is an excellent thing, in this way modellers having the great chance to set up four BMW R75 with distinct crews. The riders are fixed in positions through a peg, quite good but as for the motorcycle parts, in order to achieve a better stability it would be wise permanently sticking them with a drop of superglue. Both alternative soldiers for the side-car are with shorter legs for entering in their places, but the inadvertence does not affect the general appearance of the finished model, being impossible to perceive from outside the length of legs. One just holds an MG34 while he has no bullets to his weapon and the other received a MP40. The MG is a little over-scaled, too and should be fixed to the side-car in a hole provided there and that should be filled in case in the side car will be mounted the trooper with MP40. A most than interesting rider is the one looking through binoculars, perhaps he participates at a recon mission, one of the most common tasks of motorcycle units. He stopped the motorcycle for taking a peek and thanks to sculptor’s abilities, he holds his solo BMW in a natural manner and in a perfect balance.

Except the riders, there are supplied two ground figures attached on bases. One of them with MP40 is in a well-known Italeri pose while the other watches the enemy through binoculars. It must be said this mini best matches with the rider doing the same thing, he might depict the pillion passenger dismounted for take a better look. As regards the figures, it should be mentioned though in the tall side of 1/72, none of them suffers of gigantism, like some other comrades produced by Italeri in the last period.  

The soldiers portrayed by Italeri in “German Motorcycles” belongs to Afrika Korps, being dressed in tropical tunics and long trousers, three of them receiving the long lace boots, other three ankle boots and for the ones in the side-car their foot-wear is not important, being impossible to be noticed. Concerning headgear, that is equally split, four getting the tropical cap and the others steel helmets. Gear and weapons are finely sculptured of particular note being the gas-mask containers of the soldiers in the side-cars, worn in front and in full accordance with regulations for motor transport personnel. On the other hand, some MP40 ammunition pouches are wrongly displayed, pushed much too the back, surely from sculpting reasons. Due to the way the troopers are dressed, they are very suitable for continental troops as well, the only modification the hobbyist having to do being lace and heel details removal, exactly like it is processed in case of flash. In this way, the tropical boots can be easily transformed into marching/jack boots.

Cast is very good, with no mould mistakes, flash being almost inexistent and excess of plastic in a low amount on motorcycles wheels. Without any treatment the material properly accepts enamel, acrylics and artistic oils, sustaining modeller’s work even after heavy handling.

Mainly designed for wargaming purposes, the high level of sculpture and the rarity of the topic as well as the quite suitability for both fronts certainly would tempt static modellers, too. For these reasons the riders might be allocated to other more in-scale vehicles, Propaganda excellent but difficult to assemble kits representing a solution in the field.    

 

Historical Accuracy 9
Anatomy 9
Poses Quality 9
Details Quality 10
Mould Quality 9
Sculpture 9
Recommendation/Utility 10
Reviewer’s Opinion 9