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  1. This is not something I would normally do, I build and try to complete models that should be consigned to the box or garbage bin of doom, but my AMX truly is a pile of and deserves to be in there!!! So I need to fill the space that was of a similar theme, in it was odd, produced in very few numbers and not truly successful, and it only ever was used in training exercises and had small cannons. So I have this...it’s odd/ugly, was out of date by the time it officially entered service, it was produced in its thousands, used in a dozen or more wars and is still in service today even though it was first introduced into service in 1955 and has bigger cannons!! Takom’s ZSU-57-2........I was tempted with the ZSU-23-4, but that may come another time. I’m taking photo’s as I open the box so I don’t really know what’s in there...other than lots of shiny bags filled with plastic goodies....... ....which turn out to be lots of plastic goodies, there’s 5 sprue sets of shells! There was almost tears of joy to see a complete chassis tub!!! The instructions are like a book (I’ve build a Takom model before, the instructions are really nicely done). It even comes with PE, wire, some nice painting instructions, mine will be an East German one... Plus some decals which include a rather grumpy looking dude with a beard! I mean with something as awesome as this shouldn’t you be smiling? ....and the obligatory extras..... The barrels are awesome, I could only afford empty shells, and the track are just models all on their own. This build should be a nice and simple one which should make me forget about that which shall not be named anymore!
  2. So chaps, the next build will be something that is very dear to me, Veh reg 09EA90 ( G3 Ops) my old ride at 6th Armd Bde Salamanca Barracks in Soest West Germany. I signed for the detachment back in 1990 as a young Signaller barely just out of school, 09EA90 was straight out of base workshops after a major overhaul so it was basically a brand new wagon, the paint finish was immaculate ( sprayed black and green) , not a chip or scratch and all the kit was brand new first issue. (didn't stay like that for long) I'll be using the great Takom FV432 as the basis of this conversion which will be a in depth conversion. Most people wouldn't be able to tell a 432 and 436 apart from first glance but there are a bucket load of differences, the interior is the major headache as it filled with Radio kit. 09EA90 had a twin 353 Zulu fit along with a single 321 and a SCRAT fit. We also had 3 Ptarmigan subsets and the Redbrick TAC IC system. Adding to that I have to scratch build the new cage as the Takom cage is too small for a 436, a 1500 w Onan gene set and add the various armoured boxes on the roof plus the Racal 8m masts and mounts. After the first Gulf War our Squadron started getting the GPMG to fit on the commanders cupola, the Infantry started getting the swearing removed LSW as a section weapon so us Signallers got the GPMGs that were surplus to the Infantry. We did still have the LMG (Bren) up until that point but no mounts to fix them to the cupola. The box shot I need to find more of my photo's from the day but here are a few of 09EA90 First photo is of the Forward Headquarters 6th Armd Bde, 09EA90 (G3 Ops )on the left, centre is Radcon and the right hand side is one of the Ptarmigan Radio Relay wagon Stay tuned for more Dan
  3. Hi guys This is quite an interesting subject by Takom that surprised us all. It just goes to show the vast range of kits and subjects available now. I bet most people never would have thought they would see a kit of this ever be made. Personally It's not my usual build but unusual enough to grab my attention. I have been working on it on and off for a while now. Quite a nice kit but a bit laborious to build. This is down to most of the bits being duplicated to cover both guns and a slight mould misalignment meaning the parts clean up is taking longer than it should. I can finally see the light at the end of the building tunnel though. IMAG0475 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG0478 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG0479 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG0480 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG0481 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG0482 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG0483 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG0484 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG0485 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG1166 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG1167 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG1168 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG1169 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG1170 by Mark Inman, on Flickr IMAG1171 by Mark Inman, on Flickr
  4. Well I'll give this WIP thing another try..... Not an AFV builder at all really (last one I did was the Tamiya Tiger I 30 years ago) But a mate who is into tanks got me interested and the I saw the Takom 2047 at the lhs and next I was outside with that big box! A period of research followed/ continues, but my inspiration is Liejon Schoot's awesome build of the Trumpy 1/16 kit. I'm really hoping i'll push trough with this one, as i'm prone to getting stuck on details, and chasing my tails in research.... This means I jump about on subassemblies for the most part, modding anything that takes my fancy. some random stuff I have done so far, as i'm a random person... AAggghhhh...google photo's won't play nice...postimage it is.... tbc
  5. Hi, Takom panther project start 2 months ago, here is progress till now. Almost ready for painting.
  6. Hello I present my lates project. It's Kraz 260 (Takom) plus dozer DET250 (resin model form Red Iron). All in 1:35 scale. Please enjoy.
  7. 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
  8. Bandvagn BV 206S with Interior (2083) 1:35 Takom via Pocketbond Originally developed as a replacement for the Volvo Bv202 for the Swedish army by Hagglunds, which are now part of the global Bae Systems conglomerate, the Bandvagn is a segmented tracked vehicle that was initially designed for troop and equipment transport, with the crew cab in front, and an adaptable rear cab that can be reconfigured to a number of specific tasks. All four tracks are powered and have very low ground pressure to help it travel over both arctic tundra and boggy conditions during the Swedish thaw, with an additional amphibious capability making it almost unstoppable. It has been so successful that dozens of countries now field them, with the United Kingdom amongst them, (a larger variant named the Viking) using them to good effect in the desert during recent actions in the Gulf and Afghanistan. The S variant is armoured to withstand small-arms fire, and can carry 12 fully equipped troops spread between the two compartments, which improves survivability in the case of a hit from a larger calibre round or IED. While the British BvS 10 is similar in form, it is substantially larger with a more powerful Steyr engine to pull its added bulk along. The Kit This is a brand new tooling from Takom, and it seems fitting that it's the (likely) more popular armoured variant that has led the way, although I'm sure that other variants will follow. Whether this will extend to the Viking is uncertain, as I would imagine it would require an almost complete retool, given the dimensional differences. This variant is fielded by Sweden, Spain, Germany, France, Netherlands and Italy, so there should be plenty of options to go at amongst those operators. It's not a huge vehicle, so the box is commensurately compact, with six sprues and two hull parts in grey styrene; four rubberband-style black flexible tracks and a small sprue in the same material; a clear sprue; decals and of course the instruction booklet, which has a correction sheet included for step 21. The booklet is around a5 in size in portrait form, with a glossy fold-out at the rear containing the decal and markings options. Detail is good, with some slide-moulded parts at the edges of sprues to improve it further, and the main compartments are moulded as individual shells, again using slide-moulding to obtain superior detail on the sides of the parts. There may have been a bit of groaning at the inclusion of "rubber" tracks, but as the real things are made of just that, it's entirely accurate and having seen the larger ones coiled up at the Tank Museum, they're very chunky, not to mention incredibly heavy, which doesn't really carry through to them in 1:35 as you can imagine. The inclusion of an interior is useful due to the large ballistic windscreen in the forward compartment, which would look a bit odd otherwise. Construction begins with the large beam-mounted running gear, with four road wheels, idler and drive sprocket on each one. The front and rear suspension is identical but handed, so you end up with four subassemblies, which each have their boat-like mine resistant hull fitted with slightly different drive-shafts and mounting struts, both of which are well-detailed. The tracks wrap around the suspension and are glued at the ends using standard cement, with a large contact patch and four shallow pins making this task a little easier. Once on the road wheels, the outer half of the drive sprocket locks them in place and the finished subassemblies fit on pegs to their mounts. The rear compartment has a complex umbilical as part of its drive assembly, which is linked to the front compartment via a recessed back panel that keeps the gap between parts small. At this point the lower portion of the vehicle(s) is/are complete. In the crew cab the driver and co-pilot's seats are installed on the sponsons, and the engine compartment cover slips between their chairs, while a pair of jump-seats attach to the rear wall. The pedal box and other controls are fitted before the upper hull is detailed with exterior parts, separate front and passenger doors and the thick glazed panels, with an overhead console and sun visors added inside. The rear compartment's details are all fitted to the upper hull part, including jump seats, stowage locker on the roof, and the obligatory fire extinguisher. At this point it is worth mentioning that if you are going for accuracy, you will need to shave off the copyright and kit details from inside the roof of each compartment, as well as some ejector-pin marks that simply couldn't be avoided in these large parts. There is sure to be some additional detail missing from the rooves too, which you'll have to scratch-build yourself although who will ever see it? That's entirely up to you though The upper and lower are now ready to be brought together with the addition of mudflaps front and rear, running-board on the forward compartment, and rear doors on both parts. The rear compartment's door has a window included, as well as the usual windscreen wiper (very thoughtful for the troops), light clusters etc. The rear door of the front compartment covers up the linkage and what looks like the heat exchanger on the roof mounted air conditioning unit. Markings You get three possible schemes in the box, with the decals mostly consisting of number plates and unit markings. Two of the options are Spanish with one Italian, with the Spanish in Khaki green all over, and the Italian in NATO camouflage. You can build one of the following: Regimiento de Montaña 66 2002 – Khaki Green Regimiento de Cazadores de Montaña 66, 2009 – Khaki Green 9th Reggimento de Alpini, 2008 – NATO Green, Brown & Black camo As the profiles cover less than two pages you might need your magnifying glass to read the print, but usefully the interior colours have been provided next to the final profiles to assist you with painting. The decal sheet is small, but is reminiscent of Cartograf's style, which is a guarantee of good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt carrier film cut close to the printed areas. A couple of instrument dials are included at the bottom of the sheet, which will improve the realism of the dashboard. Conclusion It's awesome to see the sheer volume of modern and near-modern armour being kitted now, and this is one of those instances. Clearly, there's more mileage in the Bv206S due to the number of operators, but as a British modeller, I'm now hoping we'll get the Viking at some point down the line. Highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  9. AndyRM101

    Cast hull M3

    Looks like Takom are expanding their M3 Lee range with a cast hull A1 and a CDL (Canal Defence Light). Great to see the available range of M3s getting larger all the time. Andy
  10. Hi folks Well it isn't an AFV and it definitely isn't a non-military vehicle, so by virtue of part of it having wings of a sort I'm posting this here... Regards JA
  11. Bear Hobbies Online Shop

    TAKOM SALE NOW ON ! big bargains on these kits...

    15% Slashed off prices for these TAKOM kits... 1/35 Skoda 30.5cm M1916 Siege Howitzer 1/35 Bundeswehr T3 Transporter Bus (with figure) 1/35 Bundeswehr T3 Transporter Trucks/ Double Cab 1/35 Škoda 42cm M.1917 Heavy Siege Howitzer with Erich von Manstein 1/35 U.S Armored Combat Earthmover M9 ACE 1/35 Bundeswehr Feldumschlaggerät FUG 2,5 1/35 WWII German 12.8 cm FlaK 40 Zwilling 1/35 WWI Heavy Battle Tank Mk.I Male 2 in 1 (with crane and flat trailer) 1/35 German Empire 420mm Big Bertha Siege Howitzer 1/35 I.D.F Light Tank AMX-13/75 2 in 1 1/35 French Light Tank AMX-13/90 1/35 French Light Tank AMX-13/75 with SS-11 ATGM 2 in 1 1/35 Russian Medium Tank T-55 AM 1/35 Bundeswehr Flackpanzer1 Gepard SPAAG A1/A2 2 in 1 1/35 WWII German King Tiger Henschel w/Zimmerit and interior [Pz.Abt.505 special edition] 1/35 WWII German Super Heavy Tank Maus V1 1/35 French Light Tank AMX-13/105 2 in 1 1/35 U.S. Heavy Tank T29E3 1/35 U.S. Heavy Tank T30/34 2 in 1 1/35 Chinese Medium Tank Type 59/69 2 in 1 Limited Edition 1/35 US Medium Tank M47 1/35 US Medium Tank M47 E/M 2 in 1 1/35 WWII German King Tiger Henschel Turret w/interior [without Zimmerit] 1/35 WWII German King Tiger Porsche Turret w/interior [without Zimmerit] 1/35 Israeli Main Battle Tank Merkava 1 1/35 French Light Armoured Car AML-60 1/35 US MEDIUM TANK M3 LEE EARLY
  12. AndyRM101

    M31 Recovery Vehicle

    Bit late to the party, as normal, but the kit I'll be building finally showed up this morning, which was a nice distraction from the fact that I turned 45 today And the kit is... What you should really have been seeing above was a box shot of Tamiya's new Korean war Sherman, but there doesn't seem to be much sign of it turning up anytime soon, despite being listed as a Jan release. Not a problem though, as the M31 was going to be my choice prior to the Tamiya announcement, so it'll make a perfectly good stand-in. There's an outside possibility that, if I get this one done quick enough, I might squeeze the Sherman in as well, so long as it's out before the GB ends. Progress will begin once I've recovered from the shock of not being 44 anymore Andy
  13. Hey guys, This is Takom's new Maus, and it's a nice kit! Resembling something of an IKEA item, the vehicle is pretty much flat-pack with sides slotting into each other and the most complex bits being the running gear and track, where the track is made from 3 pieces per link and each piece is secured by at least six points connecting it to the sprue... The paint scheme is off the top of my head, a splinter camouflage influenced by an ambush scheme, then painted in Mr. Hobby Colours. The weathering was grimy enough as I created various airbrushed effects and then using oil paints, washed, filtered and streaked the rest. Thanks for looking guys! Sam
  14. Bear Hobbies Online Shop


    Hi Kitty lovers !! full detail panthers as reviewed by Mike here Pleased to announce the brand new tool Takom Panthers are all in stock and available for purchase ! on site now - and on ebay later tonight. Grab the bargains at the website. AMAZING ONE OFF PRICE 44.99 (RRP 60.99) !!!! https://bearhobbies.com/takom-1-35-wwii-german-tank-sd-kfz-171-panther-a-early-production-w-full-interior-kit-tako2097/ https://bearhobbies.com/takom-1-35-wwii-german-tank-sd-kfz-171-panther-a-late-production-w-full-interior-kit-tako2099/ https://bearhobbies.com/takom-1-35-wwii-german-tank-sd-kfz-171-panther-a-mid-early-production-w-full-interior-kit-tako2098/4
  15. Hey Guys I bring to you my first build log, the rather lovely Chieftain mk.11 from Takom. I chose this kit mainly due to the brilliant build logs on Youtube, I wanted something with fiddly little parts, a bit of PE and I could follow along to for my maiden voyage. I'm already a week into the build and loving it so far, i forgot how relaxing cutting, sanding and gluing can be, beats watching the junk on the TV. Here's what i have so far. Seamline hell! I've scraped, sanded, scraped and sanded, will probably need more scraping and sanding I got carried away gluing, those exhausts are going to be a pain to paint. So far no issues with fit, the size of the gates are questionable, they are huge. OH and extra thin cement is pure witchcraft, so much better than the tubes of cement I used many years ago Anyway that's it for now. Going to make a start on the lower hull and more stowage boxes
  16. King Tiger, Initial Production Takom 1:35 Hitler, and therefore Nazi Germany was obsessed with bigger which they equated with better, and this was reflected in almost every aspect of arms production in the run-up to, and throughout World War II. After the Panzer IV had been matched by Allied designs, the Tiger addressed the balance back in their favour, becoming the most feared combatant from any force, despite several draw-backs of its design, such as a weak transmission, and a level of complexity that meant it was slow to manufacture, prone to break-downs and expensive to repair. Expecting the Allies to bring heavier tanks to the field before too long, the King Tiger, Tiger II, or Königstiger as the Sd.Kfz.182 was known came into existence, having begun development even before the war started. Porsche's ground-breaking and complex design was unsuccessful for this reason, while the Henschel proposal was taken forward to production, using the same underpowered Maybach engine that was barely adequate for the Tiger I, and taking on the sloped armour of the successful Panther to significantly increase the effective thickness of the armour whilst keeping weight down to a staggering 70 tonnes. The initial turrets had curved surfaces that were difficult to manufacture, and a redesign was necessary to cure this and remove the shot-trap under the mantlet, with the new design being known today as the Henschel turret, while the old design became the Porsche turret, although both were designed by Krupps. A weak transmission design, coupled with the underpowered engine ensured that many vehicles broke down in the field, and plans were in progress to improve both aspects with fuel-injection and a new drive-train, but were curtailed by the end of the war. Most of the initial order of 1,500 units were built under difficult circumstances due to bombing of the factories and the encroaching Allied forces, and despite its problems it became one of the icons of German tank design of WWII, with a number surviving to be placed in museums, with some still running. The Kit We have had a few King Tiger (KT) kits in 1:35 over the years, but nothing new for quite a while, and at times the preferred brands have been hard to come by with prices reaching silly levels on eBay. Takom's new range of KT kits aims to provide a full set of these imposing tanks, with and without Zimmerit anti-mine coating, with Henschel and Porsche turrets, and with or without interiors. This should cater for almost every possibility, and if you like your tanks buttoned up, you won't be wasting the interior if you buy wisely. The type included from the box is that of the initial production, it therefore includes the Porsche turret and no Zimmerit. It is this and the paint schemes that are represented that make it one of the plainest King Tigers built. Inside the box are a lot of sprues, taking up almost all the available space. There are ten sprues, two hull parts and upper turret in a grey styrene, one sprue of clear parts, one small sheet of Photo-Etch (PE) brass, and a very small decal sheet. The instruction guide is in the by-now-familiar Takom format, in landscape A4, with a separate booklet for the painting instructions. All the parts are beautifully moulded with no sign of flash or other imperfections, but there are quite a few moulding pips, and for those modellers who have an aversion to indie link tracks, look away as, although these are link and length, each individual link is connected to the sprue by no less than ten gates which will require the nice tedious job of cleaning them up before fitting. Before building can begin, you will need to decide which of the four versions you wish to build as certain parts of the front glacis plate and hull deck need to be removed, as well as some holes to be opened up. Construction begins with the the road wheels and the sprockets are made up from two parts whilst the idlers are three part units. Once the gearbox covers and axles, which you will have to be careful in getting the parts fitted int eh right order, have been fitted to the hull all the wheels can be attached to their relative axles. There is a separate lower glacis plate to be attached as well. With all the track links and lengths cleaned up it’s just a case of patience and following the build guide carefully, ensuring it sags in the correct places. Work then begins on the upper hull and the fitting of the towing cables, pioneer tools, and the separate panel for the drivers and bow gunners hatches. Inside, there is a large panel glued to the inside of the glacis plate, along with the two periscopes. The three piece bow machine gun is then assembled and glued into the ball socket in the bow plate. Then, on the outside the rest of the ball mechanism is fitted, along with the armoured hood. The track guards are also added at this point, although I’d probably leave them off until the entire hull is complete and the tracks fitted. Once you’ve decided which version you are building he rear bulkhead is fitted out with the engine gearbox cover, a smaller access hatch, the alternative exhausts and exhaust covers, track puller, the two rear mudguards and rear mounted towing shackles. The completed bulkhead is then attached to the rear of the hull. On the rear upper hull alternative centre engine covers, one is fitted with three individual engine hatches each fitted with a ventilation style dome and two other access hatches. The alternative centre hatch is fitted with a single large hatch each with two ventilation domes. There are also alternative radiator covers, attached each side of the centre hatch, there have different grilles and on one style the grilles are covered by armour plate. Each of the centre mounted circular opening is covered by PE grilles. Each assembly is then glued into position. The upper hull is then glued to the lower, then the upper bow mounted track guards are fitted, followed by the three piece bow mounted light and lower, inner gearbox covers, to which the towing shackles are attached. The turret is assembled next, with the single piece centre section of the turret fitted with the roof, inner rear bulkhead, gunners internal hatch framing, inner section of the commanders cupola, outer rear bulkhead gunners hatch actuator, in open or closed position, three piece gunners hatch, periscope cover, small access hatch and grab handles. The large eight piece rear mounted hatch is then attached with its hinge covers, along with the roof mounted ventilator cover or alternative cover plate. The turret base is fitted with the gun trunnion section via two trunnion mounts and then glued to the turret. The outer commanders cupola is fitted with the seven periscope covers before being glued into position. There are two types of gun barrel, dependent of which version is being built, each made up from five parts before being fitted to the mantlet and the breech end within the turret. The completed turret is then attached to the hull, completing the build. Decals There are four paint schemes, one for each version. All the paint codes are for AMMO paints, but with the German names for each colour. There are six schemes with vehicle numbers; the other two just have generic crosses etc. The decals have been printed by Takom and although only a small sheet they are nicely printed, in register with good opacity. Three of the options are from November 1943 when at the Henschel Factory, each in the same Dunklegelb overall with Panzer grey barrel and red brown muzzle. The one different scheme is for a vehicle from January 1944 at the Henschel tank proving grounds, Houdenbeck, Germany, in Panzer grey overall Conclusion This is a very nice kit, as we have come to expect from Takom. The track links could cause some modellers sleepless nights, but with a bit of patience they should be fine. Other than that a fairly easy build and will look great in any collection. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  17. CM-11 (M-48H) Brave Tiger With ERA 1:35 Takom via Pocketbond The CM-11 is a hybrid MBT borne out if the need to quip the Republic of China (ROC) forces with a new MBT while staying within limitations set by the US-PRC Joint Communique on United States Arms Sales to Taiwan. The MBT was developed by General Dynamics and the ROC Armoured Vehicle Development Center. The hull is that of an M-60A3 and were purchased from the US. The turret is a development of the M-48 A3 unit and was produced by the Army Ordnance Maintenance and Development Center. The turret features a M68A1 105mm main gun with the added advantage of the ballistic calculator developed for the M1 Abrams. Combined with a laser rangefinder and night vision optics this gives the CM-11 a high probability first hit in all conditions and while on the move. The commanders turret featuring an M2 machine gun was procured from Israel. In addition to this gun the loaders hatch has a mounted M240 7.62mm machine gun. During development it was found that the hybrid would not offer the same protection as newer tanks and Explosive Reactive Armour would be introduced to offset this. This proved problematic as the additional weight caused problems with the torsion bar suspension, and the older engine. These problems were solved and in 2011 tanks were seen with the new ERA package installed. The ROC all the MBT the CM-11 Brave Tiger, in the US it has the designation M-48H (H for hybrid). The Kit The ERA kit is a slight modification to the original Brave tiger kit issued by Takom. It was a welcome sight so see this MBT kitted by a major manufacturer. In the box there is the hull casting, turret casting, 6 sprues of light grey plastic, a small clear sprure, a small sheet of PE, a tow cable, 2 lengths of rubber track, 2 steel pins and a very small decal sheet. Construction starts with the lower hull. Various hull fittings are attached along with attachment points for the suspension. The rear gearboxes for the drive wheels are built up and attached. Next up the suspension legs for the road wheels from the torsion bars are built up and attached. These complex parts are built up from three parts each, and 5 parts for the front idler wheel assembly. Care must be taken on assembly as not all of the axles are the same. The road wheels (14), return rollers (6) and drive wheels (2) are then made up and added to their respective axles. Attention now move to the main hull deck. At the front the drivers hatch can be displayed open, or closed (note there is no interior). Th drivers periscope can ether be in the deployed or stowed position as well. Various hull fittings are added as is the rear ravelling mount for the main gun. Note for modellers a fair few holes need to be drilled in the upper deck for various fittings. The front lights are also added at this time. The upper hull can then be joined to the lower one and the engine louvres added at the back. The side plates which go above the tracks on the hull are now made up. There are a fair few stowage boxes on these which are also made up and added. The tracks are added and then the track covers can go on. The tracks supplied are the ribber band tracks, however they seem to be extremely well moulded. Instead of the usual arrangements of clipping them together TAKOM have gone with a metal pin each side to join the runs. Various hull fittings and some of the ERA is then added to the upper hull. Construction then moves to the tank turret. A number of holes need to be drilled to accommodate all the fittings on the turret. Antenna mounts, ventilation covers, grab handles and smoke grenade launchers are added to the hull. The gun and mantle are added. The gun is a one part barrel to which a hollow muzzle end is added. The loader and commanders hatches are added along with their respective machine guns. The various ERA panels are also built up and added ot the turret. The last item to be built up and added is the rear turret stowage basket. Markings This is probably the smallest decal sheet I have seen on a kit, even an AFV. It has only a single number, and a single national marking. Only one paint scheme is available, the US Brown/Black/Green scheme. Conclusion It is good to see TAKOM producing this kit of the MBT from the ROC. The kit si not too complex and will appeal to those who like the M48/M60 gen ration of MBTs, those looking for something a little different, or fans of the ROC. Highly Recommended Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  18. M3 Lee Late Medium Tank 1:35 Takom via Pocketbond The US Army had been remarkably complacent with regard to tank development in the lead-up to WWII, and approached war with precious few that were hopelessly outclassed. This realisation resulted in a frantic clamour to produce a modern tank that could hold its own in combat, with the M3 Lee coming into service as a stop-gap measure within a year of its first design while the M4 Sherman was in development. As a consequence of its rather rushed introduction, it was known to have a number of fairly serious flaws, but it also had some strengths that (at least in part) made up for them. Its high profile and sponson mounted main gun gave the enemy a large target, but when the 75mm main gun was brought to bear on a target, it was surprisingly powerful and effective, gaining a reputation in North Africa. A great many examples were exported to the British and Russian forces in the early stages of WWII, and after the majority of British armour was left on the beaches of Dunkerque, the need became even greater. The British required some changes to improve the vehicle's performance, which most visibly included a new larger turret with a bustle to accommodate radio gear, and a cupola instead of the sub-turret with machine gun mount, which was named the Grant after general Lee's opponent. Due to the pressing need for suitable numbers however, the British did take a number of Lees, and the Soviet Union also took delivery of a substantial number of Lee variants, although some ended up at the bottom of the sea thanks to U-Boat action. The Soviets disliked the Lee intensely and gave it a wide berth wherever they could in favour of the more modern and capable T-34, the production of which ramped up substantially after the initial shock of Barbarossa, which led to its retirement from front-line service by 1943, while the other Allied continued to use them (mainly in Africa) until the end of the war. The Late version deleted the side doors and left only one pistol port. The Kit There have been three kits released initially, one being the Early Lee, the other the British specification Grant (see here), and the M31 Recovery version (see here). This kit does share a core of common parts.. Inside the box are ten sprues and two parts in grey styrene, a small clear sprue with headlights, a PE sheet, decal sheet and instruction booklet as mentioned above. Construction begins with the lower hull, which has a rear bulkhead and final drive housing attached at the front, with three stations on each side for the VVSS (vertical volute-sprung suspension) units, which held a pair of wheels each. The drive sprockets are fitted to the front, and idlers at the rear. The individual double wheel units are made up. 12 wheels are made up and fitted into 6 bogie units. The tracks are link and length, with a jig supplied for the top run, which has an upward curve at the front as it rides over the drive sprocket. The highly curved areas have individual links supplied, with the diagonals under the drive and idler wheels fitted in short lengths. The tracks fit under the sponson floors, with separate sides added. The complex angles of the glacis plate and casemate of the 75mm gun are formed over a number of steps, with the roof having a cut-out for the turret and the limited-traverse mantlet of the main gun attached before it is flipped over and fitted to the rest of the hull. The engine deck is fitted last, and has a choice of pioneer tools and towing cables, which require some holes to be drilled from the inside before fitting. The exhausts and mudflaps are fitted to the rear bulkhead along with a number of panels and towing eyes to the rear, with the driver's hatch and caged light cluster on the wings. The turret has a simple two-part construction, with the mantlet inserted into the lower half, allowing the gun to elevate, while the top machine gun turret actually has more parts, including vision ports, a split hatch, lifting eyes and machine gun barrel. The 37mm gun and coax machine gun are fitted last before the mantlet cover is installed, which makes one wonder what the purpose of the additional machine gun on the top of the turret was when there was already one mounted coaxially. Markings There are four markings options spread over the inner cover pages of the instructions, All of which are in Olive Drab, the captured example featuring applied winter camo. From the box you can build one of the following: Unknown captured tank Pz.kpfw M3 744, probably on the Eastern Front? 1st Armoured Div , England Dec 1942 Tank #9 1st Armoured Div , England Dec 1942 Tank #4 1st Armoured Div , England Dec 1942 Tank #7 The decals are printed anonymously, and have generally good registration, sharpness and colour density, with a thin matt carrier film cut close to the printed areas. Recommended Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  19. Panther Mid-Early Production Sd.Kfz.171 1:35 Takom via Pocketbond The Panther was Nazi Germany's answer to the surprise appearance of the Russian T-34 after they finally reacted to the invasion that was Operation Barbarosa. Although the project had been in gestation some time before, they took some design cues from the T-34 in the shape of the sloped armour, resulting in the Panther that was intended to fill the gap between the Panzer.IV and the (then) new Panzer VI Tiger. It was eventually supposed to replace both the Pz.IV and the earlier Pz.III that was really showing its age, but in reality it often fought alongside the Panzer IV. It was planned as a lighter, more manoeuvrable tank than the Tiger, and was fitted with a high velocity gun from the outset, which gave it enormous penetrating power that was only equalled by the British 17-pounder fitted to the Sherman to make the Firefly. The sloped frontal armour gave it an increased effective armour thickness, but this was not so true of the side armour, which was comparatively weak, and this area became the preferred target of engaging allied tanks, especially in urban combat where this was a telling issue. Like most German WWII tanks it was complex to produce, so suffered in terms of volume produced, and this led to it being rushed into service with quite a tick-list of things still to sort out. Later production solved most of these initial gremlins, but loses in the interim were high with many being abandoned after failing during combat. Curiously, the Ausf.D was the first to enter production, with the Ausf.A following later in 1943, replacing attrition of the less reliable Ausf.Ds until they themselves were superseded by the Ausf.G, which became the final major variant with increased ammo storage, simplified design to ease production, and further improvements to reliability, although this was never fully cured with a high rate of attrition due to mechanical issues, some of which resulted in catastrophic fires. A Panther II was planned, which retained much of the look of the original Panther, while improving armour and suspension. They got as far as creating a pair of prototypes before the war ended, and a destroyed but still substantial chunk of the Schmallturm (smaller turret) can be seen at Bovington. The Kit This is a brand new tooling from Chinese powerhouse Takom, who came from nothing a couple of years ago and have created their own back-catalogue in that short time. The Panther seems to be a popular choice at the moment, and there seems to be a trend of this duplication of effort between some of the Far Eastern operators, but as one company's Panther makes £0 for the other companies, we're spoiled for choice with newly tooled Panthers at the moment. This is the Interior kit of the tank, which has all the greeblies inside that you would expect if you tore open a real one in service. While this sort of attention to detail doesn't appeal to everyone, it's often said by modellers that we know the detail is there, and with the proposition of leaving hatches and panels open, or even doing a cut-away in museum stylee, there are plenty of reasons why one might want one of these uber-kits for your stash. Arriving in a deeper than usual white themed box to give a premium feeling, and accent its special nature, the box is rammed full of sprues as you'd imagine. There are 28 sprues in mid grey styrene in various sizes, plus hull, turret and two track jig parts in the same shade. There are also four braided copper cables in two thicknesses, a small sheet of Photo-Etch (PE) grilles, a single piece of flexible styrene, and two decal sheets, plus of course the instruction booklet in a landscape A4 format. My review samples had received a bit of a shock during transport, which had put a bend in the delicate engine deck supports, breaking a few of the protective sprues between them. The damage wasn't permanent and you can possibly see the stress marks if you look hard enough, but it could have been prevented by bagging it separately from the two jigs, which did the damage. That said, almost every sprue is either bagged separately or with a couple of others, so there's a lot of protection therein, so I suspect I was just unlucky. Construction begins with the floor of the hull, adding scale armour to the underside of the glacis, a conduit and then framework that binds the floor to the sides, and the longitudinal ribs that hold the torsion bars in place. The hull insides have stub axles moulded in for suspension and final drive housings to be added, and the detailed transmission fitted between them when completed. The torsion bars are fitted to one hull side and offered into the slots, then joined by the other side, meshing together across the floor. Externally, the swing-arms with their stub axles are fitted with bump-stops, and aligned using the jigs supplied whilst drying, after which the interleaved road wheels are installed, some in pairs and some singly. Flipping over the hull to right-way up the various assemblies for the lower interior are constructed such as crew seats, ammo racks, radio gear and engine bay walls, then slotted into the hull in order. Inner walls are added to the engine bay to form the compartments for the radiator baths, and a firewall is fitted to the front, through which the transmission projects, linking the transmission to the forthcoming engine. The rest of the space in the lower hull is filled with upright boxes of ammo that have only the tips depicted to save styrene, as nothing of the lower parts can be seen. The bottom surround to the turret basket is placed over the equipment, finishing off the lower hull details forward of the engine, save for some small parts added later. The tracks are of link and length variety, which can be built up on the aforementioned jigs just by using the drive and idler wheels. There are longer lengths where the track runs are straight or gently curved, and individual links for the sharp curves around the ends. It is interesting to note that the hollow guide horns that must be glued into each link have been moulded so that they fit perfectly into each link when applied as they are moulded in long runs. There is a scrap diagram dealing with this clever aspect, so don't get carried away snipping them off the sprues individually, as you'll save some time by checking out step 15. The runs are built up in a vague C-shape, with the bottom run left off until they are attached to the road wheels later, hiding any glue joints from view. The Maybach engine is built up over successive steps, and fitted into the narrow bay where it is surrounded by ancillaries and pipework. Careful painting here will really pay off, but you'll need to check forward a few pages as there is a full-colour page showing the completed interior with call-outs in the instructions using AMMO colour codes. It also shows the demarcation between red primer and the pale bone-white used in the more crew-centred areas. The sponsons are also added, and these are also covered with sloped ammo storage, going a long way toward explaining why crews got out of their tanks in such a hurry when hit. The Panther was quite vulnerable at the sides due to weight-saving reductions in the armour thickness on the sponsons where all that ammo was kept. The radiator baths and fluid tanks are added to the rear of the engine deck at this stage too, and is closed in by the rear bulkhead with its armoured exhausts and stowage boxes. The upper hull is next, with the spaces on the engine deck filled by the cast radiator covers with their mesh, the front aperture by the access panel that houses the two crew hatches for driver and machinegunner, and the main engine deck with mushroom vents, smaller access hatch, and the large cast radiator inlets either side of the circular exhausts. The small triangular side-skirt is fitted at the rear and the pioneer tools are draped along the sides, with the towing ropes made up from styrene eyes that have slide-moulded holes to accommodate the ends of the braided cable. An inner skin is glued into the rear of the glacis plate to give a scale armour thickness, which has the bow machinegun, some driver controls and the vision port mechanism added inside, travel-lock, front fenders and vision blocks from the outside, before it is mated with the lower half. Schurtzen on stand-off brackets are fastened to the sides, towing shackles to the rear, and a sturdy hitch under the rear of the tank completes the hull. The turret is moulded with its roof and sides already together, to which vents, lifting eyes, the commander's cupola and other hatches, vision ports etc. are added, with the commander's cupola having armoured covers on his periscopes, which can be glued in place as one by leaving them on their circular sprue in much the same way as the track links. The corresponding interior parts are fitted, which includes three pistol ports, and once the rear face is brought in, the aft hatch with armoured hinge. The commander gets a ring-mounted MG34 machinegun, which is probably best left off until later, after which the attention turns toward the turret floor, most of which is taken up by the gaping hole. Around it are fitted raised edges, small chunks of equipment and the turning mechanism, and it is then put aside while the mantlet and gun breech are built up. The mantlet is multi-layer, with sighting gear and gun tube projecting through, which hinges at the sides. The outer mantlet fits around and protects the inner assembly, and has two more examples on the sprue that will be used in later boxings. The completed breech with recoil guard plug into the rear of the assembly, and it too is put to one side. The turret basket floor is circular and receives the crew seats which is then fitted under the lip of the turret floor, in readiness for installing in the turret later. A flexible corrugated hose glues into the interior recess for the fume extractor in the turret ceiling, and is later hooked up to the turret basket later on, but first the mantlet is fitted to the front of the turret, and is joined by the barrel, which has a solid core and hollow three-part muzzle. The commander's lift/swing hatch slots into place on his cupola, the turret floor is glued to the underside, which then leaves the turret to drop into its aperture in the hull, with an optional turret ring fitting between them. Markings The decal options are hidden away in the double-folded rear page, and are printed in glossy full-colour using Mig's AMMO paint system for colour call-outs. The two decal sheets are split between internal stencils, which are on the larger sheet, and external numbers and crosses on the smaller sheet. Both sheets are well-printed with good register, colour density and clarity, with instrument decals adding realism to the driver's station. From the box you can build one of the following three options: 3. Pz. Div. Totenkopf, Poland 1944 – green cloud pattern over dunkelgelb. 23 Pz. Reg., 23 Pz. Div., Eastern Front, 1944 – Green/brown camo over dunkelgelb. 26 Pz. Div., Italy 1944 – all over dunkelgelb with sprayed brown stripes on the schurtzen. Conclusion Panthers are good sellers, and this kit has plenty to recommend it, such as the level of detail packed inside, with a sensible and straight-forward construction process that for the most part mimics the way a modeller that plans to paint the interior would build in assemblies at different stages. The tracks may not appeal to all, but they are detailed and uncomplicated, plus the inclusion of casting/rolling texture on the exterior armour is good to see in a modern kit, although some may want to improve it so that it shows up more under paint. Very highly recommended. Review sample courtesy of UK Distributors for
  20. SoftScience

    Soviet M3 Lee

    This thread will present my build of Takom's excellent iron cathedral. The kit is of a very early Lee, so much as I'd like to build it as an Operation Torch machine, my lack of proper parts forces me to keep things the way Takom intended. The kit offers excellent details, and I began with the bogies. Each of these consists of 14 parts, and all hinges can be built to swing. The first one is finished. Five more to go
  21. AndyRM101

    Krupp Raumer S

    This was finished a few weeks ago. Takom's newish release of the Krupp Raumer S (selbstantrieb or self-propelled). An incredibly simple kit with very few parts, but it builds up into a detailed, and huge (18 inches long) model. There was only a single example of the real one built, which was captured at the end of the war by US troops. One of the kit schemes has hypothetical US markings and I went with that option, but showed it as if it had been used for testing, then abandoned to the elements. I wasn't actually that happy with the results in the end, but it was fun to try out some heavy weathering. Thanks for looking Andy
  22. The_Lancaster

    Takom Mark IV Male

    Hey guys! So, this is my third tank on the 'Mark' basis, having built the Tadpole, and Mark. V by Takom also. Assembly was Fiddly yet satisfying as it was simply a repetitive case of building weird, angular boxes. Tracks were click together, and apart from being lengthy, the wheels were a breeze compared to that on other tanks. Painting was a mix of Tamiya Deep Green mixed with Khaki Brown. Although operationally I have read that the colour on these was a chocolate brown, no contemporary colour photos exist of these things as far as I'm aware and Takom calls for 'Moss Green', and to be fair I prefer it in green. The identification bands were masked off with maskol to get over the rivets and if it was over done in areas it wouldn't really matter as it gave a convincing chipped look. Weathering was done by first darkening the colour which i thought was too light to begin with by thinning dark green oil paint and airbrushing it on the low areas to bring a basic colour modulation into the mix. This was followed by thin brown paint ringed around the running gear. Finally, three coats of Raw Umber wash were applied before weathering back with dry-brushing and chipping. The exhaust is an older technique which I'm currently trying to perfect. I tried it on a maus I was building (currently on the bench complete in the corner as the track have scared me off!) and now on the Mark IV. I paint the exhaust in black oil paint to create a sooty fixer for pigment. This is something I'm yet to perfect however... Compared with my Mark V, it is a heavily different tank, just the shape's the same! Hope you enjoy! Sam Excuse the lighting but i've only got a temporary set up at the mo using the sun! Which in the UK is never advisable!
  23. johnny akes

    Chieftain Mk 11

    First of the new year! OOB except for replacement tow cables, painted with Mission Models paints. Regards J A
  24. This is one I just managed to finish off in the run-up to the holidays, which allowed me to clear the decks ready for the M3/M4 group build (although I'm still waiting on the kit for that one). It's a very nice kit and, although some have reported a few fit issues with the hull superstructure, it all goes together well as long as you clean up the parts and pay attention to alignment. I had to swap the barrels for aftermarket replacements, due to one of the kit barrels being damaged in the box but, apart from that, it's a straight from the box build. Oh, and with the addition of the figure and stowage too, which came from Evolution and Value Gear. The only problems I had with it were with the usually reliable Takom decals. The ones that come with this are incredibly thick, and silvered quite badly on the slogans. I gave up on them for the red stars and sprayed them instead. Thanks for looking Andy
  25. The_Lancaster

    Takom 1/35 Bergepanther

    And now for something completely different, To retire the er... 'faithful' Italeri Bergepanther may I present the Takom Bergepanther, new from Takom. No release date as of yet but I would say it wouldn't be soon after their straight panther with full interior. Takom has quoted it as 'soon'!