DML 1/72 Challenger 2 w/Dozer Blade Kit First Look
|Date of Review||April 2007||Manufacturer||DML|
|Subject||Challenger 2 w/Dozer Blade||Scale||1/72|
|Kit Number||7285||Primary Media||148 parts (136 parts in grey styrene, 10 etched brass, 2 DS plastic track runs)|
|Pros||Improved version of original kit; nicely done blade adds appeal to this kit||Cons||No markings included of any sort|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$13.98|
The original DML Challenger 2 kit was eagerly awaited when it came out by modern armor fans as it cover the "Operation TELIC" (British component of US Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003) but had a number of compromises and shortcuts which disappointed some fans.
This model appears to have been reworked, now using DML's current production values, and as such now has "slide molded" components and DS plastic tracks. The latter should be appreciated as they are more flexible and since they take normal plastic cements also easier to install and paint.
While the hull still comes with the original screw attachment holes and mounts, the parts now simply cement together. It now comes with modified uparmored skirts less the ground-length dust covers, applique armor for the glacis and the bow, and the TIP armor panels for the sides of the turret. The "4 x 8 plywood" ones for the turret glacis are not included, but I am not sure if they go on the variant modeled.
The model comes with hatches that can be positioned open or closed, but again the driver's hatch opens onto one of the screw holes. Note that the direction arrows STILL show the cover (part A38) cementing into the screw hole; most modelers will figure that one out in a hurry, but I do wonder why DML didn't correct their original error?
The new dozer blade consists of 9 parts and looks good, but apparently must be cemented into position and does not move. A set of etched brass is included, providing the engine deck grilles, four covers for the front, and two lifting lugs on the sides of the gun aperture.
While no decals or markings are included, one recommended paint scheme for the Scots Dragoon Guards Armour Regiment in Poland, 2006, is provided
Overall I think DML has fixed some of the original kit's errors but again the directions are not as good as the moldings.
Thanks to Freddie Leung of Dragon Models USA for the review sample.