British F.V. 603 Saracen APC

JB Models 1:76 Scale Vehicle Review

British F.V. 603 Saracen Armoured Personnel Carrier, 1:76 Model Kit JB Models JB1007

The model shown here is a Saracen Mk.1 with the early machine gun turret, and Bren AA machine gun. Later versions received the slightly larger turret of the Ferret armoured car. The kit includes optional parts to build the Saracen Mk.2 or Mk.3 instead. The Mk.3 was designed for use in the Middle East, and it saw action during the Gulf War. Desert Storm markings will have to be painted on by hand, they are not included in the kit. Later versions of the Saracen should be equipped with a GPMG instead of the Bren gun. The model was sprayed in NATO olive, mixed with 30% white to take the scale effect into account. Raised detail was then shaded and drybrushed using Jim Gordon's weathering technique.

Contents

  • F.V. 603 Saracen Armoured Personnel Carrier
    • Mk.1, Plate number 30 BA 83
    • Mk.2, Plate number 31 BA 98, Malaysia
    • Mk.3, Plate number 00 BB 40, Middle East

Evaluation

Scale model with nice detail.

Easy to assemble, only 46 parts. Optional parts allow the modeller to build one of three variants of the Saracen APC.

Minimal flash and mould lines.

Compatible with Airfix, Fujimi, Nitto, Trux, Crusader Models, Milicast and Cromwell Models.

The sliding cover of the roof hatch is modelled in the open position, but the hatch itself is closed. The instructions do not indicate it clearly, but the hatch needs to be cut open in section 3 of the construction process.

The Bren LMG is not detailed at all, it might be replaced by a more accurate weapon taken from a Matchbox kit. A GPMG would be an appropriate replacement for the Bren.

The painting instructions on the back of the box show a Saracen with much thinner antennas than are included in the kit. The plastic antennas may be cut off and replaced with more realistic items taken from a large paint brush.

Possible Conversion

  • Saracen Mk.1 with small turret
  • Saracen Mk.2 with larger turret
  • Saracen Mk.3 with reverse flow cooling system

This kit of the Saracen is excellent value for money, it includes optional parts to built a Saracen Mk.1, Mk.2, or Mk.3 desert version.

Frequently Asked Questions

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