Yes, they finally arrived in the Mail... Cobi Blocks' M24 Chaffee, Sherman Firefly, and M4A1 Sherman (The latter I'm going to have to send back for replacement, someone in shipping for Amazon.co got curious, and I ended up with literally half of a kit, and no instruction booklet for the M4A1... not happy about that)
About this creation
(The Back of the Box for information about the set)
the next few pics, rather than being pics of the kit itself (which really, you dont get any surprises, what you see on the box is what you get which is why i will not be doing a circle around series of photos for it, my PC sucks for taking photos anyway, as some of you may have noticed by now), will instead be visual comparisons between the Cobi Blocks M24 Chaffee ($34 USD), and the Brickmania M24 Chaffee ($155 USD)
(This image is to be compared with the Image in the bottom left of the reverse side of the Cobi Box (The side with all the little pictures on it)
as you can see from just these few pictures, the angles that are presented for each kit show that Cobi actually put more detail into their kit than Brickmania did, now what you could say about the Brickmania Kit is "It's a durabuilder kit, its not going to be as detailed as some of their other kits, because its ment to be played with" and you would be absolutely right in this regard, however, Cobi Blocks builds their WWII kits, and really all of their kits in general with playability in mind first, thats why some of their first WWII kits looked shoddy, but now, in what seems as 3rd generation WWII Cobi Blocks, they've really stepped up their game in the accuracy department...
Now if you're just tuning in, you'll see what looks like an incomplete Review thats getting longer, and longer... it is, ive tried typing this all at once 4 times now, and each time the page keeps expiring on me, so im going to type little bits and save every so often...
Also, Disclaimer *I DO NOT OWN A BRICKMANIA M24 Chaffee KIT*
now on to what i do, and dont like about the tank
- It's an M24 Chaffee... I mean come on guys...
- Sturdy construction for active play, like Brickmania's kit, though more detailed
- NEW Tracks, they are 2 wide tracks that are overall smaller, allowing more articulation in the track belt, and faster travel of the tank itself (good, it adds some realism that this tank can physically be pushed faster than the others without breaking its tracks)... however these new tracks are also a Con, more on that later.
- Opening Engine Hatch to reveal NEW Silverized Engine Block
- Opening Commanders and Drivers Hatches
- Updated detail on minifigures, you can see the rank, and unit insignia on the tankers left shoulder.
- Comes with an M2 50. Browning Machine gun
- New gun mount pieces mean this gun will stay securely where you put it (The Panthers gun over time has taken on a permanent depressed position unless acted upon otherwise due to lack of friction to hold gun in place, trust me, with these new gun mounts, your gun wont be falling unless YOU want it to...)
- Nice little details like raising and lowering mud flaps (Brickmanias kit doesn't even come with mud flaps), a sandbag, and a toolbox, and fuel can.
- Price, at $30-35 USD, you can buy 4 of these for the price of 1 Brickmania M24 Chaffee, and its bigger.
Cons: Only 2 real cons in this kit
- Interior Details, or lack there of, you see because of Cobi Blocks strict 350 piece count for small vehicles (M24 Chaffee), 400 count for medium sized vehicles (Sherman Firefly), and 600 count for large vehicles (PzKpfw VIB Tiger II [yeah ima try to get me one of these]) the outside is pleasantly detailed, whereas that little engine block is all you get of the inside... but hey Brickmania doesnt typically do full interiors either (they do, but they are expensive, like $250-400 USD expensive) and their M24 Chaffee is not exception here, no interior on it, unless you are going to add it yourself.
- Tracks, these new tracks are great, allowing you to traverse your battlefield quickly (my battlefield is my bed top), but the pieces themselves are incredibly small, and flexible, they flex so you can attach them to one another, but until you wrap the track belt around the running gear and connect them end to end, the line of track is very fragile... but once you get the track connected end to end, its actually very sturdy, hence why the tracks are also a Pro as well.
Ok with the Matilda, I said it was a good starter kit for the money, and it was for when it came out, then I got the Panther, and said it was one of the best they put out, at the time, it was... so if the pattern were to continue I would say this was their best so far right? Right, but not without reason, these 3rd generation kits, I didnt only get 1 of, i got 3, and ive built the second, with the 3rd being replaced, and I can say as far as playability, and outer shaping and outer details, this M24 takes the cake, and it runs out the state with that cake, I honestly didnt think I would see this amount of detail in one of Cobi's kits, even the Firefly (Which technically come out after the M24) isnt as spot on when it come to the overall shape of the vehicle...
very very easily 5/5
but being as how I gave the Panther (2014 Model) a 5/5, it doesnt make sense, and you're right, the bar has been raised a lot now, and while 5/5 for the time, now ive got to re-rate the 2014 Panther a solid 3.85/5, it just doesnt compare to the Chaffee...
see you next time, ive got a Firefly to play with and review while I wait on the M4A1 Sherman to be replaced by mail, Bye for now!
Just for giggles I placed the Firefly's turret on the Chaffee, and with the shaping of its turret, it actually looked a fair bit like a T37
Just a quick MOC combining parts of the two kits, not exactly a T37, but then again all I did was swap turrets, no parts mods whatsoever, so its not that bad to me.
EDIT: 1/1/17, as I have received the Tiger 131, the rating system has been updated, and this kit, while still a solid starter tank kit receives a 7/10 rating, good...
COBI certainly has improved A LOT. This legitimately looks like a Chaffee, the old Panther and Matilda had serious flaws that set them apart from the vehicles they were based upon.
I just unlocked the Chaffee on Xbox last weekend right after the update bringing in the T49 nerfed it. Really looking forward to it.