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Sd.Kfz.181 Tiger I Initial Production s.Pz.Abt.502 Leningrad 1942

DML 1/72 Sd.Kfz.181 Tiger I Initial Production s.Pz.Abt.502 Leningrad 1942 Kit First Look

By Cookie Sewell

Date of Review September 2010 Manufacturer DML
Subject Sd.Kfz.181 Tiger I Initial Production s.Pz.Abt.502 Leningrad 1942 Scale 1/72
Kit Number 7376 Primary Media 144 parts(127 in grey plastic, 14 etched brass, 2 DS plastic tracks, 1 twisted steel wire)
Pros Adds Pzkw.III type storage bin Cons 33% price increase over previous releases is hard to understand
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $19.95

First Look

Following on last year’s Early Production Tiger I kit DML has now released another initial production variant, this time the one with the jury-rigged Pzkw. III style turret stowage bin. Other than that it is a virtual duplicate of the earlier kit but with new decals.

As I noted with the earlier kit, DML borrowed the interconnected wheel sets from their popular Sd.Kfz. 251 series of halftracks and the new model has the back roads of road wheel connected by arcs that do not show once the entire four-layer set of road wheels is assembled (inner, center inside, center outside, and outer). Thus the entire 32 wheel set of road wheels per side now only requires seven parts – three linked sets and four single road wheels. The wheels are detailed on both sides even though the insides will be impossible to see.

The turret is properly asymmetric and consists of a one-piece shell with separate roof and front. As it is the early model it comes with two stowage bins, two pistol ports, and a “dustbin” cupola with an interior set of periscopes. It also has a fording air cleaner and etched brass parts for the intake grilles and radiator guides. The model also offers a choice between tall and short exhaust tubes for the rear of the hull.

The tracks are now DS plastic which will be welcome over the original black vinyl tracks.

The model comes with two finishing options, both for s.Pz.Abt. 502: Mishkino, February 1943 (whitewash over gray, bort number black 3); and Tosno, September 1942 (gray overall with white bort number 132). A tiny sheet of Cartograf decals is provided.

Overall this is a nice upgrade but as before now costs one-third more than the earlier versions.

Thanks to Freddie Leung of Dragon Models USA for the review sample.

Sprue Layout:

  • A 33 Tiger I upper hull and details, Pzkw. III turret bin
  • B 31 Tiger I turret and hatches
  • D 42 Tiger I turret and hull interior parts, idlers
  • E 20 Tiger I Early (rubber tire) road wheels and drivers
  • X 1 Lower hull
  • Y 1 twisted steel wire
  • Z 2 DS plastic track runs
  • MA 14 Etched brass

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