AMX 10 P
The kit comes in a cardboard box and is
well protected with polystyrene chips and air bubbles plastic
It consists of grey resin parts and a small sheet of photoetched parts for the stowage basket and the headlight guards.
The instruction leaflet is of the usual type with this brand that is a poor quality xerography of pictures of the assembled kit and some sketches. However, the assembly is quite easy.
The general feeling is good at the opening of the box with both carving and casting reaching a high standard level.
The accuracy is mean, this being probably due to the use of various vehicle series to build the master. But, nothing is impossible to correct as seen later on.
The chassis comes in 3 parts (the lower
hull with plain sides and two plates with the suspension system
and road axles) and the roadwheels. The assembly is easy with no
surprise. The roadwheels are too slim by 1mm and you'll just have
to thicken them on their backside. The sprockets have some
flashes to remove.
The tracks come by sections and individual links for the sprockets and idler wheels. They are well moulded and easy to assemble after a blank assembly.
The roadwheel hub is too jutting out and a sanding will be necessary to remove 0.5mm.
The lower hull comprises the empty
interior to be filled by numerous seats, stowage racks and driver
compartment. The rear ramp frame and the ramp come apart. The
ramp itself can be built down or closed with the doors opened.
Beware, on my kit the fitting of the doors was so bad that it led
me to have the doors opened while I expected to show a lowered
ramp. You can scratchbuild new doors to show the ramp down.
The interior is a mix of various series and a good documentation is required to get an accurate representation. The site Chars Français is very useful.
The main troubles come with the seats which miss their rounded basis (to add with a plastic round piece and lead foil), the supports of the two seats just beside of the turret access " corridor " are wrong shaped and their location is to be corrected.
The support of the seats in row is of the early type as shown on pics on the website mentioned above. A supporting column between the seats and the ramp is missing.
The ammo racks have to be detailed with their canvas cover. Some wiring and tubing could be added as well as the vision blocks.
The upper hull is finely moulded with the
possibility of representing the various hatches open. The detail
is crisp, the location of the handles is marked by small holes.
The engine grill is so nice that the photoetched part is useless.
The vision blocks should be engraved to give them some depth. The
jerrycan support is wrong, this is due to the use of Heller AMX30
one as master. A good picture is enough to correct this mistake.
The trim vane is of the early type and should receive a canvas cover according actual pics. This is easily done with led foil.
The stowage basket on the rear of the hull is issued as a photoetched part the bending of which is quite tricky but gives a perfect result. To increase the accuracy, I thickened the part with Putty melted in acetone ; this gives a more or less rounded shape to the flat metal.
The waterjets are represented but you'll have to build their tubular protections.
Here comes the " blacksheep ".
That is the turret. TM completely miss that area and
unfortunately it's the hardest to correct. To begin with, the
gunner's hatch should be angled rearward whereas the kit shows it
horizontal. The smo ke dischargers are too narrow whereas their
supports are wrong shaped. Their location isn't properly
mentioned in the instruction leaflet. All the vision blocks are
to be engraved. As the kit doesn't present the slightly hint of
them, a view to pics is highly recommended.
The cannon support is wrong. The kit presents it coupled to the coax MG mount which is false. The MG mount is totally wrong and a thorough study of pics enable to correct it. Have a look at the Real vehicle section in the site to have close pics and a technical manual picture of that area.
A pedestal mount with a flashing light is issued. This is an optional part, the light being used in peacetime on civilian roads only.
Unfortunately no decoration is proposed by TM, you should go on your own for the markings. The camo scheme is of the NATO 3 tone type but using French colors brighter than the original ones. See pics for the scheme.
I hope this will help if you decide to go with this kit which remains a very good basis despite all my remarks. You can spare time by representing an all hatch-down IFV. You'll just have to correct the turret. For your information, the FIST version (amx10VOA) is now available. Externally, the main change is the different turret.