Takom Panther G Late Production with IR and Anti-air armor first look
The latest kit from Takom in their Panther series is a late production Ausf G model with additional options for IR and Air Defense armor, kit 2121. This kit has options I'll try to point out that will let you produce a very late war panther with all of the most appropriate fittings. So let's dig in.
As we are starting to see these Takom full interior boxes are huge, In this case 1200 cubic inches of plastic on 30 sprues, with a small assortment of photo-etched brass and other bits. Reviewing this kit presented a challenge because I needed to strike a balance between a reasonable number of photos and a realization, as I examined the parts, that every sprue had so many awesome examples of great detail and engineering that it was hard to pick and choose what to share. Lots of slide molded parts on many sprues, which is always a nice feature.
On to the big parts, both the turret and the upper hull are packaged as separate pieces. They have excellent weld detail and nice rolled steel texture, which will be on display as these vehicles were made after zimmerit was applied. There are great details on both sides of the moldings to represent interior and exterior
Moving on we have a nice set of decals, printed in register, with some gauges, stencils, vehicle markings and a daunting number of marking for the ammo, 2 markings per each, for a full ammo load and them some
and the kit includes all that ammo, most on 1 sprue, clearly 2 different types, as well as some on a second sprue to give you many more rounds than the panther could carry
you also have PE for engine grills and also for the AA defence armor
there are two short copper wires to represent cables, and a flexible piece that I think is vinyl, which looks like a hose in the turret between a vent in the roof and a blower on the basket floor
There are two sets of jigs for the link and length tracks, depending on whether you use the small idler or the later larger self-cleaning idler, both of which are included
the tracks, as mentioned are link and length late style with the cleats, with individual guide horns. Takom uses a system of sub-frets for the guide horns so you can apply them to the links while on the sprue, like illustrated below
The barrel is molded as a single piece with separate muzzle brake, at first I was concerned when I saw the 2 part muzzle next to the barrel, but the kit includes a nice slide molded single piece break as well (and look at that turret ring with all the lovely teeth)
The kit has only one option for exhaust, the late style towers that hid the red-hot pipes, but you can see options below for open or closed engine vents
So there are many other optional parts on this kit. I counted 5 different mantlets and at least 3 different options for the rear stowage boxes (I believe one was unique to the IR panthers as it held additional electronics, Takom is mum on the issue). Many options are centered on the engine deck and also if you are using the IR equipment/AA armor or not. In fact, use of the gear unique to this kit will drive several options on the way, so it's best to know what your options are and what prototype you are building (or at least which options look the coolest).
The instruction manual seems to fit the Takom style, clear concise, but not at all verbose or even descriptive, there are no words detailing any of the options or what they may signify later on.
options marked in yellow just as an example,(and I missed one on this page)
The instructions detail 7 different marking/camo callouts, March through May '45 3 color schemes with Ammo by Mig colors and weathering recommendations. Only one of the options seems to show the IR and AA armor, a Berlin '45 vehicle.
The instructions and box art also have very helpful illustrations of painted interior colors, by this time it seems the buff/white color was out of practice and the whole interior was painted primer (there's also a few shots on the outside box sides
Looks like a fun kit, I can't wait to dig in. I'll leave you with a couple other sprue shots of interesting detail
sweet spare track holders
springs on the back of the driver's seat
some engine details
inside bulkhead detail
And on and on. I'm pretty sure an intermediate or advanced modeler will have no problem making a fine piece out of this kit.
Highly Recommended for Intermediate to Advanced builders.
Thanks goes out to Takom for this review kit.
Reviewed by Dave Mckenny
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