There is very little information available in English on the 44M Zrínyi I, however what is available indicates that the 44M Zrínyi I only got as far as a prototype. The 44M Zrínyi I was based on the Turán tank and was designed to fulfil the role of a mobile anti-tank gun. The 44M Zrínyi I is very similar to the 40/43M Zrínyi II with the only major difference being the main gun, it is the length of the barrel on the 44M Zrínyi I which enables you to identify this vehicle from the 40/43M Zrínyi II in pictures. Bronco Models
has followed their 40/43M Zrínyi II with the very recent release of the 44M Zrínyi I and is the subject of this review.
The packaging for this model is of the usual standard of Bronco Models
with a printed card box top and cardboard base. Inside you will find;
- A good quality glossy paper instruction booklet
- 12 tan sprues
- A lower hull
- An upper hull
- 18 sprues each containing 12 individual track links
- A colour painting guide
- A colour poster of the box art
- 2 photo etched frets
- A length of string
- A small decal sheet
- 1 clear sprue
I am starting this review by taking a look at the mouldings that go together to make this model. Moulding quality is very good with very cleanly moulded parts and NO obvious imperfections such as flash or ejection pin marks, in fact the only areas that may cause concern are some flow marks that have a very slight chance of showing when the model is painted. I have run my thumbnail over these flow marks which normally pick out imperfections of this nature and I could not feel anything.
Detail is as is normal with Bronco Models
products of a very high standard, with some very detailed and small parts going into the making of this kit. It is this very fine detail which deters some from attempting kits from Bronco Models
and I will tell you that while their products are not the easiest to build they do provide you with the opportunity to build a very detailed model. While on this subject the model itself will not be that difficult to build from what I can see, but the wheel suspension assemblies will test you as they are very detailed and contain a large number of small parts add to this the individual track links and you have an area of the model that will take about 40% or more of your cleaning and building time. The tracks are designed to be workable but I strongly suggest that they are glued together either during construction or after placement on the model.
With the previous model of this vehicle type having been out for some time I will provide a link to the earlier review of the 40/43M Zrínyi II which will guide you through the majority if this latest kit. Unlike the previous kit the fantastic side armour panels are not present, the reason for this is that as the model is based on a prototype these panels were never used on it. The fact that the side armour panels are not present does mean that the work put into the tracks, wheels, and suspension is easily viewable and should add a lot to the look of the finished model.
The main armament is of course the major change on this kit and Bronco Models has done a good job on it. The barrel is a single moulding with very light mould seams down both sides, the one area of the barrel that will require care is the single sprue connection point that is in an area that will be seen. The muzzle brake is supplied as two parts but instead of being two halves it is made of a front and rear section with a ring trapped between the two parts, this I believe will make clean up a lot easier than it could have been and I believe a nice touch.
The instructions use the black and white line drawing method to guide you through the making of this model. Looking through the instructions the only fault or area that could be improved is that one or two parts could be better shown as regards placement. The decals for the model only consist of two white crosses on a black square but they have been well replicated and appear to be of a good quality.
The photo etched parts are again very well thought out and not overly intimidating, with the number of parts not being excessive and as far as I am concerned only included for parts where they improve the finished look, the other photo etched parts included for the kit are for the jerry cans which have been supplied with the model and come from Bronco Models
World War Two Hungarian 20ltr Jerry Cans and 200ltr fuel drum set (AB3557).
If I had posted a news story a couple of years ago saying that a major manufacturer was going to release an Hungarian prototype vehicle from World War Two, I expect the replies would have been along the lines of “pull the other leg it has bells on”. Well we move onto the current time and Bronco Models
has done just that, and it is a model that will catch the eye. This model of the 44M Zrínyi I will make a nice addition to your collection to keep the 40/43M Zrínyi II company on your shelf. Despite only getting as far as a prototype in this setup the workable tracks and very detailed suspension will make this model one of those oddities that appeal.