2 Tractor and UK 2 Trailer
Tamiya , 1/35 scale
|by Steve Zaloga
Tamiya's 1/35 scale UE-2 Tractor will available online from Mission
Tamiya's announcement this past spring of their forthcoming UE kit
in 1/35th scale was a bit of a surprise. It's often forgotten that
the UE was the most widely built armored vehicle in western Europe
in the 1939-40 period. Still, it's a quirky choice and I certainly
would have rather seen a Renault R-35 or Somua S-35. But I'd rather
see a UE than another Hetzer (which is Tamiya's next boring
The UE kit is quite small, about the size of a jeep and trailer.
Tamiya has filled out the box with a couple of infantry figures and
some generic stores for the trailer. The UE kit is typical Tamiya in
quality and engineering, though probably closer in style and
assembly to their 1/48th scale kits than their 1/35th scale kits.
After taking a lot of flak for the lousy tracks on their 1/48th
scale Universal Carrier, Tamiya has done these tracks the proper way
in link-and-length styrene, much like their 1/48th scale tank kits.
No interior is provided for the kit, though if the kit is built with
the domes open and hatches closed, there isn't much to be seen
The kit provides parts for three variants of the UE, the UE 3rd and
4th production series and the UE 2. The UE 4th production series and
UE 2 are the most common UE variants (the 3rd production series is
rare). The decal choices are for three French vehicles, nary a
Wehrmacht license plate to be seen.
The kit has a fair number of small detail omissions and
simplifications. This consists mostly of missing rivets, and
simplifcations of some tiny details such as clasps on hatches. Some
small detail such as the depiction of the sheet metal gussets on the
dump bucket and the A frame of the trailer are a bit heavy and are
relatively difficult to correct. I suspect we will see some
aftermarket PE eventually. For anyone wanting to super-detail this
kit, Pascal Danjou's Focus 1 on the UE tractor is invaluable with
excellent detail photos. I added a partial interior using the old
Ironside aftermarket set, originally aimed at the old RPM kit. My
stowage comes mostly from the Blast resin set for the T-34-85.
Overall, the kit engineering and fit are excellent. I had some minor
problems with the tracks which are a teenie bit long.
The two crew figures come as upper torsos only, and I used one but
withe a replacement Hornet head. The infantry figures are typical of
Tamiya and are short, scrawny and not well sculpted. The small
details such as the rifles, musette bags and canteen are excellent,
also typical of Tamiya figures which tend to have superb accessories
even when the figures are mediocre. It took about two evenings of
work to clean up the infantry figure I used, and I replaced the head
with a Hornet head. The standing crew figure here in my vignette is
from Blast with a Hornet head. I also added a 25mm SA 34 anti-tank
gun, heavily rebuilt from the old Heller kit.
In summary, the kit was a pleasure to build and went together very
well with minimal problems. This project will appear in more detail
in a future issue of Military Modelling along with historical photos
Model, Images and Text
by Steven J Zaloga
Page Created 29 July, 2006
Page Last Updated
29 July, 2007