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The Modeller’s Guide to the Tiger Tank

by Patrick A Stansell

Published by Ampersand Publishing Company, Inc, no ISBN, 172 pages

This book has had a very long gestation since its first announcement, but the wait was well worthwhile. First is a historical section, with carefully chosen photographs to show Tiger Is and IIs from different production dates and captions that explain their differences and individual points of interest. That’s the first 20 pages, quite comprehensive in itself. But wait! Next come no fewer than 46 pages of text, drawings and photographs showing all the changes to both Tiger I and Tiger II. For instance, 10 separate plan views, in 1/35 scale, showing all the successive changes to engine deck and tool stowage for Tiger I. The drawings and plans are not all to 1/35, but they’re all big and clear so you can pick out what they’re showing and they all have captions keyed to the features shown. Excellent!

Next are 25 pages of colour photographs of the 13 Tiger I and II models built for the book, with notes, followed by 5 pages in colour showing various techniques for construction, weathering, detailing the tools, adding armour texture and applying Zimmerit. These are very useful too, particularly for anyone without previous experience of Zimmerit finishes.

The next 59 pages show in detail what was done to produce each of the 13 models, from the first prototype Tiger I to the final production Tiger II. Each section gives full details of the kits and accessories used, so anyone wanting to make the models has an excellent guide. There’s little room for error here, if you want a Tiger from a particular production period all the information is set out and all you have to do is choose your preferred unit and the applicable camouflage and markings. Vice versa, if you choose the unit etc first you can check with this book to identify its batch and the changes needed to your base kit – even which base kit to use and why.

Finally there are a very comprehensive list of Tiger Kits and accessories, with notes on what’s included in each kit or set, a bibliography again with notes on the books’ contents and recommendations of which to get, and a list of all known Tiger chassis numbers with their dates of production and user units.
This is a first-rate book for modellers, and a worthy complement to the Jentz and Doyle masterworks on the Tigers which Pat Stansell specifies as prime references. Highly recommended to all Axis tank fans!

John Prigent