British Cruiser Tank A34 Comet
Fighting 48th!, 1/48 scale
As much as I don’t like to give away a surprise ending, Fighting 48th!’s new Comet is the most impressive 1:48 scale armour kit that I have ever seen. There you are – a nice short review for any time-poor modellers.
For anyone who wants to know a little more, Fighting 48th!’s kit comprises more than 200 parts in beautifully cast resin, over 120 photo-etched parts, a turned aluminium 17 pdr barrel with a brass muzzle brake and machine gun barrels, two MV lenses for the headlights, fine metal rod, copper wire and plastic strip plus waterslide decals for no less than 14 vehicles. The resin parts are divided into multiple plastic bags to minimise the chance of damage, and all of this is packed into a stout, compact cardboard box.
The kit offers a number of useful options including parts to build either a wartime or post-war Comet and alternative mantlets – with canvas cover and without.
Fighting 48th! is at the forefront of technology. The design was done on a CAD system, the master model was born in a Rapid Prototyping machine – effectively a 3D printer – then the resin kit parts were cast in the conventional manner.
Instructions are supplied on seven double-sided A4 sheets and I strongly recommend that you familiarise yourself with the notes and diagrams before you cut the first part of its casting block. Having said that, though, the casting blocks on most of the parts range from non-existent to modest although there is a bit of feather-like resin flash to remove here and there.
The casting quality is nothing short of superb and surface detail is amongst the crispest that you will ever see. The subtle texture of the armour plate does not show up well in photographs, but it is a thing of beauty when you get close up and personal with the resin.
The tracks are link and length, and should not present any great challenges.
Fighting 48th! also helpfully provides a crew of two.
The 14 marking options cover everything from WWII to post-war British, Irish and Finnish.
Fighting 48th!’s Comet is a remarkable example of champagne modelling, and with a corresponding price tag. I happily shelled out though, as this is an extraordinary kit.
Some previous experience working with resin will be helpful due to the sheer number of parts, but I am confident that fit will be precise and I look forward to an enjoyable build.
Text and Images by Brett Green