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CelticWerks T-55 Stripped Engine Compartment

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Celticwerks is a brand new company to the resin aftermarket.  The main personalities are well known with Steve Reid doing the casting, Rob Ferreira, and Zachary Sex creating the masters so far.

The first release is mastered by Rob who has established a well earned reputation for modeling derelict tanks.  It comes as no surprise that he decided to have one of his works cast so he can use it on other products and we the modelers can now enjoy.

Inside a sturdy box, we find the five resin pieces, a sheet of instructions, and a business card.  It was well packaged and not damage occurred during shipping.

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The parts are cast in a gray resin without warping and only a few pin holes.  They are on blocks and this is the main hurdle to using the set.  The instructions are not of much help as to which sections of the blocks to remove so I have provided photos.  Note that Celticwerks will revise their instructions to address this concern on all future releases.

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Preparation of the Tamiya kit hull can be seen in these photos and was easily accomplished with a razor saw.  The same saw, along with nippers, were used to remove the casting blocks.  Since most modelers do not own a sanding machine, I did it the old fashioned way at 45 minutes later had the parts ready for installation.

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The last photos shows the items in place with friction.  The upper hull did fit but I clumsily snapped one of the sides when I tried to push it down as the castings are wafer thin in some areas.

As for details, they abound.  From the well done bolts to the welding around the exhaust flange, a fair bit of modeling skill is exhibited by Rob Ferreira.

compared to some of the images from the translated manual and photos of an Afghanistan wreck, the compartment looks accurate.

This is a well done first effort for Celticwerks and the fact that they are willing to update their manuals is commendable.  Videos of the assembly and painting of this compartment has been uploaded by Rob Ferreira and can be accessed through Celticwerks web site.  Best of all, Steve is considering sanding off the casting block on the hull bottom plate for a nominal fee.  I hope he does as I am sure it will be worth it.  It is certainly worth the $29.95USD retail.