DML 1/35 T-34/76 Model 1941 Kit First Look
By Ray Mehlberger
|Date of Review||February 2007||Manufacturer||DML|
|Subject||T-34/76 Model 1941||Scale||1/35|
|Kit Number||6205||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Excellent gun breech detail. Popular Soviet tank subject.||Cons||Lack of info about what Soviet tank unit the turret slogan decals are for|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$33.00|
The Soviet T-34 was an advanced tank for its era. It was produced in vast numbers to an excellent design. The design was borne from two decades of Soviet experimentation and a readiness to embrace the best of foreign ideas.
Mass production began in 1940 and its powerful gun and thick amour came as a nasty surprise to the Germans in 1941-42. Finesse was sacrificed for speed of production, but their rough and ready appearance belied their effectiveness. The T-34 was used in every role, from recovery vehicle to personnel carrier and reconnaissance. It distinguished itself at every turn, forcing the Germans back on the defensive. It is no exaggeration to say that the T-34 was the most decisive tank of WWII.
The up-gunned T-34/85 tank, introduced in 1944, is still in use with many armies still today.
- Crew: 4
- Weight: 26,000kg (57,200lb)
- Dimensions: length: 5.92m (19ft. 5in.) width: 3.0m (9ft. 10in.) height: 2.44m (8ft.)
- Range: 186km (115 mi.)
- Amour: 18-60mm (0.71-2.36in.)
- Armament: one 76.2mm gun, two 7.62mm machine-guns
- Powerplant: one V-2-34, V-12 diesel engine developing 500hp (373kW)
- Maximum road speed: 55km/h (34mph), fording: 1.37m (4ft. 6in.)
- Vertical obstacle climbing: 0.71m (2ft. 4in.)
- Trench crossing: 2.95m (9ft. 8in.)
The kit comes in a tray and lid type box. Inside the kit are 18 trees of medium gray parts, one tree of clear parts, the hull bottom single part, a fret of brass PE parts, two lengths of wire to make tow cables out of, two decal sheets (all in nine cello bags) and the instructions.
The instructions consists of a large single sheet that accordion-folds out into eight pages. These instructions are printed on slick coated paper. The assembly steps are illustrated with full color photographs of the actual kit parts vs line drawings we usually see on instruction sheets. Some modelers claim they like this, others hate it. I remain neutral. My pet peeve with DML is that 95% of their instructions do not include a history of the kit’s subject. I have only ever seen histories on the instruction sheets that are in the Singapore produced DML kits.
Page one of the instructions begins with a color repeat of the box art. This is followed by part trees drawings. Some of the parts in these drawings are shaded out, indicating that they are excess and not needed to complete the model.
Page two begins with “Cautions” about the kit, in six languages including English. This is followed by international assembly symbol explanations and a paint color listing (calling out both Gunze and Model Master brand paints). The bottom of the page gives the first two assembly steps.
Pages three through seven give a balance of 21 total assembly steps.
Page eight gives two marking and camouflage schemes:
- T-34/76 of the 1st Guards Tank Brigade, near Moscow, March 1942. (this is the box-art subject, with the “Waffle” pattern)
- T-34/76 of the 21st Tank Corps., 130th Tank Brigade, Southern Front, April 1942. (in an overall winter white-wash scheme)
This is followed by decal application instructions, in six languages including English.
There are two identical small letter A parts trees. These are co-joined to the letter M and N parts trees. Letter A trees hold: road wheels, idler wheel arms, antenna base, final transfer covers, engine hatch door etc. (12 parts per tree).
Small letter B parts tree holds: the turret roof, tow rings, rear hull plate, exhaust pipes, headlight housings etc. (21 parts).
Medium sized letter C tree holds: the hull top, rear fender storage boxes, turret periscope housings, hull nose plate etc. (16 parts). One of these parts is shaded as being excess on the instructions.
There are two identical medium sized letter D parts trees. These are co-joined to the letter F parts tree. Letter D tree holds the road wheels and their hub-caps (15 parts per tree).
Small letter E tree holds: tie down loops, spare tread link brackets etc. (19 parts)
There are two identical medium sized letter F parts trees. As mentioned above, they are co-joined to letter D part tree. Letter F tree holds: the drive sprockets, idler wheels, tow cable ends (used with the metal wire provided), armored exhaust pipe covers, storage boxes etc. (23 parts per tree).
Large letter G tree holds: some turret parts, the large central engine air intake panel, glacis plate, a jack, the gun mantle, side air intake screen panels etc. (25 parts) Three of these parts are indicated as being excess.
Small letter H tree is co-joined to the letter K part tree. Letter H tree holds: the turret front parts etc (13 parts)
Letter I is the single hull bottom part.
Letter J is the two clear headlight lenses.
Small letter K tree is co-joined, as mentioned above, to letter H tree. Letter K tree holds the main gun’s breech mechanism parts. This breech mechanism is highly-detailed and excellent detail. (13 parts)
There are three identical medium sized letter L parts trees. These hold the individual tread links. (59 parts per tree).
There are two identical small letter M parts trees. As mentioned above, these are co-joined to trees letter A and N. Letter M tree holds various tie down rings, vent covers etc. (9 parts per tree). Four of these parts is indicated as being excess.
There are two identical small letter N parts trees. Co-joined to trees letter A and M. Letter N tree holds internal spring suspension channels (4 parts per tree).
Letter MA is the brass PE fret. It holds the main engine air intake screen and it’s bracing, various tie downs and straps (33 parts). For the nervous modeler, not all of these have to absolutely used. Some of them are alternates to plastic parts in the kit.
Lettering now jumps to letter S, which is the two lengths of metal wire to use to make tow cables by super-gluing the plastic end loops to each strand.
Final items in the kit are the two decal sheets. One sheet contains “Waffle” pattern panels. The second sheet is 11 different turret slogans and division markings, all in white. A separate sheet in the kit has illustrations of how these go on the various turrets. But, we are not told what the slogans say or what Soviet tank outfit these represent. Bad move DML.
There are no crew figures provided in the kit.
The turret has some very nice basic interior detail, especially the turret breech and a gunner’s seat. The super-detailist amongst us will probably want to add more in there.
There is a very, very odd piece of cardboard in a cello bag in the kit. It has a weird design printed on it and I cannot, for the life of me, figure out what the heck it’s purpose is?
I have a Wiking brand decal sheet of Finish markings that go on captured T-34’s. I don’t know if I will use them on this DML kit or the Italeri kit of the T-34.
I highly recommend this kit to modelers of Soviet WWII armor.