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Sd.Kfz.234/3 schwere Panzerpahwagen (7.5cm)
Unassembled plastic model kit with photo-etch parts.

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Manufacturer: Dragon Models
Stock Number: DML 6786
Scale: 1/35
View all products of type "Sd.Kfz 234 Puma"

This model kit requires assembly. Cement, paint and other construction materials not included unless specifically stated in the description.

Features:
  • Newly tooled side fenders w/photo-etched hatch lids
  • Authentic jerry can w/photo-etched detail
  • Wheels can be adjusted to different positions
  • Authentically recreated suspension and steering assembly
  • Wheel hubs are finely detailed
  • Wheels made from multiple parts for maximum detail
  • Upper hull with detail specific to Sd.Kfz.234/3
  • Three-directional slide-molded hull bottom with full detail
  • Highly detailed driver's vision port
  • Slide-molded gun sight periscope made from clear part
  • Subtle basket for spent shells
  • Rifling inside gin barrel is finely reproduced
  • 7.5cm K51(L/24) gun possesses great detail
  • Gun sleeve reproduced with correct detail
  • Engine deck ventilation louvers with open or closed option
  • Rear vision ports can be assembled open/closed
  • Detailed spare-tire mounting frame
  • Both front and rest steering controls reproduced in detail
  • Redesigned turret exhibits interior of Sd.Kfz 234/3
  • Turret side armor designed to scale thickness
  • Side fender toolbox can be assembled open/closed
  • Antenna mount recreated in fine detail
  • Realistic 7.92mm MG42 included
  • Ammunition racks w/separate ammunition rounds
  • Gunner's seat w/collapsible backrest
  • One-piece chassis frame is slide molded for finer detail
  • Width indicator poles included
  • Includes internal fuel tank
  • Detailed transmission cover
  • Mufflers recreated w/multiples parts
  • Extendable jack made from separate parts
  • Detailed OVM come w/and without clasps
Germany created a number of successful schwerer Panzerspahwagen ("heavy armored reconnaissance vehicles"). An important family of vehicles in this class was the Sd.Kfz.234, which carried on where the older Sd.Kfz.231 8-Rad ("eight-wheel") design left off. Design work commenced in August 1940 and the Sd.Kfz.234 had four distinct variants, the third of which was the Sd.Kfz.234/3. This 8-wheeled vehicle is the subject of Dragon's newest 1/35 scale plastic kit. This 6m-long reconnaissance vehicle boasted a 7.5cm KwK51 gun of L/24 caliber installed in the open-topped fighting compartment. Only 88 vehicles were produced by Bussing-NAG between June and December 1944, and they were employed in armored reconnaissance companies on both the Eastern and Western Fronts.

Dragon's new Sd.Kfz.234/3 has been upgraded as a Premium Edition kit. Brand new are the side fenders with integral storage bins. These bins have photo-etched covers that can be modeled open should the modeler choose to do so, which gives more versatility. The 7.5cm KwK51 gun is accurately rendered, which is just as well since all its details are visible in the open-topped fighting compartment. The driveshafts and tie rods are constructed in such a way as to allow all eight wheels to be angled, just like on the original vehicle. This updated Premium Edition Sd.Kfz.234/3 kit accurately replicates this German 8x8 armored vehicle and it certainly gives the family more firepower.

Subject: Review - DML 1/35 scale Sd.Kfz. 234/3 Premium Edition

Kit Review: Dragon Models Limited 1/35 Scale '39-'45 Series Kit No. 6786; Sd.Kfz. 234/3 - Premium Edition; 643 parts (541 in grey styrene, 72 etched brass, 22 clear styrene, 8 pre-bent steel wire); pre-order price US$56.95 via Dragon USA Online

Advantages: new, well detailed and very complete kit of this popular vehicle completes the series; complex driveline appears to be fully replicated; updated version now includes adjustable eight-wheel steering; detailed fighting compartment interior

Disadvantages: engine bay will be difficult to open up

Rating: Highly Recommended

Recommendation: to all German armor and wheeled vehicle fans

As with the first three kits, the Germans continued their prewar designs throughout the war, and the Sd.Kfz. 231 heavy eight-wheeled armored car series was replaced by the Sd.Kfz. 234 series beginning in September 1943. Four different vehicles were produced in this series:

Sd.Kfz. 234/1 (Geraet 95) 200 built 2 cm cannon/7.92mm MG in open turret

(built Jun 44 - Jan 45)

Sd.Kfz. 234/2 (Geraet 93) 101 built 5 cm gun/7.92mm MG in closed turret

(also called the Puma)

(built Sep 43 - Sep 44)

Sd.Kfz. 234/3 (Geraet 94) 88 built 7.5 cm L/24 in open mount

(built Jun 44 - Dec 44)

Sd.Kfz. 234/4 (Geraet 96) 89 built 7.5 cm Pak 40 in open mount

(built Dec 44 - Mar 45)

The "Stroke 3" was designed for use as a heavy armored that would at least have sufficient firepower to deal with most unfortunate encounters. But by that stage of the war, and even with the advent of hollow charge ammunition, it was too light to have much effect on enemy forces. Ergo it was quickly replaced in production by the very heavy Sd.Kfz. 234/4 with the long-barreled PaK 40 7.5 cm antitank gun.

As with all of the 234s the "Stroke 3" was fast (80 kph/48 mph), moderately well armed, and had a long range (900 km/560 miles). Armor provided proof against small arms of 7.62mm caliber and shell fragments. Since its Tatra 103 engine was a 12-cylinder air-cooled diesel, it had a major advantage over other nations' armored cars.

Six years after DML released their ultimate Sd.Kfz. 234 series armor car kit (No. 6257) they have now re-released it with new parts as a "Premium Edition" kit.

This one now comes with alternate position doors for the fender bins and also adjustable eight wheel steering so the wheels can be posed as per the actual vehicle. They are not linked (e.g. each axle must be set individually) but anyone wanting to pose the vehicle now has the option. New lower link arms, ball joints, wheel mounts and steering arms are provided.

As it retains most of the 2008 kit, Dragon used"mix and match" with it offering more than 90 new or replacement parts to convert the kit basic parts to the "Stroke 3;" they have also tweaked some of the other molds from earlier kits. The gun here comes from their recent line of Pzkw. IV tanks (Ausf. B-E) and provides the basics for the gun, with new moldings adapting the L/24 gun to the 234 chassis. A new sprue of clear parts from one of the other recent kits (alas, I forget just which one) provides the periscopic sight as a clear part for the L/24 gun.

Also new to this kit is a set of three "street" tires with sectional tread, using the now optional DML "sandwich" method of assembly to get sufficient tread depth. Six sections are used to create each tire, and these tires can then be used to replace the stock tires that have been used in the other three kits. These are featured on the box art and they offer some variety in the model.

The etched brass has been increased for this kit and adds a new fret of 55 parts for the fender doors and locking chains among other parts. The original fret is still here but provides either tie-down fasteners or the centers for the six "jerry" cans. There are no brass parts for the engine access vents.

The suspension and interior are beautifully rendered and this version even includes the "jump" seats for the gun crew which can be built as folded up or down. Ammo racks with separate rounds are provided for the interior.

As before, this project was supervised by Hirohisa Takada, with technical drawings by Shin Okada and technical assistance from Tom Cockle and Gary Edmundson.

Finishing options are provided for three vehicles: 226. Aufklaerungs Abt., 116th Panzer Division, Normandy 1944 (tricolor patches); "Ulrich von Hutten" Division, Germany 1945 (tricolor patches); Unidentified Unit, Normandy 1944 (tricolor spray). A single small Cartograf decal sheet is provided with generic crosses and registration number plates and numbers. No registration numbers are given, however.

Overall this is a nice upgrade to a good DML kit and should be popular, especially with diorama or base fans as it can now easily be posed.







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