This in-the-box review covers
the rare anti aircraft tank that the Germans developed to provide
protection from the Jabos that would also provide full protection
for the crew, unlike the open top Möbelwagen, Ostwind and Wirbelwind.
The Kugelblitz (Ball Lighting) housed two 3-cm automatic
cannon developed from a MK-103 aircraft gun in a ball mount housing
the gunners and the commander. My references disagree on the number
produced but something like five pre-production Kugelblitz were assembled
and over 30 superstructures were delivered by Krupp. There is documentation
that several participated in combat in the last weeks of the war.
I have yet to find a photo of completed Kugelblitz in combat.
instructions state that this model kit conversion set is to be used
with the 1/72-scale Revell Pz IV kit; it does not specify but it
should work with either the Revell Pz IV Ausf. H or Pz IV Ausf.
J models. I believe it should also work with the Dragon and the
Zvezda Pz. IV H kit. The veteran ESCI Pz IV will need a lot of upgrading
to make it a good display model but it is possible.
gives us seven cast resin parts not including 18 paired roadwheels
on two separate pour plugs. Eduard supplies an etched brass fret
with 15 etched metal parts. Like with other CMK products the quality
of the casting is very good with no obvious defects.
upper left is the low round turret, at upper center is the ball
unit that houses the guns and crew of three. Below the turret are
the twin 30-mm gun barrels (the resin pieces on either side help
protect the parts from breaking). Below the ball is the choice of
a nicely rendered exhaust muffler or two Flammentöter exhausts
used on some Pz IV Ausf. J.
resin substitute roadwheels puzzle me. The roadwheels are well done
but so are the Revell Pz IV roadwheels, so why bother? The CMK wheels
are a little smaller in diameter than the Revell roadwheels.
close-up of the resin parts show some pour plugs to be cut and cleaned
off the turret and ball parts. Difficult to see on the ball is a
large rear hatch, a roof (commander’s?) hatch that gets a
periscope, and gunner hatches on each side of the guns which have
what appers to be small round view hatches.
turret hatches all appear to be molded shut which I find a shame.
above page from the kit instructions shows a list and diagram of
parts and advised changes to the plastic Pz IV we choose to use:
such as replacing the rear fenders with brass parts, cutting off
the turret splash protector, and enlarging the turret ring.
Important: CMK is in error on the turret ring! The Kugelblitz
turret should be centered on the superstructure roof, not offset
to the left as the regular Pz IV turret is and as shown here! The
Kugelblitz turret should reach from the left side of the hull to
the right and not over-hang the engine hatches.
a wider turret moved forward the turret interferes with the driver
and radio operator roof hatches so the hatches were moved to the
corners and turned about 45 degrees which I have tried to illustrate
below onto CMK’s instruction sheet. Before installing these
hatches, we’ll have to fill in the normal Pz IV hatches. The
advantage of using the Revell Pz IV hull is that the driver’s
hatch is separate so it will be easier to alter the hatches’
unused Pz IV turret can be used to upgrade an ESCI Pz IV model or
perhaps a quick build war gaming kit; or perhaps use with a Panzer
IV Panzerstellung (turret bunker)?
assembly instructions are very good and above average for a resin
kit. I sense this model was released before good information and
references were available though. The instruction’s biggest
error is in the turret placement and locations of the driver and
radio operators’ hatches.
CMK’s side-view drawing on the first page of the instruction
sheet portrays a vehicle with a 3-color hard edge camouflage and cross
marking on the turret side.
believe that the Kugelblitz were built on new chassis, not rebuilt
tanks, so more likely to have the Flammentöter exhausts exhaust
stacks, introduced in August 1944, in the rear (resin parts PUR
4) rather than the horizontal muffler.
that the recoil brakes (flash suppressors) at the muzzle of the
guns appear to be at 45 degrees from vertical. Drill out the muzzles
with a fine drill.
mark the new, wider turret ring and cut. There are no tabs to hold
the turret onto the superstructure so after trimming off the pour
plug either glue the turret down to the hull or build in tabs.
building the bin (part PP 2) for the spare roadwheels do not forget
the rod that goes between the wheels and secures them in the bin.
The two lifting rings in the brass fret (parts PP 7) are flat so
I recommend using brass or copper wire for the lifting rings.
instructions don’t show the location of the radio antenna
which according to Jentz & Doyle goes in the normal location
for the Pz IV Ausf. H and J, off the rear of the portside engine
may wish to upgrade the set with the proper cast idler wheels common
the Pz IV J; this is what is portrayed in CMK’s drawing. Don’t
forget to leave off the small muffler for the auxiliary engine.
Doyle portrays spare track brackets on the glacis.
commander’s hatch is portrayed as one large hatch with a periscope
while Doyle’s scale drawing portrays it to be a split hatch
with a periscope on one side. We should add hinge detail to the
PANZER TRACTS No. 12-1 Flakpanzerkampfwagen IV and other Flakpanzer
projects 1942 to 1945, by Thomas Jentz and Hillary Doyle, Darlington
Below is information on the Maco Plastic Model Kits
release of a full Flakpanzer IV Kugelblitz, kit 7208, based on the
Revell Pz IV H model kit.. Unfortunately, I never got one of these
models when it was released. Perhaps Revell AG will re-release it?
like Maco offers a new plastic superstructure with correct driver
and radio operator’s hatch locations, and an option of open
turret hatches. I am not aware of any interior detail in the turret.
supplies basic markings of a German cross from the decal sheet for
their Ostwind kit, and camouflage from two locations in 1945. I don’t
know how Maco knows this color scheme and markings are accurate, but
I cannot prove them wrong.
model can be purchased from