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German A4/V2 Rocket 1:72 Revell (03309) The Vergeltungswaffe 2, commonly known as the V-2, was the first ballistic missile to be used in combat anywhere in the world. Although relatively simple by modern standards, it laid the foundations for the space programmes of the USA and the Soviet Union in the postwar period. The V-2 was a liquid-fuelled, single-stage rocket, steered by rudders placed on the tail fins and graphite vanes at the exhaust nozzle. Guidance was provided by two gyroscopes (one for horizontal and one for vertical) and an accelerometer providing inputs to an analogue computer. From September 1944, over 3,000 V-2 rockets were launched against targets such as London, causing an estimated 9,000 civilian and military casualties. The British Government initially sought to suppress public information about the V-2 rockets, blaming the damage caused on gas main explosions. The public were not fooled however, and the V-2s acquired the sardonic nickname of "flying gas pipes". The missiles proved almost impossible to intercept, and the most effective countermeasure proved to be the disinformation system operated by MI5, whereby double agents fed false reports about the impact points and damage caused by V-2 attacks. This model is a re-release of a kit released five years ago by Special Armour, the small scale AFV imprint of CMK. Inside the end-opening box are two sprues of grey and a small decal sheet. Even a cursory glance at the sprues indicates that this is as far from a limited run kit. The mouldings are pin sharp and there is a wealth of fine detail. The overall effect is reminiscent of a modern Eduard kit, which is quite a compliment. The kit is made up of almost fifty parts. This is pretty impressive for a rocket, but most of the parts are for the launch structure. The rocket itself is made up of two halves, split vertically, plus the four fins and the rocket exhaust. The latter part is nicely detailed but is made up of two halves and will require careful assembly in order to remove the join. The rest of the parts are used for the launch platform, which can be finished in either launch position or stowed position. The platform is made up of well over twenty parts and is superbly detailed. It features accurately represented components such as the stabilising feet and the controls. A wheeled trolley is also provided, but this isn't used if you want to build the rocket in the launch position. The painting scheme shows four differnet rockets, from a black-and-white prototype through camouflaged in-service rockets and finishing with the emergency rockets used in 1945. Conclusion If you are expecting this to be a relatively simple kit with few parts, then you're in for a surprise. The rocket itself is superb, with fine surface details and precise engineering. The launch pad and transportation section are superbly complex, and I'll be paying close attention to the instructions when I finally get round to building mine. Highly recommended. Revell model kits are available from all good toy and model retailers. For further information visit or
V2 Rocket, Hanomag SS-100 and Miellerwagen 1:72 Takom The Vergeltungswaffe 2, commonly known as the V-2, was the first ballistic missile to be used in combat anywhere in the world. Although relatively simple by modern standards, it laid the foundations for the space programmes of both the USA and the Soviet Union in the postwar period. The V-2 was a liquid-fuelled, single-stage rocket, steered by rudders placed on the tail fins and graphite vanes at the exhaust nozzle. Guidance was provided by two gyroscopes (one for horizontal and one for vertical) and an accelerometer providing inputs to an analogue computer. From September 1944, over 3,000 V-2 rockets were launched against targets such as London, causing an estimated 9,000 civilian and military casualties. The British Government initially sought to suppress public information about the V-2 rockets, blaming the damage caused on gas main explosions. The public were not fooled however, and the V-2s acquired the sardonic nickname of "flying gas pipes". The missiles proved almost impossible to intercept, and the most effective countermeasure proved to be the disinformation system operated by MI5, whereby double agents fed false reports about the impact points and damage caused by V-2 attacks. The SS-100 was developed by the famous Hanomag Company in the mid-1930s. Although successful in its own right on the civilian market, the SS-100 was also widely used by the Nazi military machine as it was ideal for lugging heavy payloads and aircraft. Such was the level of demand for the vehicle that licence production had to be started by Fross Bussing of Vienna. The SS-100 was powered by a D 85S six-cylinder, 8.5 litre engine coupled to a four speed gearbox. The Gigant was capable of 40 kph and, with a large fuel tank located behind the cabin, had an unrefueled range of 500 kilometres. The SS-100 was the tractor unit of choice for moving V-2 rockets during the latter half of the war. Takom, a name more commonly associated with huge 1:16 scale kits (and less huge 1:35 scale kits), have surprised everyone by releasing a 1:72 scale kit. Even more surprising is the subject - not only have they produced a V2 rocket, but they have also given us the hanomag tractor and trailer unit. The only previous kits of these subjects I recall were produced by Special Hobby under their Special Armor imprint. The kits are not related, however. Inside the relatively compact top-opening box are four sprues of grey plastic, a small clear sprue, a small fret of photo etched parts and a veritable pile of black rubber tyres. I've never seen a Takom kit up close, but the quality of moulding looks good to me and the details are clean and crisp. Construction starts with the SS-100, or more specifically its chassis. Much of the detail is moulded in place, but the axles, leaf springs and exhaust are all separate parts that have to be fixed in place. The wheels are moulded sans tyres, and while the rubber items supplied won't be to everyone's tastes, they will at least reduce the amount of time spent painting. A fairly decent interior is provided, including seats, a dashboard, steering wheel and gear levers. The windows are moulded from clear plastic, which I prefer to having to cut them from a sheet. The cab of the tractor unit has been slide moulded into a single part, meaning that you just have to add the radiator grille, lights, trafficators, spare wheel, fuel tank and other details. Next up is the Miellerwagen trailer-cum-launch vehicle. This is a complex structure which essentially comprises a chassis (complete with lots of details such as gas bottles), the cradle/launch platform for the V2 and the road wheels. The Miellerwagen can be finished in either towed or launch positions, with parts such as the stabilisers for launch being stowed if not used. The front road wheels are connected to a separate bogey which in turn hitches to the back of the SS-100. There are a few options that you will need to pay attention to depending on whether you wish to finish your model in the launch position or not. Unfortunately the instructions are rather small, so you may need to slip your readers on before getting stuck in. As you might expect the V2 rocket itself is the simplest of the three sub-assemblies. The launch platform itself is still pretty complex, however. The painting and marking guide shows a number of different colour schemes, with references for the Mig Ammo range of acrylic paint. No decals are included, however. Conclusion This is a nice little set that will enable the modeller to finish the subject in a range of configurations or dioramas. It's interesting to note that Takom have taken a different approach to Special Armor by including all three items in a single box. This makes sense in a lot of ways, and it can't be denied that the finished article will look pretty impressive on the shelf. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
A-Stoffanhängar Liquid Oxygen Tank for V2 Rocket 1:72 Special Armour Special Armour, the small scale AFV imprint from CMK of the Czech Republic, have a number of V-2 and related kits in their impressive and growing range. This kit, depicting the Liquid Oxygen (A-Stoff or LOX) supply tank for fuelling the V2 rocket, is the latest to join the range alongside the Gigant transporter, various trailers and the V2 rockets themselves. Inside the end-opening box are two sprues of caramel-coloured plastic and a glossy, full-colour instruction booklet. As we've seen with other kits in the range, the mouldings are pin sharp and there is a wealth of fine detail. The overall effect is reminiscent of a modern Eduard kit, which is quite a compliment. The kit is made up of fifty five parts, which is pretty impressive for a kit of this type. Each of the road wheels is made up of three parts, and as they are doubled up on each axle there are eight in total plus one spare. The tyres have treads moulded around the edges but are otherwise smooth. The chassis of the trailer itself is nicely detailed and includes parts for the leaf spring suspension and various tanks and toolboxes. The large tank for the liquid oxygen oxidiser is split vertically and includes a number of extra details such as valve taps and hoses, as well as the prominent framework which holds it in place. Four painting options are provided, with a colour reference diagram on the back of the box. The options are not identified by date or location, but include an overall grey scheme, a dark yellow scheme with a grey tank and two camouflaged versions. No markings were applied so there is no decal sheet. Conclusion I have been really impressed by the other kits in the Special Armour range, and this new addition doesn't disappoint. All the detail you could want is present and correct, and the quality of moulding is top-notch. If you fancy a V-2 diorama, or even if you are a completist and just want a full range of vehicles in your collection, then this kit can be highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
Here is another Real Space model of mine, a V2 "Bumper" with WAC Corporal sounding rocket on the end. These were developed up to 1950 to study the feasibility of multi-stage rockets and could attain an altitude of up to 93 miles! The Bumper was the first rocket launched from Cape Canaveral in July 1950. The kit is basically the 1/72 Condor V2 with a scratchbuilt WAC. This is tubing, sheet and a piece of sprue filed and sanded to shape. When making a part like this, one technique is to "turn" the part in a piece of wet or dry between your fingers, ensuring a reasonably even section. Whatever, you don't need aftermarket as much as some would have you believe... anyway there isn't an aftermarket part for this! The roll markings were strips of solid decal. I first built one of these about 1978 using the old Revell "box scale" V2, so like a lot of my space models this is a "build it again better" exercise.
I saw Don's post about rocketry and the A-9 ICBM, and that tickled my fancy to get a V2. I've stood next to the beaten up one in Cosford a few times, and always fancied a kit to put in the cabinet, so I picked up the snap-together Pegasus kit in my favourite scale 1:48. It's a very simple kit for obvious reasons, and fit is excellent, I have to say All it took was trimming off the sprue gates, and scraping the central ring that joins the top to the bottom to get a better fit. Tamiya Extra Thin along all the joints, and an elastic band round the middle to tease a slightly popping seam into submission. The base/launchpad took a little more work because of some tooling marks and ejector pins on the visible parts, as well as a slight difference in height between the little legs that hold the launch ring off the ground. A little sanding hither and thither soon sorted that out, whilst testing the height with calipers in between times. Here's where we stood when I broke for tea. Probably 30 minutes' work? It's surprisingly tall, and only an inch or two from the top of my photo-booth. Next job is to sort out the seams and re-scribe the panel lines that run down those seamlines, and then tidy up the fairings at the base of the fins. They were pretty rough on the real thing, but these ones need a little TLC. Then it'll be on to the painting unless anyone's aware of any inaccuracies with the kit that I can still fix at this stage?