Takom 1/35 Skoda 30.5cm M1916 Siege Howitzer
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
The koda 30.5 cm Mörser M. 11 was a siege howitzer produced by koda Works and used by the Austro-Hungarian Army during World War I and by Germany in World War I & II.
Development began in 1906, when a development contract was placed by the Austro-Hungarian high command with Skoda-Werke in Pilsen to develop a weapon capable of penetrating the concrete fortresses being built in Belgium and Italy. Development work continued until 1909, when the first prototype was finished and, in 1910, fired secretly in Hungary.
The weapon was able to penetrate 2 m (6 ft 7 in) of reinforced concrete with its special armour piercing shell, which weighed 384 kg (847 lb). There were a few technical problems with the first piece, but, after few reconstructions in 1911, the upgraded piece made another round of testing in Felixdorf and in the mountains of Tyrol. After that, Moritz von Auffenberg, the Minister of War, placed an order for 24 of the new weapons.
In 1916, the M. 11 design was upgraded and the new M. 11/16 was produced - the difference was mainly that the firing platform had been modified to allow for a traverse of 360 degrees. Also in 1916, a new model was released, the M. 16, which had longer barrel (L/12) and longer range 12,300 metres (13,500 yd). This last improvement is the subject of this kit, which was used extensively by the Germans in WWII.
I have a fondness for artillery of all sorts and when I saw this kit at the LHS, I picked it up. While it seems a bit pricey, I have heard a lot of nice things about Takom so brought it home. The kit consists of three sprues, all in a tan plastic. One of the sprues seems to be mostly for the base of the gun while another contains pieces that include shells and the cart used to transport them up to the gun. There are no metal parts and though the instructions provide a guide to using photo etch, none is included.
The actual length of the three piece barrel when complete looks to be about 4 inches with the base itself measuring a bit over 5 inches so this is not a huge model, even in 1/35 (which I guess is about right for a mortar). The base allows the gun to swivel 360 degrees while it can be elevated as well. As mentioned, the kit comes with a pair of shells along with a wheeled had cart on which the shell is moved to the gun. Mounted on the back of the gun's mount is a trough that would be used to slide the shell into the breech.
Instructions are in booklet form and have 18 well drawn construction steps. There is a painting guide that really is not needed as everything is the same basic color; either panzer grey or panzer yellow.
Though it may seem a bit pricey, I have to admit that it is just a cool kit. We don't see much in the way of artillery pieces like this being done in mainstream injected plastic and so it is a most welcome addition. One can only hope that Takom will produce a WWI version of this as it seems to have many of the parts needed.
February 2015 Thanks to me for snagging for the preview kit. If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contactthe editor or see other details in the Back to the Main Page Back to the Previews Index Page
Thanks to me for snagging for the preview kit.
If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contactthe editor or see other details in the
Back to the Main Page
Back to the Previews Index Page