Sd.Kfz.6/2 3.7cm FlaK36
auf Fahrgestell Zugkraftwagen 5t
1:35 kit comparison
Kit No. CB-35043 - Kit #05532
Chapter 8: 3.7cm FlaK 36
Bronco: The Bronco kit includes alternate carriages for the early and late series guns but unfortunately doesn’t include the large shield mountings for the early series nor do the instructions give any indication how you should fit the early shields. It’s best therefore to build the gun as the later series and forget the early version, even more so when the slanted gunner’s shield only has the very late configuration with the additional shields added.
The carriage sides have additional panels and the elevation arc added to the inside even though this is difficult to see this detail after assembly. On the right carriage the gunner’s station consists of a multi-part assembly with separate hand wheels and small etched parts added, the foot rest and pedals are in three parts along with a three part seat, the details are nicely done without any assembly problems.
The gunner’s slanted shield includes an additional upper square shield (part Cb8/Cb9) that was usually associated with the later FlaK 37 but there are images of late FlaK 36 guns with this shield fitted but the most common configuration seen is the slanted shield without the added square shield. To depict the slanted shield without the square shield you would need to modify the front cover (part Cb17) but extending the bend, this can be done by carefully heating the plastic (don’t overheat) and flatten out before reshaping the bend to fit slanted shield. Both the slanted and additional shield are moulded a little thicker with bevelled edges to show a thinner edges.
and the modified shield to depict the more common configuration with just a little work (right).
Added to the left carriage are the two loader’s seats which can be fitted in the raised (travel) or lowered (firing) position with very small pins holding the seat support in the desired position, the seats and supports are delicately detailed with metal chain provided for the outer facing seat, this chain attached to the loading platform with raises in unison with the seat. The chain itself is over scale and if replaced with the finer link chain would look even better.
The loader’s platform can also be assembled in the raised or lowered position as required with ready 37mm round clips provided to stack on the platform if in firing mode and the rear panel between the two carriage sides includes a small grab handle and etched bracket for nice detail.
The gun cradle is in two main halves with separate forward gun mountings that have additional small plastic rings attached; these are quite small and require careful handing during assembly as well as there being fine teeth on the lower elevation ark that is free of pin marks.
The 3.7cm FlaK gun itself has the main receiver in one piece with a few smaller detail parts added along with the one piece barrel tube; this just needs the fine mould seams removed and has the correctly sized flash suppressor as a separate part. This is very well done for a plastic part with open neck slots and very fine holes included in the suppressor cone, these can do with being cleaned out with a small drill bit to improve the appearance further.
but only partially open on the DML parts and just indentations on the Trumpeter part.
The assembled gun/barrel is the correct length and fits to the cradle without any problems and has the ammo feed tray added to the left side, the optional later style tray would be used with two of the supplied 37mm round clips added if in the firing mode? Added to the front of the gun mounting is the small curved gun shield in plastic which is the correct size and fits without any problems.
Located between the two carriage halves are the two recuperator cylinders moulded in a single part with just the fine mould seams to be removed and a hole down the middle for the separate piston rod. The cylinders clip into their forward mounts and are attached to the gun trunnions by way of a small pin on one side and the sight linkage on the other, this allows the gun the elevate, but you need to be careful with the glue when attaching the pistons if you want them movable?
When attaching the two carriage halves the gun cradle, elevation cog, recuperator cylinders, rear panel and a couple of cross members have to be trapped between halves in the process and care is obviously needed during this process to get everything aligned as the halves meet, this is easier than it sounds in actuality.
The complicated Flakvisier 36 gun sight is made up of 15 quite small parts and does need care during assembly. The sight has the anti-air sight and optional ground direct telescope sight provided on the right side of the carriage and the complicated giro setting mechanism and mounting on the left side with connecting rods. The sights are a little oversized scale wise but nothing to get excited over and you will need to take care during assembly especially when fitting the part Cb43 to its U shaped mounting (part Cb34) as this is movable on the real thing with the lower assembly always at the vertical when the gun is elevated. The assembled sight is quite impressive and depicts the actual complicated sight assembly very well, note the direct ground sight is not always fitted and the sights are stowed away in the lockers under the rear tray during transport.
For the main gun shields you get alternate shield segments for the extended firing position or folded travel position so you choose the configuration as required. The shields are moulded uniformly thin without any edge bevelling, this allows surface details to be included that would be missing from etched shields given the limitations of that medium and the thin plastic gives a good appearance when assembled. The lower shields have the large triangular mountings which fit snugly to the mountings on the lower carriage with thin mounting rods for the top shield sections, these again fit precisely without any problems.
The triangular base is again well done with the correct asymmetrical shape and separate turntable to depict the overhang on one side only with the overall dimensions also correct within acceptable tolerances. Most importantly it incorporates the raises under the extendable mounting “feet” as the base was mounting higher on the 5ton deck to allow clearance for the spare barrel box and other equipment stored on the deck, this is clearly seen in period photos with Bronco representing this well.
Other details on the base are well done with separate storage box lip, movable gun travel lock and the small brackets for the leg ratchet levers with the assembled base locating directly to the raised locating rings on the deck floor. Note as mentioned above the base on the right side overlaps the front corner of the spare barrel box with this being the correct configuration. The assembled gun mounting clips into central base turntable allowing for travers of the gun as required with the travel lock clipping into the front of the gun mounting for travel mode.
Trumpeter: The Trumpeter kit is unfortunately way below today’s standards from a mainstream manufacturer and has the early series 3.7cm FlaK 36 carriage with the corresponding early shield mountings while at the same time including the later Flakvisier 40 gun sight that was only used on the later 3.7cm FlaK 37 (and 3.7cm FlaK 43). Another major issue is it only includes the gunner’s seat on the right side of the carriage but not the two loader’s seats that should be mounted on the left carriage leaving a gaping spacer where the seats should be. Also the gun can only be built in the firing position unlike the other kits which allow you to finish in the travel mode (folded shields, loader’s platform/seats) or the firing configuration.
The carriage sides don’t have the additional inner panels or the elevation arc included but I guess this is difficult to see this detail after assembly. On the right carriage the gunner’s station is quite simplified being in one piece (with two underside fillers) with separate hand wheels and top bracket, the foot rest have etched pedals and separate forward linkage assembly.
The gunner’s slanted shield is provided in thicker plastic with bevelled edges or in etched brass for a thinner appearance but both shields don’t have the rectangular sight cut-out it should have and also don’t have the canvas cover on the front of the shields.
Added to the left carriage there is just the loading platform fixed in the lowered firing position and you would have to cut this in two to depict it in travel mode. Added to the platform is a featureless box on which is mounted the ready 37mm round clips provided to stack on the platform if in firing mode, this “box” is in fact a metal ammo box laid on its side as seen on a museum example of the Sd.Kfz.7/2 FlaK 37 and has just been replicated here as some sort of “stand” for the ammo clips.
The gun cradle is in two main halves with separate forward gun mountings as well as there being fine teeth on the lower elevation ark but there area large pin marks on one side of the arc to be removed.
The 3.7cm FlaK gun itself has the main receiver in one piece with a few smaller detail parts added along with the one piece barrel tube that includes the correctly sized flash suppressor; the barrel tube just needs the fine mould seams removed. This flash suppressor is fairly basic with the neck slots and fine holes in the suppressor cone represented as indentations only and will need to be drilled out to improve the appearance if not replaced with an aftermarket metal barrel?
The assembled gun/barrel is the correct length and fits to the cradle without any problems and has the ammo feed tray added to the left side, this is the later extended style tray and is in contrast with the early features included for the remainder of the gun. Added to the front of the gun mounting is the small curved gun shield in etched brass but this is about 3mm too short in height along with the main gun shields, more on this below. Adding the curve to the etched shield is quite difficult due to the cut-out for the gun as it tends to bend more at the thinner edges than with the full shield and care is needed to get the curve uniform.
Located between the two carriage halves are the two recuperator cylinders moulded in two halves with a hole down the middle for the separate piston rod. The cylinders clip into their forward mounts and are attached to the gun trunnions by way of small pins but the location is wrong, they should be attached to the top of the trunnions not at the bottom as with the kit, this results in the recuperator cylinders sitting at the wrong angle in relation to the gun elevation.
When attaching the two carriage halves there is just the gun cradle, elevation cog, and rear cross members to be trapped between halves which is quite straightforward along with the trunnions mounting bracket at the front.
As already mentioned the kit has the incorrect sight for the FlaK 36 with the kit having the later FlaK 37 Flakvisier 40 gun sight made up of two parts with a separate mounting arm and without wanting to keep repeating myself is totally incorrect for the FlaK 36 used on the Sd.Kfz.6/2.
The main gun shields are not tall enough and are 3mm too short in height which is quite substantial but you get alternate shields in plastic or etched brass. The brass shields are also too short by the same amount and given the extra assembly (soldering) required in producing undersized shields it hardly seems worth the effort. The shields have the early style mountings which fit to the carriage sides.
The triangular base is again fairly basic in detail and while having the correct asymmetrical shape also has the turntable included in the main moulding and lacks definition on the outer lip. Also the wider section of the base is 2.5mm too narrow and it does not have the raisers on the “feet” and sits too low on the rear deck.
Due to this it doesn’t overhang the spare barrel box as it should and could be the reason the barrel box is the wrong shape (too narrow) so it will fit on the deck next to the base, the remaining details on the base are very basic lacking any real detail at all really compared to the other kit base details and the real thing obviously.
The assembled gun just sits into the base turntable allowing for travers of the gun as required with the travel lock clipping into the front of the gun mounting for travel mode but be careful if you turn to model over as there is nothing actually holding the gun in place.
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