Wednesday 20 February 2019

Kit Review: 1/72 Hauler Radschlepper Ost, Pt. I

This kit arrived with the mail today, from Hannant's. Including postage, of approx. £3, this kit cost just a few pennies less than £33! I think this makes it the most expensive 1/72 model I've purchased thus far.

The contents of the box.

Hauler, a one-man show from the Czech Republic, make resin kits, photo-etched detailing sets, and all sorts. This'll be the first time I'll have made one of their kits. There's a lot of grey resin parts, plus decals, clear plastic for windows (and even for the dials of the dash display... impressive!), and some photo-etched stuff.

I've had a look through all the parts, and the kit looks really great. I'm looking forward very much to building this bizarre vehicle. I actually bought a 1/35 kit of this quite a while ago (another brand that's new to me, Riich, or something like that!?). But that's sitting up in the attic, in a big box of 'pending' models. 

Damn! The rear axle broke during clean up. [1]

All the resin parts trimmed and cleaned up. [2]

Only one major bummer during the prepping stage of the resin parts. The rear axle broke whilst I was removing it from its 'sprue', or rather the residue of the casting. I tried supergluing it, but it just kept breaking again. In the end I had to remove the damaged section altogether. I wound up replacing it with a chunk of styrene sprue. Shaping that and supergluing the various parts together was a real pain. But I'm hoping it's gonna be alright come assembly time. That'll be tomorrow now, as it's late, and I'm very low on superglue, and I'm doggone tired!


This looks like a good read. [3]

This odd looking vehicle was one of the numerous projects that Ferdinand Porsche was involved with during WWII. Skoda manufactured them. Despite poor performance in trials Hitler ordered about 200 be made. Apparently most of them were never used. And of those that were, they ended up being used in the Western and not the Eastern front! One issue was hefty fuel consumption, which with Germany's shrinking Reich and raw materials supply issues, didn't help its cause.

Damn... another axle breakage!

That was yesterday, Feb 19th (the day my sister and her daughters arrived at my mum's, on a short visit from Spain). Today is wednesday the 20th. And work continues on the RSO. I made a right mess of the wheels. I only noticed that the front and back wheels are differing thicknesses after attaching a non-matching pair at the rear. Fortunately I hadn't glued them on. 

Getting the wheels on at all was tricky; all four required fairly extensive cutting, filing and fiddling in order to make them fit. Eventually I got them all in their proper places, and even had the tread in the right orientation. Which I hadn't on my first attempt. 

I made nicer sticks/levers/knobs, whatever, for the cabin.

And now I've made a start on the photo-etch pieces. I decided not to use the gear shift lever, etc. Instead I made my own, from stretched sprue. Much nicer, being fully rounded. The photo etch parts are both too flat and too delicate.

Gear shift lever etc. in situ.

All the underside chassis stuff... looking good!

Working with resin kits and superglue is, I find, quite tiring. More so than constructing standard styrene stuff. So at this point, i.e. now, I've decided to take a brief break. Have a lie down even! Before doing so, I took a snap of the model with upper bodywork parts resting in position, but not glued, so as to see how the model's coming along. I like it!


A couple of Milicast figures give a sense of scale.

Another short round of work on this kit is snatched. The chassis and rear body are mostly done now. The Milicast resin figures in the pics above and below help give an indication of the large scale of this vehicle. The partially painted figure below might be the driver.

Getting ready to add some inner cab detailing.

Cab floor and pedals added. Other parts prepped.

Some of the photo-etched stuff is great, being robust, or not too exposed. But some of the finer detailing is extremely delicate. The u-shaped footholds, for example, whilst lloking great, are very easy to knock off or bend out of shape. This makes handling the model tricky. I might have to come up with some kind of solution, to enable me to handle it for the forthcoming build steps.

Cabin glazed, adding dashboard detailing.

The photo-etch over clear plastic on the dash looks great.

Close of play on day two. Cabin not glued on yet.

I finished modelling at 2am! Having snatched the final hour or so after our guest went up to bed at about 12.30am. As usual, glazing the cab was a right pain, and the resulting 'glass' is dirty/messy/opaque. In this instance I glued it in place using superglue gel. Today - I'm writing this the morning after - I'll start work on painting the cab interior. 


[1] The little grey disc in the upper right area is the styrene sprue replacement part.

[2] In this pic the repaired rear axle is looking ok. The split resin segment I cut out is just to the right of the fixed axle, in the bottom right quarter of the photo.

[3] Saw this at the Bovington Tank Museum shop. Should've got it there and then! Going to On Track  down in Folkestone this saturday. Maybe I'll see/get it there?

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