ModelCollect 1/72 E-75 Heavy Tank with 128mm Gun
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||Photo etch frets, DS-style tracks|
The E-75 Standardpanzer (also known as the Amurtiger ) was intended to be the standard heavy tank to be used as a replacement of the Tiger II and Jagdtiger. The E-75 would have been built on the same production lines as the E-50 for ease of manufacture, and the two vehicles were to share many components, including the same Maybach HL 234 engine. As its name indicates, the resulting vehicle would have weighed in at over 75 tonnes, reducing its speed to around 40 km/h. To offset the increased weight, the bogies were spaced differently from on the E-50, with an extra pair added on each side, giving the E-75 a slightly improved track to ground contact length.
According to some sources, the similarities between the E-50 and the E-75 went further; they were to be equipped with the same turret and 8.8 cm KwK 43 L/71 along with an optical rangefinder for increased long range accuracy. German scientists and engineers had successfully designed a Schmalturm, narrow-front turret and infra-red lighting and sights for use on the prototypes of the Panther Ausf. F as the war drew to a close.
The original complex suspension by torsion bars was simplified with bogies. The standard Tiger II turret was equipped with 8.8cm KwK 44 L71 gun. The engine was an improved, fuel-injected Maybach HL234 which had 900 hp.
Obviously there must have been plans to equip an E-75 with the 128mm gun as that is what this kit portrays. There are three standard sprues along with a plastic upper and lower hull. The kit comes with a set of DS style tracks along with several metal pieces. There are two photo etch frets that consist mostly of engine screens and the side skirts. A solid brass barrel is included and there is a metal ferrule.
The turret is a single piece with a lower plate. The metal barrel fits into a couple of plastic pieces, the furthest aft section has a rectangular 'box' in which one is supposed to put weight to offset the weight of the barrel. I should metion that there is a forward piece to the turret that the instructions fail to mention needs to have the aft section threaded through it. There are spare tracks and photo etch grab handles to attach to the turret along with separate hatches.
The upper hull will utilize six of the photo etch screens along with some more of the p.e. grab handles. The suspension attaches to the lower hull and looks to be an easy built. In the back are twin exhaust with covers that fits onthe the rear of it. It is at this stage that one attaches the tracks, followed by the upper hull and turret. Really, a rather non-fussy build from the look of it.
This appears to be the 'ultra' boxing judging not only from the brass and photo etch, but because it includes the side skirts. There are additional construction steps showing the application of these skirts. All the attachment pieces are photo etch and one will have to bend the skirts to fit. A bit of parts removal will be needed to fit the photo etch pieces.
The instructions are well drawn and there is a single camouflage scheme shown, this being the late war banded variety. The decal sheet is nicely printed and seems to be a generic German sheet with multiple markings. Since this is a 'whiffer', you can choose whatever scheme and markings fits your fancy.
This is a very nice kit of a paper project, or 'Heer '46' if you will. The end result of this one will be pretty striking and it will definites stick out in your collection. I would not recommend this for beginners due to the photo etch and having to work with metal parts, but any intermediate level modeler with good eyesight should not have any real issues with it.
Thanks to Rick Apple of William Tell International, the importer of the kit, for the review sample. You can get these in the US from www.freetimehobbies.com, and www.houseofhobbies.com.
If you would like your product reviewed fairly and quickly, please contact me or see other details in the Note to Contributors.
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