Jagdpanzer IV L/48 July 1944 Production w/Zimmerit
Dragon, 1/35 scale
Reviewed by Cookie Sewell
|Stock Number and Description||Dragon Models Limited 1/35 Scale ‘39-‘45 Series Kit No. 6369; Jagdpanzer IV L/48 July 1944 Production w/Zimmerit - Dragon Zimmerit|
|Media and Contents:||588 parts (566 in grey styrene, 11 clear styrene, 9 etched brass, 2 DS Plastic track runs)|
|Price:||pre-order price US$59.99 via Dragon USA Online|
|Review Type:||First Look|
|Advantages:||Upgraded older kit now with zimmerit|
|Disadvantages:||DS Plastic tracks not everyone’s favorite|
|Recommendation:||Highly Recommended to all late-war German fans|
Prior to the Second World War every country building armor soon figured out that light vehicles have to, by default, carry only light guns if they will be carried high and have to rotate in all directions to provide firepower, Heavier weapons would upset the center of gravity, throw off the balance of the weapon, or worst of all, flip the vehicle over if fired. As a result, few vehicles were “overgunned” by design. The solution was to mount a big gun low in the vehicle and eliminate the turret, placing the gun in either an open barbette mounting or a casemate. The Germans chose both routes during the war, but as the war progressed decided on the latter for their antitank guns as it provided better protection for the crew.
The Sturmgeschuetz III and IV series were used frequently as antitank weapons, primarily as the later models carried the very effective PaK 40 L/48 antitank gun and could deal with almost all Allied tanks. But the StuG weapons were not heavily armored, and the solution was a dedicated antitank gun with heavier (and ballistically shaped) armor protection on the more flexible Panzer IV chassis.
The result was the Jadgpanzer IV series of SP antitank guns.While the concept was successful and the vehicle was ordered into production with some 804 being completed. Later the chassis was modified to carry the more powerful KwK 42 7.5 cm L/70 gun.
DML has now gone back to their old line of kits and upgraded them, as this kit is based more on the recent Jagdpanzer IV/70 kits but is “backdated” to the L/48 version.The model uses all of DML’s “Slide Molding” techniques on those sprues and generic Panzer IV sprues and includes casting numbers molded onto the sprue runners for diehard detail fans. (These have to be removed with a scalpel or single-edged razor blade, as a point of warning.)
This particular kit uses the 40 cm DS Plastic track runs. I keep hinting to DML that they should offer both DS and Magic Track links in their kits as this would please about 90% of their target audience (the rest want metal tracks) but so far to no avail.
This kit uses styrene“Schuerzen” armor shields vice the original brass ones.
The kit includes a lot of itty bitty details such as full and half wing nuts and other small items, but all are styrene; there are only nine etched brass parts for the vehicle, the largest of which is the sliding traversing cover for the periscopic sight.
The only interior components are the main gun and the radio sets on the firewall between the fighting compartment and the engine compartment. Still, these are nicely done.
Technical assistance was provided by Notger Schlegtendal, Tom Cockle and Gary Edmundson.
Painting schemes and markings are included for three vehicles: Pz.Jgd.Abt “Heersgruppe Mitte”, Warsaw 1944 (green over sand, black 57); Pz.Gren.Div “Hermann Goering”, East Prussia 1945 (tricolor, white 212); Unknown Pz.Jg.Abt., 1945 (tricolor, black crosses). A small sheet of Cartograf decals is provided.
Overall it is nice to see DML revisit this popular vehicle (albeit I think Tamiya releasing one may have something to do with this!) and it is a massive upgrade to their older Jagdpanzer IV kits.
A 84x2 Wheels, wingnuts, suspension
A 52x2 Drivers, idlers, details
B 52 Jagdpanzer IV/70 - engine deck, hull details and fittings
C 94 Jagdpanzer IV/70 - schuerzen assembly
D 11 Jagdpanzer IV/70 - casemate roof
E 12 Jagdpanzer IV L/48 - barrel, mantlet and mounting hardware
F 2 Jagdpanzer IV/70 - fenders
F 17 StuG III Ausf. G - gun assembly
G 30+20 Jagdpanzer IV/70 - gun and mounting hardware, casting numbers
H 71 Muffler, engine deck details, rear hull details
J 7 German generic - jack
K 10 German generic - antenna and mounts
L 18 Jagdpanzer IV/70 - zimmerit covered components
L 1 DS Plastic track - left
M 8 Clear styrene
P 3 Clear styrene
R 1 DS Plastic track - right
S 1 Lower hull pan
T 1 Rear engine deck
U 2 Jagdpanzer IV/70 - zimmerit covered casemate and mantlet
MA 9 Etched brass
Thanks to Freddie Leung for the review sample.