Quick Fix Suspension Set for Academy's M3 Lee
Modeling the U.S. Army in WWII


This kit is a relatively simple and inexpensive way to correct the suspension sets in Academy’s M3 Lee. The model’s suspension housing (or “bracket”) is too long from top to bottom, apparently based by Academy on its later heavy duty VVS suspension parts. This makes the Lee sit up too tall off ground level.

Formations provides six new early style brackets (without the pair of horizontal ribs on the bracket face) along with the volute springs and return rollers, which combine with Academy’s suspension arms and wheels. A length of plastic rod is provided by Formations to keep the arms and springs in place.

The resin parts need some careful cleaning but are well cast overall, save for a few bubbles that required some Testor contour putty. Be aware that the distinctive diagonal support flanges on top of the brackets are delicate.

Construction was easy based on the illustrated directions, and I felt the parts went together better than my experience with Tiger Model Design’s full resin suspension. The completed suspensions attach directly to the mounting plates molded onto the Academy hull, guided bu a large pin on the backside of the bracket.

As Formations notes, using this set should leave behind enough plastic parts for a complete VVSS suspension with the straight trailing arm, which you could in turn use on Tamiya's M4 or Italeri's M4A1.

At approximately $17, this is not an inexpensive replacement, but it will be worth the money if you want a more accurate looking Lee.



Modeling the U.S. Army in WWII © 2002—2007 Timothy S. Streeter