Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Sherman comparison - variants and manufacturers

As I started with some Takara pre-painted plastic 1/144 scale tanks, but then needed to go to other manufacturers for more unusual vehicles or variants, I therefore have a range of different Shermans and I thought it my be useful to post some comparisons.

[also see my later post on the Pendraken Sherman Jumbo]

From left to right below:
  • Takara 1/144 M4A1 76mm
  • Takara 1/144 M4A3
  • Takara 1/144 M4A3 76mm
  • Metal Troops 1/144 M32 recover vehicle
  • Pithead 10mm Sherman dozer
  • Pendraken 10mm Sherman dozer
  • Arrowhead M4A4  (Arrowhead were formally Wargames South)
  • Arrowhead M4A3E8 (easy eight)
  • Gramodels 1/150 M4A4

Now some comparisons one on one. I have only compared with the Takara M4A3 as there is nothing else to see in terms of scale comparison with the 76mm variants. I have also not compared everything with the Metal Troops recovery vehicle - it is almost identical in size to the Takara vehicles.

Pithead (left) and Pendraken (right) Sherman dozers:

Pithead (left) and Takara:

Pithead (left) and Arrowhead:

Pithead (left) and Gramodels:

Pendraken (left) and Takara:

Pendraken (left) and Arrowhead:

Pendraken (left) and Gramodels:

Takara (left) and Arrowhead:

Arrowhead (left) and Gramodels:

Both Arrowhead so a comparison of some later war variants, M4A4 (left) and M4A3E8:

Takara (left) and Gramodels:

Some conclusions:

  • 1/144 models are a bit larger as expected but Takara and Arrowhead compare well in terms of height, width and length;
  • Pithead are a bit narrower but very similar on length and height to the 1/144 scale tanks. The turret is more noticeably smaller though (but mainly in terms of frontal profile as from the top this is not really noticeable);
  • Pendraken are a bit smaller than Pithead but it is only really height that it is at all noticeable;
  • Gramodels is similar on height and width and turret size but noticeabley shorter (and Arrowhead and Gramodels comparison is on the same variant - the M4A4);
  • Detail is generally good for all makes;
  • No Minifigs in the comparison as I have let most of my Minifigs models go as they are a pain to clean up and don't always have the same detail. But from the ones I did have in the past they do compare well with 1/144 (they used to advertise as 12mm but now call them 10mm but I expect that is just a marketing thing as most other makes are 10mm);
  • Overall conclusion is that as long as different makes are used in different units or better still only for different variants then any minor differences in size don't really show up, particularly on the gaming table when things aren't right next to each other;
  • There is variation within makes so I generally see which one I prefer for a particular vehicle. For example, I have gone with the Pithead dozer because it has the control mechanism connecting the dozer blade to the front glacis even though the Pendraken one is nice on the detail and looks really good when painted up.

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