Articles

ESCI - Panzer IB (8368) _________(EXT)

 

Manufacturer ESCI
Scale 1/72
Set Code 8368
Year Unknown
No. of Figures 1
No. of Poses 1
Additional Items None
Size Medium
Material Hard Plastic
Colour Cream
Flash Level Medium
Glue-ability Excellent (Polly-cement)
Convert-ability Easy
Optimal Period 1939

 

Review   

One of the most representative characteristic features of ESCI kits was providing crewmen for accompanying the vehicles. Of course, at the beginning the figures were less detailed, but while time passed and experience gained, those became better and better, the latest passing as really impressive, especially taking into account the period when there had been created. Anyway, one of the first and poorest ESCI Panzer crewman is encountered in PanzerIB kit as well as in the other ESCI vehicles developed on Panzer I chassis. Its sculpture lacks profoundness but despite draw-backs, the mini represented a step forward at that time. Since inclusive reviews of ESCI kits focused mainly on the vehicles are made available by plenty of websites, the present one targets simply the figure.  

Dressed in classical Panzer uniform suitable for painting either in black or feldgrau if the trooper is allocated to an Assault Artillery vehicle, having ankle boots and early war Panzer cap, he allows deployment only in the first Early War campaigns due to its cap. The item was quickly replaced by the well-known M34 caps and hobbyists have to do the same thing with that head if they wanted to use the trooper after 1939. It is a multi-part figure, both arms being delivered separated but satisfactory fitting in positions. Standard assembled, the crewman points with the right hand while with the other holds his balance. As also the manufacturer utilised him in different kits, the mini might be emplaced in a hatch or in different locations in armoured vehicles with open fighting compartments. Headphones are worn, but no wires, so another scratch-building issue for approaching reality. Likewise, no pistol holster is showed though belt is worn by the tanker. In addition, his legs are quite thick, so if set in a hatch, recommended are larger ones or modeller’s thinning intervention, even brutal, because the legs cannot be seen inside a hatch. Garment is rude carved, collar and creases being merely engraved.

Made of hard plastic, several items supplied by Preiser, Dragon, and Caesar on separate sprues of gear are appropriate for this tanker, pistol holster, binoculars, map case immediately gluing on it. Furthermore, his head or even arms or palms could be replaced by better carved ones, all the just mentioned companies offering spare such parts inside various figure sets.

Full of flash and stigmatised by a circle on the back to show us from where the mini was held in the mould, the only good part in this regard is the multi-part approach, avoiding the appearance of excess of plastic. Painting goes nice on hard plastic no matter what substances are added on it.

As previously pointed out, the soldier is unspectacular, hobbyists having much better variants to choose. He remains just another figure on the list of 1/72 WWII Germans and even upgraded with spare parts, the solution would not transform into a striking one, the meagre sculpture of garment being difficult to be improved and per total, the mini does not merit the efforts.   

 

Historical Accuracy 7
Anatomy 7
Poses Quality 7
Details Quality 6
Mould Quality 7
Sculpture 7
Recommendation/Utility 5
Reviewer’s Opinion 7