German Mechanised Howitzer
|Kit #: 03305||
by Peter van Kempen - P(dot)Kempen5(at)chello(dot)nl
kit of a less modelled vehicle is a welcome newcomer to Braille
scale and was some time ago announced for release in October 2017.
The 12 sprues are packed in polyethylene bags to prevent damage to protruding parts. There is also a nice, colour printed, booklet with assembly instructions, containing much more information and larger layouts than previous Revell kits. The kit is classed level 5, which is the grade Revell uses for experienced modellers. If this refers to the number of parts that's correct (172!).
However, I cannot say the work ahead looks complex and some test fits worked well. It's the sheer number of parts that causes a lot of work to obtain a clean built model. There are a number of sink and ejector marks that require filling or filing.
|The tracks are hard plastic and both sides of them show reasonable detail.|
|A nice touch is that Revell provided a pair of curved sections of two links, to get a better fit over the small diameter idler wheel. Don't know yet how this will work out in practice. I cannot make more comments on them as I am not an expert on these.|
|The axles are fixed, so depicting tracks that follow the ground work will be difficult if not impossible without major surgery. Certainly it's not the quick build solution for the suspension that we see from other suppliers, that's for sure. Looking at the work involved to get this model together, some will be happy, and some will not, but can we expect all wishes for all to be fulfilled in one model?|
|The wheels even have separate rubber outer bands, to be separately painted and fitted on the rims, which are showing bolt details.|
MG 3 machine gun and cupola’s ( you have a choice here) are beautiful,
well moulded and full of detail.
So are the barrel halves, they look as they will fit into a reasonable gun tube with the typical 109G form. Turret and hull shapes all are well done and logically segmented, my first test shows good seamless fitting of these main parts.
|The turret baskets are done in plastic and look a bit thick. No doubt modellers will find ways to exchange them or make realistic substitutes, or else, some work will needed to thin them down.|
|Some support points on the upper hull, like the attachment points for the longer barrel travel lock, need to be removed. They indicate that a Paladin or another long gun version of this howitzer is in the pipeline.|
Ample decals are provided for the shown 4 different battalions and periods of use within the Bundeswehr. The decals are well printed and in register.
regard to scale, the rough comparison of the subassemblies does not
show evident deviations from the vehicle dimensions width and length
that I could find. Detail on surfaces is a bit soft, so the modeller
will have to get his paint and weathering skill out to enhance grids
and other details to live up the vehicles appearance.
Good to see Revell still comes up with new issues of detailed models from the modern era , this one will keep us busy for some well spent evenings, before we can park it in our collections ranks.
Conclusion : Over all, a recommended addition by a reliable supplier in his standard of quality that we have grown used to.
Review sample bought by the author
Comments added by Robert Kru :
is a separate ring for the rubber tire but from what I learned in
Missing Lynx (see here),
part of the metal rim should also be visible. To get the correct alignment,
you'll need patience A round mask to get this correct is highly recommended.