For modellers interested and intrigued in modern Canadian AFVs such as the Leopard C2 a long period of silence was answered by Takom with the release of their Leopard C2 MEXAS and the Leopard 1A5/C2 kits. While an injection moulded model of the Leopard C2 was most welcome, modellers and model producers alike knew the kit could be improved upon by creating a detailed representation of the tank in 1/35th scale.
Legend Productions took on the task and has produced a detail/update set for the Takom Leopard C2 kit that should be very pleasing in detail and it wonít take a big bite out of your wallet. That being stated, you will need to put in your work to use the set to its full potential. This set goes beyond simply replacing kit parts.
LF1273 is designed for the Takom Leopard 1A5/C2 kit. However, the details provided in the set are specifically for the Leopard C2 version. Legend Productions is likely to create another set to detail the Leopard 1A5 version.
With the Leopard C2s still hanging on in Canadian Armoured Regiments this set will allow the modeller to enhance the Takom kit and build a detailed Leopard C2 before the tanks are finally put out to pasture.
With 65 resin parts and a whopping 176 photo etched parts this set lives up to Legend Productions well known standards in parts casting and research details. Also included in the set are multiple sizes of brass rod and wire. The set not only replaces existing kit parts that lacked detail it also addresses some visible incorrect aspects of the kit.
Starting with the hull, the MEXAS armour mounts moulded on the kit hull will be removed and replaced with nicely shaped photo etched versions. All of the pioneer tools are provided with photo etched mounts and racks. As with the MEXAS mounts, this will require some patient work to remove all of the moulded on mounts to obtain bare pioneer tools. (Wouldnít it be great if someone produced a bare set of Leopard 1 pioneer tools?)
Other hull details included towing pintles/shackles, fording plugs and chains, engine grills, tow cable mounts, armoured cable cover mounts, fender supports, rear mud flaps, tank telephone handle, resin MEXAS mounts, NBCW housing mesh, and details for the driverís tool box. These are all great replacements for the kit details but I found it strange that Legend Productions did not include the small chains for the tow pintles.
The Takom kit turret glossed over some details and unfortunately is off in a few areas in both size and accuracy. Legend Productions focused their attention on enhancing detail and correcting issues in order to provide an end result of a darn good looking turret.
Replacement resin parts included the muzzle, the EMES 18 sight, the commanderís extended periscope, the TRP-2 sight, the bore brush bins, the cable reel box, the original spotlight mounting hooks, mantlet details, and the antenna mounts. Not all of these parts are a simple swap and glue with the kit parts. The EMES 18, TRP-2, and periscope require the removal of the kit mounts. Some test fitting along the way will likely be required to ensure you remove only what is needed.
The one piece mantlet provided in the Takom kit is provided with average detail and represents the original canvas mantlet cover used on German Leopard 1A5s and the Canadian Leopard C2s when they were first received. The original canvas mantlet cover used rectangular eyelet holes and did not have the two Velcro attached access panels. The rubberized mantlet cover with the access panels was introduced as a replacement on the Leopard C2 and continues to be used in the tankís final years. Legend Productions has included a well-cast replacement mantlet cover representing the rubberized version with the two access panels for your use. You may or may not use it depending on the timeline of your Leopard C2.
The Leopard 1A5/C2 uses a laser rangefinder and thus the two original stereoscopic range finder blisters were removed and blanked over. Takom misjudged the shape of their blanked over blisters but Legend Productions comes to the rescue with replacement resin parts. Removal of the kit blisters has to be done in order to fit the replacement parts. The replacements parts include some very nice weld detail around the blanking plates.
On the turret rear you get replacement stowage racks, jerry can racks, and two replacement fuel cans and a water can are provided in the set.
Adding to the turret details are photo etched chains for new resin grenade dischargers, mantlet plugs/chains, very nicely detailed hatch ring machine gun mount locks, and a plethora of padlocks for the turret stowage bins. For under the turret bin two resin canvas antenna bags are included. On the C2 both single and double end opening bags could be found. The bags provided are double ended and would be easy to modify to a single ended bag with a bit of sanding.
The final detail for the turret is a replacement mount for the loaderís C6 machine gun which also includes a carrying handle and bipod for the C6. In my opinion Legend Productions should have also replaced the Takom C6 with one of their resin versions for more impact.
This set is a great supplement to the base Takom Leopard C2 kit. Legend Productions has done their homework to provide a ton of detail upgrades while keeping the price reasonable. With the use of this set from Legend Productions the majority of the shortfalls in the Takom Leopard C2 kit are addressed and reduced significantly.
Highs: Excellent resin castings and a great deal of detail to add to the kit.Lows: Tow pintle chains would have been great to have been included.Verdict: A very well thought out set to assist in creating a great looking Leopard C2.
Our Thanks to Legend Productions USA! This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.