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1:35 Concrete Mixer Set
MiniArt

Catalogue # 35593

 

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Concrete. Since Roman times, there’s sure been a lot of it laid down, without a doubt. During WW1 & WW2 however, concrete laying really took off in use for fortification construction and the Germans were the real master of this. All over once-occupied Europe, from Poland to the Channel Islands, the remains of fortifications stand as silent sentinels to a more sinister and dark age that is still within living memory. Should you have wanted to lay this stuff down in smaller, less industrial quantities, then the principle was the same, and indeed remains pretty much unchanged today. You need a rotating mixer! Of course, some tools would be useful for it you needed to remove old concrete or rubble before you laid the wet stuff. MiniArt to the rescue with what I think is possibly the only mainstream, injection-moulded solution to your 1:35 concrete mixing problems.

The kit
This new release is packaged into the same size boxes as many of MiniArt’s smaller diorama accessory sets, with a nice, glossy finish and an end-opening box-flap. The front of the box shows the various contents in a situation setting whilst the rear shows each component with a suggested painting chart with colours that are represented with Vallejo, Mr Color, Lifecolor, Tamiya, Testors, AK Real Color, Humbrol, Revell, and Mission Models codes. I’m pretty sure you could fathom these yourself though, although the suggestions are useful.

Inside the box, SIX sprues of light grey styrene are packed into various clear sleeves so as to minimise any possibility of damage. One of these sprues (Df) was quite long and has been carefully split into two parts so it would comfortably fit into the packaging. The strange sprue nomenclature possibly means that some of the parts here are generic to other sets, and it’s just the inclusion of the concrete mixer that gives this set its overall remit.

 

Sprue Bf

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What we have here are some hand tools. No assembly is required, and all you’ll need to do is to snip them from the sprue and clean them up, ready for paint. Tools moulded here include a pickaxe, lump hammer, stone hammer, crowbar, shovel and spade. Details really are very nice, and these deserve some good wood and metal replication to show those details.

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Sprue Df

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The star of the show and the raison d'êtreof this whole set, this two-part sprue contains the concrete/cement mixer. Covering six constructional sequences, the agricultural-looking mixer looks every bit a period piece of construction equipment. I can’t tell whether this would be engine-powered within the case, via the side crank handle, or if the drum is manually turned with the box unit containing a gearing mechanism. The box has no internal detail, so it’s all pretty academic really. You can see from the instructions the detail that has gone into this particular item, and there is a fair amount of construction to complete it. In all, there are thirty-three parts involved in the construction of this unit, and the details really are excellent!

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Sprue Ef

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Not just one bucket, but two, and in different sizes. The bodies of these are moulded as single parts but with separate bases. No handles are included as you will make these from lengths of fine wire. Holes will need to be drilled in the handle mounts, to accommodate the wire.

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Sprue Gd

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Moving those sand and cement bags and tools around, plus mixed concrete/cement, calls for simple help, in the form of a wheelbarrow. This rustic-looking contraption consists of two wooden side frames that hold the wheel at the front and whose beams form the handles at the rear. The wheel is wooden-spoked with a metal hoop around its circumference. Spacers add rigidity to the frame. A single-moulded part forms the barrow container, and this just sits atop the frame.

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Sprue Kf (x2)

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These identical sprues hold all the parts for the sand/cement bags. Each is constructed from halves, and with a separate tied bag end that plugs into the top of them. In fact, the seams on these could probably double as the stitched seam if you allowed enough plastic to goop out when you glue, and then leave a trail of it afterwards. These bags are also designed to be stacked, should you wish. There are four in total. To enhance the parts further, you could add some texture with a cloth after brushing some thin cement onto their surfaces.

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Instructions

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A four-page, black and white instruction sheet is included with three of these taken over with construction of the set. Remember, the tools themselves need no assembly, only paint to complete. Illustrations are by means of line drawings with shading used where appropriate. Everything is very, very easy to follow.

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Conclusion
Another fabulous set from MiniArt! Pretty soon, with the aid of these guys, there will be no diorama that will be difficult for a modeller to create, from tools, crates etc. These sets are superbly made, easy to assembly, highly detailed and also very reasonably priced.

My sincere thanks to MiniArt for the sample seen in this review.

 

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Dad used to have one of these out in the shed.

We called it the Brummbar. :)

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