ARM: Review - DML 1/72 scale Sd.Kfz. 251/22 Ausf. D

Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/72 Scale Armor Pro Series Kit No.
7351; Sd.Kfz. 251/22 Ausf. D; 174 parts (165 in grey styrene, 8 etched
brass, 1 steel wire); retail price US$14.50
Advantages: the very nice 1/72 Pak 40 with mounts and the D 251 form
this popular conversion
Disadvantages: RP parts (as in right puny!); brass not an option
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for all German WWII =93Small Scale=94 fans
Given the late war German penchant for adding weapons to anything
that moved and had armor protection, desperation is the mother of
invention. The best overall antitank gun the Germans had was the 7.5
cm Pak 40 and late in 1944 it began to show up on anything the Germans
could mount it on. While effective in its towed form, as the Allies
brought in more artillery towed weapons began to suffer greater
attrition and also the problem of mobility. This weapon, which married
the Pak 40 to their D model of the medium armored personnel carrier
version of the halftrack, was a quick and expedient way to accomplish
those ends.
DML has now taken their recently added 1/72 7.5 cm PaK 40, dropped
the lower carrigae, added four parts, and created the =93Stroke 22" to
its popular line of 1/72 scale German halftrack kits.
The PaK 40 is a jewel that consists of some 34 parts, and as
previously noted looks to be a nicely done pantograph of their
developed 1/35 scale PaK 40 family. It comes with three different
barrel options (slide molded with hollow bores) but this version comes
with the heavy bracing and platform mount to install it into the 251
hull. An etched brass insert (MA5) is provided for the gun shield
sliding mask which goes above the gun barrel when the shield is
installed. The directions also indicate shaving the inside edges of
the gun shield (H28 and H29) to achieve the proper thinness and
standoff of the original.
However this kit follows most of the recent DML kit in that etched
brass is becoming no longer an option. The base shield and roof
element for the cab section (MA2) must be folded and inserted into
place when the gun mount is installed. Also the stowage bin (MA3) has
to be added as well. Last of all is MA1, the hood. The other parts in
brass include the gun travel lock (MA 5- 6) and some small bits for
the hood.
The rest of the kit follows the tried and true DML halftrack system.
The lower hull is a single piece pan, less the rear area, and the
axles are molded on the lower hull. The running gear for each side
consists of a rear (inside) wheel section, a center wheel section,
three outer road wheels, and drivers. Once installed the connectors
between the individual wheels on the inside and the center are not
visible, so it helps speed up assembly while making it easier to get
things aligned. Tracks are the gluable DS plastic, so you can also get
them to settle down on top of the road wheels with some care.
The model comes with simplified but plentiful interior fittings but
they are quite tiny as noted and will require a good deal of care.
Interior bits include the various control levers, rifles, MP
submachine guns, and other items. The hinge mechanisms for the doors
are single pieces, but are non-operating types. They cement to the
lower rear section, as the upper hull has the rear angular parts of
the hull attached to it. The four front viewers are separate parts and
can be cemented either open or closed as well, as is the hood assembly
with two flaps. No engine or interior is provided for the engine bay.
The fenders are two-piece units, but the stowage bins are only
offered as closed parts. Other RP parts include the =93Notek=94 headlight
and mount and the drum magazines for the MG 42 machine gun. The
weapons appear to be very close to scale, something I don=92t recall
from other manufacturers in the past!
Two finishing options are provided: neither one identifies a unit but
one is for a vehicle with three-color camo (black 248) and the other
in sand with white crosses. A small set of generic license plates from
Cartograf is provided along with the targeted sheet.
Overall this kit adds a popular version to the lineup and should be
well received.
Thanks to Freddie Leung of DML for the review sample.
Cookie Sewell
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