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New Project: 1:43 Model of the 220-ton Soviet Missile Transport MAZ-7904

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2010-02-09 New Project: 1:43 Model of the 220-ton Soviet Missile Transport MAZ-7904
We are starting a very interesting and extremely unique project: a 1:43 scale model of one of the largest wheeled non-railroad chassis in the world - the 140-ton transport MAZ-7904 with payload capacity of 220 tons developed to carry the Soviet response to the US Peacekeeper missile. The model will be gigantic in size: 75 cm (30 inches) long, almost 16 cm (6.5 inches) wide and only 8 cm (3.2 inches) high.

In order to start the project, we need to find 10 people willing to purchase such model for $1,500 + shipping from Russia (~$200). We already have three such buyers (including myself), and are looking for seven more. Please contact me if you are interested in joining us and getting one of these unique models for your collection.

In 1980s, the nuclear competition between the two superpowers reached its peak. The US were developing nuclear missile programs Peacekeeper and Minuteman. According to Soviet Intelligence, the development of the solid-fuel rocket LGM-118A Peacekeeper was coming to an end. That missile could carry up to 10 nuclear warheads and was planned to be deployed in up to 30 different deployment options including railroad, silos, submarines, etc.

Soviet RT-23 missile became their response to Peacekeeper. The work on that missile complex started in 1979. According to preliminary calculations, the weight of the launcher and all supporting equipment would be around 200 metric tons. Boris Shaposhnik and his construction bureau in Minsk were tasked with the development of a 140-ton chassis that could carry that launcher.

In 1981 the first chassis was ready. It was enormous: 32 meters (almost 100 feet) long, 6,8 meters (~ 20 feet) wide and 3,45 meters (over 11 feet) high. Special Bridgestone 3180x1185-1295 tires were ordered from Japan.

MAZ-7904 Chassis - Prototype for the Model

In 1981, one of the chassis was disassembled and transported by rail to Kazakhstan for further testing where launching equipment was mounted on it. Transporter was supposed to cruise in certain areas with a large house on its back carrying launcher and equiepment. Some of these were supposed to be equipped with false launchers.

A rendering of an artist of what these houses looked like.

For a long time specialists and enthusiasts thought that these giants were lost forever, but not too long ago good news came from Kazakhstan that at least one of these chassis still exists and is stored in a disassembled form in one of the hangars.

MAZ-7904 Today.

You can view more pictures of this extraordinary vehicle here.

This is not the first project of 1:43 scale model of such size. A 1:43 scale model of MAZ-7907 24x24 transport for the missile complex Tselina-2 was previously produced:

1:43 MAZ-7907 from collection of Alex Antonov

Gigantic 1:43 MAZ-7907 from collection of Alex Antonov next to 10-ton trucks, tank transports and BTR-80 APC inside a Billy bookcase by Ikea.