by: Charles Reading [ ]
IntroductionOfficially known as the 15cm Schweres Infanteriegeschutz 33this gun was developed by Rheinmetall and was first issued in 1927.
A brief description from "German Artillery of World War Two" by noted author, Ian V. Hogg is as follows:
"The gun was of conventional design with a sliding block breech mechanism, and the carriage was a two wheel box-trail type with a hydro-pneumatic recoil system in a cradle below the barrel.
The gun and cradle were trunnioned well to the rear, to allow high elevation, and two spring balancing-presses were fitted to the outside of the trail to counteract the muzzle weight. Pressed metal wheels with solid rubber tyres were fitted."
The gun remained in service until 1945, and in postwar years many examples were kept in use by some of the smaller European nations.
the kitThis is one of the "Smart Kit" series in 1:35 which includes the artillery piece, the crew figures and ammunition. Molded in typical Dragon/Cyber-Hobby light grey styrene, the kit consists of eight sprues for the gun and carriage, four sprues for the crew figures (there are fifteen sets of arms to choose from for the five crew figures). There is a sprue of ammunition, including shells and charges. There are two small sprues molded out of the 'Dragon Styrene' that represent wicker ammunition canisters and wicker mats to stack the shells on. One small photo-etch fret, an aluminum barrel and a small sprue of clear plastic with pieces representing the sighting mechanism round out what is in the box.
A typical 11 step instruction sheet is included with two examples of paint and markings for the gun and a painting guide for the crew figures. There is a small decal sheet included with generic lettering but no reference in the instructions and what appears to be the decal sheet in the sprue drawing section of the instructions is designated "part not for use"
Sprue A: Gun carriage parts, pioneer tools.
Sprue B: Gun cradle parts.
Sprue C: only the breech parts (22 &23) and two small handles (24 & 25) are used off this sprue
Sprue DX2 : the wheels and various auxiliary pieces that fit onto the carriage
Sprue 'C': Ammunition and gun shield
Sprue L: The Dragon Styrene pieces, ammo canisters and mats
MA: photo-etch fret
K: clear parts
Figure Sprue A: figure bodies, equipment
Figure sprue B: arms
Unmarked Sprues X2: different positioned arms
It appears with the different choices of arms that you can model the crew either loading/firing or standing about not carrying ammunition.
conclusion Overall a great kit. There are some minor issues with flash in various places but in the final analysis this is a great little kit of a welcome subject.