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"Eastern Front Part 1"

by Stanislaw Jablonski
& Rafal Dudzinski

Kagero Publicationst

 


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S u m m a r y

Details and Publisher: Camouflage and Decals No. 3501, "Eastern Front Part 1" by Stanislaw Jablonski and Rafal Dudzinski; Kagero Publications, Lublin, Poland, 2001
ISBN: 83-914824-2-1
Contents and Media: 40 pp., plus end covers and one 180 x 260 mm decal sheet
Price: Approx. USD$17-20
Review Type: FirstRead
Advantages: Paint schemes and matching decals in one publication
Disadvantages: Decals from Techmod have been a bit squirrely in the past.
Recommendation: Recommended for all WWII Soviet Armor fans who want some more options

 

Reviewed by Cookie Sewell

 

FirstRead

 

Bob Lessels of Eastern Front Hobbies in Alabama brought this new series of publications to my attention, and I must say I am a fan of this sort of thing. I subscribed to the now-legendary HISAIRDEC publications back in the mid 1960s and really enjoyed the concept of getting a reference article on a subject backed up by the specific markings for that subject. Others have come and gone since, but only the Poles have been strong supporters of providing similar items (there was a short series of six pubs with decals which were available from Squadron a few years back.)

This is a nice new glossy book with a very nice looking set of decals found in a special insert just inside the front cover. While this volume only looks at Soviet vehicles, others in the series will apparently look at the Germans and other nations as well. The book has a short section on the basics of Soviet camouflage and markings in both English and Polish, but the bulk of the book consists of 1/35 scale plates of markings for Soviet tanks from the BT-5 to the IS-2. Each vehicle covered in the black and white plates also has a matching set of decals provided on the generous sheet inside the front cover.

At least 41 vehicles are thus covered, as there are some duplication with the color plates and the B&W ones. Also, some small stencils (e.g. "MASLO" (oil) and "GASOIL'" (fuel)) are included for use on external fuel tanks. Some of the entries covered include the following by type: 3 x BT-5, 5 x BT-7, 2 x KV-1 s ehkranami, 3 x KV-1 Mod 1941, 2 x KV-1 Mod 1942, 6 x KV-1s, 5 x T-34 Model 1942, 2 x T-34 Model 1943, 4 x T-34-85 Model 1944, 2 x KV-85, 1 x IS-1, 3 x IS-2, and 3 x IS-2m.

However, given the depth of work required, many of the plates list the vehicles as "unknown" when the units are known, or research could provide a much more accurate picture of the vehicle and where it was in use than is provided. Case in point: the IS-2 on the center of the back cover is from the 4th Guards Tank Army, which was unique in its use of the four-color camo scheme. Also, some well-known units still are not quite right the animal on the insignia of the famous "Boyevaya Podruga - 434" from the 104th Guards Heavy Tank Regiment of the 7th Guards Tank Brigade (Plate XL) is supposed to be a polar bear, but looks more like a hornless moose on the decal.

Also, my experience with Techmod's decals shows that they do go on well, providing you have a very smooth surface for them. This means that you just about have to paint the model with Future with a brush to get the type of surface for them to work best on. If not, these decals will "silver" in a heartbeat.

But at the end of the day, Soviets did not use what one could call "True Type" fonts and many markings were painted on freehand. The sheet does collect a nice variety of numbers and give the basics for creating an accurate model.

Cookie Sewell
AMPS .


Review and Images Copyright 2001 by Cookie Sewell
Page Created 22 December, 2001
Last updated 22 July, 2003

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