Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 scale '38-'45 Series Kit No.6373; Fallschirmhjaeger w/Kurzer 8 cm Granatenwerfer 42 - Gen2; 278 parts (256 in grey styrene, 22 etched brass); price US$14.95
Advantages: clean, new moldings of paratroops with a very nicely done mortar
Disadvantages: some modelers consider "Gen2" figures too busy; relaxed poses not suitable for "action" dioramas
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all German airborne fans
DML continues to roll on with its "Gen2" super-detailed figure sets. This one effectively replaces and eclipses kit no. 6215 (Fallschirmjaeger 8 cm Mortar Team - Italy 1944) and is a beautifully done set.
The four figures are shown in full paratrooper gear with smocks and camouflaged helmets relaxing between missions while one of the men swabs out the mortar barrel. Two have cigarettes and the fourth man has a pipe. Note that only the man with the bore brush is standing flat; all others will need a base or trench wall to lean against.
Each figure follows the now standard DML "Gen2" breakdown of some 17 parts per base figure: torso (2), legs (2), arms (2), head (2), boots (2), hands (2), coat skirt (4) and collar. Heads as usual are split along the chin strap. Small items such as belt buckles are offered in either plastic or etched brass, and the latter includes assault badges and awards as well.
Weapons are from the generic "W" sets DML has used now for some time, so each weapon has a "slide molded" hollow bore, choice of open or closed bolt, and a brass sling. The 8 cm mortar is new and replaces the one from Kit 6215, providing a nine-piece mortar with separate aiming dials and cranks and a hollow bore; it comes with eight bombs and four ammo carriers as well.
The rest of the kit are the now familiar "G" sprues with a plethora of German kit - ponchos, bread bags, mess kits, canteens, bayonets, ammo pouches, entrenching tools, gas mask canisters, and holsters.
This kit gets the "A" treatment with box art and directions by Ron Volstad.
Overall this is a nicely thought out kit and while "action" modelers may be disappointed in the poses they are more realistic and provide for a centerpoint for a diorama more readily than the more frenetic ones.
Thanks to Freddie Leung for the review sample.