AFV Club
Sd.Kfz.251/21 Ausf.D "Drilling"
AFV Club Kit No. AF 35082
First Look Review by Terry Ashley

AFV Club
AFV Club have released their latest 251 kit, this time of the Sd.Kfz.251/21 Ausf.D "Drilling" mounting the triple MG151/20mm guns in a rotating mounting that could be used to engage ground and air targets.

The kit consists of approx. 260 parts in olive drab plastic with a set of soft vinyl tracks, soft vinyl ammo belts plus a large etched fret and the decal and instruction sheets.

Metal barrels
AFV Club
Etched parts
AFV Club
Soft vinyl ammo belts
AFV Club

The standard of moulding is again excellent overall with virtually no pin marks to be seen, this is especially noticeable on the hull sides, real hull panel and doors which have details on both sides but not one pin mark to be seen. The details included on the parts is also very good with nice bolt head details on the hull and fenders as well as nicely rendered weld seams on the forward hull/engine compartment and the excellent tread plate pattern on the interior floor panels.

There are a few annoying sink marks on some of the new "Drilling" mount parts that will need attention as well as some of the finest and smallest plastic parts that will have you reaching for the tweezers.

Lower Hull/Suspension:
The lower chassis part has the engine oil pan included on the undersides and the central hump with the tread plate pattern on the top while both hull sides are separate parts as with previous kits

The hull sides have the internal panelling used to fix the various different version fittings with the gap between the hull side and panels represented by small indentations along the top of the hull sides while the rear hull floor section is a further separate part again allowing for the different floor configurations. The underside hull panel is another separate part to allow the inclusion of all the bolt and panel line details.

The suspension is the same as with previous kits with the road wheels having excellent details including the spot welds around the rims and on the drive sprocket the correct offset of the drive teeth as well as the drive rollers included while the front tyres have excellent tread pattern and good hub details on the wheels.

The lower hull sides have excellent details on the axle mountings as well as the raised reinforcing panels along the lower hull sides around the axles and bump stops with all the axles as separate parts which will allow you to animate the suspension if you wish?

Upper Hull/Exterior:
The upper hull is a full length moulding which features some very subtle but nice bolt head and weld seam details with separate engine bay doors although the flush screws around the engine bay opening are not included.

The two front fenders are separate parts and also have very nice bolt head and panel details and you are given the choice of the standard head light or NOTEK light for the left fender as well as three part upper exhaust system and the pioneer tools carried on the fenders which have etched tool clips included on the etched fret.

The side storage boxes are full length parts with engraved details for the compartment doors including some etched parts for the latches and padlock securing chain while at the rear are separate tail light and other fittings.

Hull Interior:
This is especially well detailed with the front bulkhead having a separate instrument panel with engraved dials as well as separate driver’s foot pedals and gear levers as well as the distinctive slanted steering wheel and separate radio and rack.
The driver's seats have two part lower sections and the back rests with superb cushion detail on one side and the distinctive spring pattern on the back and as mentioned no pin marks to spoil the detail.

The rear section of the floor is replaced with a new part that includes the lower pedestal mounting which simply replaces the original floor panel.

The forward hull panel has separate outer vision port covers with each internal visor having three parts each for excellent detail definition and the two side vision slits also have three part internal armoured glass housings. The vision ports are in the solid plastic and not the clear vision port parts in some previous kits.

The forward top hull section gives you a choice of the early or late configuration which requires you to make some alterations to the panel depending on your choice with the bracket (part F44) located in a different position for each version.

Moving back are the side hull flanges and the side hull mounted fold down crew seats on each side and provision for the additional large ammo containers stored at the rear of the compartment. The rear doors are both separate with the hinge and latch detail moulded on and can be positioned in the open or closed position as you wish with separate outside handle and two fire extinguishers located on the rear panel either side of the doors.

The kit offers the option of early or late configurations with the early having the shorter gun shield and additional armour panels added around the upper hull sides while the later type has the taller gun shield but no additional armour panels, so you have to make the choice of configurations before starting to use the right parts. As a nice bonus you get all the gun shields including the small upper shield in plastic as well as etched parts depending on your choice of medium but the etched shields do look much better having better scale thickness.

There are also differences in some gun mount fitting between the early and late version with the instructions clearly showing these so there shouldn't be any problems mixing versions.

The lower pedestal cone has a two piece upper bracket to which is fitted the multi-part gun mounting which allows the guns to elevate but there are a couple of small sink marks on the lower mounting brackets to be filled. Added to this are numerous small detail parts that will need care when removing from the sprues and while fitting.

The MG151/20mm guns are in two parts each with the gun body and front mounting section and these fit together with a small flat section ensuring the correct orientation of the two parts. The front of the gun body has a small hole added using slide mounds to accept the brass tube gun barrels and this is a very snug fit holding the barrel in place without the need for glue. As I have no information on the correct barrel length at this time I can’t comment but they look about right from various photos. Hopefully I can update more when accurate info is to hand?

The two outside gun barrels have a very small plastic bolt ring that fits over the end of the brass barrel and this parts is exceptionally small and you will need to take care when removing from the sprue and attaching to the barrel.

In fitting the small plastic ring to the barrel I did have to reduce the diameter of the barrel tip with light filing but this was just a small amount. Don’t try and force the small plastic ring onto the barrel as you either snap it or “ping” it off into the modelling void.

MG151/20 parts
AFV Club
Assembled MG
AFV Club

Fitting the two outer angled brass flash suppressors was easy as the fit was excellent to the barrel and again will hold in place without glue if need be.

The three large ammo bins are in two halves each with separate top and smaller fittings and these fit onto mounting brackets around the pedestal base. The ammo belts which are provided in flexible vinyl with the rounds moulded on to allow for natural curves to be included are fitted between the ammo bins and gun feed chutes.

Added to the assembly are the rear gunner seat and a choice of gun sights and small upper shield depending on the version and the completed pedestal, gun mountings and ammo bins are then attached to the round base included on compartment floor.

As mentioned you also have a choice of early small gun shield in plastic or etched brass or the later taller gun shield also in plastic or etched brass allowing you to choose the medium that best suits. There are additional fittings for the gun shields which you add to the chosen shields which are then attached to the small bracket at the front of the gun assembly.

Bending the brass shields is very easy with the usual engraved bending lines and the front angles included and soldering would be the best option to make solid robust shields.

For the early version there is also the upper hull armour panels which are provided in a one piece “square” moulding in plastic or multi-part etched panels with separate small etched joining brackets and separate etched bolts that will have a good scale appearance when assembled.

There are three additional ammo bins stored inside the rear compartment to finish off the interior.

The Tracks:
These are done in soft vinyl and have very good details for this medium while AFV Club have again saved their separate link track sets for separate purchase should you want to go the extra expense?

AFV Club

The decal sheet is well printed with thin carrier film and provides markings for three early and one late vehicle;

Decal Sheet
AFV Club

Another excellent kit based on the original AFV Club Ausf.D with the addition of the nicely detailed drilling mount offering a choice of early or later types as well as a further choice of plastic or etched parts makes for an very interesting model to add to the collection.

Highly recommended.

A full comparison review between this kit and the Dragon Sd.Kfz.251/21 Ausf.D will be posted shortly to show where they both stand one to one.

Also see reviews of the two track sets AF35069 Sd.Kfz.251 Track Late model and AF35070 Sd.Kfz.251 Track Latest model.

The Sprues:

Click on thumbnails for larger view
AFV ClubAFV ClubAFV ClubAFV Club
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Ground Power Special
GALILEO Publishing Co.,Ltd
Sd.Kfz.251/1 in detail
Special Museum Line No.37
Wings & Wheels Publications
ISBN 80-86416-50-X
Sdkfz251 Ausf.C & D

Panzer Tracts N0.15-3
ISBN 0-9771643-5-7
Sd.Kfz.251/1 Ausf.D
Model Detail Photo
Monograph No.22
ISBN : 83-89717-60-3
Sd Kfz 251

Tank Power Vol.VI
Wydawnictwo Militaria No.215
ISBN: 83-7219-215-4
Sd Kfz 251

Tank Power Vol.X
Wydawnictwo Militaria No.224
ISBN: 83-7219-224-3
Schutzenpanzer (Armored Personnel Carrier)
Ryton Publications
ISBN: 1930571291

Osprey New Vanguard 25
SdKfz251 in action
Squadron Signal #2021

Tristar Shop Thanks to AFV Club for the review kit.
Tristar Shop is distributed in Australia by J.B.Wholesalers

Page Created February 18, 2006

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