ARM: DML 1/35 scale Sd.Kfz. 7 8t Typ HL m 11 1943 Production

Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 Scale '39-'45 Series Kit No. 6794; S d.Kfz. 7 8t Typ HL m 11 1943 Production - Smart Kit; 501 parts (270 in grey
styrene, 216 "Magic Track" links and pads, 8 etched brass, 6 clear styrene , 1 twisted steel wire); pre-order price US$59.95 via Dragon USA Online
Advantages: first model ever of this specific vehicle; nicely done use of " slide molding" and DS plastic tires to avoid seams and extra assemblies; fu ll engine and underside details; lots of options for finishing - two cabs, two bodies
Disadvantages: as a "Smart Kit" probably not enough brass for some; small l inks perhaps better as DS tracks
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all German halftrack and artillery fans
    In order to increase production of the very handy eight ton halftrack prim e mover, as well as having them built by Krauss Maffei the Germans also had some made by Borgward. These were slightly different from the standard pro duction models but shared most of the same primary parts.
    DML has now added this alternative variant to their family of eight-tonner s and to that end have changed or modified some of the basic parts from the earlier kits. At least 56 parts have been added or tweaked from the earlie r kits in order to replicate the body and details of the Borgward vehicles.
    The new mold body includes a new main fender assembly with small rolled sk irting on the edges and a number of other tweaks. DML has provided directio ns showing where new parts must be added or older ones cut or modified to t ake the new parts. But once again only two Kar 98K rifles are provided, so anyone wanting full racks better head for the spares box.
    The kit retains the same nicely done details from its predecessors - a com plete engine and undercarriage to include a complete transfer case, fuel ta nk, four-part winch drum, and complete tow hook installation that form part of the chassis. The drivers are two-piece with suitable rollers represente d and also add etched brass centers for scale appearance. Twisted steel wir e is now provided for the winch.
    Once again two-piece "Magic Track" halftrack tracks are included, but as o ften noted are very small and DML could have made many modelers happy by mo lding them as one-piece runs in DS plastic. Also, as the kits are "Smart Ki ts" they make use of slide molding and other tricks to avoid needless small parts assemblies and minimize the use of brass.
    The kit retains the nicely done front tires with DS plastic outers and tre ads combined with a styrene inner section.
    Like the others it has an open windshield and thus the painting masks are included.
    Research and technical assistance were provided by H3 Design Office, Shin Okada, Minoru Igarashi, Tom Cockle and Gary Edmundson.
    Two finishing options are offered but while a Cartograf license plate "num ber jungle". Is included, neither one has a registration number identified. The variants which can be modeled are: Unidentified Unit, Eastern Front 19 43 (tri-color spray pattern); Unidentified Unit, Western Front 1945 (sand o verall).
    Overall this is a nice version of the prime mover and should go well with other DML artillery kits.
    Thanks to Freddie Leung for the review sample.
Cookie Sewell
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