Sherman Firefly in 1/72
...building the new kit from Airfix
Airfix 1/72 Sherman Firefly
A recent release from Airfix is an all-new small scale Sherman Firefly. Well priced, just £9.99 on the Airfix website though you may find even better prices on the internet if you are lucky.
I am impressed by the new kit, especially for including 2 different styles of track/running gear. There is a simple, one-piece set which will allow for a much quicker build, useful for youngsters, elder modellers who might find this easier and perhaps the wargames market. There is a slightly more complex option, with link and length track which you build up around the running gear units. Fit of these parts is good, and they don't take too long to build.
There is just one really minor point to mention is the instructions, which show the hull fitted with a bow machine gun, but these weren't fitted to the Firefly as the space inside was used for ammunition stowage. The kit does include the right style little blanking plates which does appear on some of the drawings in the assembly instructions in the right place. Oddly, the hull mg also is shown and paint guide given in the 2 colour & marking options provided for in the kit. Now this is a fairly minor error but with all the research and time they put into creating a new model like this, and that the correct part is in the kit, I remain just a little disappointed that such a simple error has been made in the instructions. It would be so simple to proof-check the kit prior to release, as there are plenty of people such as members of MAFVA, that could have given advice beforehand but are not asked.
All that aside, the kit builds up very neatly and the end result looks good. It even includes extra stowage, including spare track sections which were welded to the hull/turret as extra armour protection, plus a couple of spare road wheels and some ammunition boxes. Two marking options provided for, one a plain Olive Drab and the other in an Olive Drab and Black disruptive scheme. I made use of the spare set of markings by adding those to an older 1/76 model Firefly I had that was in need of some markings.