ARM : Review - DML 1/35 scale "Chow Time" 3.7 cm Pak with Crew

Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 scale '39-'45 Series Kit No. 6697; " Chow Time" German Anti-Tank Crew (Eastern Front); 124 parts in grey styrene
; estimated price US$28.95
Advantages: nice, instant vignette kit
Disadvantages: photo-style directions hard to read, no figure painting dire ctions
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all German Eastern Front fans
    The Eastern Front quickly became no friend to the German soldier, and when winter 1941 hit things really got bad. Not only was the weather nasty, the advent of vehicles like the KV and T-34 also ruined the day of many well-t rained soldiers. The 3.7 cm PaK 36/37 antitank guns were soon shown to be w orthless against these tanks, and were soon derisively named "door knockers " by their crews.
    DML has now released what amounts to an instant vignette kit of a PaK crew having a meal while waiting for their next operation. The kit comes with t he well-known DML PaK 36/37 kit with all of its accessories such as the "St ick Bomb" Stielgranate 41 HEAT round and, surprisingly, the kit also offers an upgrade to the Soviet 45mm Model 1932/1938 gun via a new barrel. (The t wo guns were designed by the same team when the Soviets and Germans coopera ted in the early 1930s.)
    The gun is nicely done and the upgrade kit includes the new barrel and bre ech for the Soviet 45mm piece. A total of 13 new parts are included for thi s gun. The rest is the nice little 37mm piece that has been around for a nu mber of years. However, no ammunition or ammunition canisters are provided in the kit, which is a bit odd considering the rest of it.
    The three figures are all wearing greatcoats with two men standing and eat ing and one man cooking over a fire, which is not provided. Each figure con sists of at least nine parts (head, torso, arms, legs, two-piece coat and c ollar) with separate headgear and details. The kit also provides a loaf of field bread, open mess kits with the tops used for carrying food, and assor ted cans including one which the kneeling man is trying to open with a bayo net (guess the Germans didn't have the P-38, but I digress...)
    While the parts are well done, the directions are black and white photos a nd very hard to make out which parts go where. Also, there are no direction s provided for painting the figures, which lets them down a bit. At least t here is a nice box art painting by Ron Volstad to use for reference.
    Three suggested finishing options are provided: one 3.7 cm PaK 36/37; one 3.7 PaK 36/37 with Stielgranate 41 loaded; and one 4.5 cm Pak 184(r), all i n grey. No decals are provided.
    Overall this is a bit of nice change from the "four unrelated guys in a bo x" sets of recent days.
    Thanks to Freddie Leung for the review sample.     
Cookie Sewell
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