ARM: Review - DML 1/35 scale Sd.Kfz.7 with Crew

Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 Scale =9139-=9145 Series Kit No.
6545; Sd.Kfz. 7 8t Half-Track Early Production w/Crew - Smart Kit;
(257 in grey styrene, 256 =93Magic Track=94 two-piece track links. 9
etched brass, 6 clear styrene, 2 film masks, 1 length of twisted steel
wire); price US$49.95 via DragonUSA Online
Advantages: the basic prime mover version of this vehicle gets a
matching crew; nicely done rear compartment with all hatches optional
position and interior bulkheads; well done lower frame details and
fender section; DS plastic tires to avoid seams and extra assemblies;
full engine and underside details
Disadvantages: as a =93Smart Kit=94 probably not enough brass for some;
small links perhaps better as DS tracks; no =93kit=94 nor ammunition
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all German halftrack and artillery fans
DML has now enhanced their basic artillery prime mover version of the
famous eight ton halftrack with the addition of a crew. This kit
=93tweaks=94 the previous version (No. 6466) by adding a sprue of modified
parts - new sides with a new rear deck and the luggage rails =96 and six
The box art by Ron Volstad is dated 2009, but this kit follows in the
order of things. But the vehicle shown on the box lid is one with a
full crew of 11 men and a 15 cm sFH 18 in tow, so unfortunately anyone
wanting to have such a machine will have to get a second set of
figures as only six are provided. (They will be released separately as
DML Kit No. 6671, but no idea when.)
Happily, unlike the Tamiya =93zombie clones=94 from 1974 the figures here
each have distinct poses and personalities. Each is a =93Gen1" figure of
six basic parts but as they are in travel mode all come with sidecaps
and not helmets. Also no rifles are included, which is a bit of a
shame as most photos of the vehicles in transit show Kar 98K rifles
clipped to their mounts in the crew sections.
As before DML has provided a very thorough kit with a complete engine
and undercarriage to include the winch and all associated parts, as
well as passenger body with its three rows of seats and stowage
compartments at the rear of the hull. Once more two-piece =93Magic
Track=94 halftrack tracks are included =96 this time apparently with an
earlier version of the track =96 but as often noted are very small and
DML could have made many modelers happy by molding them as one-piece
runs in DS plastic. Also, as the kits are =93Smart Kits=94 they make use
of slide molding and other tricks to avoid needless small parts
assemblies and minimize the use of brass.
It still comes with complete engine, transfer case, fuel tank, four-
part winch drum, and complete towhook installation that form part of
the chassis. The drivers are two-piece with suitable rollers
represented and also add etched brass centers for scale appearance.
The front tires are again DS plastic outers and treads combined with
a styrene inner section. As fit is reported as good and the joint is
on the inside it should not be a problem, and the result is a nice
diamond-pattern tread all the way around with no seams. Another
complete tire unit is included as the spare for under the cargo bed,
and here it is provided with a partial stowage bin of its own.
Once again, the grille is solid, and perhaps could have been molded
differently to give it some =93airiness=94 with the radiator behind it.
The hood comes with separate side panels which can be left off as per
the originals.
The passenger body is nicely done with rifle clips on the backs of
the preceding seats and a very finely molded rail assembly for the
cargo stowage on the top of the stowage compartments at the rear of
the body.
While the compartments come with all interior dividers in place =96 a
one piece base unit accomplishes that =96 the doors are molded in one
piece with a thin center joint, so anyone who wants to show them open
can open them up with a simple knife cut and snap. But as the vehicle
comes with no kit or accessories, the modeler will have to provide his
own ammo cases or kit. (Given the fact it could tow either 8.8 cm Flak
guns or 10 cm/15 cm artillery this is actually understandable.)
This kit again provides masks for the windshield sections so that the
model may assembled and then painted, and which is a nice touch.
Research and technical assistance were provided by Tom Cockle and
Gary Edmundson.
Nine different finishing options are offered with a=93number jungle=94
set of Cartograf decals but no unit markings. The variants which can
be modeled are: Unidentified Artillery Unit, Operation =93Barbarossa=94
1941 (panzer grey with license plates); Unidentified Unit, Eastern
Front 1941 (panzer grey with license plates); Unidentified Unit,
Eastern Front 1942 (panzer grey with sand stripes); Unidentified Unit,
Eastern Front 1942 (panzer grey with whitewash mottle); 21st Panzer
Division, North Africa 1942 (sand with markings); =93Herman Goering=94
Division, Tunisia 1942 (sand with green stripes and WL license
plates); Unidentified Unit, Eastern Front 1943 (sand with license
plates and white trim); 256th Infantry Division, Eastern Front 1943
(sand with no markings); and, Unidentified Unit, Eastern Front 1943
(tricolor with no markings).
Overall the addition of a new mold crew makes a nice model even
Thanks to Freddie Leung for the review sample.
Cookie Sewell
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the figures here
As far as I'm concerned 9 PE parts is a reasonable number and *NOT* a disadvantage at all.
Cheers from Peter
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Sir Ridesalot

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