1⁄35Building Dragons 'Smart' Panther G
stage 3 to 5In these stages, you will install all the road wheels, and complete the rear hull wall. The road wheels, as said above, just need a wipe with some fine sandpaper, and some distressing of them with a scalpel blade wouldn’t go amiss, depending on the state of the vehicle you’re modelling. As also mentioned above, you get the option to install the last pair of road wheels as steel rimmed ones instead of rubber rimmed, so consult your references for the particular vehicle you’re modelling. Dragon instructions are often complained about since people find them difficult. To an extent I can understand, but I think it is a little unjustified. In each stage, just make absolutely sure that you look at all the small exploded view boxes, where most of the choices for different options are given. Tempting as it is to just get on with the build, it does pay dividends to study the instructions closely before you do! In stage 4 there are different options again for the exhaust stacks, with regards to the muffler and the base of each exhaust. I went for the more common rounded bases and left off the muffler extensions. When complete the rear wall can be installed on to the hull. I cam across a problem here. There was a tiny gap running down either side of the rear wall where it meets the hull, and a larger one running along the bottom. Since I had done nothing to change the basic shape of the rear wall, or the hull, I can only suppose it’s a flaw in the kit. It’s simple enough to fix, nevertheless it shouldn’t be there. For the tiny gaps down either side I ran some super thin cement down the weld beads that are attaché to the rear wall, and after they had softened a little they could then be ‘pushed’ into place with a fine, flat screwdriver. The gap along the bottom was filled with a thin styrene sheet, and then sanded smooth.
Stages 6 to 8These stages deal with construction of the Mg34 for the for the co-driver, driver and co-driver’s hatches, some periscope detail on the superstructure, and detailing the engine deck. Firstly, you have to decide whether or not you’re actually going to use the machine gun, since not all would have had them, and Dragon do provide a blanking plate if you should choose not to use it. Having said that, it’s a beautiful little piece of moulding! Seven parts combine to make this little masterpiece, and unless you’re going to leave the co-driver’s hatch open , you’re not going to see a thing! All the periscopes are supplied in clear styrene, as you would expect these days, and if you are going to leave the two front hatches open, there is some lovely detail provided for the hinges, springs etc. which again, can all be left off if the hatches are going to shown ‘buttoned-up’. All the external handles are provided as styrene, in keeping with Dragon’s aims in producing this kit, and there really is little need to replace them with wire, as long as you’re careful when removing them from the sprue and cleaning them up. The driver’s periscope again provides a choice of armoured covers, and make sure that you remove the square locating ribs around the housing for the oblique periscope on the superstructure deck. I didn’t and had to remove the cover afterwards! You can also assemble the cylindrical cleaning rod case at this point. It comes in two halves, unlike the caption on the side which can mislead you into thinking it’s a one-piece affair. This will, of course, mean that you’ll have a seam to clean up. Use extra-thin cement, push the halves together, and leave it to dry for as long as you can, don’t be tempted to try and clean up the seam until it’s thoroughly dry. When you sand it clean, use a thin strip of fine sandpaper, around the circumference, and you shouldn’t have any visible seam afterwards. The instructions also state that the crow bar should be fixed to the top of the holding brackets, but it should be part K1 not K5 as the instructions say. Stage 8 is the detailing on the engine deck. Again, lots of choices. You can have two flush fans, or the left one raised and fitted with a heating duct to the crew compartment as it was on really late G’s. You can have that one with the fan closed off, or the fan stowed to one side. It’s here you get to use the photo etched grills supplied with the kit.
Copyright ©2020 by Vinnie Branigan. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. The views and opinions expressed herein are solely the views and opinions of the authors and/or contributors to this Web site and do not necessarily represent the views and/or opinions of AeroScale, KitMaker Network, or Silver Star Enterrpises. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved. Originally published on: 2006-07-15 00:00:00. Unique Reads: 55425