The kit arrives in a study end-opening box, with colour profiles of the three featured vehicles on the reverse. Styrene parts are moulded in light grey and "Panzer yellow" on 4 runners which are packed together in a resealable bag, with the decals and etched fret in a smaller zip-lock packet for their protection.
The kit comprises:
108 x styrene parts (plus 31 not needed)
9 x etched brass parts
Decals for 3 x colour schemes
The reason for the large number of spare parts is because one runner is shared with other kits in the Demag half-track series, so your spares box will get a useful restock with Jerry cans etc.
The MK72 model first appeared some eight years ago and the parts still look excellent, with crisp moulding and plenty of detail. There's a whisper of flash here and there, but nothing that a quick swipe with a sanding stick won't sort out. You probably will want to spend a few minutes dealing with some of the ejector-pin marks, though. These are only light, but it does look as though some of them will be visible the inside the fighting compartment, so this will be worth checking as you assemble the kit.
I did spot one small moulding issue; one of the rifles included for the interior fit-out is lacking the tip of its barrel in the sample kit. This does seem to be a short-shot, not the result of breakage in transit.
The level of detail is pretty impressive for this scale, with a neatly fitted out interior built from around 20 parts. The driver's position is well detailed, with a nicely moulded dashboard and the seats have a bit of "sag" and look like they've actually been sat on.
The interlocking roadwheels are moulded in groups for simplicity, but the finished effect should be fine and they are finished off with nicely detailed styrene tracks. These are moulded over-long and the instructions show to remove 5 links, but I'd double-check that to be on the safe side before snipping them all off. One advantage of all those spare parts is that you actually get redundant tracks, so you could use these to ascertain the correct length and practise fitting them.
The kit features a pair of delicately moulded MG 34s, one fitted with an armoured shield on the driver's roof and the second on a pivot mount at the rear of the fighting compartment. Each has a separate ammunition drum, with a couple of spares in a rack inside the vehicle. 4 rifles are also carried inside and, as noted above, one of these is missing the tip of its barrel in my kit. Thankfully, this doesn't look too hard to repair - at least well enough to hide among the other rifles.
The exterior of the kit is dressed up with plenty of tools and Jerry cans, and the etched fret adds racks to hold additional fuel cans for one of the colour schemes, along with a mounting bracket for a radio mast which must be scratchbuilt from dimensions which Special Armour provide.
Instructions, Painting & Decals
The instructions are produced as an A5 12-page booklet, printed in colour on glossy stock. The main diagrams are modified from the original MK 72 illustrations, but extra views have been added for the etched parts and scratchbuilding notes. The assembly sequence looks pretty logical (although I'd leave the tracks and running gear off until I'd painted the body), and it’s now broken down into 36 stages - some only involving a couple of parts. Colour matches are provided for Mr Color paints.
The small sheet of decals looks very good quality and has markings for an interesting trio of vehicles:
Camo A: Sd.Kfz 250/1, WH-1449561, 1. SPW, 16. Panzer Division, Eastern Front, 1942-43
Camo B: Sd.Kfz 250/1, WH-1030186, Panzer Division Grossdeutschland, Voronezh Oblast, June 1942
Camo C: Sd.Kfz 250/1, WH-679984/1004, 90, leichte Infanterie-Division, Gazala, 1942, used as a command vehicle by their CO, General Major von Kleemann.
There's pretty much something to suit every taste the colour schemes, from field-applied winter camouflage, early wartime Panzer Grau and, finally, Afrika Corps Gelb.
In terms of painting, Camo A (subject of the boxtop painting) looks particularly interesting, with the vehicle originally finished in Panzer Grau, then partially overpainted in Dunkel Gelb, which was in turn covered by white distemper. From a construction point of view, Camo C will be most challenging with its etched stowage racks and some scratchbuilding required.
Special Armour’s updated re-boxing of the Sd.Kfz 250/1 Ausf.A looks a great little kit, packed with plenty of detail that will repay careful assembly and painting. It's a very welcome re-release for modellers of 1:72 armour modellers, and the new options will also appeal to those who already have the MK 72 original.
Kit #SA72019 Is available from Special Hobby now - Price: 15.00 Euros
Many thanks to Special Hobby for providing the review sample.
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