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Revell Kenworth W-900 Wrecker

Kenworth W-900 Wrecker
Revell No. 85-2510
Model Type: Sidebar
Molded Colors: Black, white, clear
Scale: 1/25
MSRP: $89.95
Pros: Plenty of chrome; good chassis detail; good kit for experienced modelers
Cons: Decals bled into paint; fuel tank bracket a problem
Sometimes you’re happy to see a tow truck; sometimes you’re not. Even in the best circumstances, it’s a mixed blessing.

So it was with this 1/24 scale Kenworth W-900 Wrecker from Revell.

There were times while I was building it that I was excited about how cool it was all coming together; others when I wished I hadn’t opened the box.

Highlights include all of the chrome – three sprues worth – and the well- detailed chassis and tow bed.

Lowlights included the colorful, well- printed decals that didn’t fit the tow bed and resisted decal-setting solutions, but eventually bled blue ink into the paint.

There were also a couple of things that led me to deviate from the instructions, or wish I had.

There’s a bracket to carry the fuel tank, but there isn’t any positive locator for the bracket on the frame. I installed the front cab mount first, so it didn’t cause problems later.

But when I tried to attach the fuel tank to the bracket, there was no orientation that would align the pins on the tank with the holes on the bracket.

I used a hobby knife to widen the holes, allowing the tank to sit flush, but when I installed the wheels, it seemed the tank was sitting rather low. By the time I installed the cab, I was sure the tank was in the wrong position.

I checked the parts I used (there are two tank assemblies, from when this kit was offered in a tractor configuration), but no: I had the right parts, and the other parts wouldn’t have fit any better.

I pried the tank from the bracket, looked at how it might fit better, then made new holes for the top alignment pins above the old ones, and installed the tank so its bottom pins were in the original top holes. This looked much more like the box art.

As for the wheels, I installed them when I had the cab on, so the model would sit flat while I added all of the chrome details to the cab. I was pleased that they seated easily and firmly on the axles. The tires have nice detail, with Michelin X engraving on the sidewalls.

On the tow bed, I wish I had cut up the side stripes to get them to fit better, instead of relying on decal-setting solution to take up the slack.

When the ink ran, my only solution was to strip the bed and repaint it. Because my plan was to clearcoat the bed after the decals were on, at least I didn’t have to worry about masking around non-body-colored parts. (Like many modelers, I build assemblies that will be painted one color, to get rid of seams and fit issues before painting.)

Of course, that can end up biting you in the behind if you overlook something, which I did.

I wish I had spooled the thread that simulates the tow cables onto their spindles before I assembled the cable winches and painted them.

Instead, I ended up drilling a hole into the outer end of the winch assembly, and into the spindle shaft. Then I could jam a micro screwdriver into the end of the spindle to wind up the cable. The open ends were concealed by the winch housing sides.

Overall, Revell’s kit makes a striking model. There’s room to add more detail, but it presents well out of the box.

An experienced modeler could have a good time with this kit.


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