Dragon 1/35 Neubau-Fahrzeug #3-5
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
Germany’s first attempt at creating a heavy tank was the Neubau-Fahrzeug (literally, “New Construction Vehicle”), although the design was in fact too ponderous for the blitzkrieg tactics that were being developed. Nevertheless, a total of five vehicles were made, and three of them saw combat in Norway in 1940. The multi-turreted Neubau-Fahrzeug was conceived in 1933, with the main armaments being a 7.5cm KwK L/24 gun and coaxial 3.7cm KwK L/45 gun. There were two other turrets fitted front and rear with machine guns. While the Neubau-Fahrzeug offered good propaganda value, the vehicle operated by a six-man crew wasn’t truly effective in combat. Three tanks fought in a specially created Panzerabteilung in Norway, although one was demolished after getting stuck in a swamp. By 1942, all these heavy tanks had been scrapped.
Looks like Dragon has taken pretty much the same bits as used in the Cyber-hobby boxing of the initial two prototypes and made those changes needed to produce tanks three, four and five. Like the previous kit, this one has individual track links, which helps produce the 580 parts count. Photo etch is used very sparingly and I'm pleased of that aspect of things. From the look of things, you can eliminate the p.e. entirely if you wish as they seem to just be replacements for injected parts. Like the Soviet T-35, this vehicle fits the 'land fortress' appellation quite well, thanks to the multiple turrets.
I'll let Dragon's PR blurb point out the various features:
- Newly tooled turret w/MG reproduced
- Rare & idiosyncratic Neubau-fahrzeug Nr 3-5 perfectly recreated
- Turret side hatches can be assembled open/closed
- Slide-molded upper hull produced w/intricate details
- Hull bottom has full and correct details
- Slide-molded turret for maximum detail
- Delicate 7.5cm KwK L/24 and 3.7KwK L/45 produced
- Movable, upgraded frontal MG
- Turret can be rotated at different angles
- Realistic U-shaped metal tow hooks
- Intricate ventilator w/photo-etched parts
- Intricate antenna included
- Complicated exhaust system accurately recreated
- Delicate engine deck reproduced
- Side fenders w/pattern detail on both top and bottom surfaces
- Injection-molded fenders made to thinnest possible dimensions
- Injection-molded on-vehicle tools
- Delicate suspension system
- Drive sprocket accurately recreated
- Front idler wheels w/details on both sides
- Delicate 38cm track produced
The kit provides every possible marking that these tanks carried, including the one used in the 1940 Norway campaign. Base color is Panzer Grey with the Norway tanks having large dark brown bits. Some of the options have large white numbers on the back of the main turret.
If ou missed out on the Cyber-hobby boxing, you now have the opportunity to add an interesting tank to your collection. While only one of these apparently saw combat (the other two being the 1st and 2nd prototype), it was an important step in German tank development.
Thanks to www.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview kit. Get yours at your local shop or on-line retailer.
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