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Found 20 results

  1. Eduard leaflet for May: http://www.eduard.com/store/out/media/distributors/leaflet/leaflet2016-05.pdf change digit in link for older issues
  2. I believe this is the Gavia kit inside the Eduard box, which is now over 20 years old. It's not too bad, although I will say it does benefit you to test fit everything at least twice. The Czech Air Force had several batches of La-7s delivered just after the end of the war. Designated the S-97, most served less than 2 years front line service as the factory would only guarantee the glue bonds in the wooden airframe for 2 years. Upon inspection, some aircraft soldiered on until about 1950 when they were all withdrawn from service. I found some profiles which show some of these aircraft painted in the green over blue, probably towards the end of their service life. They should have some white, or black squadron letters on the fuselage side, but I didn't have the appropriate size letters, so this will just have to do. I also added a pilot figure from the spares box, I think he was a Luftwaffe air gunner, but he's changed sides. Thanks for looking.
  3. 1/48 Avia S-199 (post war Bf 109) is planed for next two or three years. source: http://modelforum.cz/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=95280&start=4005#p1897662 downscale to 1/72 is planed too (like all Eduard projects) but more years in future.
  4. Hi It's my last finished kit. - Color photo etch; - Resin pipes; - Steel needles (tube Pitot, tail wheel stem, film camera gun in the wing); - Sparkling wine foil ring antenna)) - The red color on the letters was painted with a brush over the decals; - Used Vallejo colors Grey Violet 71.259 (RLM75), USAF Light Gray 71.276, Red 70.926 Pictures... it's my permanent pain, but I tryed.
  5. Avia S-199 Pilot & Mechanic (F72385) 1:72 CMK by Special Hobby The Avia S-199 was a Czech-built copy of the Messerschmitt Bf.109G, based on toolings and parts left behind as the Nazis retreated from their country, but substituting the unobtainable DB605 engine with a Junkers Jumo 211F that was mated with the same prop used when it was fitted to the He.111 during wartime production. The result was a difficult aircraft to fly due to the mismatch of parts, which led to some derogatory nicknames from their pilots such as Mule from the Czechoslovakian pilots and Knife from the Israelis, who used it as their first fighter after establishing their new Air Force. This figure set is intended for the recent Eduard kit in this scale, and includes a pair of figures giving each other one last salute before the pilot goes off to fly his Mule, or a salute of relief from a pilot coming back from a mission. The two figures are well sculpted for the scale, and are supplied with ‘batwings’ of flash between their arms and torsos, as well as a little between their legs, which is a moulding aid to reduce bubbles and make the parts easier to remove from the moulds, and should be easy to remove. As with all resin moulds, there is always a little clean-up to be done, which is best carried out before giving the parts a wash in warm (not hot) soapy water to remove the particles and any remaining mould-release agent, which could reduce paint adhesion. With resin, you should take the precaution of wearing a mask when cutting or sanding it, as the tiny particles are harmful to your health if breathed in. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  6. Aero Ab-11 L-BUCD (SH72471) Blue Bird on a Long Flight over Europe, Africa and Asia 1:72 Special Hobby Between the two World Wars, Czech company Aero created a number of aircraft for their own country’s use, many of which were biplanes. The A-11 was a light bomber and reconnaissance aircraft that was a development of the earlier and inconsistently named A-12, that reached production after flight tests and subsequent alterations that gave the airframe the look that became synonymous with the type. The Ab-11 was the bomber variant, and served with the Czech Air Force uneventfully, where they were well-respected by their crews, and when they were finally withdrawn from front-line service, many were refitted with dual controls so that they could be used as training aircraft. Most airframes were out of service or destroyed by the time WWII came around, and were considered too old to be used by the Germans, with just a few originals and replicas remaining today, one of which is at Kbely museum in Prague, so I might have some pictures somewhere. The aircraft’s performance and reliability were factors in choosing the type for a long-distance endurance journey around Europe, North Africa and parts of the Far East, with pilot General Vilem Stanovsky at the controls and mechanic Frantisek Simek in the second seat. The flight began in May 1926 and lasted until 23rd June of that year, travelling a total of over 15,000km. The aircraft was given a civilian registration of L-BUCD, and nicknamed Blue Bird with a light blue paint scheme reinforcing the theme. The reliability of the Breitfield-Danek Perun II straight-6 engine was a factor in their success, making the round trip from Czechoslovakia, Morocco, England, Finland, Turkey, Italy, and back to Czechoslovakia with a spare prop strapped to the underside, just in case. The Kit This is a new limited-edition tooling from Special Hobby, and the kit arrives in a small top-opening box, with two sprues of grey styrene, a small clear sprue, tiny Photo-Etch (PE) fret, instruction booklet and separately bagged decal sheet within. The instructions state that a floatplane version was created under the code A-29, and looking at the sprue diagrams there are some unused parts for this boxing, so shall we wonder if we’ll be seeing one of those later? Detail is good, especially the louvred engine cowlings and cockpit interior, as well as the fabric covered wooden wings, which have a subtle undulating surface moulded into them. Construction begins by making up the cockpit floor from two sections, adding a couple of detail parts on the starboard side, then fixing it and a small bulkhead to the starboard fuselage half after painting the details that are moulded into the interior of the fuselage and taking care of a few ejector-pin marks if necessary. A crib-like stowage area is made up from two parts plus an inverted A-frame, and that has a seat fixed to the front of the frame, installed just behind the cockpit floor, with another bucket seat added further forward for the pilot, using PE parts for the seatbelts, and fixing the controls into the front of the cockpit. A bulkhead with rudder bar is glued at an angle to the front of the cockpit, with radio gear applied to the centre of the port fuselage half along with a compass that has a decal applied to the top. The fuselage can be closed after adding a two-part exhaust insert from within the starboard half, and a bumper is inserted into the tail at the same time. The cockpit is wide open at this stage, with an insert provided to create the two oval openings for the crew. The instrument panel is glued inside the front of the insert and has a pair of decals supplied, one for the dials around the periphery, and a central decal with a good-sized map in colour. The completed insert is then slotted into place in the upper fuselage, with another insert beneath the engine cowling, and yet another rectangular insert that has a small window in it. There are also three holes to be drilled into the underside, with a scrap diagram to guide you in locating the correct sized holes accurately. The front-mounted radiator is then attached to the fuselage to close it up. With the fuselage completed, the two lower wings, which are each single parts, are inserted into slots in the fuselage, and a scrap diagram shows that there is zero dihedral to them, as do the elevators, which are each inserted into the rear fuselage on pins and given their separate flying surfaces, with the rudder pushed into a slot in the rear to complete the empennage. The crew are in open cockpits, so a pair of tiny windscreens are added to the coaming in front of the opening, both of which are minute, but also crystal clear. The upper wings are moulded as a single span part, with an insert placed over the narrow centre section to achieve the semi-circular scooped section over the crew. A pair of cabane struts are installed in the underside of the wing, with four more added slightly outboard, and finally a pair of interplane stuts are fixed to the outer wings on each side. A see-through impression of the upper wing is shown above the rest of the model to show it being installed from above, and the following two diagrams show the location of the rigging lines, which you’ll need to supply yourself, using your preferred method to complete the job. An additional strut joins the upper wing to the fuselage near the pilot’s position, which is best inserted after the wings are joined. The model still needs its landing gear, but the spare prop is under/between the legs, so is best built first, folding up a PE pocket for it that is glued to the underside of the cowling to accommodate the tip of one blade, with the prop’s axle sliding into the larger hole drilled previously. The two V-shaped gear supports and their interlinking axle are then inserted into holes in the underside, and have their wheels added to the ends. The prop that’s currently in use has a tiny PE boss glued to the centre, and the axle at the rear slides into the hole under the radiator at the front. Markings This is a special limited edition, so only has one decal option is present on the included sheet, which is of course the Blue Bird. From the box you can build the following aircraft: The decals appear to be printed by Eduard and are in good registration, sharpness, and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. I mention Eduard because from 2021, the carrier film on their decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied, effectively rendering them carrier film free, making the completed decals much thinner and more realistic, and obviating the need to apply successive coats of clear varnish to hide the edges of the carrier film. It’s a great step further in realism from my point of view, and saves a good quantity of time into the bargain. Conclusion The Ab-11 is an interesting and quirky aircraft from Aero, and this special scheme is rather attractive, and a change from the usual camouflaged aircraft of WWII, or the gaudy schemes sometimes applied to WWI aircraft. The detail is good, and should appeal to a broad range of modellers, so I hope they moulded sufficient copies. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  7. Avia S-199 Bubble Canopy ProfiPACK (70151) 1:72 Eduard There must have been billions of words written on the Bf.109 over the years, which was the mainstay of the Luftwaffe's fighter arm, despite having been supposedly superseded by the Fw.190 and others during its service life. The G or Gustav as it was known was one of the later variants, and is widely regarded as one of the best, with improved armament that necessitate a distinctive pair of blisters in front of the windscreen to accommodate the breeches of the new weapons, plus mounting points for the 210mm rocket tubes used to disrupt the bomber streams in long range attacks using timed detonation. Post war the Avia factory, who had been making Bf.109s for the Germans, continued manufacturing them from parts and plans that they had to hand, designating the originals S-99. The later S-199 using Junkers Jumo 211F engines and props that were previously fitted to the He.111 due to a lack of original DB605 engines, with a pair of MG151 cannons fitted in pods under the wings to make up for the lack of coaxial cannon that was lost through the engine change. The twin cowling machine guns were troubled by unreliable synchronisation gear that could result in a perforated or missing props if it failed at the wrong moment. Over 500 were made in total, and a small number found their way to the nascent Israeli Air Force, where it was less-than successful and was withdrawn from service relatively quickly. In Czech service they were retained through most of the 50s, the last flight taking place in 1957. The Kit This is a new boxing of a 2022 tooling of this postscript to the Bf.109’s story, depicting the last hurrah of the type before it retired to the annals of history. The kit arrives in a well-appointed ProfiPACK styled top-opening box, and inside are three sprues in blue-grey styrene, a clear sprue, a fret of Photo-Etch (PE) brass that is nickel-plated and pre-painted, a sheet of pre-cut kabuki-style masking material (not pictured), two decal sheets, and the usual glossy instruction booklet with spot colour throughout and colour profiles on the rear pages to help with painting and decaling. If you have seen Eduard’s 1:48 109s, the details and parts breakdown will be familiar, with plenty of engraved panel lines and rivets to be seen, plus well-detailed cockpit and gear bays out of the box. Construction begins predictably with the cockpit, which is based around an L-shaped floor onto which the two seat parts, painted PE seatbelts, PE rudder pedals, control column, instrument panel support and the panel itself, which gives you a choice between a styrene panel with raised detail, or a flat styrene backing that you add the laminated PE parts to, adding extra realism at this small scale. The fuselage halves are prepared with sidewall details in styrene and PE, some replacing less detailed aspects of the styrene moulding. The fuselage is closed up around the tail-wheel, and once the glue is dry the cockpit is slipped in from below, then attention shifts to the wings. The lower wings are full-span except for the tips, which are moulded into the uppers for finesse. The main gear bay sidewalls are inserted into the lower along with a pair of barrels, and at this stage you should consider whether you want to drill two holes under each wing, depending on which markings option you have chosen. The upper wings are glued in place, and you are advised to bend the wings slightly to get a snug fit between the two assemblies, or leave one upper wing off until the wings have been glued in place. A bulkhead behind the pilot’s head is added at this stage along with a decal that depends on which option you have chosen. The elevators fins are each two halves, and the flying surfaces are a single part each, with ribbing detail moulded in, and giving you the option of posing them deflected, as does the rudder, to which you add either a styrene or PE actuator. The wings have separate leading-edge slats, ailerons and flaps, and a pair of wingtip lights in clear styrene to finish them off, taking care not to snap off the pitot probe that is moulded into the port wingtip. The cowling is missing some important aspects at this point, with the twin nose gun troughs fitted to the top with a long piano-style hinge projecting aft past the end of the part. The twin ‘Beule’ cannon breech blisters in front of the windscreen are separate inserts, and you have a choice of two styles, plus an air-intake horn on the starboard cowling. Two barrel tips are slotted into the rear of the troughs, and the pilot is protected by a piece of head armour fixed to the bulkhead behind his seat and braced against the rear of the cockpit. The lower cowling is closed over by adding a U-shaped section, and while you have the model inverted, the PE radiator surfaces are glued in place and the housings fixed over them once everything is painted, flexing the cooling flaps at the rear downwards along the weakened line if you have dropped the flaps. The narrow track landing gear of the 109 was carried over to the S-199, and coupled with the torque from the wide blades of the new prop, it made for an even trickier proposition to take-off and land. The struts have moulded-in scissor-links, a PE tie-down lug and brake hose, plus a captive bay door in styrene, finished off with a four-part wheel at the end of each leg. Masks for the wheels are included on the kabuki tape sheet, which should allow you to cut a clean demarcation with little effort. The legs are glued into the bays on a long tab for strength, the choice of two styles of drop-tanks are fixed on a four-pronged pylon, and an underwing antenna is inserted into a clear styrene isolator patch. A pair of PE recognition lights are glued to the underside of the rear fuselage, sanding off the raised circle if they are closed over, with scrap diagrams showing the correct location of these and the correct angles that the landing gear should sit at once complete. For one markings option a pair of small holes under the wings just outboard of the main gear bays are filled for accuracy. Before fitting the canopy, the clear gunsight is painted up and fixed to the front of the instrument panel, then a traditional angular windscreen with a PE roll-over hoop is fixed into the front of the cockpit, and the blown canopy with another PE hoop is able to be modelled closed or slid back on a pair of rails up to the short antenna that is just in front of the D/F loop, which can be made from styrene or plastic. The masking sheet includes masks for the canopy frames, with the highly curved centre sections covered with liquid mask or tape at your discretion. A useful hand-crank starter-handle is supplied for the engine, and Eduard’s designers have even thought about the clumsy modeller (a.k.a. me), supplying a spare pitot probe on the C sprue in case you can’t help knocking it off. Before installing the prop, the exhaust stubs are slipped into the slots in the cowling sides, then the prop, which has all the blades moulded as one, has the spinner fixed to the front and rear, then applied to the nose, which is when you realise that those blades really are broad. The gluey bits aren’t finished quite yet however. Three markings options have a pair of small blisters fitted outboard of the main gear bays, using the two holes that are otherwise filled in. Two more decal options have the MG151 cannons in gondolas, and each of these are made from three parts, and use the same two holes to locate them. Markings There are a generous six options available from the kit decals, all of which are in Czech schemes, with some variation in colour to appeal to as wide an audience as is reasonably possible. From the box you can build one of the following: 389, por. Jaroslav Plecitý, 3rd Sqn., 18 Fighter Regiment, Pilsen-Bory, Aug 1952 253, rtn. Jiljí Horák, Air Regiment No.5, Plzeň-Bory, Feb 1950 182, vrch. Stržm. Josef Sobota, Police Air Patrol, Praha-Ruzyně, Dec 1949 183, 1 Air Training Regiment, Olomouc, 1953 334, ak. Milan Pohlodek, Air Military Academy, Hradec Králové, Mar 1950 235, por. Jan Šurák, 2nd Sqn., 8 Fighter Air Regiment, Klecany, May 1951 The decals are printed by Eduard and are in good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin gloss carrier film cut close to the printed areas. The stencils are on a separate sheet, and are marked on a page of the booklet, separate from the rest of the markings to avoid confusion from trying to read overly busy diagrams. Don’t forget that as of 2021, the carrier film from Eduard decals can be coaxed away from the printed part of the decal after they have been applied, effectively rendering them carrier-free, making the decals much thinner and more realistic, and obviating the need to apply successive coats of clear varnish to hide the edges of the film. It’s a great step further in realism from my point of view. Conclusion Another great small-scale Bf.109 derivative from Eduard in their usual style, with tons of detail, a variety of decal options, and some big guns that go bang. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  8. This is a very nice kit, the detail is great, fit is near perfect and the decals are extremely nice, all 200+ of them. My only gripe is there was not enough room for me to get the nose weighted down, so I made up a little base for her to sit on. I really like Tiger Meet special markings and this is a cracker of a kit. It's painted in overall RLM 04 yellow, weathering kept down as she looked pretty good when on display. It seems this aircraft was kept in her tiger colours and put on a pole outside an airbase hanger.
  9. I picked this up on a whim at the LHS a while back, I think it cost me all of about 8 dollars. Looks interesting, clear plastic for the main body and it's almost in one piece. Dad's been bugging me to build it, so what better opportunity really.
  10. MPM SH32049 boxart: http://www.modelforum.cz/viewtopic.php?f=97&t=71717&start=0&st=0&sk=t&sd=a translation: Main parts from short run and small details from metal mould.
  11. Hi, First post, second try. https://www.flickr.com/photos/16229799@N03/50290875288/in/album-72157676062816991 KP Avia S-199 - What you get in the box. Comparison with plans. Damaged kit canopy during spraying. Several attempts and replacements later it was mostly fixed! Out-of-the-box except for a trimmed prop and a few other details. The only problems were self-made! https://www.flickr.com/photos/162 Finished article bar a few paint touch ups, c/o iphone. https://www.flickr.com/photos/16229799@N03/50291696097/in/album-72157676062816991/ https://www.flickr.com/photos/16229799@N03/50290875288/in/album-72157676062816991/ Comments welcome. I had problems uploading the links/images. Hopefully you'll be able to see them.
  12. Built many years ago pre-AFV modelling and photographed now as it needs to go inthe bin to make some room in my cabinet. I used Flory panel wash which I was pleased with. Thanks for looking Rob
  13. Hello, Thought I'd start building something a bit more relaxing after the Flanker, so at the Moson show in Hungary I've bought this beautiful eduard's kit - with all the extras. I am planning to build it as opened as possible - engine, cockpit, radio, gunbays, misc. panels and so on. So, starting with the cutting, cleaning and thinning all the resin bits and pieces and dryfitting them over and over again. So, this is my Moson show loot, most of the parts here are for Spit. Too much of them really... So, brassin radio compartment with Aires cockpit test fitted... brassin parts just slot into the position, they fit the eduard kit perfectly. And Aires gunbays (just dryfitted, not glued yet) I think I will thin the plastic a bit more...
  14. The first of several Eduard 1/48 MiG-21s I have been working on has now reached the painting stage. It will become a Czech MiG-21MF. I didn't have the right colours in the Xtracolor range, so I had to use Model Master. Paints used were RLM78 for the lower surfaces and FS30117 Military Brown and RLM80 for the upper surfaces. All three colours were painted on top of a black undercoat. Jens
  15. Hi everyone! Here are a few shots of my recently finished Italeri Spitfire Mk. V. Inspired by the recent Eduard 1/48 Czech Spitfire set, I raided the spares box and managed to work together one of the aircraft in that set. The kit was surprisingly difficult, though it had good detail, fit was terrible! The plane is mostly Tamiya extra thin cement and milliput. Only after I built it did I realize two mistakes: The rounded tail and for some reason I painted the red 'tape squares' around the cannons! As always, I look forward to your comments and suggestions.
  16. My second entry in the group build will be this fairly well known rag-wing survivor: THE BATTLE OF BRITAIN 1940. © IWM (CH 1434)IWM Non Commercial Licence As Stew has pointed out, transfers are available from AML. I have a resin gun bay set for the rag wing to try out too.
  17. Woohoo here we go!!! Ok after such a long wait it has finally come…………and it’ll be a few weeks before I can start!! Ok I decided to go with something nice and easy…….then I found this, the Czech AF Mig-21MF s/n 7701 in “Splinter Camouflage”, something nice and simple! Copyrighted material removed photo courtesy of Airlines.net Ok the base model will be a 1/48 Eduard MiG-21MF, I have a choice of two, but will be using the ProfiPACK one for this build….have plans for the other one! Lots of nice bit inside, Eduard was even nice enough to give me two complete sets of PE bits! What lovely people!! Not too sure if I’ll through extra bits at this one or not, have a few weeks to decide before I even get a chance to play with it. The camouflage is the big part of this build and I have a choice of either the sort of easy path and use the Syh@rt decals……..can imagine how much fun that will be!! Or go hard core and use the Model-CZ masks, a lot of work but mistakes can be corrected….just have to make sure everything is in the correct place! Or a combo of the two……..not too sure about that, for sure I won’t be able to get the colours to match. Anyway am sooo looking forward to this one, though I still have to wait for 3 more weeks till I get back home!
  18. Jach + Mark I 1/144 Aero L-29 Delfín (Maya) source: http://modelforum.cz/viewtopic.php?f=298&t=32253&start=495#p1645271
  19. Okay.. This T plus build 8 since getting back into this modelling 'thing'. (and counting till I've done 12 ) This was supposed to be a quick build, and finished some weeks ago. It was going really well, but a little thing called life did something very unexpected in a manner I couldn't have even imagined.. so on the back-burner it went. Also kept me away from having a browse around here! The horror! So, this is the Eduard rendition of the Mig 15 in 1/72, recently reviewed right here on Britmodeller. This one being from the Dual Combo kit they do which I bought on a whim at a silly bargain price. A bit of PE in the box, some masks, and a few resin stores that are not used on this version. My first go with one of these Eduard things and golly! I'm impressed. Nicely engineered and the only area you really need to take extra care about is making sure the gun pack and nose all fit nice and snug. Oh, and stick some weight in the front where there is space fore of the cockpit tub. I had some liquid gravity on hand so it was the perfect test for it. Alclad Alu all over. Nose is painted Xtracolor high speed silver where apparently this aircaft had it's old code painted out. The blue bands were applied for wargame duties and I've done them using one of those nice Revell acrylics. So few markings this was the quickest decal session I've ever done! Thank you for your attention again. Next up after this one... I think it's back to something with familiar RAF roundels on. Which probably means I'll do an IAF Spitfire. I am so fickle. First, obligitory cockpit shot, because just for a change I had a pocket cam handy. Mig_15_150214_01 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Mig_15_150214_02 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Then my usual let's not even attempt to pretend it's not a model images. Mig_15_100314_04 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Mig_15_100314_08 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Mig_15_100314_09 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Mig_15_100314_05 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Mig_15_100314_11 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Mig_15_100314_13 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Mig_15_100314_07 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr Mig_15_100314_16 by IrritableRabbit, on Flickr
  20. Pz.Kpfw 38(t) Ausf E/F 1:16 Panda Hobby The Panzer 38 started life as an inter-war Czech designed medium tank that was co-opted into service by the Nazi war machine when Czechoslovakia was annexed prior to WWII. It's age is exhibited by the comparatively light main armament and the riveted and bolted construction of the armour plates. Additional armour was deemed necessary in German service, which was achieved by the addition of extra plates to the existing armour, rather than replacing the panels, and these were designated as E through to G. Although it was already a fairly old design by the outbreak of WWII in Europe, manufacture continued until 1942, when the realisation that it could not take on the Russian tank of the day, the T-34 dawned upon the designers. Its chassis carried on however, and was used as a Flakpanzer, the well liked (by its crew) Hetzer and the Marder III. Crews said of the drivetrain that it was well-designed for use as well as maintenance, which resulted in a low breakdown rate, with easy repairs when it did fail. Its main use was on the Eastern Front, but it was pulled out of frontline use due to its light armour, and although it continued as a reconnaissance tank, that was the remaining chassis from the 1,400 that has been built were re-tasked in earnest. The Marder III was an attempt to break through the armour of the T-34 with captured 76.2mm Russian guns mounted in open turrets, and this in turn led to the more successful Hezter. The diminutive Hetzer (officially designated Jagdpanzer 38(t)) had a wider chassis and heavier armour in a turretless design, turning it into an effective tank destroyer that became increasingly common right up to the end of the war, with almost 3,000 built. The Kit This is the first kit in Panda's new "Huge Monster Series", as evidenced by the 16001 catalogue number on the end of the box. Even though it is a relatively small tank, the dimensions on the front of the box show a length of 288mm, width of 133mm and height of 144mm, which is handy to know if you're not familiar with the scale. The box is around the same size and proportions as an Airfix Valiant box, just to give you an idea of how it'd fit in your stash - it's a top opening box that is pleasingly heavy, and inside you will find rather a lot of styrene in individual bags. There are eleven sprues in dark grey styrene, seventeen ladder sprues in mid-brown styrene containing the track links, a clear sprue, a sheet of Photo-Etch (PE) brass, a turned aluminium barrel for the main armament, and a sheet of decals for the tank's markings. The instruction booklet is in the form of a narrow A4 and runs to eight pages packed with construction sequences. The painting and marking sheet is A3 and printed in full colour on glossy paper, with a side-profile printed on the rear that could be framed and hung on the wall after use if you're careful with it, and so minded. First impressions are good, and after you stop looking for the hull and realise it is supplied in slab-sections, it is obvious that a lot of detail has been crammed into the parts, including a basic turret interior and full breech. It is also clear that the kit has been made with absolutely no regard for motorisation, which I'm sure will disappoint a few folks, but most will be happy with a static model of this lesser known, but important tank. Slide-moulding has been used where sensible, a turned metal barrel improves the look of the gun immensely, and the individual track links with separate pins have been well done, and have only seams and sprue links to clean up - not an ejector pin in sight. Of course, instruction starts with the drivetrain, and detail here is good. The drive sprockets are made up from two sprocket parts with two hub components coupled to the final drive, and the idler is similarly doubled up to trap the guide-horns, with a track-tensioner axle attached at the rear. The roadwheels are built up in pairs on their suspension arms, which have traditional leaf-springs between the axles. The wheels are separate from the tyres, which will please a lot of folks, and again, the two-part hubs are present. The return-rollers are built from two parts attached to a small stub-axle, and these are then attached to the hull. The hull itself is built up from a base with rolled front section, two side panels, front glacis plate with a large hatch in it, and the rear bulkhead, of which you have a choice of two for E or F models. Once that has set up, the running gear is added using locating pegs & holes in the sides of the hull, along with a bump-stop for the front suspension pair and two return-rollers per side. The fenders are one-piece per side, and run from stem to stern, with folded PE brackets providing extra strength on the real thing. The upper glacis panel is built up from the two layers of armour, and the ball of the bow-mounted MG is trapped between them, with a simple breech added to a socket on the rear of the ball. The muzzle of the 7.92mm ZB-53 gun is hollow thanks to some handy slide-moulding, but its part number is wrong. The vision blocks are shown in the open position, and have small hinges, stays and latches added during construction to finish them off. The upper hull with the turret ring is added next, and here Panda have taken the trouble of putting a highly detailed set of teeth around the aperture, although it will seldom be seen unless you model the tank as knocked-out. The fenders are festooned with pioneer tools, which are very well detailed with more realistic tie-downs when compared to the usual shapeless blocks you see on smaller scale armour. For some reason these steps are repeated in steps 13 and 14, so can be ignored. As mentioned earlier, the barrel of the gun is turned from aluminium and has a hollow barrel for realism. This is clamped between the breech parts, which are built up into a good representation of the 37mm kwK 38(t) L/47.8 cannon, the German version of the original Skoda A7 unit. The coaxial machine gun is also present in another ball-mount, this time trapped behind an internal bezel within the mantlet. This also has a breech identical to the bow-mounted one. Unlike the bow-mounted MG though, the turret coax doesn't have a hollow barrel, but could be quickly drilled out for extra realism if you wished - why they gave us only one hollow barrel is a mystery. The turret has a high cupola for the commander, which has a quartet of clear vision blocks mounted in armoured blocks every 90o around the hatch. This is added to the roof of the slide-moulded turret part, which lines up with the four sections of the inner hatch wall moulded into the turret. Additional sighting is achieved by a periscope that sits just forward of the commander's cupola on the port side. The underside of the turret with its cut-out is glued inside the turret shell, and a pair of jump-seats are added on tubular brackets for the gunner and commander. The aft deck is fairly empty, save for one grille that has a PE mesh panel installed over it to stop debris and grenades from finding their way inside. The exhaust is on the rear bulkhead, and is cylindrical with input and exhaust tubes on either end. Attached to that is a shroud for the input pipe, and on the rear of the cylindrical section is a box that is intended for smoke candles, set on a bracket. Additional track links are added to the fenders, and here the repeated construction steps start to take their toll. Clearly there were other steps that have been missed out during production of the booklet, as there is a large sloped sided box on the starboard fender behind the jack-block, and yet it is not mentioned in the instructions until it magically appears on the back page. It's a shame, as it's a nicely done perforated piece, which has benefited from some slide-moulding to make it in one piece. The jack fits across the top of it in a pair of recessed, and this is also ignored in the instructions. A length of spare track also appears on the underside of the bow, with no word of how it is affixed, although I have a hunch that part E50 has a hand in it. Oops! I'm sure that this will be corrected now it's known, but in the meantime, a little guesswork will be required, and some reference to reference photos to see how it goes together. Oddly for a tank, the tracks are not covered until the very last step, almost as an afterthought. In a scrap diagram the links are shown being glued together, and you are told that you need 186 of them, which I assume will mean 93 per side. The track pins that are provided in large quantities on the side of each track sprue aren't mentioned however, but most tracks seem to be assembled with an open or closed pin, which are both supplied, six of each on each sprue. You'll need to check your references to see which one goes where, so take care when assembling them. The last act is to add the turret and some small PE parts to the upper hull, and place the communications aerial on the bow plate on its bracket that attaches to the port corner. Markings Decals forfour options are supplied in the box on a medium sized sheet that has been printed in China. Printing is nicely done, with minimal carrier film between the numerals, although there is a slight registration error between the black and white colours, so you'll need to trim the ends of some of the balkenkreuz (German crosses). From the box you can build one of the following machines: "525" Pz. Regiment 25 of the 7th Pz. Division, Russia 1942 - overall Panzer Grey "833" Pz. Regiment 204 of the 22nd Pz. Division, Crimea 1941-2 - overall Panzer Grey "522" Pz. Regiment 204 of the 22nd Pz. Division, Crimea 1941-2 - overall Panzer Grey "1003" Pz. Regiment 25 of the 7th Pz. Division, Russia winter 1941-2 - overall Panzer Grey with a worn white distemper overcoat Conclusion As someone that has recently been introduced to the world of 1:16 armour, I'm very pleased to see this kit, and it bodes well for the next and subsequent kits in this scale from Panda. Detail is excellent, just as you would hope with the increase in scale, and even the most hardened adherent to rubber-band tracks will be able to deal with these nice big links, although having to research where the pins go is a minor pain. Of larger concern is the mistake in the instructions, as less experienced modellers might struggle to figure out where the unmentioned parts go, and may not even realise that they are missed, resulting in an incomplete tank. Hopefully Panda will come out with a downloadable addendum for those that have the incorrect instructions, but it's a mistake that could have easily been averting by proofing or even a test build following the instructions. Somewhere along the line, the copy & paste machine took a wrong turn. Don't let that put you off the kit though - it's well done and highly detailed. We shall have to wait for the P38(t) experts to pick over the fine details to hear more about the accuracy of the shape when built, and to find out whether there are any smaller details that need working on, as is so often the case with any older, and even some of the newer tank designs where production was in a constant state of change from month to month. If you've not tried 1:16 armour before, this would make a great introduction, as the finished product is relatively compact, and the detail is that of a model kit, rather than a well-detailed toy. It deserves to do well. Highly recommended. Welsh Dragon Models are hoping to have amongst the first stocks in the UK soon. Review sample courtesy of and available soon from major hobby shops
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