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Marder I Kit

Trumpeter 1/35 Panzerjager 39(H) Marder I Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review February 2005 Manufacturer Trumpeter
Subject Panzerjager 39(H) Marder I Scale 1/35
Kit Number 0354 Primary Media Styrene
Pros Nicely detailed fighting compartment and exterior. Cons Basic markings provided
Skill Level Intermediate MSRP (USD) $24.95

First Look

Marder I Kit
Marder I Kit
Marder I Kit
Marder I Kit
Marder I Kit
Marder I Kit
Marder I Kit

The German Army never wasted a potential resource. When they 'acquired' a number of French-built Hotchkiss H-39s, their hulls were converted to serve as the self-propelled mount for the 75mm PAK 40/3 anti-tank gun. This vehicle was designated Sd.Kfz.135 Panzerjager 39(H) Marder I.

Designed as a tank 'plinker', these vehicles were deployed against Soviet armor with disastrous results. The survivors were returned to defend the western regions and were used effectively against the Shermans at Normandy.

To the best of my knowledge, I believe this is the first kit of the Marder I released in 1/35 styrene. The Marder II and Marder III have been addressed by several companies. Molded in tan styrene, the kit is comprised of 199 parts on six trees, plus the lower hull and two sections of track molded in black.

As you can see in the parts tree photos, the layout of the kit is very simple (as was the real combat vehicle). Assembly begins with the lower hull and the twin-wheel bogies. Six of these units are assembled similar to the larger Sherman wheel units. With these and the return rollers added to the lower hull, attention is turned inside the lower hull.

The kit features a nice driver's compartment as well as the engine firewall/radiator assembly.

The PAK40 is an extensively detailed model of its own right, complete with separate breech and block parts, handles, shields, aiming mechanisms, etc. The interior of the fighting compartment also contains a nice radio set, range finders, pioneering tools, ammo stowage, and other stowage boxes.

The completed upper hull is attached to the lower hull, fenders are added, and the final details like machine guns are added.

The kit comes with two crew figures that stand inside the fighting compartment.

Generic German crosses are provided for markings. If you're looking to personalize the vehicle to a particular unit and/or crew, then you'll need to obtain your own detailed markings.

This is an interesting early tank hunter, and when placed next to the Marder II and III versions, as well as the Sturmgeschutz series, you'll have an interesting visual display of the evolution of German tank hunters as they evolved through combat experience.

My sincere thanks to Stevens International for this review sample!

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