The box top advertises that this photo etch upgrade set is for the German King Tiger with the “Porsche Turret”, but it includes instructions and parts for both the Porsche turret and Henschel turret versions. Included in the flip top box are:
- Five large and one small PE frets
- Two pieces of brass wire, two different diameters
- One piece of plastic rod
- Aluminum one piece barrel
- Muzzle brake consisting of two piece muzzle brake and five pieces of photo etch
- Four pages of instructions, although none for the barrel
The box top states the photo etch is for the Dragon kit, but the parts fit perfectly on my Tamiya kit. I did not use the parts that were on the interior of the turret and they aren’t visible from the outside. Also I did not add the interior parts for the rear turret hatch as the Tamiya turret is not compatible.
Lion Roar used at least two different thicknesses for the brass. Each fret is covered on both sides by a thin plastic film. I have read reviews where the reviewer didn’t like this feature, but I am a big fan. I peel off the film from one side and leave the other sheet of film as a backing to keep small parts from being sacrificed to the rug. The fenders and other large pieces were thicker and actually kept the parts which required multiple folds from flexing. The smaller parts were thinner. All the parts that required folding were pre-scribed and folded easily using an etch mate, needle nose pliers or a couple of Xacto blades, depending on the size of the pieces.
A bonus in this set is the metal gun barrel set. It combines aluminum and brass components and assembles easily. One issue with the barrel is that there were no assembly instructions. The three major parts are easy to assemble, but there are five photo etch parts. I went to the Lion Roar website and found a picture that illustrated the construction process for the barrel. It was so nice not having to clean up seams on that long main gun barrel and double baffle muzzle brake!
General – I jumped back and forth through the instructions, tackling items that were easier while gaining confidence in working with the multi-part subassemblies.
The grills on the engine deck fit perfectly to the Tamiya kit. Other parts required the removal of molded on parts or the filling in of location holes. I marked where molded on parts were removed or where holes had been filled, as the instructions are vague in places and the added zimmerit hid mounting locations. I added plastic strip to the back of the side fenders to improve adhesion to the hull sides. I left off some of the fender pieces to match photos of my selected vehicle. The front and rear fenders include bracing on the underside and working hinges, if you want. I recommend adding the rear fenders last as they are fragile and get in the way when working elsewhere on the hull. I broke off the extension of the right rear fender...and it will remain off to replicate maneuver damage.
I had a steep learning curve on the tool mounts, which consist of three small parts, one of which is very fragile. Eventually I completed all of them. Lion Roar helped here by providing extras for most of the small parts. I now have a plethora of bolt heads, latches and other small parts as spares. The mounts for the tow cables and cleaning rods mounted on the hull sides were a little small for the Tamiya kit, but were workable. I still need to add the butterfly nuts and bolts after the parts are painted. I am sure the air brush will blow them across my work room.
The detail on the parts of this kit is outstanding. The use of two thicknesses of brass sheet really helped with construction. You can go for as much detail as you feel you can complete. I do not have a problem with Lion Roar’s product, only with the German engineers that designed those complicated tool latches!
I recommend this set to anyone that wishes to improve what comes in the Dragon, or even the Tamiya box.
I would like to thank Dragon Models USA for this review kit.