Panda 1/35 BMD-1

KIT #: PH 35004
PRICE: approx $40.00
DECALS: Three options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: New tool kit


The BMD-1 is a Soviet airborne amphibious tracked infantry fighting vehicle, which was introduced in 1969 and first seen by the West in 1970. BMD stands for Boyevaya Mashina Desanta (Боевая Машина Десанта, literally "Combat Vehicle of the Airborne"). It can be dropped by parachute and although it resembles the BMP-1 it is in fact much smaller. The BMD-1 was used as an IFV by the Soviet Army's airborne divisions. An improved variant of BMD-1 was developed, the BMD-2. The BMD-1 also provided a basis for the BTR-D airborne multi-purpose tracked APC. Main armament is a 73mm gun.


Adding to the growing number of Soviet/Russian semi-modern kits that have been released over the years is this very nicely done version of the BMD-1. As noted in the history section, it is sort of a mini-BMP-1, using the same gun and turret. The molding on the kit is very good with only a tiny amount of flash found on one of the lower air intake grilles. Photo etch is mostly used for cooling screens, fender ends and those flat bits that are on the top of the nose of the vehicle (I guess they are some sort of splash guard). All of the hatches on the body and turret are separate with interior detail so you can pose them open if you have a figure to stick in there. There is no detail inside the hull or the turret.

The kit's suspension is nicely molded with two-piece road wheels and idler with a three piece sprocket gear. What will take some time is the individual track links which each have a separate guide pin that will need to be installed. To quote the instructions "make 88". You are provides spares. The turret is another nicely done assembly that will require a bit of trimming and some photo etch. Thereis a spotlight and what looks like a TOW missile that fits atop the main gun.

Instructions are well drawn and provide clear construction sequences with detail drawings where needed. Full color painting instructions are provided and show that this is an overall FS 34102 green with a white missiles. Markings for three different vehicles are provided, with no indication of unit affiliation. The decal sheet is nicely printed with no issues in registration since they are all white.


Those into Soviet/Russian military vehicles will be quite pleased to see this one being offered. It looks like it will make into an excellent model and aside from the individual track links, should prove to be a relatively quick build.


May 2014

Thanks to Panda Hobby for the preview kit. Get yours at your local retailer or have them order it for you.

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