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Photo-Etched Set for Tamiya T-55


Lion Roar


S u m m a r y

Stock Number and Description Shanghai Lion Roar Art Model Company 1/35 scale etched brass set No. LE 35011; Russian T-55A for Tamiya kit #35257
Media and Contents: 131 parts on two frets
Price: AroundUSD$16.00
Scale: 1/35
Review Type: First Look
Advantages: nice, useful set with most major items needed to detail a T-55 well designed and ready to go
Disadvantages: built-up fuel tanks appear to be a royal pain in the neck to assemble
Recommendation: Highly Recommended for any T-55 kit


Reviewed by Cookie Sewell

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F i r s t L o o k


Brass or etched metal sets have become step 2 in upgrading or "superdetailing" most modern model kits, with step 1 being better tracks as a rule of thumb. Currently the "class leader" has been Eduard, followed closely by Aber and Show Modeling with smaller companies like Royal Model coming on strong. Based on their prolific output of materials, the "aiming stake" here has to be Eduard.

Lion Roar is a new company from the Peoples' Republic of China, and as such is literally another country heard from in this area. This set was offered by Baseline Hobbies at their stand at AMPS 2004, and as such was a bit of a surprise as these sets arrived unheralded.

These are brass parts and come on two frets, one of 63 mm x 146 mm and the other 78 mm by 115 mm. The parts are well rendered and include most of the basic items people want, such as fender braces, radiator intake/exhaust grilles, and new hasps and hinges for the various stowage bins. Also included are a new splash board and mounts, details for the gun mantelet cover and turret bits, but at least half of the material is devoted to built-up fuel drums.

Now I admit that fuel drums are the bane of many modelers as they are very difficult to assemble without nearly impossible cracks to fill around the ends or seams that tend to flatten the object if sanded smooth. But the solution used by most companies is a cast resin drum, and these are very busy objects. One fuel tank (these are the 200 liter "drop tanks" not the 95 liter side panniers) consists of 21 brass parts (plus a length of microrod the modeler must supply) including a shell that has to be rolled to size.

The results appear a bit odd, as there are no filler caps provided for on the ends of the tanks and the ridges on the drums are built up from a set of 12 rings.

While the rest of the parts seem quite nice and handy, this feature does not. Still, as inexpensive as the set is, even if they are left on the fret or only the strapping is used the set is still a good buy.

Cookie Sewell

Review Copyright 2004 by Cookie Sewell
Page Created 19 April, 2004
Last updated 19 April, 2004

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