Home > Reviews > German WWII > DRAGON MODELS LIMITED (kit no. 7256) E-100 Heavy Tank in 1/72nd-scale injection-molded styrene plastic.


DRAGON MODELS LIMITED (kit no. 7256) E-100 Heavy Tank in 1/72nd-scale injection-molded styrene plastic.

by Frank De Sisto

Contains: 89 injection molded styrene parts, seven etched brass parts, two track lengths in flexible DS-100 styrene, two figures in flexible DS-100 styrene, generic waterslide decals and four pages of instructions in nine steps. Price: Unavailable.

DML continues to release new items in the resurgent 1/72nd-scale, including some that depict so-called “Paper Panzers”. The E-100 is a case in point, being Krupp’s answer to Porche’s enormous “Maus”. Since only a hull/chassis was partially completed by war’s end, the issue of accuracy regarding such a kit cannot be taken as the only means of determining if what DML provides is acceptable to a modeler.

Regardless, I checked the hull against drawings in Panzer Tracts #6, “Schwere Panzerkampfwagen D.W. to E-100, Including the Tigers” and noted that the driver’s and radio operators hatch arrangement does not match, and that some seams on the hull roof are not given. Photos of the hull/chassis also indicate that the kit’s rear plate does not extend down far enough over the tracks. Finally, the curve of the lower turret front should meet the bottom without a step, whereas the kit’s turret has this feature incorrectly given. Also, the circular depressions on the turret sides and rear are too large. Otherwise, everything else seems to be where it ought to be.

The parts fit of the major components was excellent, with only a bit of tweaking where the turret rear plate meets the turret shell. There are no ejector pin marks in any visible areas and sink marks are completely absent.

Some nice features, thanks to slide mold technology include: both 7.5cm and 15cm guns have the bores pre-drilled and each pair of road wheels is molded as one piece, with the space in between accurately rendered. The turret is a three part molding, with the front, sides and roof as one piece and the rear and bottom as separate parts. Unfortunately, the hatches on the turret are molded closed, limiting the use of the nice figures included in the kit.

Only one crew hatch (that of the driver) is a separate part; the engine deck also has the main hatch as a separate part. The fans inside the two circular cowlings on the engine deck are nicely represented, but will probably be unseen once the cowlings and the etched screens are in place. The remaining etch parts are for the engine deck and for the perforated muzzle brake for the 15cm gun. This last part should be fitted to the muzzle part and cleaned up; then the assembly should be attached to the gun tube and aligned. The side skirts will press-fit, allowing painting to proceed. Then, they can be permanently attached after the tracks are fitted. The single-piece DS-100 styrene track lengths themselves are nicely detailed and can be fixed with standard styrene cement. The two figures are extremely well done for this scale in the DS-100 styrene and ought to look quite good when painted. One fellow is standing with a peaked cap, while the second, wearing a side cap, is sitting with his legs dangling over the sides of the turret/hull, or into an open hatch. They wear standard panzer crew uniforms and can be painted accordingly in black or camouflage.

The decals are from Cartograf in Italy and are excellently printed. There are four styles of Balkan crosses: two in black/white, two in white outline. There are three sets of tac numbers. One is solid white, the second is white outline, and the third is black with white outline. There are kill stripes for the gun tube, tank silhouettes and even red stars and “Hammer & Sickle” for a tank captured by the Soviets. These last items are probably included since this decal sheet will very likely be used on the forthcoming Maus kit from DML. Regardless, the leftovers will certainly come in handy for the Braille Scale modeler.

The instructions are well printed, but are relatively “compressed”, so be careful while following them. Also, lest the modeler become confused: the photo of the built-up kit on the box side shows the drive sprocket on the rear station, when in fact it was front-mounted. The instructions are correct in this case.

As I said previously, since accuracy really cannot be considered a critical issue, those modelers who want a quick build of a tank that never saw service will enjoy this kit. “Purists” may wish to look elsewhere.Recommended with reservations.

Frank V. De Sisto

DML kits are available from retail and mail order shops. For details see their web site at: www.dragonmodelsltd.com.