Introduced in 1944, the Jagdpanther was arguably one of the best tank destroyer designs of WW2. It operated on the Eastern and Western front where it proved to be a formidable weapon with its sloped armor and deadly 88mm gun!

Introduction

Upon opening the box I had a surprise. The body of the vehicle is entirely metal! This was my first experience regarding a metal Dragon kit so I toyed with it for a minute gazing in wonder.

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Main body, decals, rubber tracks and the nice instructions.

There are also 2 plastic sprues inside the box. One of them deals with the road wheels and the other with the classic (and beautiful in my opinion) “Saukopf”, hull details and engine block.

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The running gear.

Engine details and the gun.

Engine details and the gun.

Assembly Process

I started by assembling the “Saukopf” and the gun barrel. Dragon likes to build guns that can move a bit, adding to the real feel of the model however the actual fitting is kind of hard for people with big hands. It took 10 minutes just to figure out how to proceed in pinning down the gun barrel through the gun shield. Also, the C30 piece (the mantlet) was not accepting the C6 gun barrel. My solution was to simply use the C16 piece (the second mantlet) which is deemed not to be used.

Notice how the upper mantlet is designed to deflect shots.

Notice how the upper mantlet is designed to deflect shots.

Next were the wheels and as usual there are lots of them. Around 12 sets have to be assembled (2 parts each) and a further 16 road wheels are used in conjunction.

Lots of wheelies.

Lots of wheelies.

It was actually much easier than it looks to put it all together. Care though because when you press them in to place you can actually break them (I broke one).

Running gear completed.

Running gear completed.

Next was the engine compartment and another surprise. C14 is NOT the right piece to assemble the motor with, but C15. C14 is actually the piece B14 that is needed to close the back hatch on the hull (you can see the hole in this picture).

Nice angled body for maximum armor efficiency.

Nice angled body for maximum armor efficiency.

Finishing the upper hull, I had to manually trim the commander hatch C19 because it wouldn’t fit so I cut the back piece that was elevating it by 1-2mm. The rest of the parts were quite easy to cut, fit and glue to the body.

All details added.

All details added.

After that it was just an easy job of gluing the two pieces together (upper and lower hull) and take final pictures.

The hunter on the prowl.

The hunter on the prowl.

front view

Front view.

rear view

Rear view.

Evaluation

Plastic Quality 4.5 (Very Good) It’s hard plastic so not easy to bend or scratch. Also there is no flash on the pieces.
Number of Details 4 (Good) Although not abundant in details that can be added the result looks real and crisp. Has decals included.
Instructions 4 (Good) Instructions are good and detailed. It has a very nice paint scheme available in colour.
Building Time 5 (Perfect) A very fast kit considering that it does not sacrifice detail. It took 70 minutes to build.
Enjoyment 4.5 (Very Good) There is no part that stresses the modeller. Assembly simply flows. Highly enjoyable.

Dragon also kindly includes a lot of extras on the sprues. A nice touch is the extra machine gun and the extra headlight included, which are so small that they are prone to be lost if dropped. The total number of parts found in the box is 115.

The model comes with decals included and the paint scheme recommended is for an unknown unit active in Germany, 1945.

In conclusion, this is a very nice beginner friendly kit that can easily be completed in less than 90 minutes.

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