Bumerang IFV Object K-17
Panda, 1/35 scale
Reviewed by Cookie Sewell
|Stock Number and Description||Panda Hobby 1/35 scale Kit No. PH35026; Bumerang IFV Object K-17 - 2-in-1 2015/1016 ((sic))|
|Media and Contents:||401 parts (335 in tan styrene, 50 etched brass, 8 black vinyl, 7 clear styrene, 1 length of twisted brass wire)|
|Review Type:||First Look|
|Advantages:||First kit of this vehicle in this scale; options for 2015 or 2016 parade versions.|
|Disadvantages:||No interior or interior details.|
|Recommendation:||Highly Recommended for all modern Russian and wheeled armor fans|
When the Russians decided to go into Chechnya in December 1994, they pulled a large number of vehicles out of storage and other units which turned out to be a mess. According to then commander of GABTU General-Lieutenant Sergey Mayev, they had more than 20 different tank chassis and platforms in use, many of which did not share spare parts, as well as similar problems with light AFVs and wheeled armored vehicles.
Soon afterward a decision was made to cut down on platforms and to make all future vehicles share as many components as possible. With the failure of the T-95 tank program, the new vehicle lines gelled into four lines: a heavy armored (tank) chassis as Project Armata; a light armored chassis (BMP) as Kurganets-25; a wheeled vehicle chassis as Bumerang; and a new airborne chassis which was to be based on the BMD-3. Starting in 2013 all of the vehicle began to show up in parades and at arms shows, with the Bumerang making its debut in 2015.
The Bumerang is the outgrowth of the BTR-80 and BTR-90 programs, and for the first time in a Russian wheeled APC it uses a front mounted engine and rear access for the assault team. Instead of a manned turret, it now uses an unmanned turret called Bumerang-BM fitted with a 30mm 2A42 automatic cannon, a 7.62mm PKT machine gun, and four “Kornet” ATGM missiles. Crew is 3 men with 9 men in the dismount assault team. Weight is 25 metric tons.
So far only prototypes have been shown, and as such nobody knows what the final configuration will reflect.
Panda has for once (!) made a fairly simple kit of the new wheeled APC, and for them 400 parts is a “simple” kit! Cleanly molded in tan plastic with slide molding where it makes sense, the kit is a no-nonsense and no-frills model with no interior or other detailing (very little has been shown due to the unmanned turret and its electronics).
While Panda insists that it is called “Object K-17" most Russian sources call it VPK-7829 which makes better sense due to the design numbers for wheeled APCs in Soviet and Russian service. (Internally so do the kit sprues!) Note that this version shares its turret with the T-15 Armata heavy BMP kit (PH35017) as well as the main components with the Bumerang APC kit (PH35025).
Panda still suffers from the AFV Club/Heller habit of making five parts where two will do, so expect some fussy assemblies. Assembly starts with the lower hull and the suspension. As there are only 50 PE parts, most are either large or repetitive such as the tie-down loops and hooks on the upper hull, a change for Panda kits.
As there is little to show on the upper hull, most of the assembly focuses on the suspension which is very complex and on the turret. One thing many Soviet armor fans will notice is that unlike past vehicles this one likes shock absorbers - 12 of them to be exact. According to the directions all are slightly different so pay attention when removing them from the sprues. Also note for your modeling pleasure it has eight-wheel steering so each wheel has a tierod assembly as well as driveline parts.
The first four steps cover the suspension and lower hull, and the next three the much less busy upper hull. The driver’s hatch is a separate part but as noted there is no interior within his station. The same goes for the large dismount team hatches on the rear roof. It has a wave breaker but no mechanism seems to be provided for its extension. Waterjet drives are provided and are nicely done.
Note that the antennas on the vehicle represent the new generation of Russian communications and data systems and should NOT be replaced by stretched sprue or wire antennas.
There are some minor differences between the 2015 and 2016 versions (“1016" on the box art); each has different front fender panels, midships bin steps, and drivelines to the hydrojet drives.
The turret has nicely rendered twin-pod units of “Kornet” missiles with 14 parts to each one including a PE shroud. None of the turret hatches have optional positions but it does come with sight heads, a slide molded 2A42 gun, and three more antennas. The vehicle has a complete suite of IR/laser detector sensors on the hull and turret as well.
The tires are vinyl but nicely rendered with off-center seams to ease cleanup and are “Belshina” 16.00R20 size. (I assume Belshina means “Belarus Tires?”)
Finishing gives but two (actually one) option: parade dress in FS34102 equivalent green with the St. George Medal striping and stars used on all parade vehicles in recent years.
Overall, considering the “green” nature of the vehicle Panda has done a very nice job of capturing it as it exists right now and all fans of new Russian armor may want to pick one up.
35025 7 Clear
– 50 Etched brass
– 1 Twisted copper wire
35025B 64 Hull rear, fender corners, bins, details, hydrojet drives
35025C 102x2 Suspension, wheels, driveline
35017E 65 Turret, gun, missiles
– 2 Hull top and bottom
– 8 Vinyl tires