“NATO in Miniatures” is a new resin figure company from Russia. Founded by Dmitri Baev, the owner of Soga Miniatures webstore, the company announced its vision to release 1/35 scale resin figures of NATO soldiers in current conflicts; not only US soldier figures, but also modern British, German, French, Italian and Canadian figures… a very welcomed move by all modern figure enthusiasts. US Navy SEAL
is the second figure in “NATO in Miniatures” range.
The figure arrived in a well designed and firm cardboard box, additionally protected by packing peanuts. The box is printed in ACU pattern, features nicely painted box art picture and lists both the sculptor (Dmitri Shevcov) and the painter (Dmitri Baev).
After opening the zip-lock bags and reviewing parts of the figure I was amazed by the amount of details on the figure and by the wonderful molding of parts. The parts are cast in grey resin and are completely clean of all imperfections: there are no air bubbles, no flash or seam lines… perfect. Casting plugs are well placed, but be careful when cleaning the weapon and the Boonie hat as those are very delicate.
This figure represents a US Navy SEAL operative (probably a sniper/marksman) sitting on the high ground and surveying the perimeter … a great pose for a single figure vignette. The figure consists of 7 pieces: full body with the head, right arm, left arm, right hand, Boonie hat, canteen and the weapon. The fit of the parts is very good; however, I would suggest testing the fit of both arms, right hand and the weapon before gluing… if placed correctly the parts should fit perfectly. The anatomy of the figure is flawless and the pose is very natural.
The figure wears customized Battle Dress Uniform (BDU). BDU has been worn as a standard uniform of the US Army since 1981 and during the years several companies were offering customized BDUs; SWG RAID BDU is one of the most widespread modifications, especially among Special Forces operatives. The RAID modifications were added to improve security, functionality and accessibility of the entire BDU system. Modifications include:
- full coverage racer collar with neck ID device,
- forward tilted double layer chest Velcro pocket complex (accessible while wearing open front LBV and underneath chest pocket accessible even while wearing closed body armor),
- double layer shoulder Velcro pocket complex (consisting of main pocket and concealed compartment underneath),
- enlarged loop Velcro panels at cover flap and shoulder pocket body (maximizing the area for patches),
- Cordura fabric reinforced elbows,
- Velcro adjustable wrist cuffs,
- waist D-rings and nylon reinforced belt loops,
- Velcro closure butt pockets,
- Velcro closure expanded cargo pockets,
- small front hip pockets,
- Cordura fabric reinforced knees,
- lower leg pocket with divider,
- shock cord leg cuff closures.
All the extra pockets and features make SWG RAID BDU far superior than the current BDU system. The uniform on this figure is very nicely sculpted and the RAID modifications (additional shoulder pockets and Velcro adjustable wrist cuffs) are clearly visible. The SF look of this figure is additionally enhanced with perfectly sculpted tactical gloves and knee pads. The Boonie hat looks really good as well and the desert boots even have the sole pattern carved. Kudos to the sculptor!
The figure wears Blackhawk Omega Cross Draw/Pistol Mag Vest. The vest is made of heavy-duty nylon mesh for maximum breathability and is fully adjustable for length and girth. It features three double M16/M4 magazine pouches, four pistol magazine pouches, one horizontal accessory pouch and cross draw holster secured by an adjustable side release buckle. The vest is secured to the web belt via belt loops, while the extra equipment can be fastened on shoulder D-rings or the heavy-duty webbing on back of the vest. Blackhawk assault vest is perfectly rendered on this figure; all the complex details are present and sculpted to the highest standard.
The figure is armed with M16A4 assault rifle. M16A4 is the latest version of the famous M16 rifle and includes Picatinny rail system in place of the integral carrying handle for attaching sighting optics, as well as Knight’s Armament Company M5 RAS handguard allowing attachment of vertical grips, lasers, tactical lights and various other accessories. M16A4 is a standard issue for USMC and some US Army units. The rifle sculpted for this figure looks good and in scale, however it is not the weapon I would expect a SEAL sniper/designated marksman to carry. I'd prefer to use SR sniper rifle with this figure instead.
I must admit I didn’t know what to expect from “NATO in Miniatures” resin figures when I was given a chance to review couple of those figures… and what a pleasant surprise it was when I opened the box! This figure is wonderfully cast and the parts fit extremely well. The pose looks good and very natural. The sculptor did his job really well on the uniform and the equipment; the details on Blackhawk vest are amazing, as are those on the tactical gloves and the Boonie hat. The facial details look very good too. This figure can easily be compared to the best Evolution or Bravo6 resin figures offerings.
The only thing I didn't like in this kit is the rifle supplied. I'm a bit surprised the sculptor decided to go with the M16A4 instead of a sniper rifle. The SEALs adopted SR-25 as their primary sniping weapon back in the 90s, so perhaps a SR-25 (particularly the Mk II Mod 0 version) could have been a better solution for arming this figure. I will definitely replace the weapon when I decide to build my figure.