Jagdtiger Porsche Production Type
The German Jagdtiger was the largest operational armored fighting vehicle of the Second World War, based on a lengthened King Tiger chassis and weighing in at 72 tons. The Jagdtiger was the final (and largest) expression of the German philosophy of creating turret-less tank hunting vehicles using existing tank chassis. Sources vary slightly, but approximately 80 of these monsters were built between February 1944 and May 1945. Two variants were built, differing mainly in the number of roadwheels; the Porsche designed suspension had 8 roadwheels per side, the Henschel suspension used 9 roadwheels. Just 11 Jagdtigers were built with the Porsche suspension, the balance of production used the Henschel suspension.
The Jagdtiger went into operations in September 1944, serving in two heavy anti-tank battalions. With frontal armor almost 10” thick, and mounting a fearsome 128mm gun, the Jagdtiger was an impressive tank hunter, but one with fatal flaws. It was severely underpowered, and suffered many mechanical breakdowns in the field. The Jagdtiger also had limited operational range due to quite high fuel consumption, with many abandoned after running out of gas. The huge 128mm gun mounted in the fixed superstructure had very limited traverse, meaning that the entire vehicle would need to moved to shift point of aim. The gun needed to be stabilized with a travel lock or it would be jolted to the point of losing its calibration (or zero). In the end, these issues combined with many less than well trained / experienced crews meant that the Jagdtigers were not terribly effective in combat. Many were lost to breakdowns, or simply running out of gas and then being destroyed by their crews. There is even a story of a U.S. bazooka team knocking one out (if true, somebody must have used up a lifetime’s worth of good luck that day).
This kit replicates a Porsche Jagdtiger built sometime prior to September 1944, when zimmerit ceased being applied at the factories. This is a “new parts” kit offering from TAKOM, with the base kit (TAKOM 8001) being first produced in 2019.
What’s in the box?
The kit is packaged in the familiar tray and lid box. All parts sprues are individually packaged in cellophane bags. No parts appeared to be missing or damaged when I removed the parts sprues for photography.
Sprue P detail
Sprue P detail
Sprue D Miscellaneous superstructure parts, gun mount, styrene gun tube halves
Sprue M (x2) Various suspension parts, roadwheels
Sprue M detail
Sprue F detail
Sprue Q detail
Sprue J (x4) Individual link tracks
Sprue J detail
Sprue J detail
Upper Hull detail
Metal gun barrel, photoetch fret, decals
representative pages from the instructions
Paint and markings scheme. This is the only one provided, Panzer Gruppe Kummersdorf, Sennelager Germany, March / April 1945. I’m not crazy about the rendering sharing a page with ads for other kits, as the text on the rendering is TINY.
Parts quality for this kit looks to be pretty good. Small, molded-on detail on the parts is finely done, crisp and sharply molded. Sprue attachment points do not appear to pose any problem. All parts are fully molded, no short-shots or sink marks are seen. There are some mold seams needing clean up here and there, but nothing extreme. The zimmerit molded onto to the applicable parts looks to be in scale, and nicely done.
The tracks are individual link, with no jig to assemble them as was the case with the other Jagdtiger kits from TAKOM.
A choice of gun tubes is provided; traditional two piece styrene (for those who like sanding gun barrels) or a nice turned aluminum barrel. A small fret of photoetch is provided for engine deck screens, and a very small sheet of decals will put markings on this big hunting cat.
The instructions look to be quite clearly drawn and uncrowded, and should be easily followed.
Overall, this looks like a fairly uncomplicated build and should be enjoyable.
Highly Recommended (pending full build)
Thanks to Takom for the review sample
Reviewed by Chuck Aleshire, AMPS Chicagoland
AMPS 2nd Vice President, Midwest Region
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