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  1. The year is 2035. War rages across Europe and Asia. NATO is struggling to keep the peace. The Middle East is riddled with pockets of biological radiation. To deal with the challenges and hazards associated with the new breed of warfare, NATO updated their legendary M1A3 Abrams Main Battle Tank. The resulting armored vehicle was designated the M1A4 SEPV5. Upgrades include a new unmanned turret, vehicle defense package, and heavy weapons suite. The most prominent feature of the new turret is the pair of "rabbit ear" missile tubes. The missiles are based off of the Titan MRPL Compact from ArmA 3. Mounted all around the main chassis are Active Protection System grenade launchers and their infrared targeting cameras. The APS launches chaff/smoke grenades to confuse guided anti-tank missiles. The tank's cannon has been upgraded to a 120mm cannon with a rate of fire of about 15 rounds per minute. At the end of the barrel is the gunner's primary sight, with a muzzlebreak fitted to keep muzzle flash from interfering with the gunner's sight picture. The 7.62 coaxial machine gun has been replaced with a 12.7mm (50 Caliber) machine gun. The driver's hatch on this tank has been replaced with an aftermarket one, as the standard version does not have any periscopes fitted. It appears that the crew of this tank are fans of classic PC gaming. Looking at the rear of the tank, we see the rear mounted CROWS turret. This is an automated weapons system designed to protect the tank from rear attacks. It features a mounted M2 50 caliber machine gun, MAAWS anti-tank missile launcher, and two blocks of tear-gas launchers. The writing reads: How's My Driving? 1-800-Screw-You. The interior of the tank has been upgraded with more controls and sensor screens for the commander and gunner. Additional rounds for the MAAWS and boxes of 50 caliber Raufoss rounds can also be seen. Finally here we see the crew of the tank wielding their chosen weapons. From left to right, Gunner (H&K MP7 PDW), Driver (L22 Carbine), Commander (XMP PDW). Thanks for viewing. Comments and crits are appreciated and I'm always happy to answer additional questions.
  2. Introduction Time for another clone bricks review. No not the Star Wars™ soldiers. Today I am looking at a Chinese clone. Specifically the Kazi M1A2 Abrams main battle tank. While I have seen a few video reviews of it, I could not find any in-depth written reviews of this set. I aim to change that. Set Information Title: M1A2 Abrams Number: KY10000 Released: 2016? Part Count: 1463 Price: Varies Links: Amazon AliExpress Packaging My tank was shipped to me without a box. It took roughly 15 days to process and ship from China to Idaho, USA. The bags and instructions were tightly wrapped in bubble wrap to protect them during shipping. With the exception of the tracks and some larger pieces, all of the bags were numbered. I also received a small bonus sticker sheet, for some reason. There were two instruction booklets, one for the tank, and for for the all-terrain humvee (review coming soon). There is no DSS, as all of the details are printed parts. Instructions The instructions are clear with excellent parts differentiation and directions. Minifigures Five minifigures are included with the set. They are (from left to right): Militia Grenadier Militia AT (Anti-Tank) Gunner? Driver Commander? The Militia grenadier is armed with what appears to be a M32 MGL. The Militia AT is armed with a RPG-7. The gunner has a UMP 9mm with removable(!) suppressor. The driver and commander are unarmed. The figures only have front printing and good articulation. The M1A2 Abrams SEP It is a a very large tank coming in at 27cm long (35cm to tip of barrel), 10cm tall, and 14cm wide. Here it is compared to a Sluban/Oxford tank and the taxi from set 60233 Donut Shop Opening. It absolutely dwarfs the taxi with it's menacing size. The turret spins 360 degrees and the M256 120mm smoothbore gun moves up and down. The turret is also fitted with a small rod to represent the gunner's coaxial M240 machine gun (mounted beside the cannon). The side mounted smoke grenade launchers and commander's independent thermal viewer (the drum-thingy in front of the loader's hatch) are also present. The tank commander has access to a M2 Browning 50 Caliber machine gun while the loader has a LSAT caseless light machine gun mounted over his hatch. (A Brickarms M60 would have been a better choice for the loader's weapon). Unfortunately, the hatches are too small for minifigs to fit in. There are also 4 slightly larger-than-life ammunition boxes for the M2 machine gun mounted on the rear of the turret. The Coalition Identification Panels (the panels with black angles on them) and the battalion markings (F2 panels) are the only printed pieces in the set. Interior The driver's position is well detailed, but there is no way to easily remove/put in said figure without taking apart the front of the tank. The tank does not feature a turret basket, instead it has a space for two minifigures in the middle of the hull. The pair of white tiles are supposed to be data screens/controls. The minifigs can only fit if the are reclining backwards. A small rack of what appears to be SABOT anti-tank shells is also modeled. Behind this is the engine compartment. The gas turbine engine (similar to that of a jet) is well detailed and includes some minor details. I do not particularly like the inclusion of the transparent blue tile, as it seems to clash with the rest of the tank and feels out of place. The only way to open the top engine hatch is to remove the turret. The engine can also be accessed through a pair of doors on the rear of the tank, like the real thing. Exterior Looking at the bottom of the tank, the is no working suspension, even though it is modeled. The tracks roll very smoothly, but only on rough surfaces, like carpet or cloth. Having no suspension, the tank simply rides high over obstacles. How it should actually happen. Here we see a short scene following the crushing of the car. One of the road wheels is swapped for a new one by a repair team. Meanwhile the commander berates the driver for his reckless behavior that damaged the tank. A special forces team provides 360 degree protection throughout the whole process. Not wanting to interrupt the commander, the gunner chats with the leader of the special forces team. With the repairs done, the special forces team escorts the repair crew back to the forward operating base (FOB), while the tank returns to it's original mission. Destroyed Building Included with the set is a destroyed building, in which a pair of militia men have set up an ambush. The building has three floors and looks excellent. A stoplight(?) has been modeled as well as a barrel and signpost. Some TNT and a backpack are provided for the hostile soldiers to presumably use as a makeshift IED. Amusingly, the position of the soldiers will result in the grenadier being back-blasted by the RPG when it is fired. The building has some minor structural details that make it pop and look unique. Summary As far as tank sets are concerned, this set is amazing. It has tons of detail, plenty of playability, and overall good looks. The figures could be better, as well as some of the accessories provided. The mold quality of the parts is rather high, however one of my parts was melted. Do I like the tank? Heck yeah! It is bada** and looks great displayed on my shelf next to it's 1/16th scale brother produced by Tamiya. Would I recommend it? Definitely, as long as you can find it for a reasonable price. Pros Realistically detailed Well made Tons of playability Cons Lack of suspension Odd minifigures Melted piece Score How do I rate this set? Design - 8/10 Looks like the real thing and features plenty of realistic design details Building Experience - 5/10 Not too boring, but not very exciting either. Building the tracks was rather laborious, as expected. Features - 8/10 It has all of the functions that the real tank has and even includes multiple minifigures. Playability - 7/10 I had fun setting up the repair diorama and enjoyed rolling it back and forth when testing the tracks. Parts - 7/10 This set is a decent parts donor with a good variety of unique pieces and accessories Value for Money - Variable I got mine on sale for $35 with free shipping. Your experience may differ. 8/10 - A fantastic replica of the venerable M1A2 Main Battle Tank and good addition to any fighting force. Thank you for reading through my review. C&C are always appreciated and needed, as I am constantly working to improve my review and presentation skills. I leave you now with the view that many Republican Guard tank crews experienced during Operation Desert Storm.