Point of Contact Miniatures: Halftrack Overview | Print |  E-mail
Written by Don MacVittie   
Tuesday, 13 January 2009


The boxes, as delivered.

When we saw the advertisement on The Miniatures Page  for Point of Contact Miniatures, we thought we’d give it a try. Since one of the distributors listed is a supplier for our FLGS, we asked them to order us some American M3A1 halftracks and some German Sdkfz 251 halftracks.


The Sdkfz 251 box as delivered.

First off, the Sdkfz is sold as a 251/1C, but is actually an Sdkfz 251/2B 8cm Granatwerfer carrier. Why the confusion on the part of the manufacturer, we don’t know, but it didn’t start us off with a warm fuzzy feeling.


M3A1 box as delivered.

The models come pre-painted with a paint job that is roughly on par with the pre-paint jobs done by Gaming Models Miniatures (http://wargames.nordalia.com/index.php?option=com_weblinks&task=view&catid=24&id=189 ). They are packaged five per pack and come with a weapons kit for each vehicle. The weapons are the same color as the base color of the vehicle in question. Finally, the vehicles come with a large selection of decals – in fact, if you were to purchase the right decal packs from BattleFront, you would find that you owned these exact ones. The arrangement of the decals on the sheet is even the same – though the Point of Contact comes with three of the BF sheets on one larger sheet


The M3A1 box contents.


The Sdkfz 251 box contents.

These don’t look half bad from the three foot distance of table-top play, and could actually be played with as they are delivered – though we think the usability factor of the models would have been greatly enhanced if the bag of weapons for each one had been painted also – machine guns are basically black after all.


One Sdkfz251 assembled.

 

And from the side.


One M3A1 model assembled.


And from the side.

We painted up one of each model to match our other models and took pictures of these figures with and without our paint jobs. They paint up easily enough, with enough detail on everything – including the tracks and road wheels, places that are traditionally weak in most miniatures. The attachment points of tracks and the top of the Sdkfzs is a bit weak, but none of them came off. We did nearly lose the track unit on one M3A1, and the top of our painted Sdkfz 251 wobbled as we painted it, but never showed signs of coming off.


The PoC M3A1 with BattleFront and Command Decision models.


And from above.


From the side with the BattleFront model.

The AAMG for the back of the Sdkfz 251/1 is tough to mount up correctly. The peg on the mount is larger than the hole provided and very short. We broke the mount on the model used in these pictures trying to get it to seat correctly – the other mountable weapons that come with the vehicles slip right into the spots provided on the vehicle hull. For the vehicle we painted, we drilled out the mount point a little bit, but then the short stub on the MG didn’t hold the gun in place well, so we glued it. This works acceptably, just be aware that while the other weapons slip right into their mount points and require nothing – though gluing might be a good idea it is not required as they clip in – this particular weapon doesn’t mount up well.


The PoC Miniature from above with a Command Decision model.

 


The PoC Miniature from above with the Quick Reaction Force model.

 


With the BattleFront Miniature from the side.

 


With a Command Decision miniature form the side.

 


With the Quick Reaction Force miniature.

For size comparisons, the Sdkfz 251 is a bit on the large side, matching close enough with the BattleFront vehicle even though it is a touch larger. The M3A1 is a huge monstrosity when placed next to any other vendor’s product that we own. It’s larger in every dimension, could even be a small 1:72nd model. We pulled out our 1:87th Heiser stuff, and the Sdkfz is close to the size of our Bison, the M3A1 larger. So if you lean toward 1:87th vehicles with 15mm figures, you’ll love these, if you prefer 1:100th, these will feel too large for you – though the Sdkfz is a close enough match for larger 1:100th figures. 

 

From the front, the M3A1 makes the BF miniature look small, it makes the Old Glory model look positively tiny.

 

If you normally repaint your pre-painted miniatures, then the value of these minis is dubious at best – the price/quality equation is weak when compared to some of the metal and resin products out there. If however, your time is worth money to you and you’re willing to run with these as they are painted, then they will serve you just fine – you could hardly expect to purchase and pay for a painting service for the price of these miniatures.

Vehicle

Length

Width

Height

Info

Original M3A1

6.34

2.22

2.69

To top of pulpit

PoC M3A1

7.2

2.6

2.5

To top of pulpit

Original Sdkfz 251

5.8

2.1

2.0

w/o MGs

PoC Sdkfz 251

6.2

2.5

2.0

w/o MGs

Note the significant differences in the M3A1. It is shorter in height, longer in length, and wider than the original by a noticeable amount.
 

MSRP: $39.95 for a box of five as depicted in this review.

US Sourcing: Noble Knight Games 

UK Sourcing: None known.

 

 

Bonus Pictures…


The painted M3A1.


A finished model with decals applied and dull-coat sprayed over the whole to protect the decals.



Here are some shots of the models with decals after one of each has been repainted and one of each simply washed – all models were dull-coated to protect the decals.

In both pictures, the leftmost model is painted, the one next to it washed with future and a mix of black/brown paint, the others simply dull-coated.

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