Dragon 1/35 Flakpanzer 38(t) Ausf L
Check the preview for a good historical summary and a quick look at what’s in the box.
This is my third Dragon Smart Kit, and I stand amazed once again. In fact, almost too amazed: this was one of the hardest kits I’ve ever assembled. Start with over 540 parts, throw in the dreaded photoetch and individual link tracks (Dragon’s “Magictracks”), and you have a case of advanced modeling syndrome just looking for a place to happen (in fact, it took me several months to finally complete this beast, and I had to slap the AMS out of myself).
Per the instructions, I started with the lower hull and suspension system. I also assembled the road wheels and glued them to the lower hull. I then assembled the transmission, the engine (26 pieces!) and the radiator.
The next subassembly was the upper hull. There are quite a few parts on each
of these, so I tried to take my time and make sure that I didn’t miss anything.
I like to glue the tools on the tank and then hand-paint them later. Right off
the bat, the dreaded PE came into play. There are a myriad of latches,
tie downs, and boxes that are PE. I don’t have one of the PE bending tools, but
I would highly recommend one of these for this kit.
As an example of the PE complexity, each of the tie downs for the
Step 13 is where I had the most trouble. I decided to build the kit with the gun shields in the “up” position, but for some reason, I just could not get the parts to line up correctly (perhaps due to mislabeling?). No matter how I tried them, the angles just would not match up. After several attempts, I decided the only alternative was to scratch-build my own shields with the correct angles. So I made some templates and cut out the parts from thin white plastic stock.
|COLORS AND MARKINGS|
I started by painting the interior compartments. From articles I have been able to read on the Internet, German armor engine compartments were painted red, so I opted for Floquil’s hull red. After painting the compartment, I placed the covers on it and then painted the vehicle’s exterior. I sprayed the transmission compartment flat white.
For the exterior, I decided on a different paint scheme than the instructions offered. I started with MM Sand Gelb as the overall base coat, and then painted red brown and dark green splotches on the vehicle. I sprayed the tracks with Testors Steel.
Next, I dry brushed the vehicle with Polly S Fantasy Goblin Flesh to simulate rust (ever since Floquil stopped making their rust wash, I have found it difficult to locate a paint that actually looks like real rust. This fantasy paint is about as close as I have come lately). The final weathering was to take a silver artist’s pencil and rub it on sharp edges where there normally would be wear to simulate bare metal.
This is yet another great kit from Dragon. I highly recommend this kit to all armor buffs, plus anybody that’s up for a modeling challenge!
Thanks to your editor for the review kit.
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