Recently I have written about a new modelling magazine entering the modelling publications world – the Abrams Squad. Always curious, I have ordered the magazine and last Friday (just before I left to spend weekend re-enacting 200th anniversary of the Battle of Fort George, for anyone interested – see pictures here) it has arrived. I was quite pleased as the delivery was surprisingly fast, took only about a week for the magazine to arrive from Spain.
Having now spent few days going through the magazine I can say that I am very pleased with its quality. On the technical side Abrams Squad is top class – high quality paper, professional design, very high quality of photographs – high resolution, nice colour saturation, good lighting and white balance).
The magazine content has little bit of everything – new products section, reviews, reference articles, but of course the key piece everyone will be looking for are the build articles. There are 4 of them in this issue and are quite extensive, all of them of course covering modern armour kits. Names of authors are quite well-known, so those with high expectations will not be disappointed. Articles cover both construction and painting and weathering processes. They combine the text and photographs in quite balanced way and I found it easy to follow the steps. Each model is well presented with number of photographs showing it from multiple angles. Photographs showing finished model are large enough to see all the details, so that you won’t need magnifying glass…
One novel feature, which is interesting is the review of the AFV’s M109A6 Paladin kit. Unlike traditional reviews you can find in modelling magazines, this article goes well into details and compares the kit with number of reference photographs. Number of the constructions steps of the kit are commented and any issues or mistakes are highlighted. All in all, the review covers 6 pages and I believe will be extremely helpful to anyone interested in building this kit.
Should I raise any criticism, there definitely won’t be a lot. Some of the articles would definitely benefit from more editorial control. One particular article, written by English speaking modeller, left me feel as if it was first translated into Spanish and then back into English (ehm, and it could have been done better).
One other thing, and this is purely my view, based on my modelling preferences – one article extensively covers construction and improvements of the Italeri M109A6 kit. While the article is definitely very detailed and offers a lot of guidance on scratchbuilding and using aftermarket parts, I would find it more interesting if it would use one of the new kits, such as the one mentioned above. Personally I don’t like to spend modelling time correcting old kit if there is alternative of higher quality. But again, there are others, who find fun in exactly that…
Overall however, this magazine is definitely one of the best on the market these days. If you are interested in modern armour, it definitely should not be missing in your library. I am already looking forward to the next issue.