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Attack Hobby’s Kugelpanzer In 1/35th Scale

By Valentin “What the hell is that?” Bueno

Check Out Club Meeting: February 2009 Meeting

Featured In: February 2009 Newsletter

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

For more years than I can count, a 1/35th scale kit of the unique and mysterious Kugelpanzer has been my Holy Grail of armor kits. I figured nobody would ever produce a kit of this …thing. From what I have read in articles here and there, this 2 meter tall wheeled bowling ball was supposed to be a German reconnaissance vehicle. A single example of the Kugelpanzer (kugel=ball, panzer=armor) currently resides in the Kubinka Armor museum in Russia.

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

All four parts laid out.

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

The raw parts and the plug to be removed.

Attack models out of the Czech Republic is well known in the 1/72 scale armor world with only a few releases done in 1/35th scale. I believe this is their first full kit release in 1/35th scale. The kit consists of four cream colored resin pieces, the two wheels, the center section and the tail wheel. Casting plugs remain over a large portion of the mating surface of the two wheels and the center section and will require a bit of effort to remove.

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

The three main parts are molded solid, and you can see the chunks of cast off resin thrown into the mold used to reduce the amount of fresh resin needed to make the castings. The surface detail of the wheels is ok. The center section includes some rather anemic looking rivets, but when compared to photos, they look accurate. This kit is cast based on the prototype vehicle and matches the Kubinka example very well.


All Together Now

The first order of business was to clean up the molding plugs from the castings. On the wheels, I used 180- grit sandpaper to sand off the plugs. On the center section, I used a cutter head on a Dremel tool to cut/grind off the plug. I finished off the surface with the 180 grit sandpaper. After that, I just glued the parts together with Cyanoacrylate (CA) glue, also known as “super glue”. But wait, that’s not all….. Being the randy bugger that I am, I couldn’t just leave it as a prototype vehicle. To upgrade it to a “what-if” production vehicle, I added a few things. A Notek light from a Tamiya Marder III, support bracket for the Notek light from a DML StuG III, hatch hinges, vision port, pistol port, pick-up loops and exhaust pipes from the same kit, and hand bars from wire solder.

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

The parts primed in Dark Earth.

Slap of the brush

I primed the model with a blast of Tamiya Dark Earth from a spray can. Why Dark Earth instead of German Grey? Simple, I didn’t have any German Grey paint! Besides, the Dark Earth provides a good base color for the dirt weathering to follow. Polly S RLM 66 Scale Black was brush painted onto the center section and the wheels where the mud wasn’t going to be. Does that make sense? I usually paint the undercarriage dark earth, but in this case, there is none and only the two big wheels, so they get the dark earth treatment.

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

RLM 66 Scale Black added to the model.

What’s the Weathering like?

Next was a coat of Polly S Dirt mixed with some MIG Productions European Dirt Powder pastel. This adds some texture to the dirt covered areas of the wheels. I was planning to use Russian Earth and Dark mud colors and the resin binder, but never did.

MIG Productions weathering powders and acrylic resin.

Now I utilized a technique called mapping where I used a mix of RLM 66 and dark earth to create a lighter version of the base color and applied this to the wide open areas in random shapes like continents on a map to break up the monotony of the area. The only real way to get the hang of this technique is to give it a try and see what you get.

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

A wash of thinner and Beach Sand.

I added the first wash of Tamiya Thinner and MIG Productions Beach Sand pastel powder to add a dusty effect to all the crevices and around the rivets. This represents dried dust that collects in these areas.

I applied a final dusting of European Dirt, Russian Earth and Bright Rust (all MIG Productions Pigments) to the model. A #2 Pencil was used to add faint chips and scratches to the edges of hatches and on the wheels as if branches and whatnot rubbed up against the wheels as the vehicle rolled through the underbrush. The Rust was applied to the exhausts to represent the rust that occurs on hot pipes. I also added a few streaks of red and black in a radial pattern emanating from the bolt axle in the center of the wheel.

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

Starboard side of the vehicle.

But Wait, There’s More………NOT!

I was originally going to build a small base for this model due to its propensity to roll (it is a bowling ball after all), but the lack of sufficient real estate in my display shelves nixed that idea. I have enough room for the model, not a display base. Time to thin the herd! So that’s basically it for this model. It was nice to be able to start and finish a model within the same year let alone the same week. OK Mr. Leung of Dragon Models, how about this in plastic with a full interior and engine bay?

Attack Hobby Kugel Panzer in 1/35scale

The model next my first attempt at scratch building it.

  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-01
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-02
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-03
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-04
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-05
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-06
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-07
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-08
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-09
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-10
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-11
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-12
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-13
  • Kugel Panzer 1-35-14

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