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Set 8018

Afrika Korps

Click for larger image
All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Stats
Date Released Unknown
Contents 21 figures
Poses 9 poses
Material Plastic (Very Hard)
Colours Tan
Average Height 24 mm (= 1.73 m)

Review

Although Hitler had not intended to get involved in North Africa, once German forces arrived there in 1941 they quickly established an excellent reputation and were to fight bravely, hampered of course by the inhospitable terrain and climate. However their efforts were a serious drain on German resources at a time when Hitler was much more concerned with the invasion of the Soviet Union, and ultimately they were not able to hold North Africa for the Axis. Although the Afrikakorps only existed for a little over two years they are a popular subject for modellers and have been immortalised in 1/72 scale plastic many times.

The fairly small number of poses are all reasonable, and the first two firing men make up almost half of the total figures in the set. As usual those figures that are moulded in one piece look more natural, with the man running and holding his rifle in front of his chest being the weakest of the bunch. This pose, the mortar man and the two kneeling poses require several parts to be put together, but as can be seen by looking at the full sprue the rest are largely complete. As usual there is a considerable Tamiya flavour to these men, with both the kneeling figures strongly resembling the Tamiya 1/35 figures and the man with the mortar seemingly coming from the 88 mm gun set.

The accuracy of these figures is reasonable but misses the mark in small details. Areas such as the ammunition pouches are not properly done and some of the helmet shapes leave something to be desired. The standing figure with the machine gun has his helmet down over his nose, so clearly can see nothing at all. Detail is reasonable but the figures are particularly disfigured by obvious mould marks round the back, which either leave a cylindrical lump of plastic to be removed of a round gap in the detail. On our sample some also had cavities in stomachs and other places. Where figures require assembly the parts fit adequately, and of course all the figures need to be glued to their base. The set comes with a number of extra ammunition boxes and eight extra mortar bombs as well as the mortar shown, which is a fairly nice piece and certainly streets ahead of the same weapon in this company's soft plastic set.

In all this set is of a similar standard to the others in the small hard plastic range of figures from this manufacturer. The advantages and better value of the soft plastic is obvious to all, and their hard-plastic cousins have long been out of production. The set does not offer anything that is not now available in soft plastic, although this was clearly not so when the set was originally made, and while it may not cause much excitement it does the job.


Ratings

Historical Accuracy 8
Pose Quality 8
Pose Number 6
Sculpting 7
Mould 7

Further Reading
Books
"Afrikakorps 1941-43" - Osprey (Elite Series No.34) - Gordon Williamson - 9781855321304
"German Combat Equipments 1939-45" - Osprey (Men-at-Arms Series No.234) - Gordon Rottman - 9780850459524
"German Soldiers of World War II" - Histoire & Collections - Jean de Lagarde - 9782915239355
"Infantry Weapons of World War II" - David & Charles - Jan Suermont - 9780715319253
"The German Army 1939-45 (2) North Africa & Balkans" - Osprey (Men-at-Arms Series No.316) - Nigel Thomas - 9781855326408

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