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Gebirgsjaeger Defenders - Gustav Line 1944

DML 1/35 Gebirgsjaeger Defenders - Gustav Line 1944 - Gen2 Kit First Look

By Cookie Sewell

Date of Review August 2009 Manufacturer DML
Subject Gebirgsjaeger Defenders - Gustav Line 1944 - Gen2 Scale 1/35
Kit Number 6517 Primary Media 120 parts in grey styrene
Pros Combination of “Gen1" figures and “Gen2" kit a good idea Cons No major items noted
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $13.95

First Look

The “Gustav Line” was one of several fortified German defensive lines up the “boot” of Italy and ran from the Tyrrhenian Sea in the West to the Adriatic in the east about 75 miles south of Rome. By this time many different units were defending it, including mountain troops (Gebirgsjaeger) who had been trained for this sort of operations.

DML is now offering a set of these troops in the heavier kit used in colder climates (normally they wore shorter paints, tall stocking and “birgsteiflen” or mountain boots). The four figures in the box provide one man preparing to fire a rifle, a lieutenant on a field phone reporting, one loading a flare pistol, and one moving laterally with a submachine gun at the ready.

The figures are the so-called “Gen1" type consisting of seven basic parts (head, collar/hood, torso, arms, and legs) with separate hands for one figure. This has been one of the points of debate between fans of the simple figure and the more detailed “Gen2" figures which normally run 16-18 parts each, providing much more detail but being harder to get a “clean” assembly for painting.

One compromise here is the use of “Gen2" style kit which uses more slide molding techniques and are more natural in appearance once attached to the figures.

The weapons are new mold, but surprisingly are not the true “Gen2" weapons with slide molded hollow muzzles. Still, they provide a good selection for troops stationed in Italy post-1943 when the Italians nominally went back over to the Allies.

The artwork is by Ron Volstad and as usual is top-flight, as well as providing a much easier set of painting and assembly directions.

Overall this is another take on German troops and one which fills another niche.

Thanks to DML for the review sample.

Sprue Layout:

  • 6517 43 Four figures with basic kit
  • G 60 Basic German kit (helmets, pouches, canteens, grenades, gas masks, etc.)
  • W 10 3 x MP-40, ammo clips for Kar 98K
  • WA 2 2 x Gewehr 43
  • WA 5 Carcano carbine, Beretta submachine gun, light machine gun