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  1. Hello all, After an hectic 15 weeks, I can now say I am settled in y new house, where the bench was rebuilt, and ready for some (old and new) projects. I wanted to contribute to this group build, whilst satisfying my pet idiosyncrasies : no camoed subject, civilian or at least peaceful subject, and possibly, not an aircraft, which would give me the excuse of an OOB build, which I am unable to do with wingy things. My choice has fallen on the Ukrainian manufacturer Miniart. I have been regularly impressed by their original subjects, and the impressive builds that could result with their kits, like for instance their Caterpillar dozer. I settled on their "European Tramcar kit". They have released other tramways kits, probably more appropriate for an Ukrainian city, i.e. the Russian-designed "X-type" tram. But, for this group build, I would not even want to choose of subject with a Russian or Soviet flavour. Still, their European tram, most likely a replica of a Gothaer Waggonfabrik tramcar, could very well have been used in Lviv, which used to be Polish until 1945. And, besides, I have decided I would not go for a specific Ukrainian town tramcar, but more for a fanciful" model, in Ukrainian colors, i.e. yellow bottom and blue top (which - I found in my browsings on the subject - is a color set used on some trams of the town of Gotha in Germany). Ok, on to the build ! The box is compact but filled to the brim with sprues ! I have not counted the parts, but read on the net that the base kit (without the passengers and crew) was made of 609 parts. We are in tank realm with this part count There is even a vacform base representing a portion of paved street with rails, at a tram stop, with a wrought iron bench and guard rails. The original vehicle being essentially symmetrical along the transverse middle axis, Miniart have chosen to model a lot of parts along one longitudinal half, which has saved a lot of tooling. This is why most of the sprues in the box are duplicated, or sometimes in present in 4 identical sets. I followed the instructions and started with the two sets of left and right entry steps. These are made of 5 parts, on of them the support for the forthcoming suspension springs. Then I decided to depart with the assembly instructions by assembling the two main floor halves. I feared that any joint cleaning would be very difficlut once all parts were added to them. I was right to fear a potential issue with the assembly of the two floor halves. There is some shrinkage in the middle, which creates a gap needing to be filled. Plus the bottom is smeared with multiple ejection pins marks. Even though this is underneath the tram, given that the bottoms are really very detailed, these marks need filling before going further. They have been filled, and I have resumed assembling some of the components of the bottom. However, this is currently stalled whilst the putty dries and awaits some sanding. So, to be continued another day Hubert
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