The German Leichter Panzerspähwagen (light armored reconnaissance vehicle) was a 4-wheeled vehicle during World War 2 that served multiple purposes. The vehicle normally served as part of reconnaissance units mounting various smaller weapons, like a MG34, 2.8cm sPzB, or 2cm KwK autocannon. Some of the vehicles carried no weapons, but radio equipment to help maintain communication between units. The Sd.Kfz.260 was designed to carry radio equipment that allow for the communication between ground units and aircraft.
6 Plastic Sprues
1 Fret of Photo-etched
4 Vinyl Rubber Tires
1 Sheet Decal
This new kit of the Sd.Kfz. German Radio vehicle from ICM
is something new in 1/48 scale that I have normally not seen in plastic. The kit comes molded in grey plastic and looks to have decent molded details. While I found no sink marks on my sample, I did find a little bit of flash showing around some of the parts. Also it does look like most of the ejector marks will be hidden, with the only one that might cause an issue for some are the ones on the inside of the fenders.
I do find some of the details to be a little "chunky" for the 1/48 scale, as in over exagerated a litte. This is noticable on some of the hinges, head light brackets, and tail light assemblies. I would think it would have been nice to see some of these details on the photo-etched fret.
The running gear, including axles is molded as a single piece, and this should make assembly rather easy. The swing arms are separate, but again look to easy to assemble. The overall detail of the assembly does look good. As for wheels, ICM
has provided the option of the vinyl rubber or plastic molded tires. Both look good, with decent tread details, but the vinyl rubber, in my opinion, have always been difficult to remove the outer seam around the tire. I also found with the plastic molded tires there were some major inconsistencies on molding on the inside of the tires.
Having a full screened top, ICM does provide a fret of photo-etched. The screen on the photo-etched does look good. My only issue, and a bit of a pet-peeve for me is the fold lines on the photo-etched are on the outer surface, thus will be visible is not filled and sanded in some case. Also note that the kit does not include an interior, so I would suggest throwing on a coat of paint on the interior prior to installing the screened top.
A review of the sprues does show some parts that will be not be used, for example, a 2cm gun and turret. I would expect that ICM does have future plans to release an Sd.Kfz.221 or 222, or maybe both.
The instructions look to be well printed, with 25 steps across six pages. The steps look well organised and easy to follow. Paint scheme and markings are include for four vehicles:
- Ukraine, Summer 1941 (Dunklegrau)
- Grossdeutschland Division, Don Area, Summer 1942 (Dunklegrau)
- Russia, Winter 1942 (White washed)
- 5th Panzer Division, DAK, Libya, Summer 1942 (Gelbbraun)
The decals do look to be well printed and all in register.
So having the kit and it showing not to have a lot of parts, I thought I would try a quick build. And I was right, it does go together rather quickly, can be assembled in just a few hours. The basic fit is good, including the main hull top and bottom. Prior to assembling them, I did throw a quick coat of a light desert yellow primer on the inside.
As mentioned earlier, the one piece molded running gear makes the assembly that much quicker. After cleaning up some flash and prominent seams, it fit right into place with no issues. Adding the swing arms was just as easy.
I little sanding and more prominent seam marks are removed from the fendors that again fit well. Just has to be a little careful with the alignment as the locator tab is not exact. And as mention earlier, there are ejector marks on the inside, a little scraping and sanding made quick work of them.
Attaching the top of the body did leave a slight seam, but a little putty and sanding took care of it. The rest of the assembly went very well. I did notice while adding of the last parts that the jack does not have tie down or clamp details, thus a little work would be needed there if you want the right detail, I left my off.
does provide photo-etched parts for the top screen, which I found more copper colored then I had seen before. Working with it, I did find it stiffer them most other photo-etched I have also worked with. While I placed the main center part first, then the sides, I found lining that up a little difficult. I am thinking I should have fully assembled it, then attached to the vehicle.
With the Sd.Kfz.260 built, I applied a coat of primer, followed by a couple light coats of Vallejo Dunklegrau. After a coat of Future, the decals went on pretty well. They are very thin, but I did find a couple had rather large carrier film borders. I then re-sealed, applied a couple of washes and some fine weathering.
Overall the kit built very well, with decent fit. Being the first 1/48 scale AFV kit I have built in some time, I was pleasantly surprised and found it to be a fun build.
I found this to be a decent kit from ICM
of the German Sd.Kfz.260 in 1/48 scale. For the scale the kit has some pretty decent detail. While not as fully detailed as the bigger scale, when built it does look good. I would have like to see a little interior detail and maybe some more photo-etched details, which ICM
omitted, which would provide the option to leave the top open. The kit is the perfect scale for those 1/48 scale aircraft builders who would like a vehicle to display with your aircraft. Based on the kit and the build, I would recommend this kit.