In-Box Review
IDF Sho't Centurion Mk. 5
IDF Sho't Centurion Mk. 5 and 5/1 1967 Early Type
  • HPIM5789

by: Pete Becerra [ EPI ]

After the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, the IDF realized how important armored forces were and bought, improvised, and upgraded WWII surplus vehicles. Realizing that their WWII tanks couldn’t accommodate the larger guns needed to go up against Arab-bought Russian T-54/55’s, the Israelis in 1959 were introduced to the British Centurion MkII. The Centurion came equipped with its original 20-pounder gun and 7.62 commander’s machine gun. In 1963, the IDF upgraded these Centurions with the British made L7 105mm gun and US .50 Cal M2 machine gun for the Tank Commander and designated this as the Sho’t. When the Six-Day War broke out, the IDF had 385 Centurions, including the Sho’t, in the inventory.

Kit Contents
Multi-media kits are becoming a norm these days with many of the scale plastic model companies. AFV Club is one of those companies that combine plastic, resin, turned aluminum, and photo etch in their kits. Once you open the box, you will find it jammed packed with plastic with a majority of it coming from AFV’s previous Centurion releases. The kit contains the following:

11 sprues molded in olive drab
1 clear plastic sprue
2 small photo etch frets
1 cast resin infantry telephone box
2 vinyl tracks
1 length of string for tow cables
6 individual spare tracks
6 metal springs
24 vinyl tires
2 sets of vinyl poly caps
1 20-pounder Type B turned metal barrel
1 L7 105mm “Bonus” turned metal barrel
2 small decal sheets
1 16 page Instructions and painting guide

The instruction sheet is straight forward consisting of 16 pages with a painting guide for three vehicles. An additional insert is provided for the bonus barrel. In step 16 the replacement glacis plate is marked in red with an “F8”. This replacement plate is loose within the parts and is also marked with a small sticker and with the part number marked in red.

Beginning with the turret, it is molded with a fine cast metal texture. Weld seems and casting numbers are very well defined and a turned aluminum 20-pounder Type B barrel with separate fume extractor is provided. As an added bonus in the first edition kits only, AFV has also provided a L7 105mm turned aluminum metal barrel with separate fume extractor, so this item may or may not always be present depending on the kit you buy. Both barrels include the rifling in very fine detail. Sprue H comes from AFV's WC-57 kit and is only used for the .50 Cal M2 machine gun. This machine gun and the photo etch gun mount and ammo can make up the new commander's machine gun. The only down fall to the turret is that no mantlet cover is provided. However the cover can be purchased separately from AFV or you can scratch build one using tissue paper soaked in diluted white glue or two part epoxy putty.

Traditional armor kits come with a one piece lower and upper hull but AFV’s Centurion upper hull is made up of several pieces rather than one single piece. It is comprised of the front glacis plate, drivers hatch, turret plate, radiator hatch, engine hatch, and left/right fenders. The road wheels are made to be workable and a metal spring and four road wheels make up one road wheel sub assembly. Linkage arms are “mushroomed” in place, making the sub assembly workable. Rather than spending longer time masking and painting the road wheels and tires, AFV makes it easier by providing separate vinyl tires. The wheels can be painted and weathered separately than the tire can be placed on. Rubber band style tracks are provided in the kit but separate individual tracks can be purchased, once again, from AFV if desired.

The requires you to pay close attention to step 16. As I mentioned above, there is a red “F8” stamped on the glacis plate in red in the instruction sheet. This red “F8” refers to a replacement glacis plate this is not attached to any sprue. The replacement plate is used only when making the Mk 5/1 option.

Decals are provided for three vehicles from Israel’s 10th Armor Brigade in Samaria on the West Bank during 1967. White on black and white vehicle “bumper” numbers are given along with large white vehicle ID panel numbers. ID panels need to be made from tissue paper and diluted white glue or very thinly rolled two part epoxy putty.

My sample kit did have some broken and bent parts. On both B sprues, part 18 was either bent or broken and on one of the S sprues, part 7 was broken. While reviewing the instructions, I came to the conclusion that those parts were not needed, so that was a good thing. There are a lot of delicate parts such as grab handles that need to be removed, so care need to be taken when doing so. With a steady hand for all the small parts, good reference pictures, and nice accessory set from Legend or any other after market company, a nice looking IDF Mk 5 Centurion Sho’t can emerge from the box.
Highs: Separate vinyl tires are provided making it easier to paint and weather the road wheels. Both the kit and bonus turned aluminum barrels are rifled.
Lows: A mantlet cover is not provided and has to be purchased separately from AFV Club. Very delicate parts which may cause a problem when removing from the sprues
Verdict: AFV Club has narrowed the gap in modern armor in what seemed to be very limited. Like their Stryker kit, AFV Club has brought out different variants of the Centurion tank and with all their kits, the level of detail in the IDF Centurion Sho't is superb.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: AF35159
  Suggested Retail: $43.00
  PUBLISHED: Apr 13, 2008

Our Thanks to AFV Club!
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 Pete Becerra (Epi)

I am 48 years of age. I have been modeling since I was around 8 years old. As you can see from my signature, I am retired from the US Army and Texas Army National Guard. I served 6 years in active duty from 1989 to 1995 and in 1998 I joined the Texas Army National Guard and been serving up unt...

Copyright ©2021 text by Pete Becerra [ EPI ]. All rights reserved.


Legend LF1098. Good stuff.
APR 17, 2008 - 09:08 PM
Dear All I have a question concerning the Shot, historical one, If I would to depict a Shot for the Yom Kippur war this kit is useless or i can use it with minor modification AM parts maybe ? Same question for the 1982 Lebanon war ?? TIA Seb
APR 18, 2008 - 04:29 PM
Exactly, here's a shot of the real thing to illustrate (It's an inner road wheel, but same on the outside. For some reason I couldn't find a good pic of an outer one, out of the 100's of pics I had ) : Notice the grooves on the inner rim. The Legend wheels are good, but they are also missing this detail. I can't figure out why so many don't like the AFV Club wheels, it's the only way to properly capture this feature. Jim
APR 18, 2008 - 05:09 PM
Nothing somuch wrong with the wheels, I suppose most people are put of by the fact that they still need to paint part of the rubber, and don't know why AFV have done it like this. I didn't, untill 18bravo explained it. Another small problem are the sink holes on the hubs... easy enough to fix with a dab of glue, but annoying none the less. I'll post a pic tomorrow, when SWMBO returns from her 'Holiday'. As she took the camera...
APR 18, 2008 - 05:14 PM
I ran into the wheel issue with the MK5 (or 3), as I choose to forget, Aussie Cent. Well painted the wheels as though they had nothing to do with the rims and went back to compare my progress to some pics. Lo and behold, the rim was part of the rubber!!! It was fun going back and fixing it. Cant say I had any problems with the plastic melting; could it be the glue? On another note, just a good shot of auto primer (the not very sandy type) and everything can be painted. I found tamiya primer to not stick very well and that ended in a melting Porsche 911 GT2 after some brake cleaning fluid As for why I choose to forget: My nephew, who is 3, broke into my office and decided that a tank should fly. What remained was indescribably heartbreaking. Regards, Mike
APR 18, 2008 - 06:41 PM
Don't want to but... Your best best for the October War is the new AFV Club Sho't Kal. You CAN use this kit for that conflict, but it requires the hull extension found in the new Sho't Kal kit, and engine deck louvers. It will look very similar to this '67 version, which again, the "IDF Shot Centurion" will not quite do for you: All Centurions had been upgraded to Sho't Kal configuration by 1974, so it's very safe to say that the Meteor engined ones this review speaks of were not prevalent in October of '73. The fact that the vast majority of photos from '73 show the newer Sho't Kal would be a fairly good indicator of that as well.
APR 18, 2008 - 07:31 PM
18 Bravo Thanks my man for your explanation on the different models Much appreciate For kicking my a*** be my guest But Margaritas will be better dont think so ?? Seb
APR 19, 2008 - 05:16 AM
Thanks for the review lads. Next time i am at hannants i will certainly buy two of these babies. Does any one know of any good book for the Israeli Centurion and any resin figures i could usefor it? Thanks.
APR 26, 2008 - 03:05 AM
For figures, check here.
APR 26, 2008 - 03:16 AM

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