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In-Box Review
135
Panzerträgerwagen w/ 38(t)
German Panzerträgerwagen (for BP-42)
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by: Jim Starkweather [ STAFF_JIM ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Yet another in Trumpeter's BP-42 armored train series, this is the Panzerträgerwagen which houses a Panzer 38(t) and this tank IS included with this model kit. This rail car was specifically designed as a ready-to-deploy defensive measure. A car would be placed near the front and rear of the armored train column. If the car was behind the engine, the engine could detach (via a Scharfenberg coupling) and allow the 38(t) to move off the transport car and move to counter any attack on the train. The rail car itself has a deep well that protects the tanks running gear from damage while on-board. The car appears well armored and suited for duty as a BP-42 component. While this car could have been used to move tanks into combat areas, larger (late war) German tanks would not fit on this customized transport.

What's Included

This kit includes the rail car transport (Panzerträgerwagen), a Panzerkampfwagen 38(t) Sd.Kfz.140, and the usual track section we are use to seeing on the other Trumpeter train car releases. A photo-etch sheet for the 38(t) is included and is marked as being for the Ausf. E/F. A decal sheet for both the tank and rail car is also present. 16 pages of instructions in black and white with one color painting and marking guide (double sided) is also provided showing a nifty three-color camouflage scheme.

The Kit

The rail car sprues of the kit are clearly marked as A, B, and C. While the tank parts are marked as TA, TB, TC, TD (x2), and TT (x5). The rail car chassis is in two pieces. The fit appears good with a slight gap on our sample at the rear (photos shown at right) but this won't be a problem if attention to this area is given during the gluing phase. There are a small number (7) of unused parts in the kit. Most of these being on the A sprue.

This Trumpeter release will not surprise most people familiar with past releases. There is some minor flash present (mostly on the panzer parts). There appears to be some sunk areas on the rail cars folding ramp. None of these are anything major and while this kit does not have many "wow!" areas in terms of detail, it appears to be another competent release from the folks in Zhongshan City.

The cost of this kit might put some modelers off, however I am seeing a high degree of fluctuation for it. Expect prices in the USA around $90-95, UK £60-65, and (at least as of this writing) limited availability via Asian retailers. I am not sure what is up but I could only find this on HobbyEasy's site as a pre-order (showing a release date of Jan-21-2011), while other US or UK retailers show it in stock.

Conclusions

If you are keen on building a complete BP-42 armored train set, this release is obviously going to make you very happy. I think even for modelers who aren't going to build the whole set, this kit has some interesting possibilities for diorama makers as well. One can easily imagine a dio showing one of the 38(t)'s being deployed to counter Polish guerrilla fighters or the like. As I pointed out above this kit may put off some modelers due to it's close to $100 price tag, however with kits like this $100 may very well be a bargain compared to what it may cost (as a limited availability piece) 5 years from now.
SUMMARY
Highs: Great subject matter and not something you will see from several other kit makers.
Lows: High cost for what's included by comparison to other recent rail car releases.
Verdict: This is going to make train aficionados very happy. Typical Trumpeter mold quality and workmanship.
Percentage Rating
89%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 01508
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Jan 09, 2011
  NATIONALITY: Germany
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 89.91%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 84.63%

Our Thanks to Stevens International!
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.
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About Jim Starkweather (staff_Jim)
FROM: CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES

I started building models in 1971 when I was 6. My first model was a 1/32 P-40 Warhawk. Revell I believe. From there I moved onto the standard cars, Apollo spacecraft, and other kid orientated kits. I don't know what got me started on Armor. I must have seen a Monogram tank kit one day and said "Mom...

Copyright ©2017 text by Jim Starkweather [ STAFF_JIM ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of TankRat's. All rights reserved.


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Comments

I`ve just gotten two of these to put the finishing touch to my BP 42 and i have to say that they are FANTASTIC !.Whilst i realise that the price is high i do have to say they are worth every penny as very little ( if any ) AM stuff is needed. The only down-side for me personally is that the tank only comes with indy-link tracks (which i`m pants at doing !). I do,however,applaud Trumpeter`s approach to releasing the BP 42 in seperate components as selling it as a whole thing would have been phenomenally expensive - i`m only building half and it`s reached £400 as it is !,but it seems to be the only way forward. To sum up,hats off to Trumpeter to go where no manufacturer has gone before.
JAN 09, 2011 - 08:19 AM
Danny, If you want vinyl tracks, I have 2 sets from the Tamiya marders. Just pay for shipping and they are yours! Regards, Georg
JAN 09, 2011 - 09:20 AM
Thanks for this review Jim! I saw a small thumbnail of this the GreatWall website but couldn't click on it, so I had no idea what I was looking at. Now that I really do know what I'm looking at I'm interested, especially being a fan of both trains and the 38(t)
JAN 12, 2011 - 11:43 PM
Good review of an interesting subject. Especially the train car! I hope someone will start making these railroad subjects in 1/48.
JAN 31, 2011 - 10:18 PM
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