Saturday, 23 June 2012

M16-M3 Scale Comparison

Just in case it's of any use to anyone, here are a few pics comparing the 1/76 scale Matchbox M16 with its 1/72 Italeri M3 cousin.

When placed side by side, the M16 is definitely noticeably slimmer and shorter than the larger scale M3.  But it's not actually as noticeable as I thought it would be, and certainly not as dramatic as this!

Does make me realise that I perhaps need to go back and weather the M3s though!


  1. Very similar indeed!

    Amazing job on both of them, gets me more and more anticipated to get the M3's I'm ordering!

  2. Interesting size comparison. The Matchbox M16 is underscale for 1/76. The Italeri model (1/72) is longer than the Airfix US HT (1/76) but they are almost identical in width. In fact, with very minor work, the one-piece interior assembly of the Italeri kit can be dropped into the Airfix version to replace its woeful interior.

    The only real problem with the Italeri kit is the incorrect designation M3A1 on the box when its clearly M3. I have converted quite a few of these into M3A1s to replace all of my old Hasegawa M3A1s (1/72) which, at the other end of the spectrum to the diminutive M16, were hugely overscale.

    Cheers, Dave

    1. Thanks, I didn't realise it was actually underscale! Good tip about the Hasegawa as well, I love their kits, but thye do seem quite, um 'chunky'.

      I would certainly prefer proper 'A1s with the pulpit MG, but the Italeri ones are just such good value (although becoming harder to find) and so easy to build that they're just too tempting for a vehicle that I'll need a lot of. That said, I have toyed with adding a pulpit to at least a few. I'd be interested to hear how you went about yours.

      Ta, Alan

    2. Alan,

      Here are the steps I followed to make M3A1s from the Italeri M3.

      1. Assemble the Italeri HT as normal, plugging the hole for the pedestal MG.

      2. For the pulpit I used the mount from the Airfix kit. It is the right size. If you can get your hands on some old Airfix kits (as we were discussing), you don't need to junk a whole donor kit as you can still build them up using the full tarp. Similarly you could use a Hasegawa kit as it can be built open or closed but I am sure the Hasegawa pulpit would look wrong (ie too big) and I didn't even entertain using it.

      3. One problem with the Airfix MG mount is it is the wrong shape. I corrected mine to look more like this (not my model):

      I used the axle from the Airfix trailer (which IIRC isn't even a WWII item) to make the support so the pulpit doesn't just hang in the air as with the original Airfix model.

      It should really look like this:

      But close enough...

      4. Finally, you are done unless you want mineracks on you new M3A1s. Of course not all had them so you can stop here. But if you do there is a problem. They are quite fiddly to scratch build and you can't pinch them from the Airfix kit because those aren't long enough. As I mentioned I decided to junk my Hasegawa kits so I just ripped them off (they are long enough) and thinned them down a bit.

      Here's how they should look:


      Cheers, Dave

  3. S&S Models do a resin drop in set of seats for the Airfix half track which improves it no end. The Other good thing about the Airfix model is the older ones have a canvas tarpaulin. Most of the action pictures from WWII show these on or half open. For some reason this was dropped in the more recent mouldings.

    1. Yep love the old Airfix with tarp and have acquired a stash of those. A slight pity they didn't mould the shape of the MG pulpit underneath like the Hase. However, the full tarp does a great job of hiding that horrible interior.

      Cheers, Dave

    2. Thanks for the tip about the S&S interiors, I might look in to that in case I acquire any of the Airfix Kits (I'll be looking for the oder ones as well now that you've pointed out the tarp issue).

      For me that classic half-track look is the M3A1 with the pulpit, bull bars and canvas roof. Probably something to do with the old Corgi toy I had as a kid! Wonder where that went? [sighs nostalgically]