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Gallery Models 1/16 scale StuG III Ausf G plastic model kit review

A big, detailed model, but be prepared to clean mold lines
Kit:64009 // Scale:1/16 // Price:$198.99
Gallery Models (Sample courtesy of Model Rectifier Corp.)
Nice detail; good instructions; parts breakdown makes for a straightforward build
Fit issues; parts cleanup; no interior; decals silvered
Injection-molded plastic; 1,296 parts (1 copper wire, poly caps, photo-etched metal fret)
Perhaps surprisingly, this 1/16 scale StuG III Ausf G is the first kit I’ve built from Gallery Models. Inside the big box reside over 1,000 parts that include a single-piece hull bottom and sides, individual-length tracks, road wheels, tires, periscopes, a rear rack, and a metal barrel. Decals with markings for four different vehicles are included, too.

Assembly starts with the suspension and torsion bars. Early on, I realized the plastic torsion bars didn’t line up, correctly, I glued them in place, checking them with a ruler. The multipart road wheels made cleaning up the separate tires a lengthy process, with eight sprue points per tire. That aside, the tires were nicely molded with a “Continental” logo on each side.

A cleat, horn, and pin completed each track, and every part required cleanup. The track pins did not fit consistently and the holes needed frequent drilling.

The hull one-piece fender included all the hardware. I used a mix of plastic and photo-etched metal (PE) hold-downs for the tools and tow cables. The PE lock mechanisms gave me trouble, particularly the pin (Part PE-A7)—too short and fiddly to insert. The locating holes in the fenders were undersized, which required drilling. The tow cables were made of copper wire that needed straightening from being rolled up in the box. Installing them in the holders was a challenge because of the wire’s memory—just wanted to keep curling back up. The instructions are a bit vague on where to attach the fenders, so I glued them to the hull for a sure fit.

The kit offers the choice between a plastic or metal barrel for the main gun. Of course, I chose metal, built the breech, and attached the two. I primed the assembly before installing it.

The upper hull and engine deck fit without any difficulty. With it all closed up, I painted the camo. Lastly, I added the side skirts, and, like the prototype, they just hang there loose. I glued them to keep them from falling off and applied the decals. Unfortunately, the decals silvered after drying for a day. I used decal solvent to get them to settle down. A light misting of Floquil Dust from an airbrush added a bit of light weathering.

Gallery Models’ 1/16 scale StuG III Ausf G took longer than I expected: 65 hours with a good portion spent on running gear. Well organized, the biggest stumbling block for me was the amount of cleanup required. It makes an impressive model and will interest German armor fans, especially those looking to superdetail a big model.
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