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Black Widow Heavy Support Tank Kit Preview


By Vince Hoffmann - images & text © 2005

Scale: 25mm - 5½" tall, 10" long (140mm x 254mm)
Parts: 40 pieces, solid polyurethane resin cast.
Instructions: Download from manufacturer's site
Decals: None
Molding Quality: 7 - no bubbles or dimples, some mismatched halves and heavy seams.
Detail: 8 - good, lots of nuts and bolts.
Accuracy: Not applicable
MSRP: $79.00 USD (~$96.33 CAN/ 61.50 EUR) plus shipping, available from DreamForge Games
Overall Rating: An interesting subject guaranteed to get a second look.

[Dryfit pieces]

^ Assembled model, without glue

[Click to enlarge]

^ What you get
Image: Top of the hull/turret

Image: Underneath the hull/turret

Image: Leg

Image: Lots of guns

Image: With 25mm figures for scale

Image: Turret ring parts

[Click to enlarge]

^ Assembled turret ring lets you rotate the beast

Gamers love variety and DreamForge Games is offering a kit which is both unusual and unlike anything else on the market. The Black widow Heavy Support Tank fits in nicely with the mechanics and architecture of the currently popular Warhammer 3K game and models.

The Kit

This polyurethane model, created for 25-28mm tabletop war games (or simply to fill that empty space on your model shelf), stands 5½" tall 10" long and 6¾" wide when completed. It has customizable hard points (weapon mounts) and your choice of two different types of main guns and 4 varieties of secondary weapons.

My kit arrived in a sturdy book-fold cardboard box with the parts nicely packaged inside in bubble wrap and plastic bags. Opening the box reveals just how large this model really is; the main hull, solid cast in one piece, is 7" long, and with the gun barrel attached, stretches out to nearly 11"! The turret sits on an assembly which, once put together, allows the entire hull to rotate while remaining firmly attached to the legs.

Each leg comes in two parts that fit together snugly. Gluing the legs together as provided will give you a simple static pose, but if action is what you require then the knee joint can be easily modified to give more extension. The hip joint, however, will require more surgery to adjust.

One particularly nice feature is the ability for the hull to rotate, while remaining firmly attached to the legs. This is done by a clever 3-piece assembly which fits inside the hull and attaches to the leg base.

Simple detailing, lots of rivets, bolts and raised plate detail overall as well as a nice array of periscopes and optics give this model an uncluttered appearance, maintaining the feel of a heavily armored fighting vehicle.

Pluses and Minuses

Solid construction and clever engineering makes this kit an easy build, and the ability to customize it with various types of weaponry is an unexpected feature.

However, casting separation lines are quite prominent in places; many mold seams bisect cylindrical parts which will make cleanup a bit of a challenge. Lack of instructions and box art give this kit an unfinished appearance, although instructions are available at the manufacturer's website, they really are not needed because construction is fairly straightforward and obvious.

Conclusion

This kit is an excellent addition to any gamer's standing army. The smart parts breakdown and large pieces will give the novice resin kit builder no problems during construction, while the experienced kit builder will find plenty of room for extra detailing and customization not commonly found in garage kits.


Many thanks to Vince's wallet for providing the review samples. Manufacturers and retailers, interested in getting your wares reviewed and publicized on a site averaging 3500+ readers a day? Contact us!

Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the reviewer.
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This page copyright © 2005 Starship Modeler™. First posted on 5 April 2005.