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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Review: Battlefront's 7.5cm PaK40 Platoon (Winter) (GBX73)

What can be said about the PaK40? It is an iconic German Anti-tank Gun. Battlefront has created another great box set for Flames of War with their 7.5cm PaK40 Platoon (Winter) (GBX73).  This box set is unique in that not only do you get a gun crew in winter uniforms, but you get the new plastic PaK40s and "recessed" bases from the Open Fire boxed set.

Once more to Wikipedia for some specs on this weapon.

General characteristics:
Caliber: 75 mm
Barrel length: L/46
Rifling: 32 Grooves, right-hand increasing twist, 1/24 to 1/18.
Length with the carriage: 6.2 metres (20.3 ft)
Length: 3.45 metres (11.3 ft)
Width: 2 metres (6.6 ft)
Height: 1.25 metres (4.1 ft)
Weight (combat ready): 1,425 kilograms (3,142 lb)

Rate of fire: 14 rounds per minute
Engagement range: 1,800 metres (5,906 ft)
Indirect range: 7,678 metres (25,190 ft) m (HE shell)
Projectile weight: 3.18 kilograms (7.0 lb) to 6.8 kilograms (15.0 lb)

This gun could penetrate up to 6.1 inches of armour (90 degrees of incidence) at 500m with APCR or 5.2 inches with standard armor piercing rounds!

In game terms this equates to:

With the foundation set, lets break down this boxed set...

Accuracy:  Again. Battlefront is on target with accuracy (hee hee see what I did there with that  :-)  )

This plastic gun is even more spot on than the previous metal version.  The muzzle brake has the holes through the side; handles in the trails are crisp; the shovel on the lower gun shield is nice and crisp.  There is even more detail around the breach.  The crew are typical Battlefront sculps.  Uniform wise they are spot on for the winter...camo overalls, scarves, gloved hands. It's all there.  The sculps are the standard Battlefront "chunky" style. With that in mind, the figures are spot on.  All the body parts and equipment are sized right to the figure (no over sized hands or arms).  Overall 10/10 for both the gun and the crew.

**Edit:  It was brought to the reviewer's attention after posting that there is a "hump" on the barrel forward of the gun shield that shouldn't be there.   After considering this I must dock Accuracy by 2 points bringing it to an 8/10.                     

Quality: Very happy with the quality of this set.  The crew had little to no flash that had to be scrapped off or filed down.  I think only one helmet had a slight mold line.  The guns were a errors at all.  Overall: 10/10 for both gun and crew.

Versatility: This is a Winter themed PaK40 platoon.  This is going to narrow where you can use this platoon.  All of the lists in Nuts, Devil's Charge have PaK40s and these are Winter themed books.  You could get away with using this set for a Grey Wolf list as well.  The one thing that limits versatility is the new bases with the recesses for the crew.  This gives you limited number of positions you can model each team.  Overall:  8/10.

Paintability:  Again, top marks here for both the gun and crew.  They both take paint well and have crisp detail that isn't lost in the paint job.  The figures have nice poses with character as well. Overall:  10/10.

Overall: 9.5/10.  A great kit.  Was one of my favorite ones to put together and paint.  **Edit:  Based on revised Accuracy score of 8/10, the new overall total is 9/10.  No change that this is still a great kit.  A word of warning on the plastic gun: take care when cutting it off the sprue!  If you are not careful, you could easily bend/crease parts of the model as you cut it off the sprue.  This is especially true with the barrel and trails.  The connection points are just very close to each other you don't have a lot of space to get in and clip the part directly off the model without creasing the part.

 I found it best to cut off the section from the sprue and then trim that overhang off the model piece

Again, a great boxed set...just perfect to improve your winter force and break through to Bastogne!

SonBae (AKA Jeff Flint) is a long time gamer and painter and runs a blog at Journey Back To The Table where he posts photos of his work, reviews, BatReps and the “Painting Miniatures Declassified” modeling and painting tutorials.

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