Scale: 1 / 35
The kit's background
The Tiger (P) was a prototype tank. It was a candidate for the German army's heavy tank contract. Ten examples were built in 1942 (not all identical). The vehicle was also known as the VK4501 (P) and the "Type 101".
Another candidate tank from Henschel won the contract, became known as the Tiger (H) and went down in history. But the Tiger (P) was not discarded. Its turret was adapted and used on the Tiger (H), which never got a turret of its own despite two attempted designs.
Some of the finished Tiger (P) were used for training Tiger crews, including men from s.Pz.Abt. 501 and 503. Another ninety Tiger (P) whose manufacture had been started were converted to tank destroyers.
This kit represents one of the completed Tiger (P). The first eight of them had a turret with a segmented roof and two pistol ports at the rear; this is what the kit contains. The final two Tiger (P) had an improved turret with a one-piece roof and a side hatch; the kit cannot build them.
The instructions state that the kit represents the 7th of the Tiger (P), as drawn in the book "Panzer Tracts". In fact the kit appears to be based primarily on the "Panzer Tracts" drawings. Several small errors in those drawings have been copied into the kit; careful study of photographs would have prevented this.
The kit's instructions suggest two paint schemes, an all-grey version and a camouflaged one. The real tanks were apparently grey while in use at the training grounds in Germany, so the first option is realistic. However, there were small identifying numbers on the turret sides which are not provided in this kit's decal sheet.
The camouflaged paint scheme is pure speculation. If these tanks had gone into series production, they would have had the improved version of the turret, which is not included in this kit. But it's possible that the first eight examples would have seen service in the first of the Heavy Tank Battalions. The decal sheet provides generic numbers and crosses, but none of them have the fonts or symbols of these battalions.
The kit has photo-etch grilles, a figure and some metal wire. Both flexible-band and working individual-link track sets are provided. There are working metal suspension springs.
There are hints that an interior version of this kit may be planned. The inside of the driver's visor is provided, although completely invisible. Also, a turret ring with bolt holes is molded into the hull roof, and there is bolt detail on the turret base. But these two items are very inaccurate (in fact they are blatantly copied from the Rye Field kits). Since the internal layout of the real tank is not fully known, an interior kit is likely to add many more errors.
In this analysis I will discuss only the portions of this kit that are similar to Tiger (H) components. This includes the turret and certain items on the hull.
My ongoing review and comments;
|Pistol port||Vision port position||Cupola arm|
|Turret seating ring||Travel lock||Notch in mantlet|
|Cupola position||Turret ring|
These are other reviews of the kit;
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