This will be the first in a series of linked reviews which will (hopefully) culminate in a BLOG using this set, the recently released update set from Voyager Model
and the 'Emil' kit from Trumpeter
Armorscale's 128mm Kanone 40
B35-021: 128mm Kanone 40 Gun Barrel for German SPG (Pz.Sfl.V) "Sturer Emil"
consists of the following (brass) elements in a ziploc bag with card header:
Muzzle brake in two parts (front and rear) - all the relevant locking rings are included
Baffle for the Muzzle Brake (three parts, one brass, two PE)
At this point it is perhaps useful to see a comparison shot between the Armorscale
barrel and the kit one:
With a test-fitting (without glue), all the parts went together with the minimum of fuss and with little clean-up required. The barrel is virtually flawless with no cleaning-up envisaged. This is truly 'model-engineering' at its best.
The large replacement mantlet, is flawlessly cast with only a large resin 'excess' to remove, a simple task using a razor saw. All necessary welding marks are moulded in, as are the bolt-heads.
No modification is necessary to the donor-kit whatsoever, the new barrel/mantlet simply plugs into the prepares section on the superstructure.
The instructions are clear and concise, with a useful series of color-coding to assist in what should be a simple process for any level of modeller.
A simple update for the basic kit, however the question remains, is this absolutely necessary for the kit? The simple answer is, yes. Apart from some (simplified) interior detail on Trumpeter's
kit, the barrel is extremely short and inaccurate. The mantlet also leaves a lot to be desired. So, in the final analysis, this is not simply 'dressing-up' the kit, it is, in my opinion, the minimum which can be done to produce a good model of this interesting subject.
Very Highly Recommended
Further information and acknowledgements...
In the first instance, my thanks to Robert Grabowski ofArmorscale for the review sample.
Secondly, as there are a number of 12.8cm Kanone 40 replacemnt barrels out there, it is useful to see a comparison of just what is available. Terry Ashley's
review of this barrel, also includes a useful comparison piece (including photos). It can be seen: HERE