Hi all, I was recently hunting for some aftermarket tracks for a King Tiger (Meng TS-031), and wasn’t having much joy with reviews of a couple of manufacturers. On the advise of a couple of others on this forum I went ahead and purchase some tracks from “R-Model”.
Its a shame that R-Model doesn’t have a website or similar resource to pedal their gear, as that would make for more informed decision making prior to purchase.
The set I ordered arrived today (purchased from BNA Model, out of Australia). The set is the set “35013A Tiger King / Tiger Hunting Metal Track”
The set is well packaged in a sturdy plastic (quite large) box:
There are no instructions, no information at all either on the box, or inside the box. The parts are separated into individual plastic bags:
A sample of randomly selected items, there is flash in places on the smaller links, but that seems to knock of pretty easily. On the larger of the parts maybe 30% have flash inside the 2 hollow square segments that the drive sprocket picks up, which could be a bit tricky to clean out if one feels inclined to tidy those up.
But… this is the money shot! R-Model may get a few negative points for the flash on the mouldings… but that is more than made up for with these pins! Stunning, beautifully made, perfection. These look great. Although the one gripe I have is that without instructions the user has to figure out which pin should go into which end! I haven’t worked this out myself yet! One pin (the longer) has a stepped head on it, the other (shorter) pin has a flat head. Sorry for the photos, its the depth of winter where I am and lighting at night isn’t great.
I assembled a short run of track, pretty quickly to be fair. I did no trimming, no filing, no nothing to assemble this run. The flash on the smaller casting just sort of self-sorts when you assemble. The links assemble fairly stiffly, but a quick bend back and forth loosens the joint. Assembly is so much quicker with these pins, they slip in nicely, and the pins are strong enough to be forced in. No drilling needed, no nothing (a lot simpler to get the pins in than a set of Masterclub tracks I recently made).
The pins seem very secure, they don’t want to come out at all which is good (although I have only fitted the long pins, and not the short, until I figure out which is the right way).
I test fitted the run onto the sprocket from Meng’s kit, and it fitted nicely, although a fraction tight perhaps.
All in all, these are fantastic from an assembly and speed point of view. The castings themselves could be a little bit better perhaps… but overall im pretty happy, especially with those pins.
One comment though is that the manufacturer of these (and other) aftermarket tracks leave a lot for the user to head scratch about, really there is limited information available on what tracks these suit, what era, etc. I have seen other very different looking tracks for a King Tiger, so obviously there are multiple track types - but no assistance from the manufacturer, as well as that we aren’t given the information about which pin goes in which end (minor gripe).
I think R-Model actually has another set of tracks for a King Tiger as well.