Zvezda’s new T-35 kit captures the imposing bulk of the only widely produced five-turreted tank perfectly. The large box is filled with huge sprues; if your workspace is on the smaller side you’ll need to find a larger place to build. The dark green plastic parts feature crisp details, no flash, and slide-molded gun barrels. The only part I had any problem with was the wraparound antenna; it was brittle and the part was broken in my sample.
Thoughtful part breakdown and good fits made this behemoth a joy to build. On many kits, assemblies such as turret halves would normally require filler to eliminate seams. Zvezda’s turrets fit so well that light sanding made joins disappear. Weld beads, rivets, and bolts are crisp and clearly defined.
I encountered only two areas that required modification for fit. In Step 10, remove the three center rivets from Part D24 so Part B58 fits properly.
Second, the lower run (B1) on the link-and-length tracks appears to be one link too long. I trimmed one link from the end that mates with Part B14.
Unlike the majority of tank models, construction of the T-35 began with the upper hull and turrets. All of the turrets have some interior detail. The smallest have gun breeches; the main turret has a full basket with seats, controls, and the breech for the 76mm cannon. The fit of the turret roofs is snug without glue, so I left one of each loose to display the inside.
Small clips added in Step 10 hold the turrets in their races, but I left them off for painting.
Weld lines and fine rivets mark the tub for the lower hull.
The running gear needed little cleanup and went together smoothly. It’s a shame that the side skirts cover up so many lovely details, such as the mud chutes and springs. I could not find any photos of a T-35 with missing skirts, but I left a section off to display some of the suspension.
In addition to a straightforward build, painting and weathering proceeded smoothly. I left the skirts off to paint the suspension, then attached them for consistent weathering.
If you enjoy Soviet and Russian armor or want something different in your collection, this large kit is a must. The finished model is an impressive 11" long and about 4" tall, but it’s the small details that demand a closer look. The only thing I would add is a figure to illustrate the scale of this beast.
Note: A version of this review appeared in the February 2017 issue.