Category Archives: 1/35 Artillery German & Allied

Trumpeter Soviet Aerosan RF-8/GAZ-98

The Russians used aerosans for reconnaissance and light raiding in northern areas where their light plywood skis allowed them to move quickly over the deep snow where other heavy vehicles would be unable to move at all.   However they were lightly powered and so could only be used on open country or frozen lakes as they had poor hill climbing ability.

The GAZ-98 was developed in 1942 and is powered by a GAZ-M1 truck engine and is armed with a drumfed Light Machine Gun.

Trumpeter Soviet Aerosan RF-8/GAZ-98

This kit has been lingering in my studio for a couple of months then built and waited for a few weeks more to be photographed. The 1/35 Soviet Aerosan RF-8/GAZ-98 kit from Trumpeter Models is perhaps one of those model kits you wouldn’t buy unless you physically have it on front of you. So that was my case and like thousands of model kit builders I went to my local hobby shop for some supplies but we can leave that store with some styrene. The box art quickly brings a ‘’mental build’’ and combined with a very affordable price, you have to take it home even if you have hundreds of model kits in your stash. The kit lends itself to low cost-small winter scene vignette.

Kit Highlights
  • Highly detailed plastic pieces molded in gray.
  • Photo-etched parts.
  • Two figures included.
  • Waterslide decals.
  • Illustrated instructions
  • Scale: 1/35
  • Length: 5.74″ (146mm)
  • Width: 2.83″ (72.1mm)
  • Parts: 80+
  • Trumpeter Product Number: 02322
  • MSRP: $14.99

Inside the box you’ll find parts with crisp details and delicate attachment points. A must for the small nature of many of the kit parts. The railing guards on the back of the model are very nicely molded and the fit between parts and then to the craft itself is outstanding. To get rid of the barely visible mould line on the guards, I used Tamiya Ultra Thin Cement instead of conventional sanding. The cement does the work of erasing that line an easy task. I was really close to modify the suspension springs with real springs from ball points and also add an electric motor from Tamiya *240 (75026) to the fan. But changed my mind after looking the stack of models in my review queue.

The kit fit in general is very good so no issues to report here. It also includes a small fret with 2 photo etched sights for the 7.62mm machine gun. You get to use just one so the other one will be destined to the spare box. The model was primed with Vallejo Acrylic Surface (Black) Primer 73.602. I don’t prime all my models but I do have on my workbench their Black, Gray and White primer. This stuff is amazing for all your priming needs but I use it mostly on resin parts and figures. And no, we are not sponsored by Vallejo in any way in case you’re wondering and even if we were, we wouldn’t sugar coat it.

Following the primer, the model was painted with Polly Scale Reefer White. All the weathering effect was achieved with the excellent Ammo Mig Weathering Products. (Thanks Miguel, Eli and Iain for your unconditional support). There is a picture of the WIP on our Instagram page. The figures included with the kit are not really bad but they are nothing to write home about. Decals are very nice for a kit this price and responded very well to Walther’s Solvaset over the well pronounced rivets on the craft.

Note from the Author

If you like Soviet subjects (or not) or if you are looking for an uncomplicated weekend build, the Trumpeter Soviet Aerosan RF-8/GAZ-98 is for you.

Highly Recommended!

Review Sample courtesy of my increasingly thin wallet.

Paper Panzer Productions etched Casting Symbols incl. German Factory Markings

 

PPP35012aPaper Panzer Productions is a new company from Belgium which has released several unique and interesting resin detail and conversion sets for 1/35th scale models.  This is their first etched set.  Product PPP35012 arrives in a © Ziploc type bag with a paper header stapled to it. There are no instructions.

PPP35012b

Inside we find a fairly large sheet packed with numerals and letters.  These are protected by plastic sheets on both sides.   While I peeled them back to take photographs, do NOT toss them away!  These items are tiny, some as small as 0.75mm (0.030 inch)!  The best technique to avoid losing the parts is to cut them free through the plastic and slowly lift a corner to release the part you are using.

PPP35012c

The set includes abbreviations used for the various German Factories during WWII.  Also, not the curved sections designed to be fitted to the fan castings found on the Tiger II, Jagdtiger (and any Paper panzer you wish).  The numerals will find their way to tire markings as well.  For attaching, I recommend Gator’s Grip Hobby glue as it will allow moving the item around and cleaning up excess with water yet the bond is firm enough to take weathering.

PPP35012d

Vulcan Models Ordnance QF 2 Pounder Mark IX Carriage Mark II

Vulcan Models’ 1/35th Scale Ordnance QF 2 Pounder Mark IX Carriage Mark II
Kit Number 56001
Scale   1-35
MSRP $29.99 (USD)

barbed-wire-division

The Kit

I ordered three of these kits directly from Asia and they arrived quickly. The box art (by an artist named Fleischer) is well done and on either side a suggested finishing scheme was illustrated using colored CAD drawings. The instructions were underneath the sprues and well illustrated on a glossy paper. The first impression was quite favorable and not that of a limited run kit.

This new kit contains two individually plastic wrapped sprues with 68 parts on Sprue A and 58 parts on Sprue B for a total of 126 parts. Some of the pieces are quite tiny yet well molded. The plastic is of a slightly translucent yet high quality polystyrene. None of the parts fell off the sprues during shipment on any of the three kits bought.

Slide molded has been used on three areas which allowed the spent shells, stake brackets, ammunition boxes, gun barrel to have hollowed or detail openings and/or sides. The gun shield is commendably thin although there was some slight flash in the gun sight slit. See detail photos.

Aside from slight flash, there are several raised pin marks to remove but these are all on areas which will be hidden once sanded. These are the wheel slices which are used to create a tread pattern and the bottom of the stabilizer legs. The latter items get the spikes, parts B24, after the pin marks are removed and sanded away.

Box art by Fleischer
Sprue A
Sprue B
Close up of shield showing sharp edges
Another close up showing finely rendered details
Three examples, out of four, of slide molding in effect
Front of wheel with tire portion
Rear of wheels
Details of carriage
Slight sink mark on platform
Large raised punch marks on bottom of pads which are easy to remove
Pin marks on inside of surfaces where they won’t be seen after assembly

Assembly

Assembly of the kit seems to be straightforward.

Accuracy

Comparing the kit parts to the photographs on the CD, in books, and on the web, some items have been simplified but not in a manner which makes the kit look less detailed. Some areas need fine weld beads added such as the foot well of the gun shield. Others, like the misplaced bolt on one of the wheels, needs correcting. My plan is to use epoxy putty, placed over a lightly oiled surface of the wheel, covering two bolts and part of the hub. Once the epoxy putty is dry, it can be removed revealing two bolt impressions and part of the hub.

Using heated sprue, I squash mold one bolt and carefully shave it off the sprue. Then I place the new bolt into one of the impressions of the epoxy putty mold. The wheel has the misplaced bolt removed, is sanded and washed and allowed to dry. Now, add thin (not watery) glue to the base of the bolt which was placed back in the epoxy putty mold and use the impression of the empty bolt and partial hub to properly place the new bolt. I will try to take photos of this process and add them.

Conclusions

A very nice first effort from Vulcan Models. The price listed is from Stevens Hobby which will be distributing in the US. The second release has already been announced and will be a crew for this gun. I look forward to the next upcoming releases and hope the misplaced bolt on the wheel becomes a thing of the past.

References

Toadman’s Tank Pictures #10 British World War II Anti Tank Guns CD
http://www.toadmanstankpictures.com/2pdr.htm
http://www.clubhyper.com/reference/2pdrwm_1.htm
The 2-Pounder Anti-Tank Gun in Canadian Service by Doug Knight; Service Publications, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 2008

German Telemeter KDO Mod.40

The Kommandogerät 40 was a director used principally for large anti-aircraft guns, such as the 8.8cm Flak.36 or the 10.5cm Flak.40. Introduced by the German military in 1941 this small director was used by all three services and could be modified for use with almost any anti-aircraft weapon. In the field the director used a 5-man crew, two men are required to input azimuth and elevation data. A third man sets the slant range by means of a 4-meter stereo range finder which is mounted on top of the director. A fourth man sets the horizontal angle of approach, while the fifth man is a general operator.

The time from first acquiring the target to firing the first round could be achieved in less than 30 seconds. The slant range could be up to 18,000 meters. For transport the director is mounted on a special trailer, equipped with lifting devices, and towed by a light truck.

barbed-wire-division

The Kit:
This is the German Telemeter KDO Mod.40 with Anh 52 Trailer in 1/35 scale from Bronco Models. This kit comes molded in tan with very crisp detail and clean of flash or heavy molding lines.  The kit is comprised of 7 small sprues, 1 photo etch fret and a small sheet of nicely printed decals depicting gauges.

There are not too many parts on those sprues, but this model kit can easily fool you. It was meant to be a relief weekend build but there are tiny parts to fiddle with. The main structure is comprised of 5 walls with exquisite molded on details. The telemeter itself has some little photo etched parts but details for the most part is molded on. The finished product looks very crowded with details. Based on the side you’re working on, keep an eye on parts B-11 & B-12. They might end up on the wrong location 😉

The base for the meter has another dose of photo etched details to deal with. In *my* honest opinion, if Bronco wanted to mold these details on the base, they would have done so with no problems as you can see more intricate details around the model already molded on. The photo etched base mesh looks very nice and gives a very realistic feel to the structure. The floor mesh can be molded open or close; and in case you want to build yours in the close position, I did a test fit with the trailer and it does fit like a glove.

The Sd. Anh 52 trailer is another kit in itself. The tires are molded in a very realistic pattern and yes, there’s more photo etch parts to deal with hear. If done correctly, the wheels can turn freely. I just wish I knew what kind of cable goes on the real spools so I could add my own in scale accordingly.

The kit can be painted either in German Gray or Sand with dark green spots. Those camo spots are illustrated even on the wheels and tires. This one was painted with Tamiya XF-63 German Gray and weathered using AK Interactive Dust Effects and a Brown/Blue Wash also from AK Interactive Products. Selective puddles of Summer Kurks Earth was also added.

There are no figures included with this model kit. You would have to add your own or place it into context with the proper subjects on a diorama. I still find it a nice display and conversation piece as a stand alone model in my display cabinet.

Note from the Author

If you are an artillery fan, this model is for you. Kudos to Bronco Models for such a nice a kit of a rather uncommon subject.
Highly Recommended.

Review sample courtesy of my wallet.