Stryker fans have been waiting for aftermarket kits ever since the Trumpeter kit arrived a few months ago. It has not taken long for them to arrive, and here is one of the first, coming from Real Model. The box top photo shows the stowage attached to an AFV Club kit, but there should be no issue in making this stowage fit the Trumpeter kit or the forthcoming Dragon kit, or for that matter other modern US vehicles.
There is plenty of stowage to choose from, and oddly enough the box top photo does not do justice to the actual contents - there is more than what the photo shows, and for many people what is not shown will be quite desireable.
Three large pieces are the first thing most people will notice. Two of these groupings of ALICE packs and sleeping mats are meant to hang off the sides of the vehicle. The third piece is a grouping of three duffel bags, three ALICE packs, strapped together jerrycans, two 40mm ammunition cans, a sleeping bag, and a few odds and ends. This piece is keyed on the bottom so as to fit the roof area behind the TC hatch. If using this piece as designed there is no need really to even glue on the roof vent of the actual plastic model since it is completely covered by the resin offering.
The best part of the kit are the two tow bars, each of different sizes. The shorter tow bar is meant for Strykers without slat, and the larger tow bar is used in Iraq with the slat. On the Stryker, the tow bar is hung off the right front hull, sometimes only half of a tow bar is carried, and other times the whole tow bar is carried. Also, an AT-4 is supplied, which is quite welcome since many Strykers have at least one AT-4 on the roof.
10 water jerrycans are supplied and these are meant for the stowage bins, but of course can be used elsewhere. Two different stacks of .50 ammunition cans/40mm cans are supplied and these too are meant to go in the side stowage bins.
Finally, a sheet of MRE boxes are supplied.
Molding is quite nice, with only a very tiny air bubbles in my example. These are easily filled. Pour plugs should not be a problem for most, but a Dremel tool is recommended to make things go reasonably fast. The sculpting is outstanding and the packs seem to hang naturally. However, as noted above the packs are the ALICE version, and not the newer and now more common MOLLE system.
Highs: Hard to find tow bars and AT-4 are provided and well done. Very nice sculpting of the rucks.Lows: Instead of the more up-to-date MOLLE pack, the ALICE pack is provided.Verdict: Highly recommended. This kit makes the Stryker look lived in.
About Robert Burik (Burik) FROM: NEW JERSEY, UNITED STATES
We recently moved to New Jersey from Oregon. Being from Pittsburgh, we are very happy to be back on the east coast, although I will miss the Northwest - it is quite beautiful.
I have been modeling since my teens, and have been lucky enough to have written a couple of books and a handful of artic...