For the exercise I took a set of 1/35th plans from the Russian publication “Medium Tank T-34 Modelist Konstruktor publications 3'99” (see reference list) and enlarged these by a factor of 219% on a photocopier (the actual percentage required for the enlargement is 218.8% so I guess .2% can be forgiven).
Lets also take into account the fact that there is no guarantee the plans are accurate themselves as well as the slight differences due to printing etc.
T-34-76 Model 1943 (kit 00903):
Firstly the hull angles for the glacis, side panels, rear plate, the width and length all matched the plans perfectly and the road wheels, track width and engine deck also matched well within the above tolerances. Most of the smaller parts were to size but the rear square fuel tanks were narrower than the plans by about 2mm while the turret height was spot on but one area where they didn’t match exactly was the shape of the turret roof and as a consequence the width of the rearmost panel was slightly too wide altering the angles of the two rear side panels on the hexagonal turret as shown below.
T-34-76 Model 1942 (Kit No.00905):
I also enlarged a set of Mod.1942 plans from the same book as above and as the basic hull is the same in both kits, the same comments apply. With the turret, the shape, size and angles (including the correct dip in the roof line just in front of the hatch) were spot on with the only part a little off was the centre flat panel on the rear of the turret which was about 1.5mm narrower (.75mm each side) than the plans which is almost in the nit pic category given the above considerations. (Note, this did not alter the angles of the turret sides as the rear turret sections compensated for the slight difference in flat panel width).
T-34-85 (Future Kits No.00902 & 00904):
To hopefully set peoples minds at rest I also compared the test shot of the T-34-85 turret received a while back to the enlarged plans and it was well within acceptable tolerances mentioned above from all angles, I will also mention that the fine details such as cast effect and other details have been considerably enhanced from those on the test shot -76 turrets to the final kit turrets and we can safely assume the test shot -85 turret will be similarly enhanced, so it's all looking good for the July releases.
There has been some speculation regarding the angles of the suspension
trunks on the front hull sides as they should be at different angles with
the front trunks slanted further forward than the rear ones.
This feature is included in the kit parts as it should be as shown on the image below and does show the degree of research gone into the kit. The trunks either side of the engine compartment are at the same angle but I don’t have any references that shows otherwise and can only assume that as the front trunks have the offset then the rear ones are also correct.
Sure the shape of the ’43 hex turret is not quite right on this particular kit but every kit has errors and if this is the only one we can find here then it really pales into insignificance given the overall package and hopefully we don’t focus on a particular error and miss the big picture.
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Page created 27 May 2004
Updated 28 May 2004