Soviet Model 52K M1939

85-mm Anti Aircraft Gun

[German 8.5-cm FlaK39(r)]

Kit : #72274 & 72276

Review by Stephen 'Tank Whisperer' Brezinski sbrez1(at)comcast(dot)net
Edited by Marc Mercier

This is ACE’s year 2009 release of the primary heavy AA gun used by the Soviets from about 1939 till replaced by larger 100-mm and 130-mm guns after the war. I understand it is an enlarged version of their 76.2-mm AA gun and they both look very similar.

ACE markets this as their “early” production model 1939 with the primary difference between the early and late model appearing to be the addition of a gun shield. A Soviet towing vehicle could be a Studebaker 2.5-ton truck, a fully tracked Soviet tractor or perhaps a Zis-42 halftrack.

This weapon can also be modeled with a German crew as the 8.5-cm Flak 39(r) in dark gray or Dunkelgelb colors. The Germans used this AA gun with its original Soviet ammunition as well as re-chambered for German 8.8-cm ammunition. A German towing vehicle would be an SdKfz 6 or an SdKfz 7 halftrack tractor.

I have always liked ACE’s box art and this is consistently well done in showing us what is in the kit, what it should look like when assembled, and the color scheme the model should be in: a monochromatic olive green in this case. We have here a gun on a 360 degree turntable with the wheels razed up by pedestals to take it out of towing mode.

There are about 85 parts molded in light gray, injection-molded styrene plastic on four sprues. No decal markings come with the kit; except for kill rings on German used guns I have never seen discernable markings on these weapons.

Due to ACE’s short-run molds the early molded kits may be of higher quality than those towards the end of the kit’s production.

This is the box art for ACE’s kit #72274 the late version of the 52-K 85-mm Soviet Heavy AA Gun which is essentially the same as kit #72276 but with additional parts for the protective shield onto one of the sprues. It is being towed by a Studebaker truck with Soviet markings.

This is a much simpler looking AA gun than the similar caliber German 8.8-cm Flak!

The assembly instructions are a rather complicated exploded-view type standard to most kits; because of the number of parts the assembly may be a bit more difficult than in smaller artillery kits.

The gun can be modeled in either firing or towing mode. There are no crew figures included.

This kit sprue shows parts for the suspension and cruciform platform. The four wheels (lower center) are well done as are the ground pads (left and right of center).

Several rounds of 85-mm ammunition are included but I wish ammunition storage boxes were also included.

The sprue here is the gun carriage with the traverse and elevation handwheels, a crew seat and other mechanisms for the gun.

I noted little flash and sink hole problems.

This sprue carries the 85-mm gun barrel with the recoil parts, part of the cruciform platform and the pedestal mount at far right. Two sections of the round floor plate are right of center.

It looks like we’ll have to drill out the muzzle and perhaps cut the slots of the muzzle brake deeper.

On the late version, ACE kit #72274, this is the sprue that carries the additional gun shield parts.


The kit appears well designed and detailed and is certainly much better than the only other kit of this gun available in small scale that I am aware of, the older AER resin model.

References and pictures of the gun at Aberdeen Proving Grounds can be found here

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Article Last Updated: 25 March 2014