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Zvezda 1/35 BMD-1 Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review October 2005 Manufacturer Zvezda
Subject BMD-1 Scale 1/35
Kit Number 3559 Primary Media Styrene
Pros DML quality kit Cons
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) $20.98

First Look


The BMD-1 was designed in 1969 to serve as an armored scout and combat vehicle to support the airborne forces derived from the Soviet Army's BMP-1 combat vehicle. Like the BMP, the BMD is amphibious, tracked and has a low profile.

Designed for air transport and parachute landing, the BMD-1 is armed with a 73mm main gun, a coaxially mounted AT-3 missile launcher, and a coaxially mounted 7.62mm gun

Experience with the BMD in Afghanistan was less than impressive, and the airborne forces quickly 'requisitioned' BMPs, BTRs and other vehicles that had better armor and/or mobility.

Molded in medium green styrene, this kit is presented on five parts trees, plus one additional clear tree containing periscopes and lenses. In addition, four sections of rubber band track are provided to build up the two tracks. Like the PT-76 amphibious tank that preceded the BMD, the vehicle is designed as a 'lightweight' compromise between armor protection and mobility/transportability. This is reflected in the kit as well.

While not complex by design, Zvezda provided all of the crew hatches separately so they can be positioned open. You'll have to scratch-build your own interior.

Markings are provided for two examples:

  • #211 of the Soviet Airborne Paratrooper Force
  • #281 of the Soviet Airborne Paratrooper Force

This is a nice model! Elegant in its simplicity, the BMD-1 is an easy build for the novice modeler, yet offers some nice territory for the advanced modeler for weathering, detailing and/or crew figures. Recommended!

Check out the build review here!

My sincere thanks to Squadron Mail Order for this review sample!