Home Welcome Reviews Editorials/Press Reference Shopping Mall Links Photo Archive Search Contact
Caterpillar 18M3 Motor Grader

Maker:  Diecast Masters
Model No:  85521
Scale:  1:50
Review Date:  August 2017

Diecast Masters Index
Earthmoving Equipment Index

Cranes Etc Model Rating
Packaging   (max 10) 9
Detail   (max 30) 24
Features   (max 20) 16
Quality   (max 25) 19
Price   (max 15) 11
Overall   (max 100) 79%


Caterpillar 12M3 and 18M3 Motor Graders Video  [Youku video]
Click to see large photo
Caterpillar branded tin.
Click to see large photo
Complex looking model.
Click to see large photo
Click to see large photo
Detailed hydraulics.
Click to see large photo
Fire suppression gear looks great.
Its smaller brother, the 12M3, is on the left.
Big oscillation on the rear wheels.

The Caterpillar 18M3 Motor Grader weighs 33.7 tonnes.  It is used for earthmoving, roadwork, and material handling operations where maintenance of haul roads or accurate levelling of surfaces is required.


The model comes in excellent packaging.  There is an outer shipping carton which contains a tin which is protected by a nylon bag.  The tin is high quality and includes pictures and details about the real machine.

The review model had no missing parts or defects.

The only thing missing is information for the model, but a mini catalogue of the Diecast Masters range is included.


There is some detail underneath.    The rubber tyres have a deep tread pattern and look impressive, and they are mounted on decent plastic wheels which have wheel nut details.  The front tyres were mounted with the tread in the opposite direction to those shown on the real grader, but this is easy to reverse.

At the rear the ripper is metal and the seven shanks have nice teeth but they are thickly painted.  The rivets are painted so they look unobtrusive. The engine block looks good with grab rails and the grilles are formed of graphics.  A very nice touch is the fire suppression equipment, and the handrails are thin metal except the soft plastic ones at the access ladder.

The steering pistons are modelled at the pivot point, but there are no hydraulics crossing.

The cab roof is plastic, and the detail throughout the cab is good and it includes the usual operator. 

The front end has a counterweight fitted and the drawbar and circle are modelled very well.  The moldboard has rivet details on the blade. The detailing of the hydraulics is particularly good.


The front axle has limited steering capability but it is able to oscillate up and down.  The mechanism to lean the tyres is modelled, but was non-functional on the review model.

The rear wheels are in linked pairs and can also oscillate significantly.

The grader can steer across the pivot point behind the cab.  The angle is shallow.

At the rear the ripper can be raised and lowered.

The moldboard has a full range of movement.  It can be raised and lowered, and a small amount of side to side tilt is possible.  It can also rotate on the circle, be extended to one side or the other, and have the face tilted forwards and backwards.


It is a reasonably robust model with a high metal content, and some plastic parts.

The paint is good, but with a small area of rough finish on the review model, and the graphics are sharp.


It is reasonable value.


As usual the model is beautifully presented in its high quality tin.  It looks good and there are many moving parts.


The model became available in 2016.

Click to see large photo
Front tyre treads are reversed.
Click to see large photo
Hand rails are mostly metal.
Click to see large photo
Big tilt.
Profile view.
Yes, he is there.