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Blitz by Takom Jagdtiger

Build review of the 1/35 scale armor kit with good, easy detail
RELATED TOPICS: ARMOR
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The Jagdtiger was the heaviest and most armored vehicle to see combat in World War II. Developed from the already massive King Tiger tank, the tank destroyer mounted a 12.8cm gun in the casemate; fewer than 80 were completed before war’s end. The Jagdtiger has been a popular kit subject; if manufacturers had a King Tiger, a Jagdtiger would follow.  

Takom’s all-new Jagdtiger is molded in light gray plastic with sharp details and no flash. Features include link-and-length tracks, optional parts to build early or late production versions, decals for five Jagdtigers, and a small photo-etched metal (PE) fret that supplies engine screens. No figures are provided.

Note: Some steps are marked as -1 and -2 illustrations. This indicates differences between early and late vehicles, but Takom never states this clearly.

With a one-piece lower hull, most of the early work revolves around the suspension. The road-wheel arms fit positively and are keyed for alignment. You can confirm the angle of the arms with the kit’s handy jig, which is also used to build the tracks. The road wheels are three-part assemblies with sharp detail. The jig made track assembly easy and I used the recommended number of links and the assembled track runs fit perfectly.

The upper hull part includes crisp weld seams and torch cuts. Separate front and rear plates close the fighting compartment. The front plate fought me during installation until I discovered the correct angle to slide it into place.

The PE screens enhance the engine deck and I was impressed by the 3D-effect achieved on these screens.

Separate crew hatches are provided along the with the main engine access, possibly a sign Takom plans to release one with a full interior as it has done with the King Tiger kits. The lack of clear parts for the periscopes disappointed me.

The gun barrel comprises three parts: two halves with a separate one-part muzzle with nice rifling. Internally, the gun and its mounting are very simple, lacking the breech and elevation equipment.

I caught a couple of issues late in the construction and painting of the gun. First, when I attached the mantlet I found the gun did not protrude far enough. It was hard to attach the mantlet to the gun’s locking tabs and the gun’s wider section doesn’t protrude as it should. I am not sure if something moved during assembly or if the gun platform is set a bit too far back.

The second issue came up during painting: a gap between the one-piece muzzle and the barrel, which I believe Takom intends to represent a machined groove. It’s not visible in photos; if I were to build this kit again I would fill this seam.

I painted my Jagdtiger with a combination of AK Interactive Real Color and Ammo of Mig late war German colors. Decals laid down well over the semigloss finish with a little decal solution.

I spent 28 hours and I was impressed with the quality of the molding and the subject. This kit can be handled easily by most modelers who have built any of the current armor kits on the market. I highly recommend the kit to modelers who like big German armor!


Note: A version of this review appeared in the May 2020 issue.

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