Tamiya- Panzerkampfwagen Ausf. E/F 38(t)
For the First Look review- http://www.amps-armor.org/SiteReviews/ShowReview.aspx?id=14454
Tamiya's new kits really are amazing-- the company has long been known for their "add glue, shake the box, and there's your perfect kit" quality and it's well deserved. The fit of this kit is really quite perfect. Assembly begins with building the lower hull tub-- it is made up of 5 pieces as opposed to the usual one piece. You then add the top deck pieces and rear panel and the one PE part of the kit for the engine grill.
Addition of the suspension arms follows, then the road wheels, sprocket, and rear idlers. Tracks are link and length with the typical long upper and lower runs and the single pieces for around the sprocket and rear idler. I used Tamiya Cement to form the tracks around those parts and made the complete lengths before letting everything set, leaving one section unglued so I could easily remove the tracks for painting.
The fenders, front armor plate, and various hull parts follow.The pair of storage boxes are each four part assemblies. I waited to add all the tools and smaller hull parts until I was done painting. The detail on the grouser box is really excellent- with all the holes present. The assembly of the gun mantlet is smooth and while the detail is pretty nice, it is the only interior section in the kit and it'll be impossible to see once it's all closed up and the figure is in place. Turret assembly follows and is made up of the base, rear, two side pieces, and top. Once the small turret parts are in place, the figure is assembled. I really love how Tamiya has designed the figures in their newer kits. The notches for the separate parts make positioning the parts flawless.
Painting and Finishing
Two Russian schemes are included in the kit-- both in German gray. One for the 19th Panzer Division and one for the 7th Panzer Division. I chose the 19th as the bit of red in the numbers really sets itself out distinctly from the overall gray. I used straight up Tamiya paints for the scheme and weathered with AMMO and Mig Productions washes and pigments.
Tamiya has hit another one out of the park with this 38(t). The fit of the kit is flawless and the figure is one of the best I have seen from them. I ended up losing his binoculars in the process of bringing it to the photo booth so will have to find a replacement at some point. The detail is quite nice and should make a very nice addition to your early war Axis armor collection.
Highly Recommended for Beginner to Advanced builders.
Thanks goes out to Tamiya for this review kit.
Reviewed by Michael Reeves
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