Merkava Mk.3D Early

Published on
August 19, 2012
Review Author(s)
Product / Stock #
Company: Meng Model - Website: Visit Site
Provided by: Stevens International - Website: Visit Site
Box Art


The Merkava Mk.3D main battle tank (MBT) in service in Israel Defense Forces (IDF) is the revised version of the Merkava Mk.3, equipping with a 120mm smoothbore gun, the BAZ gunner's sight and the panoramic commander's sight. The detachable add-on armor plates at the turret roof and its sides greatly increased the protection ability. As the most widely equipped MBT by IDF, the Merkava Mk.3D took action in the second Lebanon war in 2006, "cast Lead" operation in the Gaza strip in the winter of 2009 and many other security activities along Israeli border.


The kit is nicely boxed with all spruces individually sealed in plastic. There are eleven spruces, one clear spruce, Polly caps, upper turret, bottom turret, lower hull, upper hull, idle wheels, and a bag of individual track links already cleaned up. Also included are string, copper wire, decal sheet, and a piece of metal for the ID panels. The instruction book is well laid out, with a color section at the back to show two types of tanks you can model. All the parts are nicely molded with very little clean up to do at all.


Before you start the build go through the instructions as there are a lot of options to choose from that need to be decided on before you start your build. For example: The hatches can be modeled open or closed, type of road wheels (All steel, rubber treads, or a combo of both can be chosen), rear door open or closed, Headlights open or closed, type of drivers hatch, periscopes open/closed, range finder sights open/closed, antenna placement. There is two painting options that you will need to decide on as this will affect you build.

Step 1 thru step 9 deals with the road wheels and lower hull. Step 10 thru step 18 deals with the tracks and upper hull. A good track jig, either homemade or bought is recommended to assemble the individual link tracks. I had a little fit problem with one of the side suction. A little filing was done to fix the problem. Steps 19 thru steps 43 deal with the turret. In step 19 this is the step that the gun barrel is put together. There are 13 parts to make up the barrel. A good turned metal barrel would have been nice. Be careful when cutting from the spruce some of the really small pieces in the kit. Some broke on me and I had to glue them back together. There is no non-skid molded into the kit parts as this was a common thing found on these tanks. I painted the model with Tamiya paints and weathered with different weathering products.


I think Meng hit a home run with this kit. The subject is great, the parts a cleanly molded and go together expertly. I highly recommend this model to any and all skill levels of armor.

I would like to thank Stevens International for allowing me the opportunity to build this kit. Also, Meng models for producing a excellent kit.


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