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T-54/54A Medium Tank




S u m m a r y

Stock Number and Description PST 1/72 Scale Model Kit No. 72045; T-54/54A Medium Tank
Media and Contents: 183 parts (124 in green styrene, 59 in black styrene)
Price: USD$9.96 from Squadron.com
Scale: 1/35
Review Type: First Look
Advantages: Decent kit of this vehicle; provides several options for different models and users
Disadvantages: Some minor shape and detail problems
Recommendation: Highly Recommended to all modern armor and Warsaw Pact fans


Reviewed by Cookie Sewell

PST's 1/72 scale T-44/T-44A is available online from Squadron.com


F i r s t L o o k


As most of my friends and readers of my reviews know, I have a real hard edge when it comes to the lack of decent T-54 and T-55 models on the market. There are none in 1/35 scale, and until now (with the release of this kit and some others from other manufacturers in 1/72) none in small scale either.

PST is a manufacturer out of Belarus who has acquired a good reputation for its now reasonably large line of WWII Soviet armored vehicles and trucks. They are now branching out into postwar vehicles, and a T-54/54A and T-55 are among their first releases.

This kit is a typical Eastern European style kit, but it is amazing to see this many parts and this level of endeavor in this scale. It comes with "link and length" tracks and the early "spider" cast wheels with lightening holes. The design is not a complete one, but PST has cleverly arranged things so the details are visible where they should be and missing where unimportant or difficult; case in point are the drivers, which only have teeth where they are visible between the track runs and not under the links. This does leave only a dot where the hole for the tooth should be, however.

Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

The design of the kit is modular. The model comes with two different turrets for an early T-54 Model 1951 without the night sight and a later model of the T-54A with the sight. Alas, since the kit is designed to build only the Model 1951 no searchlight set is included. Two engine decks are provided, as well as three different engine access hatches, two mantelets, and two gun barrels (one with bore evacuator, one without.)

Details are a bit fuzzy in some areas (such as the "D" plates on the turret roof) and the turret design itself is a bit too triangular it should have "cheek" bulges which are not present. The wheel pattern is correct trailing links on axles 1-4 and leading link on axle 5, so at least this kit was not cloned from the ESCI 1/35 scale kit. (Fuel tanks are also the same size!) The DShK is a bit sketchy but is at least identifiable for what it is (compare with the ancient Airfix IS-3 kit, for example). External fittings cover a pair of 200 liter fuel tanks, two tow cables (which are provided as cable heads; the directions suggest using thread in this scale) and an unditching log.

While it has its problems, thus far this is the best T-54/T-55 available in any scale. Markings are provided for six vehicles two Polish and four Russian but only three units as sequential sets are included for two tanks in each unit covered.

Overall, this is a reasonable kit for a good price and can be made into a nice and attractive model of the most widely built tank series in history over 130,000 T-54, T-55 and Type 59 variants have been built and fought all over the planet.

Cookie Sewell

Review Copyright 2002 by Cookie Sewell
Page Created 03 October, 2002
Last updated 22 July, 2003

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