OKB Grigorov

Chassis correction set for M48

Kit #: P72001 & P72002 Preview by Marc Mercier - mercier(dot)marc(dot)2(at)gmail(dot)com
Edited by Al Magnus

All M48 variants (M48-A2/A3/A5/A2C and A2GA2) originally released by Esci several ages ago (and the same kits marketed afterwards by Italeri, Revell, AMT and Ertl) all suffered from a lack of detail on the roadwheels and tracks. The roadwheels (with the torsion bars moulded integrally on them!) and return rollers were moulded as one wide wheel, while the tracks had no guide teeth or interior detail. This set from OKB GRIGOROV provides a short run injection moulded plastic set that contains all the necessary parts to correct this shortcoming. What do you get is two sprues containing the T97E2 tracks and four containing the wheels. This allows you to make:

  • Enough link and length tracks for both sides and still have 24 single links for the spare box
  • 16 road wheels where you only need 12
  • 12 return rollers. Depending on the M48 version you'll need 6 to 10
  • 12 torsion bars
Detail is present on both sides of the parts.

However this set also has its disadvantages. Being a short run production, detail is acceptable but soft. Additionally, the track sprues have serious sink marks on the inner and outer faces of the rubber track pads on places that cannot be easily corrected (see pictures below).

The M60 variants (M60A1, M60A2, M60A3 and M60 Blazer) manufactured by Esci, have the same suspension shortcomings as the M48 family. Early M60 used the same T97E2 tracks and, although this set is labelled exclusively for the M48 variants (which needs 158 shoes per vehicle), thanks to the spare links, they can also be used for the M60 (162 shoes per vehicle) and M88 family (168 shoes per vehicle). The steel roadwheels used in the M48 series could also be installed in the M60 family (which normally used the lighter aluminium wheels) as a stop gap measure.

The T97E2 tracks can also be bought separately from OKB GRIGOROV as Set P72002, which are then advertised for both the M48 and M60 series.

Some additional comments provided from Robert Kru [ robert(dot)kru(at)gmx(dot)at ].

This set has some other problems.

  • The Grigorov tracks are nearly 1mm wider than the original tracks! You can use spacers to line up the wheels with the guide teeth, but the kit's fenders will now be too narrow to cover the tracks.
  • If you want to use the Grigorov torsion bars you have to remove excess material from the spacer at the connection point, otherwise the track will sit too far from the hull.
  • Both the Grogorov idler wheel as well as the Esci hull have pins. One of the pins will have to be removed and a hole drilled to accept the pin from the other.

Review sample purchased by the author.

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Article Last Updated: 06 August 2012