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T-26 MOD 1935 Light Tank etched set. 1:35 ET Models


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Russian T-26 Light Tank MOD 1935 (E35-183)

1:35 ET Model

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Trumpeters T-26 (1935) Light tank is a very nice little kit even though the suspension is a little awkward as seen in the review HERE. Whilst the kit is quite nicely detailed ET Models have released this two sheet set to replace some of the chunkier items to give a more scale thickness and appearance. Onto top of these there a host of smaller items that both delight, when fitted and frustrate, when making. The set comes in the standard ET packaging of poly bag with card header. The main sheet is taped onto black card, whilst the smaller sheet is contained in a zip lock poly bag, and the instructions of three sides of A4 green paper. These are very clear and well laid out, but they will still require careful reading before starting to assemble the etched parts, as some of the kit parts need to be altered or removed before these can be added. Plastic or brass rod of various diameters will also be required to use as directed.

The first parts to be constructed are the large storage box for the right hand track guard and is made up of a single piece lower part which needs to be folded to shape and the lid which also needs the edges folded down to for an lip. To the completed box two support brackets, one at each end are attached as are the rear lid hinges, two hasp and clasps and one of two alternative lifting handles. Each of the pioneer tools receives new brackets and clamps including tiny wing nut bolts for each clamp. The next major assembly is that of the air intake grille on the rear engine deck. This is made up of the base box structure, which is quite a complex folding job, into which twelve individual slats are glued into the slots on either side. The top edges of the box are then folded over to cover the ends of the slats. Four bolt heads are then fitted to each edge and three plastic/brass rods passed through the three holes on each side under the slats.

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One of the most awkward assemblies within this set is that of the new exhaust. The main body needs to be rolled to shape with only the small overlapping seams being glued or, preferably, soldered. The internal end pieces are then fitted and the three support struts/straps attached to their specific locations. Whilst it may be awkward the effect should be a much better looking exhaust particularly as the etched part has a nice knurled like texture more indicative of the real item. Another awkward assembly is that for the two replacement track guards, where each end needs to be rolled to the shape matching that of the folded sides. Once achieved however, the completed guards are a great improvement over the kit parts in that they provide a much better scale thickness. Once the guards have been rolled and folded to shape they are fitted out with a compliment of strengtheners, support struts and fitting straps. To the left rear section of the engine decking there is another air intake and this is completely replaced with etched items, including new grilles and intake housing. Next to the slatted intake a new jack support and clamp fitting is provided, but the instructions give details of how to make a new shaped bottle jack to fit. With all the main assemblies built up they can be fitted to the model leaving just the new drivers hatches, turret hatch hinges, turret rear hatch hinges, fighting light lens covers and driving light housing hinges to be fitted to complete the build.

Conclusion

This is another superb set that, considering the size of the model is pretty comprehensive. Covering almost all the tank these parts will give a much improved detail and scale appearance to the completed model. There are some specialist folding and rolling tools that would make the work on the parts much easier, but I’m sure there are modellers that can find ingenious ways to do the same work if they’re not too keen of the extra expense. Highly recommended.

Review Sample courtesy of
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