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Menck M 251 Dragline

Maker:  NZG
Model No:  470
Scale:  1:50
Review Date:  August 2004

NZG Index
Historic Equipment Index

Cranes Etc Model Rating
Packaging   (max 10) 8
Detail   (max 30) 27
Features   (max 20) 17
Quality   (max 25) 21
Price   (max 15) 12
Overall   (max 100) 85%


Menck M 251 Dragline video (published January 2024).
NZG historical model box.
The parts.
Old timer body shape.
Excellent track wheels.
Rivets are detailed on the roof.
Jib head with excellent spoked pulleys.
Jib geometry is very good.
Gear wheel modelled inside.
Tipping the bucket.
The Menck M 251 is one of the historical series of models produced by NZG.


The model is supplied in a cardboard box imprinted with an artwork picture of the machine at work as is the usual style for models in this series.  Inside the box the model is contained within a polystyrene box with a compartment for the jib sections and other parts. 

A coloured sheet shows the rigging instructions in a clear diagrammatic way. 

The review model was undamaged and rigging presented no problems.


The undercarriage has metal sprocket wheels for each track and the tracks themselves are metal and made of links which are individually pinned together.  There is excellent detailing of rivets and cover plates on the underframe and the turntable has deeply grooved teeth on the ring.

The body of the crane is a masterwork.  Commencing with the cab, there are lights and a first class metal ladder up on to the roof.  Inside the cab there are levers and a seat, and an internal door separating the cab from the engine compartment.  Behind the cab is a sliding door which gives access to one of the winch controls.

Looking inside, the floor has texture and aspects of the machinery are modelled.  Moving to the rear of the crane, the counterweight has the lettering for 'Menck' impressively cast in.  Above this is another sliding door and when this is opened the engine block can be seen inside.  There is another sliding door on the right hand side and this provides access to two more winches.  Also visible is a large flywheel.  Next to this sliding door is an excellent handrail.

The roof of the body has excellent rivet detailing and a couple of exhaust pipes both of which are actually pipes rather than just solid castings.  The pulleys on the roof are metal.

The jib sections are beautifully made with excellent lattice work.  They are joined using the push pin system and this works well on this model.  The bottom section of the jib contains a couple of larger metal spoked pulleys for the dragline.  Two intermediate jib sections are supplied, and the top jib section contains superb detailing with metal spoked pulleys and moving cable retainers on the jib luffing pulleys.  Also supplied are three metal cable retaining loops for the main winch rope which are fixed by pushing them into holes in the jib sections.

The dragline bucket continues the high standard of the model. The bucket has draining holes and the chains and rigging are all excellent.  The winch ropes are intended to be tied off directly onto the bucket rigging but on the review model the ropes have been tied off onto jewellery clasps which provide a quick-hitch facility to enable the model to be switched between crane and dragline use easily. 


The crawler tracks work beautifully.  The crane rotates and the there are three working winch mechanisms.  One controls the jib luffing, one the main hoist and the third is for the dragline.  Each works very well and is operated by means of the tool supplied by NZG for the purpose. 

The sliding doors on the body are excellent.

The model can be displayed in a variety of ways.  It would look fine on a suitable low loader or alternatively can be rigged with a variety of jib lengths in either crane or dragline formation. 


This model is a class apart from most other models produced in volume of this scale both in terms of detail and quality.  There is almost a complete absence of plastic, the only exception being the internal parts within the body.  The paintwork is particularly rich and the lettering is faultless.


NZG have produced a model which is very good value for money.


The Menck M251 is a stunning model and sets an excellent standard for 1:50 scale models of this type.  The addition of a suitable demolition ball would provide further display options.


The model was introduced in 2000.  At the 2004 Nuremberg Toy Fair an 'aged' version of the 1:50 scale model was announced with dilapidated paintwork.  At the same Toy Fair a 1:87 scale version was announced.  The aged version never appeared.  The 1:50 scale version of the model was absent from the 2005 NZG catalogue.

Profile view.
Impressive old machine.
Old fashioned cab.
The jib foot.
Dragline bucket.
Jib can be fully lowered.
Sliding door at the back.
Another sliding door.
Rigged with a demolition ball (not included.