ARM: Review - DML 1/35 Scale Tiger (P) - Premium Edition

Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 Scale '39-'45 Series Kit No.
6352; Sd.Kfz. 181 Panzerkampfwagen IV (P) Premium Edition; 734 parts
(355 grey styrene, 228 Magic Track links, 127 etched brass, 12 clear
styrene, 4 prebent steel wire, 2 prebent copper wire, 2 twisted steel
wire, 2 prebent etched brass, 1 spring, 1 turned aluminum gun barrel);
price around US $45
Advantages: nice if older kit receives upgrades and bonus parts from
later Tiger I and Elefant kit releases; Magic Track always a nice
change and upgrade for single-link track kits; some corrections to
original kit
Disadvantages: lot of extra work for a one-off vehicle; no zimmerit
paste on hull or turret
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all die-hard Tiger fans
There are a number of one-off items that have always proven popular
with modelers, and many of them deservedly so due to the fame of their
prototypes: the Ryan "Spirit of St. Louis," the USS Constitution,
HMS Victory, the Bismarck, NCC-1701 USS Enterprise, RMS Titanic, and
even the "Leopold" railway gun. (Yes, I know that there are related
or sister items to each of these, but only these specific items gained
iconic status.) But among armored vehicles, this particular tank is one
of the very few to gain such a following, along with other short-lived
or unfinished German designs such as the "Maus" heavy tank or
"Dora" 80 cm heavy gun.
DML released a pretty nice kit of this tank in November 2004 as their
kit No. 6210, but as usual the "boo birds" were not happy as it was
not perfect. DML provided most of the kit in styrene with DS plastic
one-piece tracks and only sufficient etched brass for the grillwork,
and not much more. There were some twitches over hatches and details as
well, as the kit shared much of its architecture with the then-recently
released "Ferdinand" and "Elefant" kits.
DML now adds this kit to their "Premium Edition" stock with more
than double the parts of the original kit, adding "Magic Track" for
the kit as well as a good-sized fret of etched brass and parts from
their more recent "Slide Molded" Tiger I kits.
The "Magic Track" provides two kinds of links - an "A" link
(parts R) with a guide tooth and a "B" link (parts S) that snap
together. This should solve the complaints from those who want the
track to sag properly (but probably getting grouses from the
"one-piece track" fans for dropping the DS plastic ones!) The good
news is the "Magic Track" links are some of the best around,
needing minimal cleanup and replicating the originals very nicely.
The etched brass covers the original grilles as well as many other
details and brackets that dress up the model. Some such as the device
to the rear of the commander's cupola (MA31) are going to be somewhat
difficult to shape but they do provide nice details. A styrene version
(A9) is also provided.
As the model uses parts from the later Tiger I series of kits, it
makes a step forward with the turned aluminum barrel and a step
backwards with the frou-frou "realistic recoil" spring feature. The
kit comes with no less than three mantelets but the one in the
"Special Features" card bag is the correct one to use. It also has
two different right sides to the turret, one with a pistol port and one
with the hatch, so the modeler has some flexibility on making the most
accurate kit possible based on the original's career.
Only one set of markings and painting directions are provided for
the vehicle as the command tank of s.Pz.Jg.Abt. 653 on the Eastern
Front in 1944. Again, no zimmerit is provided for the hull or turret so
the modeler will have to add them if desired.
Overall this adds to DML's Tiger "family" but I am not sure,
since it was a one-off "orphan," if those who purchased the
original kit will want this one as well. DML may well be on their way
to becoming their own worst enemy with this "Premium" kits as
fence-sitters may prefer to wait for an upgrade/corrected version of a
specific vehicle in the future.
Thanks to Freddie Leung of DML for the review sample.
Cookie Sewell
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I think you mean Panzerkampfwagen VI?
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Er, would you believe dyslexic fingers???
Cookie Sewell
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