Framo with platform and canvas "Schmiedemeister Günsel"
Brochure: Herpa Cars & Trucks 2013 / 05-06
Series: Vintage car
From 1957 until 1961, various variants of the Framo 901/2 were manufactured in the former GDR. As flatbed truck, it was utilized for various purposes, for instance as delivery vehicle of the master smith Günsel from Magdeborn near Leipzig.*
Framo was founded by the Danish engineer Jørgen Skafte Rasmussen and two colleagues as a components supplier in 1923. At this time, the company was called Metall-Werke Frankenberg GmbH and located in Frankenberg, Saxony. Rasmussen had earlier founded DKW, and the Framo factory was created to produce components for DKW motorcycles. Rasmussen played an important role in the establishment of the Auto Union group, and DKW is represented by one ring of the four rings of the Audi brand today.
In 1934, the company moved to Hainichen and was subsequently rebranded as FRAMO-Werke GmbH, Hainichen. Framo is a made-up word based on FRankenberg [sic] and MOtorenwerk (engine plant).**
Framo debuted a family of compact automobiles in 1934 beginning with the tricycle Stromer FP 200,
and four-wheeled successors Piccolo VH 200
and Piccolo VH 300.
Framo motorized freight trikes were more successful so in 1938 a new series of four wheel utility vehicles were built, the first being the V 500.
Framo produced vehicles in WWII. Post-war the Soviets relocated the factories to Russia for reparations.
The factory restarted the assembly of the pre-war-model (V 501/2) in 1949. The newly developed postwar models
V 901 and
V 902 entered the market in 1951. The development of varying superstructures began in 1953.**
The Framo 901 was powered by a three-cylinder 50 hp Wartburg 1000 engine.
Herpa packages this neat HO model in a red end-opening carton with a cellophane viewing window. The model is securely held in a vacuformed form-fitting cradle. The cradle also has a depression to hold two small baggies which contain tiny side view mirrors.
This model is molded with great finesse: crisp detail; recessed panel lines; accurate raised detail per the prototype; thin license plates; sharp lumber and steel post cargo bed; canvas cargo top with tie-down seams; hub caps. A finely molded chassis holds the body. It consists of a frame, axles, leaf springs, tail lights and plate mounts. Soft plastic/rubber tires support the vehicle. The model is almost completely, flawlessly factory assembled.
Herpa put a great detail of effort into this model. Finely molded detail enhances the cab and engine exterior: small door hinges; door handles; windshield wipers; grille detail. The cargo bed also sports fine molding for wooden slats and steel bracing.
Clear lenses simulate the head lamps. Unfortunately the rear lenses are simulated with paint, as are the signal lights.
Cab detail consists of seats and a steering wheel. The only separate parts are a pair of chromed side view mirrors. These plug into holes molded at the front top of each door. Use caution handling these tiny pieces as they are diminutive and slick. They are difficult to handle with my fingers and the pins are too wide to fit into the holes.
Underside detail includes the chassis, exhaust, springs, drive shaft and underside of the Wartburg engine.
Finally, the detachable tarpaulin over the cargo bed has fine fabric detail of texture and give.
Paint and markings
As keen a model as it already is, Herpa’s finish is exceptional! The model is coated with smooth paint or molded in color. Paint adds faux chrome to the grille and elsewhere. Impressive sharp printing advertises this truck as belonging to Schmiedemeister
(Master Smith) Werner Günsel, Magderborn, Leipzig. Paint was used to simulate the tail lights and on the license plate.
Taking the road
Herpa has released another excellent model in their theme of older and East German vehicles with this light truck. Molding is top-notch, it has clear lenses for headlights, incredible printing and finishing, and good detail. A link to an impressive site dedicated to Framo trucks can be found below at Click here for additional images for this review.
I think the rear lights could be better simulated with a sheet of clear plastic or even gloss paint. The side mirrors are very challenging to attach.
I think this is an exceptional model that will enhance your HO layout or 1/87 diorama if you model the late 1950s and later. I happily recommend this model!
Please tell manufacturers and retailers that you saw this model here - on RailroadModeling.