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In-Box Review
135
T-34 Update Set
  • t34_001

by: Jim Rae [ JIMBRAE ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction


At last it seems that the T34 is coming more into the 'mainstream'. It's always been a popular subject with modelers but has not (considering the astronomical numbers which were built) featured all that heavily in the manufacturers lists. However, good as a 'mainstream' kit can be, it's unlikely the manufacturers (for cost reasons) will ever include all the 'extras' which the AM people do.

Curiously enough, the Soviets never loaded their vehicles up with stowage as the British or Americans did. Certainly however, they did carry items such as spare track-links or ice grousers - by comparison, Polish forces (within the Red Army) did tend to load their vehicles up more than their Russian counterparts...


Legend's New Update Set


LF1152 - T-34 Update Set comes in the usual side-opening box and consists of 60 resin parts, a sheet of PE parts, a length of thread, two lengths of different diameter copper wire, a small sheet of lead and an instruction sheet in full-color. All the resin parts are packed together in one plastic bag, the wire etc., in another.


What does it cover?


LF1152 sets out to replace a number of specific areas in almost any T34/76 (and with applications for the -85 as well) these are:

Rear Fuel tanks

Storage Boxes

Spare Track Links

Ice Grousers

Shackles/Tow Cables

Rear Engine Vent

Smaller Details (lights, Klaxon etc.)

Crew Figure


In Detail


Casting an initial look over the set, there were no air bubbles present in any of the resin parts. Casting is good with the blocks easier to remove than other of the company's update sets. The only damage I found was on the large saw - which was missing its handles.

A word about the subject: Going through my plans and due to one of the aspects of the set, I have come to the conclusion, that using the parts as indicated, it's for a T34/76 Model 1942 which was produced at Factory 112 during summer 1942. The conclusion is quite simple, the three (frequently FOUR) large hand rails (for accompanying infantry) were typical of this factory's output (see image below).

As usual, i'll comment on the various items in the set and finish with some conclusions.

Rear Fuel tanks: Two types are provided, the cylindrical type (with PE supports) and the earlier 'square' type which were generally seen on early/mid war variants. These aren't generally seen much beyond 1943 although, as someone said regarding Shermans, never say never! These are dimensionally accurate and correctly provide THREE cylindrical tanks which is again appropriate for a mid-war T34. Attachmnent points for the square tanks are added from the PE set.

Storage Boxes: Two storage boxes are provided with padlocks, hinges etc. nicely cast. Much simpler than PE ones...

Spare Track Links/Ice Grousers: These parts i'm not wild about. In the case of the former, there are some very nice seperate link sets coming out from the manufacturers. Definition doesn't seem too brilliant although they are useable.

Shackles/Tow Cables: These are absolutely superb. Good shape and with the addition of an attachment point (as described in the instructions) will look very convincing.

Rear Engine Vent: Only the very recent T34s are including this as a seperate part - it looks horrible in solid plastic... This is produced in PE and will require some careful bending. The end result should be well worth the effort though.

Smaller Details (lights, Klaxon etc.): Once again, a considerable improvement on the usual kit parts. The main headlight for example, being hollow, will allow the modeler to add a lamp filament inside and use a plastic lens with it. The stowage bundles are the usual high-standard one would expect from Legend. Four are provided to use where appropriate.

The Figure: Unusually enough, a crew figure is provided. Very nicely cast with seperate hands, feet, head and a two-part body. Good detail on the face and the tanker's padded helmet.

Instructions: As I mentioned in the introduction, these are printed in full-color. They are clear and concise - more than one normally expects from update sets! As a nice bonus, three propaganda posters and two maps are also included on this sheet.


Conclusions


A very versatile set indeed, which, although is designed for the T34/76 than the -85 will still find some use in the latter. Very well thought-out with some truly inspired touches. My only real 'gripe' was with the Ice Grousers although they will serve. The attention to detail by the designer is also worth a 'thumbs-up' the choice of fuel tanks gives a lot of possibilities for early/mid-war vehicles I also thought the inclusion of the figure was a good idea. Legend Productions are definitely bringing us some great items..
SUMMARY
The last year or so has seen some new or updated T34s from, in particular, DML. However, only a handful, of the many available from various manufacturers, have been updated (or are completely new) which leaves a lot of possibilities to upgrade some of the older (but essentially sound) T34s available.
Percentage Rating
85%
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: LF1152
  Related Link: Product on Company Homepage
  PUBLISHED: Oct 24, 2007
  NATIONALITY: Russia
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 88.06%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 87.83%

Our Thanks to Legend Productions!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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Photos
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  • con_jVNWFl
  • con_TpmDnH
  • t34-4
  • t34-1
  • t34-2
  • t34-3
  • t34-3a
About Jim Rae (jimbrae)
FROM: PROVINCIA DE LUGO, SPAIN / ESPAñA

Self-employed English teacher living in NW Spain. Been modelling off and on since the sixties. Came back into the hobby around ten years ago. First love is Soviet Armor with German subjects running a close second. Currently exploring ways of getting cloned to allow time for modelling, working and wr...

Copyright ©2019 text by Jim Rae [ JIMBRAE ]. All rights reserved.



Comments

It' still a case of sewing a silk purse to a sow's ear. I am baffled by Legend Productions' choice to offer an expensive upgrade kit for the obsolete Tamiya model. What's the point of upgrading a thirty year old kit when better kits are available from other makers? For less money, one can get a Dragon T-34 with everything you need in the box. Dragon will almost certainly release this midwar variant within the next year, and it will presumably come with the same photoetch and indie link Magic Tracks as their other recent T-34 kits. And if you absolutely must have this variant today, it makes more sense to mate a Dragon T-34 with a resin aftermarket turret. It will be more accurate, more detailed, and might even be cheaper. The Tamiya kit is fine for someone who just wants an inexpensive, easy build that pretty much looks like a T-34, but adding these extras defeats the purpose, if economy and simplicity is the objective.
OCT 26, 2007 - 12:47 AM
   

What's Your Opinion?


Photos
Click image to enlarge
  • t34_002
  • t34-5
    Instructions
  • t34_004
    Grousers
  • t34_006
  • t34_003
    Replacement fuel tanks
  • t34_005
    Stowage Bundles
  • t34_007
    Shackles and Replacement lights
  • t34_009
    Crew Figure
  • t34-6
    Photo Etch