The following introduction is as supplied by Tankograd Publishing; The ideal companion to our In-Detail ‘Leopard-Maintenance’ this publication offers a highly detailed walk-around of the Bundeswehr’s Cold War hero, the 2A4 variant of the Leopard main battle tank family. 221 colour photos on 96 pages and a comprehensive textual introduction grant a fantastic look on the technical aspects if this tank. Aside from the hull and turret, the interior and the engine compartment are also covered in great detail.
Quantity Photos and Illustrations:
Illustrated with 221 colour photos
Text - Language:
Number of Pages:
The Leopard family of tanks has to be one of the most popular armoured fighting vehicles due to the many types and variants that have been produced since its inception in 1956 through to the current day. Further interest in the Leopard family is generated by its participation in various conflicts serving with NATO Forces and German armed force; and finally of course the Leopard has and does serve with many nations. All of these attributes have made the Leopard family a firm favourite with modellers the world over.
This latest book release from Tankograd Publishing looks specifically at the Leopard 2A4 and is the perfect addition to the In-Detail ‘Leopard-Maintenance’ title released a while ago. This title is a duel language offering; German on the left side of the page and English on the right, this should not deter anyone as this title is aimed at the modeller as a pictorial reference and the text at the start of the book while very relevant is really an informed introduction on the Leopard. The seven pages of text provides some interesting information for the modeller, but it will not satisfy the person who wants to read about the Leopard; modellers however will love it.
The full colour photographs in this title start with a general series of images showing various vehicles from a good number of angles. I also like that Tankograd Publishing have opted to depict a wide range of camouflage offerings and dirty vehicles rather than pristine offerings. The hull is the first area of the vehicle looked at in detail and Tankograd Publishing have done a good job of covering the details on the hull. I should point out that while I have described this book as a pictorial reference Tankograd Publishing has supplied clear and precise captions for the photographs in order that you know exactly what is being shown to you. When it comes to reference one area that is often glossed over is the running gear, I am pleased to say that Tankograd Publishing have given this area good coverage and even looked at the wheels from under the hull looking out.
The next two areas of the Leopard 2A4 examined are the glacis plate and engine deck, and again these two areas have been covered well and pointing out all of the details a modeller would want to see. An empty engine bay is next in the line up and this will be of great benefit to anyone wishing to cover a model with this aspect. I also like that the engine hatch cover has been detailed with lift device in place. The removed power pack has also been photographed, but as there are only two images I feel this could have benefitted from greater coverage.
Leaving the hull behind the book moves onto the turret with a huge section devoted to this area of Leopard 2A4. Tankograd Publishing really has done a fine job of covering the hull and I cannot see or detect any area that has not had the needed coverage. Tankograd Publishing has even given the commanders and loaders hatches their own section in this title with coverage of the loaders machine gun in this area. Most reference titles would likely finish at this point, but that is not the case with book; Tankograd Publishing has provided a pretty thorough walk around of the interior of both the turret and drivers position. The interior is a great plus for any modellers looking at super detailing a model as it should meet the needs of most. The book closes with a look at some sample markings for the Leopard 2A4.
Looking at this title as a modeller I believe it would be exceptionally hard to gather together all of the information provided in this title from Tankograd Publishing. I know the arguments for researching via google, but it is all too easy to be sent on a bum steer by an incorrectly labelled photo, something that this title overcomes and of course instead of spending 30 minutes searching online the reference is there at hand at the flick of a few pages. For €22 I think this is an excellent book to add to your library.
Highs: I like that the interior and engine have been covered as well as the exterior.Lows: The engine would benefit from a few more pictures of it.Verdict: If you have an interest in the Leopard tank or are planning a build of a 2A4 in the future you will enjoy this book.
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About Darren Baker (CMOT) FROM: ENGLAND - SOUTH WEST, UNITED KINGDOM
I have been building model kits since the early 70’s starting with Airfix kits of mostly aircraft, then progressing to the point I am at now building predominantly armour kits from all countries and time periods. Living in the middle of Salisbury plain since the 70’s, I have had lots of opportunitie...