38(t) series interior comparison
1:35 Kit Comparison
by Terry Ashley


This comparison is somewhat different than the normal as it isn't comparing specific kits but instead the interior details found in the various Pz.Kpfw.38(t) series kits on the market and includes the interiors from Cyberhobby/Dragon, Italeri and Tristar 38(t) kits. Tristar also have their interior set available separately (kit #35032) to upgrade any existing kits if you wish.

The reason for this is that the interiors can in some way be treated as separate kits within kits and many modellers don't include the interior detail even if included while others won't build a model without one.

Building any of the applicable kit without the interior will obviously shorten the construction time and you can use the interior for other projects if required, also this comparison will not be an in-depth analysis of every nut and bolt but basically a brief overview with the images doing the talking so you can see exactly what you get in the different kits to make up your own minds on this often asked question.

The Interiors:

The Italeri 38(t) kits only have the forward transmission/gearbox while both the Cyberhobby/Dragon and Tristar kits have the full transmission/gearbox and engine details included with all being basically the same major parts with just minor alterations of exhaust pipe placement and drive shaft lengths for rear and mid engine versions in the kits.

The Italeri kit has purely plastic parts while the Cyberhobby/Dragon kits are mostly plastic with some minor PE included in the engine compartment while the Tristar has extensive PE for many of the finer details which results in far more detailed assemblies from the box than the other two. But of course that does mean there is a lot more assembly involved with the Tristar interiors and some experience working with PE would be of assistance.

Of the three kits the Italeri interior has the driver's foot pedals but not the driver's instrument panel with the Tristar interior having both the driver's foot pedals and instrument panel while the Cyberhobby/Dragon interiors have neither of these details included.


Overall the Tristar interior details are far superior to the others offered, this is apparent to anyone able to view the images here with both eyes open but as mentioned will require additional assembly over the others.

For the engines, the Cyberhobby/Dragon parts have some details better represented while the Tristar parts has other details better so as far as the engines go it's comes out about even overall.
The Tristar radiator better represents that seen in most photos of the wartime 38(t) interior but this is basically hidden on both kits after assembly so is not a big deal.

The big differences between the kits is the transmission/gearbox/driver's station with the Italeri very basic indeed lacking any sort of real details and the Cyberhobby/Dragon parts have better defined details along with some that is quite chunky such as the steering levers and seats. The Tristar parts on the other hand have finer details enhanced with the extensive use of PE and the visual appearance is vastly superior as a result.

Again additional work is needed for this and there are aftermarket PE/resin update sets available to bring the Cyberhobby/Dragon kit parts up to the standard found in the Tristar box initially.

As the transmission/gearbox/driver's station is more accessible on most kits the additional details here on the Tristar parts make for a far better overall appearance.

Obviously if you don't include interiors in your kits then all of the above is purely academic but if you want the best 38(t) interior set available straight from the box then it's clearly the Tristar offering and again I refer you to the images instead of just taking my word for it.

See the Pz.38(t) subjects page for additional reviews of 38(t) kits and accessories.

Assembly Images:

Detail images
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Page created July 3, 2008