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Panzer III Ausf.J

Gallery Models 1/16 Panzer III Ausf.J Kit Build Review

by Michael Benolkin

Date of Review June 2022 Manufacturer Gallery Models
Subject Panzer III Ausf.J Scale 1/16
Kit Number 64011 Primary Media Styrene / Photo-Etch
Pros Nicely detailed kit Cons See text
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $184.98

Build Review

For an inbox review and history reference look here.

So, for those of you who followed my build review of the Gallery Models 1/16 StuG III Ausf.G, I ended my review saying that I wouldn’t mind building another that included an interior. Well, I didn’t get my wish, but I have the Panzer III Ausf.J/L/M kit instead. The lower hull and much of the upper hull are nearly identical to the StuG III kit, so I decided to build the Panzer III and see how that goes. I examined the Panzer III kit here, so I won’t repeat what I found in the box, but I will say that it is predictably ‘déjà vu all over again’.

While I could have some fun with the improvised camouflage schemes worn on the later model Panzer IIIs, I’ve decided to build the Ausf.J, and the example I’m given in the box is for an overall Panzer Gray scheme for one of the early intruders into Russia. While it doesn’t have anything to do with my choice of subjects, it just so happens that the Ausf.J has a turned aluminum barrel for the main gun, whereas the L/M kits have a regular styrene main gun assembly instead. I won’t get into any details on assembling this kit unless I run into problems, but as before, I’ll photo-document each of the steps on the way.

Panzer III Ausf.J

Here’s step one with the rubber up-stops for the suspension installed.

Panzer III Ausf.J

Here’s step two with the torsion bar suspension installed. The torsion bars do work.

Panzer III Ausf.J

Here’s steps three-through-five with the road wheels, return rollers, etc., installed. I am leaving part of the return roller unglued until I can get the track installed to see if I can modify the roller assembly to deal with the track tension.

Panzer III Ausf.J

This is just one half of the shortest step, but this involves 273 parts. This step builds two full track runs for a total of 546 parts, but only warrants a brief message in the instructions.

Panzer III Ausf.J

The second track run in completed, and unlike the StuG III build, this time 91 track links work perfectly per side.

Panzer III Ausf.J

With the addition of the rear details including the two mufflers, it is time to start working on the upper side of the hull!

To be continued...

My sincere thanks to MRC for this review sample!