söndag 26 oktober 2014

October is Tanktober, Italeri 28mm Panther Review

So, for some October is Orctober, for others it's Zombtober, and for yet another bunch it's Tanktober. So which is it for me? Well a little bit of both (but no zombies yet).

(found on the web and on is featured on various other blogs too)

Talking about tanks I couldn't resist the new Italeri 1:56 scale models.

Ahhh... happiness in a cardboard box, complete with glue and paint.
These are made in collaboration with Warlord Games, which means that Italeri makes the kit and Warlord can repackage them in Warlord Boxes and slap the Bolt Action logo on them. Warlord of course slaps on a couple of quids on the price as well; The Italeri version costs €21 while the Warlord version costs £20. Considering that you get a brush (albeit cheap), a pot of glue and a small bottle of the appropriate base colour from Vallejo with the Italeri kit the Warlord kit seems very pricey indeed.

Decals, instructions and a one page ad for Warlord games were included in the box. 
Warlord Games and Italeri have (so far) collaborated on four kits: a Sherman, a Panther, a Cromwell and a Puma armoured car. Interestingly the Warlord versions are all released ahead of the Italeri kits. I do not know if this is deliberate or if it's a just a coincidence. Another thing of note is that the transfers differ between the Warlord Games and Italeri versions. The collaboration also allow Italeri to sell Warlord Games plastic figures in Italeri boxes. To be fair these are more expensive than the Warlord Games originals, as a comparison you get 10 british figures in the Italeri box (with glue and a bottle of paint) for €18 but 25 figures for £24 from Warlord Games.

Holy Zimmerit Batman!
The kit builds into a beatiful version of the Panther ausf A with Zimmerit. The ausf A was the second version of the Panther, the first being ausf. D and the last version was the Ausf G. An ausf F was planned but only prototypes were built. This is a vehicle that you could find on the battlefields from late 1943 until late 1944 although some specimens did survive until the end of the war. 

The machine gun "bulb", the drivers view port and the commander's cupola are all telltale signs of the Ausf. A.

It's a fast-assembly kit which means all the wheels are one piece assemblies and the tracks are just a few pieces. You do get to add some details like the headlamp and tow shackles and you can position the driver's and commander's hatches open if you wish to add some figures. No crew are included though, although there would have been room on the sprue for them.

All the "extras" in the kit.
I think it's a nice touch to include paint and glue, although I'm not sure Iraqui sand is the correct shade. However you always need glue and you can't really get too much paint, can you? The brush is probably not the greatest quality though.

Size comparison with Crusader 28mm british figures.
All in all the new Italeri Panther is a splendid little kit. I couldn't find any real faults with it. From a modelling point of view it might be a little bit low on details but the moulding is crisp and it goes together without any issues. The zimmerit is nice and is even featured on the lower front glacis as well (hear that Plastic Soldier Company?) I would have liked some more bits in the kit, like perhaps some stowage or a commander figure, or even just a few more track links to put on the hull or turret sides. There is a conspisciously empty space on one of the sprues, as if they planned to include something that was then left out.

I give the Italeri Panther 4 out of 5.

The M4 Sherman or Sherman I, was used mainly by the US and Soviet forces.

I also bought an Italeri Sherman, thinking of using it with my british, but it seems to be the wrong type. I'm no expert on Shermans but googling makes me think that the brits used other versions, at least in Normandie which is my main area of interest. So I'm looking forward to the Cromwell while contemplating what to do with the Sherman. 

3 kommentarer:

  1. Those are great looking kits and a really useful review. I mostly build 20mm kits but I'd be tempted by these just for fun.

    I think you might be OK with the Sherman, the British seem to have used almost every type. There's quite a useful wikipedia page on Lend Lease Shermans

    1. Thanks for the link. It says "The first Shermans to see battle were M4A1s with the British Eighth Army at the Second Battle of El Alamein in October 1942." which I knew before, which is why I thought the british didn't use the regular M4.

      However it also says that "The British became the primary users of the M4A4 Sherman V, which they found to be far more reliable than did the few US users. M4 Sherman I, M4A1 Sherman II and M4A2 Sherman III were also used in roughly that order of importance."

      So it would seem that the M4A4 and M4 where the most common among British units. Huh. This is worth pursuing then.

  2. Thanks for the review Leif
    I may change my views on the plastic 28mm models; so far I've been a fan of the resin models only at this scale


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