Review: 1/35 AAVP-7A1 Ram/RS with EAAK (HobbyBoss 82416)
The Assault Amphibian Vehicle Reliability, Availability, Maintainability/Rebuild to Standard (AAV RAM/RS) is the current US Marine corps amphibious troop transport. There are a few different variants of this vehicle. This RAM/RS version in short is different from others because of the replaced (Bradley) suspension and improved engine.
This kit comes in a nice firm box with an AAVP driving through Iraq. Inside you get treated with the usual grey HobbyBoss sprues. The first thing you notice is the separation to separate the lower and upper hull from the sprues to keep them from damaging the sprues.
What’s in the box:
- Upper hull
- Lower hull
- 15 light grey sprues
- 2 clear sprues
- 4 black sprues
- 3 bags of track links
- Photo etch
- Small piece of rope
- Paint scheme chart
Instructions: The instructions come in two big pieces of paper (why not a booklet?), this can work a bit confusing because the instructions aren’t in a very logical order. It contains 19 steps in black and white. On the bright side the drawings are clear and good to understand.
Upper hull: A nice looking part with a lot of detail on it. It has some anti-slip coating on certain points and the mounting bosses look very attractive but the welding seams could be better.
Lower hull: The biggest piece of plastic in the kit. Same here for the detail and the welding seams. A quick dryfit learns that the lower hull has bit of a pinching effect you need to pay attention to when you glue them together.
Sprue AB: There are four of these sprues in the box. These contain the ‘rubber’ pads for the tracks.
Sprue C: Two of these sprues are in the box. There are a lot of smaller parts on these sprues, for example, Sprocket wheels, water cans, boat hooks headlights and more.
Sprue D: This sprue contains some bigger parts such as hatches and tools.
Sprue E: This smaller sprue is for the rear parts, with the ramp and the door. A few small parts like a towbar can be found on this sprue
Sprue H: A small sprue that contains parts for the front plate.
Sprue J: Also a small sprue with parts for the interior with the biggest of the two parts being the floor.
Sprue K: This sprue has some sidepanels for the interior and also a few small parts.
Sprue L: This sprue also has parts for the interior. It holds a big part for the front compartment and some smaller parts.
Sprue M: Contains parts for one of the interior panels that goes onto the upperhull.
Sprue N: Holds the other side of the upper panel that goes onto the upperhull. It also holds a big piece for the front compartment where the turretgunner would sit.
Sprue P: This contains parts for that rotating turret and some other small parts.
Sprue Q: On here are some outer plates, and guards as well as the big pieces that give the AAVP it’s characteristic look on the front sides.
Sprue R: This sprue contains the EAAK and other armor plating. It also holds some handgrips, nicely protected by a strip of foam.
Sprue X: Two of these sprues in the box containing the wheels and suspension as most noticeable.
Sprue Y1: This is a clear parts sprue with glasses for periscopes.
Sprue Y2: Also a clear parts sprue with some more glasses.
Track links: These come in bags, connected together two by two. Some flash on some of the tracks and will require quite a bit of cleaning. Other than that they look nice.
Photo etch: The smaller fret feels a bit thicker than the bigger fret, the PE is mostly used for covering the air intakes / outtakes (grills). PE will always look better then some plastic non see trough grills.
Rope: Small piece of rope for the ramp on the rear.
Decals: These decals are looking fairly nice and thin at first sight.
Paint scheme chart: There are two options on here. It doesn’t clearly state which units they belong to. They both are painted in the three tone Nato-camo but the difference being that on one of the options the EAAK is green and on the other option the EAAK is Sandy Yellow.
This is one impressive big kit with nice moldings but the details could have been a bit sharper in my opinion. Little to no flash wash detected. For a builder there are a lot of options for this kit for instance covered in sand in Iraq of just coming out of the water on a beach. You could hang a lot of gear on it, stow it with boxes or you could just leave it open to keep everything in sight. For detailers there is a lot of room especially on the great interior. The tracklinks are the weakest point in my opinion. These first need to be cut loose and then be cleaned. They will look great when finished but I can imagine some modellers who are not willing to spent so much time on them. The instructions should have been in a booklet form but are nicely readable and easy to understand and that’s the most important thing!