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Built Review
135
Panzer-Pionier-Bataillon 37
Dragon '39-'45 series, Panzer-Pionier-Bataillon 37 1.Panzer-Division Leningrad 1941
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by: Randy Harvey [ HARV ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction

The 1st Panzer Division was formed in 1935 and took place in fighting both on the Western and Eastern fronts. In 1941 it took part in Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union. During Operation Barbarossa the 1st Panzer Division was a key player in the fighting for Leningrad.

As with any fighting force there has always been a demand for specially trained soldiers who fill the role of a combat engineer. Combat engineers perform several functions such as placing roads signs, planting and detecting land mines, building, repairing and destroying bridges, destroying armored vehicles that cannot be repaired and placing charges on barriers and fortified positions. During the invasion of the Soviet Union the combat engineers were there fulfilling their role and earning their place in history during Operation Barbarossa.

Dragon has released Panzer-Pionier-Bataillon 37 1.Panzer-Division Leningrad 1941, kit number 6651, a set of four figures in 1/35 scale in its '39-'45 series, which represent four WWII German Pioniers on the Eastern Front during the fighting in Leningrad during 1941.

the kit

The box that the kit comes in is the typical soft cardboard open end box with artwork of the figures on the top of the box by artist Ron Volstad. The bottom of the box has a very basic assembly guide in the form of photographs of the completed figures and an artwork painting guide.

The kit comes with four grey styrene sprues which contain 155 total pieces. The sprues come sealed in clear plastic bags. All of the pieces are attached to the sprue with a minimal amount of contact points. When I examined the sprues I didn't find any bent, broken or missing pieces.

There is no separate instruction sheet included in the kit. There is only the basic assembly guide on the bottom of the box. The assembly guide does have mistakes in it in the form of the wrongly numbered items.

Included on the bottom of the box is a painting guide. There are three brands of paint referenced. They are:

• GSI Creos Corp. Aqueous Hobby Colour,
• GSI Creos Corp. Mr. Colour,
• Model Master Color.

There are no decals included in this kit.

sprue breakdown

Sprue 6651: 56 total pieces
All of the pieces for the four figures (24 total pieces); 1 German side cap, 1 German Pioniersturmgepäck - pioneer assault pack, 1 German Teller 29 anti-tank mine, 2 German Teller 35 anti-tank mines, 2 German Teller 42 anti-tank mines, 2 German Teller 43 anti-tank mines, 6 German “S” (Bouncy Betty) mines, 1 German Riegelmine 43 anti-tank mine, 1 German 20M Tape Measure?, 3 German fuse carrying cases?, German Shu-Mines?, 2 German Mauser ammunition stripper clips, 1 pair of German bolt/wire cutters, German engineer explosive detonator Model 39 (Glühzündapparat 39) with a separate “T” handle, 1 German engineer’s demolition wire reel

Sprue G: 60 total pieces, 4 German bayonets, 4 German canteens, 4 German gas mask canisters with separate end caps, 4 German gas mask cape pouches, 4 German rolled shelter halves, 4 German bread bags, 4 German mess kits, 1 German document pouch, 2 German STG-44 magazine pouches, 3 German pistol holsters, 3 German stick grenades, 4 German helmets, 1 pair of German binoculars with eye piece cap, 6 German Mauser ammunition pouches, 4 German MP-40 ammunition pouches, two with the magazine loading tool pouch, 1 German Luger pistol, 1 German P-38 pistol, 1 machine gun tool pouch

Sprue W: 30 total pieces; 3 German MP-40 sub machine guns, 1 German MP-40 extended stock, 2 German MP-40 ammunition magazines, 4 German Mauser 98k rifles, 4 German Mauser ammunition stripper clips, 1 German MG-34 machine gun, 1 German MG-34 machine gun bi-pod, 1 German MG-34 machine gun ammunition feed tray cover, 1 German MG-42 machine gun, 1 German MG-42 machine gun bipod,1 German MG-42 machine gun ammunition feed tray cover, 1 German STG-44 assault rifle, 1 German Gewehr 43 rifle, 2 German STG-44 assault rifle ammunition magazines, 3 German Gewehr 43 rifle ammunition magazines, 3 German machine gun saddle drum ammunition magazines

Sprue 6110: 9 total pieces; 1 German Mauser 98k rifle with a 30 mm Schießbecher cup-type rifle grenade launcher, 3 machine gun ammunition belts, 1 machine gun ammunition can. I was surprised, and disappointed, to find that no entrenching tools came with these figures.

As I examined the individual pieces I found what I would consider to be a normal to minimal amount of flash however there are seam lines present. I did not find any push out (knock out) marks on the individual pieces. The detailing on the individual pieces is fairly decent.

The figures

I assembled all of the figures straight out of the box without doing any work on them to show the seam lines, flash, gaps and how the equipment fits on the figures. I felt this would be a good way to show the work required on all of them.

Figure 1:
Standing figure holding the MP-40. The figure is made up of ten total pieces. The figure is wearing the armored pioneer variation of the black panzer uniform. The figure is carrying a German MP-40 sub-machine gun which fits into the figures hand well. If desired the modeler will need to scratch build a sling for the sub-machine gun. Along with the MP-40 are two magazine pouches, one with the magazine loader tool pouch. Areas of detailing that is decent are the buttons, belt buckle, epaulettes, rank on the collar tabs and the eagle on the right side of the chest. The boots have hob nails that are done fairly well. The pose of the figure is nice, the neck fits into the collar fairly well and the side cap fits on the head nicely. The detailing on the figures face is decent. There is very little flash present however there are seam lines which will need to be removed. The overall fit of the pieces is good with few gaps that will need to be filled.

Figure 2:
Standing figure holding the detonator. The figure is made up of thirteen total pieces. The pose of the figure is nice. The figure is holding an engineer explosive detonator Model 39 (Glühzündapparat 39) which comes in two pieces. The detonator doesn’t fit into the hands very well. Some work will be required to make it fit more realistically. Areas of detailing that is decent are the buttons, rank on the collar tabs, pocket flaps and the eagle on the right side of the chest. The detailing on the belt buckle and epaulettes is fair. The boots have hob nails that are done fairly well. The pose of the figure is nice, the neck fits into the collar well, the face has decent detailing and the helmet fits on the head nicely. There is a molded chin strap on the figures head that has decent detailing on the left side however the right side is poor. There is very little flash present however there are seam lines which will need to be removed. he overall fit of the pieces is good with few gaps that will need to be filled. There are mistakes in the instructions are far as wrong numbers used to identify certain parts.

Figure 3:
Kneeling figure with the engineer pack. The figure is made up of a total of sixteen pieces. The figure is carrying a Mauser 98K rifle. The modeler will need to scratch build a sling for the rifle. The rifle does not fit into the hands very well. So some work will be required to open the hands to make the rifle fit correctly. The figure is carrying a Pioniersturmgepäck - pioneer assault pack and pouches and there are molded straps on the torso for the pack. Areas of detailing that is decent are the buttons, rank on the collar tabs, pocket flaps and the eagle on the right side of the chest. The detailing on the belt buckle and epaulettes is fair. The boots have hob nails that are done fairly well. The pose of the figure is nice, the neck fits into the collar well, the face has decent detailing and the helmet fits on the head nicely. There is very little flash present however there are seam lines which will need to be removed. The overall fit of the pieces is good with few gaps that will need to be filled.

Figure 4:
Prone figure with the Mauser 98k rifle with the grenade launcher. The figure is made up of thirteen total pieces. The figure is carrying a Mauser 98K rifle which is fitted with a 30 mm Schießbecher cup-type rifle grenade launcher. There is also a side mounted bubble sight on the left side of the Mauser. The modeler will need to scratch build a sling for the rifle. The rifle does not fit into the figures left hand very well so some work will be required to open the hand to make the rifle fit correctly. Areas of detailing that is decent are the buttons, rank on the collar tabs, pocket flaps and the eagle on the right side of the chest. The detailing on the belt buckle and epaulettes is fair. The boots have hob nails that are done fairly well. The pose of the figure is nice, the neck fits into the collar well, the face has decent detailing and the helmet fits on the head nicely. There is very little flash present however there are seam lines which will need to be removed. The overall fit of the pieces is good with few gaps that will need to be filled.

Extra pieces:
The kit comes with several extra pieces from sprues 6610, 6651, G and W that can be added to the spare parts bin

Conclusion

This is a very nice set of figures. It represents German Engineers well. I like the fact that the figures are in different uniforms which helps create a more realistic scene. I was impressed with the detailing and the poses of all four figures. A modeler will just need to be prepared to spend some time removing seam lines, filling the few gaps, and making a few adjustments to some of the pieces.

One complaint I have is the wrongly numbered items on the instruction sheet. Another thing I would have liked to of seen included would have been some 30mm grenades for the Schießbecher cup-type rifle grenade launcher. On the positive side you do get several extra items for the spare parts bin. Other than my few complaints I was very impressed with the set and I feel that anyone who purchases this set of figures will be pleased with them.

References

Martin Windrow (illustrations by Gerry Embleton), World War 2 Combat Uniforms and Insignia, Squadron/Signal Publications, #6013, 1977

Ian V. Hogg,The Military Book Club Encyclopedia of Infantry Weapons of WWII, Saturn Books Ltd.

George Markham, Arms and Armour Press, Guns of the Reich, Firearms of the German Forces, 1939-1945

Martin Windrow (illustrations by Gerry Embleton), Tank and AFV Crew Uniforms Since 1916, Squadron/Signal Publications - #6027, 1979
SUMMARY
Highs: Decent detailing on most of the parts and the uniforms. Nice poses on most figures. The amount of extra items.
Lows: No instruction sheet or painting guide other than the basic guide on the box. No grenades for the 30 mm Schießbecher cup-type rifle grenade launcher. The amount of gaps and seam lines.
Verdict: This is a very nice set of figures which represents German Engineers well. I have no hesitation to recommend the set to others. This set could be easily used to create a simple diorama or the figures could be separated and used in different projects.
Percentage Rating
85%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 6651
  Suggested Retail: $11.95
  Related Link: DragonUSA Item Page
  PUBLISHED: Aug 21, 2011
  NATIONALITY: Germany
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 91.62%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 86.19%

Our Thanks to Dragon 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.

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About Randy Harvey (HARV)
FROM: WYOMING, UNITED STATES

I have been in the modeling hobby off and on since my youth. I build mostly 1/35 scale. However I work in other scales for aircraft, ships and the occasional civilian car kit. I also kit bash and scratch-build when the mood strikes. I mainly model WWI and WWII figures, armor, vehic...

Copyright ©2017 text by Randy Harvey [ HARV ]. 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

Looks like another Dragon kit to buy for the gear as much for the figures; thnaks for the review Randy
AUG 31, 2011 - 09:15 AM
Thank you Matthew and you're welcome. You do get lots of extras with these kits. That is a definite plus with me!! Randy
SEP 02, 2011 - 11:41 AM
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