Russian ChTZ S-65 Tractor

Kit #: 07112 Review by - Al Magnus

Check out Bill Power's preview of this kit for a brief history, some excellent diagrams of the driver controls and sprue pictures.


The kit's design lends itself to constructing it as sub-assemblies to ease painting and final assembly: 1. engine housing with seat & floor, 2. chassis, 3. tracks, and 4. track mud guard plates.

There is some flash to remove and a few seams to eliminate.

Generally, molding is very well done. The large parts for the engine cover, floor & seat, and chassis particularly so. On the other hand, the track pieces are a bit of a disappointment. I applaud Trumpeter for molding them as a single part (containing the drive sprocket, idler and track) to ease construction. Unfortunately mold alignment issues leaves a major seam that runs down the middle of the outer face of the tracks which proved difficult to remove. The mold shift also produced uneven thickness to the vertical bars on the shoes. On one side of the seam, the vertical bar is quite thin, while on the opposite side it is much thicker. This makes for a rather uneven look to the track shoes which required sanding to reduce.

The majority of the detail is nicely done as well, being crisp and sharp for the most part. Exceptions are the driver controls, which are just blobs, the rear towing point, which has extraneous plastic, and again the tracks, which miss some of the finer details seen on the real machine. There is also a problem with the raised lettering molded to both sides, plus top and bottom of the radiator housing. The name CTAЛИHEЦ (Russian for STALINETS) on the top and sides is depicted as CTAЛNHEЦ (the English "N" is substituted for the Cyrillic "I" (И)). This also applies for the word diesel (ДИЗEЛь) where once again Trumpeter substituted an English "N" for a Cyrillic "I" (И). For those eagle-eyed modellers, you can actually see the error on the box top artwork. Apparently this spelling issue is also found on Trumpeter's 1/35 scale version of this kit (reference [7]), so it would appear that this kit has been scaled down from the 1/35 kit. I for one didn't notice this until it was pointed out to me post-build. In any case, the lettering is so tiny and indistinct, that after a few coats of paint the spelling discrepancy is virtually undetectable, unless you're wearing an Optivisor. The builder could explore adding some damage to this letter and maybe a few of its neighbours to mitigate the error - attribute it to a mishap that the tractor experienced in real life!

Part fit was exemplary for mush of the build. The only issues I encountered were with the track units. Some sanding along the top half of the molded on mud guard found on part B4 was required to get the tracks to stand vertical, and the three holes in the bottom wheels of the track units had to be opened up some to get the lower half of the mud guards (parts A6 & A7) to slot into place.

Using photographs from the list of references listed below (mostly from [1]), plus the diagrams found in Bill Power's preview, I added the following detail to the kit.
  1. added missing ribs to outside facing run of the tracks
  2. replaced the kit's featureless stumps for driver controls
  3. added missing rivets to drive sprocket housings and along both lower inside mud shields
  4. added missing handle to both sides of seat frame
  5. cleaned out the rear towing point, drilled a hole and added a hitch pin
  6. just for fun added a pair of hooks to backside of seat to hold a chain & added a chain from Hawk Graphics (item no. A003)
  7. added a half dozen rivet heads to the seat back as seen in photos from reference [1]
  8. drilled out rear light housings and added lenses made from a disc punched out of a chrome sequin, plus lenses made from drops of Bondic
  9. covered over hollow bottom of seat
  10. added what looks like a lubrication point for rear drive sprocket housings


Not a bad effort overall. Molding and detail are very nice save for the track units. I must admit that the large seam was what prompted me to place this kit on my shelf-of-doom. A second crack at the kit along with some more determination overcame that issue and the finished product looks quite nice in the end. For those that want the ultimate model, there is some more room for improvement, especially to correct spelling on the engine & radiator housings.


[1] Silicon Valley Scale Modelers (walkaround)
[4] Engines of the Red Army
[6] wikipedia
[7] Perth Military Modelling (preview of 1/35 scale Trumpeter kit)

Review sample purchased by the author.

Trumpeter products are available at Tracks & Troops

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Article Last Updated: 31 October 2019

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