Sunday, March 6, 2011

15mm CMG Kaamados Armored Car: Build it & Review

Critical Mass Games recently had a sale with free international shipping no less, and as I have been looking for vehicles for many of my factions for 15mm sci-fi I decided this was a good opportunity to give CMG a try.

I had not ordered from them before, but they have a wide variety of miniatures and many looked tempting. I have more than enough infantry, too many, so I wasn't looking to start a new faction, only for vehicles for existing factions. Despite that, I picked up one of each of the Mercenary Aliens packs, and some Ygs troops to be villainous scum and local enforcers to populate a More Wretched Hive of Scum & Villainy... but more on that at a future date.

Many of the vehicles don't suit my taste, but some looked very compelling. One of these is the Kaamados Armored Car. Looking at it, the same one gracing the banner of Dropship Horizon, I thought it might be just right for a 'fast apc' for a small squad of my Mangalores and give some mobile hitting power for the force as well.

So let's take a look:
This is the kit contents of the Kaamados Armored Car with Cluster Missile.
Other variants differ only in the weapon bit, the object at the bottom center of the picture.
It is a Resin Kit. Casting was smooth with crisp details.

Mold Tabs are placed in the least obstructive areas, except in the case of the main hull: it is unfortunate it couldn't have been located more underneath the hull. Still, it isn't too bad where it is. The tabs for the main Hull and the undercarriage piece are quite thick. The undercarriage tab is in a very forgiving place: it will be completely hidden when assembled. The main hull's tab will only be partially obscured from sight, so take care when removing it.

A jeweler saw is the most reliable way to safely remove thick tabs, though with some risk you can remove them with clippers and a craft blade if you're experienced. If choosing this option, cut slowly with clippers and don't cut all the way through in one go: 'squeeze' the resin once with clippers without cutting all the way through, and do this on both sides of the tab, score across with a craft blade before returning to make the first cut with clippers, and don't try to get it all in the first cut: it is better to leave some of the tab & shave this with a blade and file smooth than try to cut it perfect the first time and risk breaking into your model.

Again the jeweler saw is the safer option, but for people with experience and impatience it can be done with only a bit more risk and much faster with the clipper option.

As always when working with resin, wear a mask when filing & sawing because resin dust is deadly. I watched a loved family member die indirectly from lung cancer and you don't want to do that to yourself or those who care about you.

This miniature took almost no time to clean & assemble.
It is a very simple kit and fits well together.

In fact, the miniature pictured above is not glued together!
All the pieces are still lose (which explains why the wheels hubs aren't all at the same angle), since I did not want to wait to take pictures until after they'd been washed and assembled.

With Resin you will want to wash the pieces in mild warm water with a bit of dish soap then rinse well and dry thoroughly. This does add to the assembly time, but it isn't 'active' time- you can do other things while this is being done.
Here it is with a Mangalore shown for scale. The armored car is a little smaller than I anticipated.
It may not serve well for a 'fast apc' for a squad of 5, not without some serious 'clown car' suspension of disbelief.
Well, most games have that problem, so I'm not sure I will let it deter me.
I have one of the Kaamados APCs on order, the big boxy one, so we'll compare when it gets here.

A rear angle shot. The design is very cool. Even if I can't use it as a small squad APC I look forward to having several of these on the table. If the Mangalores must walk to battle so that I can have more of these cars in the army, then it is a sacrifice they will have to make. To be fair, the armored car is not intended to be an APC, I was just hoping to push the possible uses of this vehicle.
The Kaamados Armored Car next to the GZG Bulldog.
The CMG vehicle benefits from being cast in resin. Resin is my favorite material for any miniature that I don't intend to convert. The footprint of the two vehicles is comparable as is the price. The Bulldog has more flexible use and the Armored Car has smoother casting. Aesthetics is up to personal preference, for me I like them both in slightly different ways.

I plan to paint all the vehicles I get in a fairly faction-neutral scheme so that I can have more options for each force with vehicles possibly serving several different factions.

Overall I highly recommend this model if you like the look of it. I'm looking forward to getting the CMG Kaamados APC and will be keeping an eye on CMG for future releases.

Casting: 10/10
Cleverness of Design: 9/10
Aesthetics: 9/10


Paul´s Bods said...

Very nice painted minis you´ve got here :-D

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