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In-Box Review
120mm
US Army 101st Airborne
US Army 101st Airborne Division

by: Peter Ong [ TRISAW ]


Originally published on:
Historicus Forma

The 101st “Air Assault” Airborne Division rides into combat via helicopters and thus attack and transport helicopters form an integral transportation method of this organization. In 2002, “The One-oh-One” participated in the mountainous fighting of Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan against the Taliban.

The owner of Deyun Hobby commissioned Maceij “Maciek” Rebowski to sculpt this, along with a few other figures, exclusively for the Deyun Hobby brand. Therefore, this is an original kit, not a stolen recast.

BOX CONTENTS:

The off-white parts are sealed in two clear plastic Ziploc bags, tightly wrapped in bubblepaper, and housed inside a colorful cardboard box stuffed with Styrofoam popcorn. The box contains parts for one figure. The 21 cream-colored resin parts are:

  • Right leg with molded-on kneepad
  • Left leg with molded-on kneepad
  • Head with molded-on kevlar helmet covered with strips and night vision goggle bracket
  • Left arm with molded-on 101st Airborne shoulder insignia patch
  • Right arm with molded-on backwards American flag shoulder patch
  • Small buttpack with buckle fasteners
  • Small buttpack with SNAP-TITE plastic buckle fasters
  • Left boot
  • Right boot
  • Three ALICE M-16 ammo pouches, one with two fragmentation grenades in each side pouch
  • Two large MOLLE ammo pouches
  • Torso with molded-on Interceptor Body Armor, MOLLE loops, and Camelbak with drinking tube and straps
  • M4 carbine with molded-on barrel and right hand. Molded-onto the barrel is an AN/PEQ-2 laser illuminator/designator secured with tape and the Rail Interface System.
  • Left hand holding a molded-on M4 magazine
  • M4 barrel and frontal post sight
  • M4 buttstock
  • COMP-M “Red Dot” sight
  • Knife in sheath

    CASTING:

    The parts are crisp and generally error-free. Although your kit may be different, on my sample the legs, head, torso, boots, MOLLE ammo pouches, buttpacks and most of the arms appear to have the pour blocks sawn off although sanding will still be required to get the glue surfaces smooth. The hands have pour blocks attached to the wrists, a wise location since cutting these off will reveal the glue surfaces without affecting the appearance of the hands. I detected a large air bubble on a boot’s toe and very minor ones on the back of the Camelbak. These could easily be filled in with putty or superglue. Minor raised mold seams run down each hand and needs sanding off. Other than those findings, the castings appear excellent, devoid of warps, gouges, runs, and resin flash.

    The figure’s size compares to Maciek’s later figures he made for Verlinden and Airborne Miniatures.

    DETAILS:

    I recall communicating with Maciek when he received commission to create the figures for Deyun Hobby. Maciek said that this figure represents the 101st Airborne operating in Afghanistan during “Operation Anaconda” in 2002. From the start, Maciek said he wanted to create a soldier kneeling and reloading “in a mountainous firefight.” As one of Maciek’s earlier works, this figure lacks some of the newer details and extras found in later figures Maciek made for Verlinden and his own company, Airborne Miniatures, mainly due to the lack of photo references at the time. The Camelbak is of an older style without the external filler cap, but nonetheless accurately represents a the Camelbak of that design. Even though wrapped in tape to hide most of the top surface, the AN/PEQ-2 lacks the top surface details, the pits and grooves, but this lack of AN/PEQ-2 surface details was also present in Maciek’s earlier figures as well.

    This figure does have the equipment for night-fighting, the night-vision bracket on the helmet and the infra-red AN/PEQ-2. From my photo references, the figure also seems accurate to 2002 due to the lack of MOLLE vest pouches and more modern gear that hasn’t been created or fielded by the Army yet. Nonetheless, sculpted by Maciek, which many modern military figure modelers consider as the best sculptor of 120mm modern U.S. figures, Deyun Hobby’s “101st Airborne Division” really does look proportional, realistic, and well-equipped for combat.

    The head exhibits excellent craftsmanship. Both lips are indeed slightly parted in an exasperation as the box photo shows. The strips on top of the helmet cover are wrinkly and textured enough to really give the impression of torn strips for camouflage purposes. These resin strips are sculpted flat onto the helmet so there’s no worry of breaking off. With most of the details molded on, the head should be very “maintenance free” and ready to glue onto the torso.

    The hands, molded onto the magazine or the gun, give the impression that the figure is actually gripping the equipment. One should note that the trigger finger is squeezing the trigger, perhaps an indication of the intense stress of the situation. Some modelers may wish to sculpt the trigger finger straight (i.e.: extended) and resting on the receiver instead.

    The torso has the six MOLLE loop rows of the Interceptor Body Armor (IBA). Maciek sculpted the IBA as slightly conforming to the soldier’s figure, ever so slightly curving in under the rib cage. The Velcro flap actually appears as layer on top of the IBA to give a hint of depth and thickness. The MOLLE loops expand and bunch up to the contour of the torso. I found this attention to body contouring very nice as the non-flat IBA doesn’t give the impression that it was ironed.

    The shoulder insignia patches are both well done. Sanding them off or smoothing them would give the modeler an option of placing a decal of another unit in its place.

    The fragmentation grenades in the ALICE ammo pouch comes with the top metal heads and spoons attached to the grenade pouch.

    The knife’s sheath appears similar to a Ka-Bar, but isn’t due to the flat handle of the knife.

    TESTFITTING:

    My sample had most of the pour blocks removed so I testfitted the pieces together as best as I could. The M4 carbine comes in pieces and needs a keen eye and a steady hand to align properly when superglued. The boots may require drilling and pinning to the ankles to support the weight of the figure resting on them. The head fits well into the neck hole and has room to be posed turned left or right. The neck’s glue surface, being flat, doesn’t allow the head to angled up or down. Both arms align properly on their shoulder glue surfaces once the pour block remnants are sanded flush. The leg halves fit pretty well together and the torso generally rests well on the waist. The minor gaps around the waist will be covered with gear; however, modelers should fill them in with putty first. The pour blocks at the end of each hand should be cut away to glue the hands to the bare wrists, some pinning may be required here as well.

    The ALICE and MOLLE ammo pouches generally rest well against the torso. Certain areas may require putty for a flush fit.

    CONCLUSION:

    Deyun Hobby’s 120mm “101st Airborne Division” figure looks proportional and relatively accurate for the 2002 “Operation Anaconda” time period. The details are excellent and the weapon and gear reflects a soldier in combat. Due to the lower number of parts, this figure isn’t as complex as some of Maciek’s later works, but die-hard fans of this figure sculptor would want to buy this one because of the consistent craftsmanship and detail apparent in all of Maciek’s figures.

  • SUMMARY
    Highs: Another beautiful figure from Maceij “Maciek” Rebowski for Deyun Hobby. The figure looks proportional, realistic, and generally accurate for the time period. The sculpting and details are superb.
    Lows: Being one of Maciek's earlier figures, some details are lacking due to the lack of reference photos at the time. The gear isn't the most current in use (no MOLLE vest pouches) so this may limit the figure to certain years.
    Verdict: Sculpted by Maciek Rebowski, this figure is consistent with his attention to detail, accuracy, and realism. The parts generally fit well and look proportional. Casting is superb.
    Percentage Rating
    88%
      Scale: 120mm
      Mfg. ID: DS120003
      Suggested Retail: 34.00 USD
      Related Link: 
      PUBLISHED: Aug 08, 2007
      NATIONALITY: United States
    NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
      THIS REVIEWER: 89.47%
      MAKER/PUBLISHER: 89.00%

    About Peter Ong (Trisaw)
    FROM: CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES

    I model modern topics, mainly post 1991 Gulf War onwards. My modeling interests include: * Science-fiction/ fantasy * 1/100 Gundam * 1/35 armor * Kitbashed projects * Special Forces * Resin or plastic modern figures * 1/24 Police, fire, medical, and Government vehicles * Rare, unique, ori...

    Copyright ©2017 text by Peter Ong [ TRISAW ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of ModelGeek. All rights reserved.


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    Comments

    That's a cool looking figure, Rudi. Great review by Pete too. Definitely something for my shopping list. Also, I wouldn't have to worry about painting him in digi pattern!
    AUG 10, 2007 - 02:10 PM
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    Photos
    Click image to enlarge
    • 101st-Box-Front
    • 101st-Box-Back
    • 101st-parts
    • 101-head
    • 101-torso
    • 101-torso-back
    • 101-boots-and-arms
    • 101-legs
    • 101-gun
    • 101-pouches
    • 101-gear