Armoured Car Daimler Mk.II

Kit #: MT24/31124 Review by - Al Magnus

Inside the box you get 48 parts in Hasegawa's familiar hard, medium grey plastic. Some dislike this style of plastic but for me it's by far the best supplied by any manufacturer save Dragon and Trumpeter. Also included is a small decal sheet and a nicely done and easy to follow instruction sheet.

Molding quality is excellent. For a kit originally offered in the 1970-1980s, the molds have held up well over the years. There are practically no seams or flash to slow down construction.

Overall detail is quite good. It would have been nice to see some tow rings, extra stowage for the exterior, possibly some pioneer tools, and the turret needs to have an antenna and mount. Most of this can be obtained from the various accessory manufacturers or can be made from scratch for those wishing to save a bit of money. The only major disappointment comes with the undercarriage, where the kit does show its age when compared to most of the newer kits. There is some chassis detail, drive shafts and suspension arms, but the axles are simple copper rods and the coil springs are absent. Originally I had wanted to add the springs but decided that they would be next to invisible for the most part so I left things as they were here.

Wheels and hubs are excellent and their quality still makes me wonder why modern manufacturers can't reach this same detail level with their kits, especially when one considers that Hasegawa originally released this kit some 30 or so years ago.

As for the fit of the parts, this was excellent. Only the front glacis (part 34) posed any substantial problems. It has beveled edges that are supposed to fit inside the upper hull (part 10) but the bevel is not quite correct and prevents the glacis from fitting snugly. This needs some scraping and sanding to reshape the bevel and improve the fit. Also, the upper hull piece is marginally larger than the lower hull. As far as I can determine from web photos, the real vehicle does not exhibit this feature, but since it's not too noticeable and not easily fixed, I left it as is.

I rarely build my vehicles straight from the box and wanting just a bit more detail I performed my usual modifications

  • Drilled out the main gun barrel, exhaust pipe (this is quite thin and was a challenge to say the least), smoke dischargers and the sighting port
  • Added the missing tow rings, which I obtained from spares box (actually these were spares from my Dragon Jagdtiger (Porsche) build)
  • Added a set of handles to the engine deck, fashioned from bent wire
  • Added the missing radio mount, cut from some square plastic rod, and an antenna cut from some guitar wire.
  • Added lenses on the turret search light and the driving light in the hull. These were both made using the sequin and 1-minute epoxy method. The turret search light was hollowed to accept the lens. The molded on hull light was drilled out and backed with a piece of plastic to ensure that the lens would not get accidentally pushed through the hole when it was added.

Using the copper rods for the axles helps line things up suspension wise, but I found that I had to try quite a few wheel location combinations (i.e. switching the wheels around on the axles) until I discovered the proper combination to get the vehicle to sit with all its wheels touching. I suspect this was caused by slight differences in the location of the axle hole in the rear of the wheels/hubs.

The decal sheet is shared by Hasegawa's Humber Armoured Car kit. From this common sheet two markings options are used for the Daimler:

  • vehicle F208944 of the 11th Hussars, 7th Armoured Division, Berlin 1945, in overall green camouflage.
  • vehicle F208338, 7th Armoured Division, Egypt, in overall sand camouflage.

  • Note: I have seen one of the older releases of this kit, from a Hasegawa Minicraft kit with the box top art seen above right at the head of this page, and its instructions only show where to place the transfers and do not specify which units the markings represent.
Decal quality was much better than Hasegawa's usual fare. They are reasonably well printed, in register with dense inks, and the carrier film is nice and thin. Only the bridge classification disk was a bit on the blurry side and I found the Desert Rats emblems a bit indistinct. A few liberal applications of Microsol got them to sit down very nicely indeed. Paint callouts are for Gunze Sangyo Aqueous and Mr. Color enamels.

As for scale, it appears that the Daimler is quite close to 1/72. Wikipedia has length as 13ft 1in & width at 8ft 1in, which is 157in by 97in, which is appx. 2.18in by 1.35in in 1/72. My dial calipers measure the Hasegawa kit at about 2.15in by 1.33in, which works out to appx. 1/73 for both measurements. Close enough for my liking.

This is an old kit with a refreshingly sparse part count which makes for a quick and easy build straight from the box. Out of the box detail is acceptable and with a few minor modifications it can be made into a very nice replica of this significant Allied armoured car.

[1] Wikipedia

Review sample purchased by the author.

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Article Last Updated: 10 October 2010

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