Balaton Modell

2S3 Akatsiya Soviet Self-Propelled Gun

Kit #: BM7201 Preview by Christopher Benjamin - christopherb214(at)msn(dot)com
Edited by Al Magnus

This resin kit is packaged in a cardboard box with the subject picture on the front and plan views on one long side of the box. All of the 100 resin parts are in four ziplock baggies. The resin is a weird lemon yellow with a few lighter colored pieces thrown in. One baggy has a photo-etch fret with 15 pieces, one baggy with the track pieces which consist of 50 individual track links and 8 track lengths. One piece of wire is supposed to be included, but my kit was missing it. The other baggy is stuffed with the rest of the kit parts. Very small amounts of flash are present as are some pour blocks, but they are not heavy handed. The instruction sheet is an excellently rendered CAD-type drawing, double sided, that locates everything for the most part, in a clear manner. Another smaller sheet of paper shows some of the other kits that are available in 1/72, all modern, all Warsaw Pact with the exception of a U.S. HET M1070. Balaton Modell's kits are not cheap, but are priced in the normal to upper-end of the kit price range.

The largest parts are the turret and the 2 piece, horizonally split hull. I find that part disturbing and quite unusual. There are four slots to line the halves up, so it should work out, but I can't see the reason to do it unless there are further models forthcomming that will use the lower part of the hull, but not the upper (or vise-versa).

Information from the book Russian Military Power circa 1980: The 2S3 was known at some time past as the 152mm M-1973, able to fire a shell 18,000 meters. A battalion of 18 of these were allocated per tank division. The vehicle is built on a modified SA-4 Ganaf chassis.

I'm sure more about this vehicle is on the web and I believe there was at least one of these beasts on display at the Duxford Museum, England, in desert colors around the 1998 time frame, stored outside the Land Warfare hall.


Back to Balaton Modell Kit List Back to Home Page

Article Last Updated: 06 November 2010