by: Kevin Brant [ ]
The Morris C8 Field Artillery Tractor(FAT) was designed by the British in World War 2 as an artillery towing vehicle. Commonly known as a Quad, the vehicle was the backbone for both towed artillery and towed anti-tank gun regiments to ensure the guns got to where they were needed. The Mk II variant of the Morris C8 FAT was almost identical to the Mk I with the exception of the removed of the locking differential. There was almost 4000 C8 Mk II's built, and Mirror Models latest kit covers one of the first 3000 with the "beetle back" body.
10 Plastic sprues, including body
1 Clear plastic sprue
3 Photo-etched frets(two small)
5 Poly-vinyl tires
1 Length of Wire
1 Decal Sheet
1 Paint and Marking scheme sheet(double sided)
1 Instruction Booklet
Looking in the box there are several individually bagged grey plastic sprues, a small box to protect the body with wheels and a piece of wire, an instruction booklet, and a colored painting and marking scheme from Ammo by Mig.
A more detailed look of the plastic shows some great moldings, with some good looking surface details and well done fine parts. This is the second kit I have reviewed since it seems Mirror Models has changed their molding process for the better. I found no flash, sink marks, and only limited number of ejector marks, these should be well hidden after assembly.
Again the body looks to been done with slide molding, and should make assembly of the body nice and easy. And must say, it does look to be very well done, with most hatches molded on and the doors separated to allow the building to show in the interior crew section. That said, the kit does include a full crew area, including seats, photo-etched petal, controls, and battery box with photo-etched frame.
Also under the front bonnet a decent looking Morris engine is included, but to display it, some cutting and scratch building will need to be done to show it off. The engine at the front of the frame is not the only detail on the bottom, the frame looks to include a lot of details, as the first three and a bit pages of the instructions are dedicated to building the frame and drive gear including winch
The instruction booklet is 10 pages, and while the steps are not numbered, the individual panes show easy assembly steps in a logical flow for this type of vehicle. The individual steps look to be well done, and should assist in building this great subject from Mirror Models. It should be noted that an instruction amendment sheet is included showing the need for a photo-etched spacer for the wheel assembly.
Since the vehicle has windows around three sides, you may wish to plan out your painting of the interior and masking of window during the assembly process.
The tires are a poly-vinyl and do look to be well molded, with good tread definition and raised lettering, Goodyear, on the side walls. While not everyone’s cup of tea, Mirror Models sister company, LZ Models does have great resin cast wheels available for those who would like replacements. It should be noted that there is a seam around the tire that can sometimes prove difficult to remove on tires of this material.
Again with this kit the painting and marking schemes are done by Ammo by Mig, being a double sided full color painting and marking sheet. There are marking for 4 different vehicles:
- 50th Infantry Division, Normandy 1944
- Unknown Unit, Tunis 1942
- 146th Field Artillery Regiment, Italy 1943
- Polish 1st AT Regiment, France 1944
The decals look to be well printed, nice color, and all within register.
Overall this looks to be a great kit from Mirror Models, and another example of the improved molding process and a great subject to boot. The kit has some great looking details, both surface and fine parts, and should build into a great looking model. One drawback I can think of is the stowage hatches and front bonnet are molded in the close position, and could have added some interest detail is the option to model them open was available, especially with the great looking Morris engine. I would highly recommend this kit to artillery and soft skin fans.