Reference, Osprey Modelling 30, Modelling the Panther Tank
May 25 2006 at 9:22 PM
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Modelling 30, Modelling the Panther Tank. By: Steve van Beveren. Soft cover, 7.25 x 9.75-inches, 80 pages. Contains 191 color photos, index, bibliography, kitography, and one page of color samples. ISBN 1-84176-928-2.
Osprey continues its well-done revised “Modelling” series with a book on that most Teutonic Panzer, the German Panther medium tank. The author, who is new to the series, has done a very creditable job in dealing with this very popular modeling subject. He is of course aided by the fact that there are some very good kits of this particular “cat”, as well as a host of after-market accessories in 1/35th-scale, plus some very fine reference sources. Unlike many other titles in this series, there are no “Braille Scale” projects within the covers.
The book follows the basic format of the series in that it provides a brief description of the vehicle in question, followed by a description of tools and materials the author prefers to use. Following this is a blow-by-blow text and photo description of the construction of the following kits:
• Panther Ausf.A, based on the DML kit.
• Panther Ausf.D, based on the DML kit.
• Panther Ausf.G, based on the Tamiya kit.
• Bergepanther Ausf.A, conversion based on the DML kit.
• Pantherturm, based on a DML turret.
Within each individual project, the author describes techniques for correcting some errors (such as the glacis/superstructure roof joint on the Tamiya Ausf.G), or adding details and after-market parts, as well as techniques for adding Zimmerit to those Panthers that required them. The use of after-market items to correct items in certain kits, or to create specific vehicle features is also shown. Aside from the major conversion work done to produce the Bergepanther, which also utilized after-market parts, the author adds an interior to the Tamiya Ausf.G; this is one of the finest interiors this reviewer has ever seen and should serve as an inspiration to those who may wish to add this feature to their model. The construction of the Pantherturm also involves scratch-building the steel shelters seen beneath the turret. This is also ably accomplished by the author and is plainly laid-out for the reader. In short, every project will inform the careful reader. Oddly enough, there is no Jagdpanther project within the book’s covers, which, considering that it was a major variant of the Panther, is a bit odd. But, what is included is certainly worth the price of admission.
To further supplement the detailed projects described in the book, a gallery contains the models of the following individuals:
• Panther Ausf.G, Tamiya, by Manus Gallagher.
• Panther Ausf.A, DML, by Sam Dwyer.
• Bergepanther Ausf.A, DML, by Sam Dwyer.
• Panther Ausf.A, DML, by David Parker.
• Panther Ausf.G, Tamiya, by David Parker.
These projects, all created by well-known modelers, will certainly serve to inspire others, as well as to impart more variety to the book.
The text is competently-written and easily understood. It is complimented by very fine (and well-captioned) full-color photography, which amply illustrates the points the author makes. There are separate headings for each of the author’s projects detailing kits, accessories and materials used for each kit. The detailed kit and accessory list is also accompanied by an in-print and on-line reference listing, a listing of Panthers displayed in various museums and private collections, a page featuring full-color paint samples (not to be taken “literally” due to limitations in the reproductive process) and samples of various Zimmerit patterns. An index will aid the modeler who is seeking information regarding a particular segment, or item, within the book.
In conclusion, this book should prove to be a handy tool for modelers considering building a Panther. It will also be of use to those who are interested in seeing the work of others, as well as those who are always seeking new modeling techniques.
Frank V. De Sisto
Osprey books can be acquired direct through their web site at: www.ospreypublishing.com.