Home > Reviews > Modern > Trumpeter kit 00379 - PT-76 Amphibious Tank Model 1951

PT-76 Amphibious Tank Model 1951

Trumpeter, 1/35 scale

Reviewed by Luke Pitt


Stock No.

Trumpeter PT-76 Amphibious Tank Model 1951 Item Number: 00379

Contents and Media:

Plastic and photo etch parts


AUD$37.00 (distributed in Australia by J.B. Wholesalers)



Review Type:

First Look


Good accurate in outline, simple parts break down, cheap compared to other kits available, best plastic kit available.


Vinyl tracks




The Russian Military has always had an interest so called “Swimming Tanks”. During World War 2 three main types were produced in this class, these being the T-37,T-38 and T-40. All of these types were hampered by the lack of an effective main gun. After the war, various prototypes were trialed with the “BMP” series and “PT” series showing the most promise. Where the “BMP” series were troop transporters the “PT” series was designed from the onset to be a true “Swimming Tank”.

First produced in 1953 (although designed in 1951) the “PT” series was to go on to be produced in four main types, with well over 2000 being exported to 21 countries friendly to the former Soviet Union. From a modelling standpoint this means the model (especially the latter models) can be modelled and painted in a variety of interesting and different schemes.

Two other plastic kits of the PT-76 have been produced in 35th scale thus far. The first being the old Glencoe kit dating from the early 60’s (which was really 32nd) and the Eastern Express kit produced in the 90’s. Both of these kits had their fair share of faults, so it is pleasing that a new kit of this type has been produced from a main stream producer. The Kit has a very small part count for a modern kit and numbers only 187 in total. The molding is quite good and covers some four sprues with the upper and lower hulls molded separately. The molding on the upper and lower hull is a standout with outstanding attention to detail in evidence their. The detail level on the lower hull for instance is breathtaking with the water jet intakes being molded to a very high standard. The fit of the upper and lower hulls is also outstanding with no gaps in evidence. These two parts quite literally click together.


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

Moving on to the road wheels (which can make or break a vehicle of this type) and we find that Trumpeter, have captured the rib contours itself quite well with the only problem here being the raised “ribs” on the rubber portion of the wheel. These should be removed. The drive sprockets are of the early type and are molded to a fair standard. The only thing to watch out for here being the alignment key as it is out of position. The simple solution here is to shave off the alignment pin and align the two sprockets by hand. The tracks provided are in vinyl and are lacking any real detail. They are impossible to glue and will have to be “heat melted” together. I would have liked an option of plastic and link type tracks to be included (as there are no after-market options available as yet) These tracks really bring down the overall standard of this kit.


The turret is provided as a upper and lower assembly and is molded to a high standard. The early main gun (with its slotted muzzle brake) is the standout here with the brake itself being nicely defined. Other details such as the searchlight and spare track are molded well and more importantly fit well. The turret interior for the most part is pretty much bare which is a problem as if the large hatch is left open a lot of the interior can be seen. A small photo etch fret is provided and for the most part is fine. The large mesh screen is a little thick as far as the mesh grid pattern is concerned, while the smaller screen is fine and to scale? Trumpeter has seen fit to include the headlight guards as photo etched items and while I applaud the effort the result is incorrect as the guards were made from round bar stock on the real vehicle. I guess the only way to do these in scale is to scratch build them yourself in either sprue or thin wire as no photo etch would even come close to replicating this design.

A small decal sheet is provided for two Soviet Russian green examples, one from the Polish uprising and the second from a nondescript unit. The instructions are large and easy to follow. Overall, this is a respectable and honest kit. The kit scales out correctly to available plans and is relatively in expensive. It is by far the best plastic 35th scale example of this tank available today. As this version is an early model the marking choices are somewhat limited. The kit is not without its faults, but for the most part are easily corrected. Dmitry Kiyatkin has allowed me to link some Late Model Pt-76 walk around pictures to this review. Although a late model with a few detail differences to the Trumpeter kit being reviewed I believe they may indeed be useful.



Thanks to J.B. Wholesalers for the review sample.