Dragon 1/35 RSO/01 Type 470
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
The Eastern Front presented many difficulties during WWII, one of which was the harsh weather. With few well-paved roads available, rain and snow could render the terrain almost impassable, as Germany found out during their first winter in 1941-42. For such difficult conditions, Germany realized it needed special tracked vehicles to traverse Russia’s roads and countryside. One solution offered up was the Raupenschlepper Ost (literally “Caterpillar Tractor East”, or “RSO” for short). The RSO, based on the Steyr 1500A light truck, was initially conceived as a prime mover and tractor for towing artillery pieces, although it was eventually put to many uses. The fully tracked vehicle performed very well in the muddy conditions, and various manufacturers eventually produced 23,000 vehicles before the war ended. The RSO/03 was a later-production variant that had a simple metal cab with a soft-top roof. It was powered to a top speed of 30km/h by a Deutz diesel engine. A pintle was fitted at the rear for towing artillery pieces.
The RSO may have been inspired by very similar full-tracked small tractors in use in other armies, mostly originated from the pre-war light to medium series of Vickers artillery tractors.
As you can see from the list of features presented below, Dragon has decided to give their later RSO kit a complete makeover. This is not a curbside and comes complete with a full engine, detailed suspension and a complete driver's compartment. There is also a full bed with a frame in case you wish to add a tarpaulin and there are side storage areas with a load of some sort that appears to be ammo cases.
Other features are side panels and a tail gate that can be posed open. You can do the same with the main doors. The kit comes with Magic Track individual track links and those make up a goodly portion of the 400 parts. All the rest of the details are listed below.
- Newly tooled RSO rendered with fine detail
- Newly tooled cabin captures the complex shape accurately, produced using slide-mold technology
- Newly tooled levers and pedals for driver's compartment can be assembled in separate parts
- New dash board w/realistic detail
- Side panels and tailgate of brand new cargo deck can be shown folded up or down
- Delicate and realistic new engine provided
- Brand new Magic Track
- Curved frame on cargo compartment
- Spare Winterketten tracks w/detailed surfaces on side panels
- Cabin produced in separate parts for easy assembly
- Driver's door can be assembled open/closed
- Realistic seats included
- Delicate Notek lamp reproduced
- One-piece chassis and upper hull w/accurate thickness and details
- Accurate lower hull
- Fine pattern molded on hull bottom
- Drive sprocket and mountings accurately replicated
- Engine and transmission realistically reproduced
- Detailed suspension included
- Delicate road wheels
- Separate road wheels w/photo-etched details mounted in pairs
- Ammo case is included
- Muffler w/exhaust pipe accurately produced
There are seven markings options, most of them for unidentified units, though you have a variety of schemes in which you can paint this one. The decal sheet is pretty much just plates. A nice touch is the addition of masks for the windows. That will help quite a bit when it comes time to paint.
In all, a very nice little kit that makes into a great prime mover for smaller artillery or a general purpose vehicle.
Thanks to www.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview kit. Get yours today at your local retailer.
If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact the editor or see other details in the
Back to the Main Page
Back to the Previews Index Page