Esci/Italeri M60A1/A3 Questions

Hi guys.
I know there are much better M60 kits now available from Afv Club and Takom.But i have several Esci/Italeri 60s ive aquired over the years.Have any of you guys any tweaks for the suspension (Possibly height) etc.I dont want to go down the route of buying an update set from say M R models in white metal.
Thanks always
Richard

The Ecsi/Italeri M60 kits have the correct ride height. It was the Tamiya M48 that sits too high.

The Esci/Italeri M60s are really nice kits and hold up well to modern standards. They are a very close third to the other two you listed. In my opinion, they are better than the AFV Club kits which have too rough of a cast surface texture for me.

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Apparently many have had issues with the track not joining up on this kit. I avoid those issues by not permanently installing the idler until it’s time for the tracks to go on. On some kits you can prototypically rotate the idler mount. On others you may have to cut off the mount and glue in brass rod.

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I am not a fan of the ESCI/Italeri tracks anyway, so I just replace them with aftermarket tracks. Problem solved.
Ken

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You mean the link 'n length ones?
Italeri has those. A real PITA.

Yes. There was just another thread about it. They don’t meet up and you have to use a “half link” made from one of the spares. (sometimes)

Which I ended up almost doing. I settled for a whole one. Without pads, since there were no more. Had to use one on each side anyway, since there is too few padded ones.

Thanks for your input.I think i shall try and do some brass tinkering and like you said make the idlers movable to aid the track fitting.I have plans to do a few as the 60s are very high up on my list of tank favourites.Im going to.do a U S.M.C.one residing in the desert in California with no tracks and idlers missing etc.I think i have 8 m60 kits to make.
All the best from Richard

Hiya Gino.
Nice to hear from you.The Esci and Italeri kits are ideal for me as im not one for mega detailing and im not great at P.E work plus i mainly handpaint as we live in a small appartment with pets so no airbrushing allowed.I might buy some Afv indy links and see how i get on if the kit tracks test my patience.
Thanks for your input.
Cheers from Richard

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Hi Ken.
The tracks certainly are a BIG challenge.Im sure the plastic is much different then the sytrene in the kit.I wash the parts and the last m60 i started was just a pain.3 different kinds of glue didnt stick them so this 60 will be track less one in the desert.Im going to order some Afv club indy links as i dont think my patience would stand beating the kit tracks into.submission.
Cheers from Richard

Hi Ron.
Yes BIG BIG pita.I must be a glutton for punishment as i have 8 60s to make and last was an original Esci IDF Magach shrink wrapped for a good price.Think the plan is order some Afv club indys and save my sanity and foul language putting the kit ones together.
Richard

Buy one set of AFV-indies first and try them.
When I assembled a set some 25 years ago they were made of some
strange plastic, the end connectors split when trying to get them on the
track pins, tracks fell apart, styrene glue activated hidden cracks so those
end connectors that didn’t crack the first time but started sliding off the
pins started cracking instead.
They may very well have changed the molds and the plastics but if I were
you I would try one set before buying half a dozen of them.

Avoid the MR conversion set, not worth the time and money.

The suspension height is ok, it should be around 42mm vertical from the fender to the ground at the sprocket. The Esci kit is about that, depending on how you glue and position the suspension arms.

One of the best guides on how to work the Esci kit is here: M60 MBT Page One

Take in mind that this is a conversion for a M60 slick hull, so some details are different than the A1/A3 hulls (lifting eyes, second shock absorber etc)

The best tracks for M60 tanks are the new TAKOM ones, because their plastic is better than the AFV club ones without sinkmarks and because their pitch is spot on, unlike the Bronco tracks which are designed for Academy Tamiya kits and need some persuasion to fit the Takom, Dragon sprockets. They are time consuming to build but once you do the first one the others are easier to do.

In general, one can go crazy working on these kits adding details without many aftermarket stuff. If you add some aftermarket to the mix you can really get a superb model

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Thanks for the warning Robin.I hope that they go together well as im not going down the Fruil route as it wouldnt be cost effective.Im sure 3d guys will release some if i did buy a few styrene ones so keeping the fingers crossed.Ive got some T97 tracks i got with the Def m60 slick conversion.Afv ones i recall and quite" Soapy plastic".Will see how i get on.
All the best from Richard

Hi again Nikos.
Good to hear from you.Love the Franken m60 n the pictures.Would it be made from many kit parts?,Green maybe Academy?,Tan Esci?.Im a great believer in detailing.older kits without loads of aftermarket and good old fashioned scratchbuilding with plastc strip.Thats proper modelling in my opinion and satisfying and unique to the modeller.I sure do hate photo etch.My.relationship with the stuff isnt great.Just fights me everytime grrrrrr.Am i correct in saying that the Hellenic army uses or used the M60a3 TTS?.
Appreciate your help and enjoy sharing with all the guys on here.
Richard

I personally have had no issue with AFV Club’s T97E2 nor T142 tracks for M48/M60 tanks.

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Green Academy, some resin hubs because they were there, the cupola is resin molded from a mold done using Academy parts and putty, the return rolles are tamiya I think, the front fenders left overs from DEF, the air cleaners are Tamiya.

The Hellenic Army operated both M60A1 and A3TTS and the model was built into a M60A1 of the Hellenic Army

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Really cool Nikos.I shall add a Helenic a1 or TTS to my list to do.Ive amassed decals for Spain,Egypt,Saudis,Turkish,Taiwan,So ive got lots of 60s to build and must do some M48s as well which i enjoy.
Cheers from Richard

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Richard,
I like their M60s also. Much better than Academy and Tamiya offerings for sure.
Here’s my attempt of making an M60A3:


I really like their Magach version, too. Although its urdan cupola needs some resizing:

Perhaps the tracks being the weakest point, I’d say their drive wheels are a bit inaccurately shaped, too - also only giving you the aluminum type and lacking the steel type wheels.
Luckily for me, I CADded and 3D printed mine to capture all the grooves and bulges accurately:


Have fun!

Kind regards,
James

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Hi James.
Thanks for the reply.Nice to hear from you.The M60A3 model looks excellent and love the super detailing.The 3D printed steel wheels look really great.Great addition to the model.I might swap the Urdan in my Esci Magach with an aftermarket one or if im brave try and tweak the kit one.
All the best from Richard