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In-Box Review
135
U.S. Mech Mule Driver
U.S. Mech Mule Driver
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by: Engin Kayral [ GRAYWOLF ]

introduction

The U.S. Military M274 Truck or Platform, known as the Mechanical Mule, is a 4-wheel drive, gasoline-powered truck/tractor type vehicle that can carry up to a 1/2 ton off-road. It was developed in the 1956 as a light weight cargo carrier to replace both the 1/4-ton jeep and 3/4-ton trucks in infantry and airborne infantry battalions, and used until the 1980s.


The M274 family could be fitted for many infantry tasks including transport of personnel or cargo (keeping pace with foot soldiers), for stringing wire with a cable reel, for carrying patients on stretchers, and as a weapons platform for a recoilless rifle or TOW anti-tank missile. Each wheel had shackles for lifting by helicopter or parachute airdrop. If it landed upside-down, it could be turned over and still be driven away.
The seat and the foot basket can be detached and stored underneath the platform which can then be rigged as a steerable trailer. The steering column could be set in multiple positions so the driver could operate the vehicle from almost any position, including crouching down.

One of the latest releases of BRAVO-6,B6-35079 U.S. Mech Mule Driver includes one sitting figure for this vehicle.
packing &casting

Kit content comes well packed in standard light brown cardboard box labeled with a photo of painted figure. Body part and other small parts like arms and steering wheel are split into two transparent bags. Resin quality is good with no casting mistakes. Details are clean and sharp. No need for a serious cleanwork, just a few seamlines on the arms.
figure

Figure is sculpted by Vladimir Demchenko in 1/35 scale and cast in grey resin. It comes in 4 pieces; Body, seperate arms and steering wheel.

  • Posed to drive/sit on the driver seat of M274, main part is body with head. Facial details and hair are well represented. He wears tropical jungle uniform of jacket with two chest and two lower bellows pockets - all with flap covers, trousers and canvas-leather combined Vibram boots. Trotters are inserted into boots. Uniform details, wrinkles and folds are well defined.
  • Arms with upfolded sleeves are posed to hold the steering wheel. They make good fit to shoulders.
  • Steering wheel
    conclusion

    Useful figure for Dragon 3315 and 3317 Mechanical Mule kits. Nice sculpt and cast.
  • SUMMARY
    Highs: Sculpted in sharp details and clean cast. Unique figure for M274 builders.
    Lows: No lows but maybe limited usage for some modelers.
    Verdict: Nice figure as driver of Dragon Mech.Mule kits.
    Percentage Rating
    90%
      Scale: 1:35
      Mfg. ID: B6-35079
      PUBLISHED: Aug 25, 2015
      NATIONALITY: United States
    NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
      THIS REVIEWER: 92.20%
      MAKER/PUBLISHER: 95.07%

    Our Thanks to BRAVO-6!
    This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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    About Engin Kayral (Graywolf)
    FROM: IZMIR, TURKEY / TüRKçE

    Born in 1962,married and having 2 sons. I started modelling about 8 years old building USS Fletcher with mom. It was a model dad brought from USA., I think in those days only a few people in Turkey had info on scale model kits. Grown as an AF officer son , I built many aircraft models in years. Som...

    Copyright ©2019 text by Engin Kayral [ GRAYWOLF ]. All rights reserved.



    Comments

    Thanks Engin; takes me back to an exercise on Salisbury Plain here in UK in the mid 70s when Mechanical Mules, along with Gama Goats were deployed amongst classic thatched cottages of English villages - all a bit surreal. I seem to recall that they were in a version of the MASSTER scheme and seem to have been US Airborne (alongside Belgian and Brit paras). Anyway, a useful figure.
    AUG 24, 2015 - 02:09 PM
    Nice review. The Mule doesn't get enough love by modelers, since it's not just a Vietnam War vehicle.
    AUG 27, 2015 - 01:48 AM
       

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