Friday, August 14

Read n' Reviewed - WWI revisited with this special edition #49 from Panzer Aces

“Panzer Aces” magazine no #49 is a complimentary volume that is mostly concerned with dio’s as well. Well there is sure to be some good armour, figure work, painting and weathering in there as well. Let’s find out in our review of this WWI special.

 Read n' Reviewed:
Panzer Aces #49
Available in English/Spanish & French
64 pages
A4 softcover portrait format.
Available for € 11 from your nearest hobby shop or Direct from the publishers

Every two months Euromodelismo releases another edition of “Panzer Aces.” We normally like what is inside them and although the book is of Spanish origin the writing and modelling is well done and not over stylized like many people may think of modellers work from Spain. We had the chance to look at the latest issue that features World War One scenes, vehicles and figures as its focus in today’s review.

Issue 49 of the popular “Panzer Aces” magazine from Accion press is a special edition that is dedicated to the muddy and shell holed landscape of Northern Europe in WWI. Although it features WWI subjects only it fits in with what we have seen before from Panzer Aces –The size is A4 in portrait format and it features sixty-four pages with no advertisements in there anywhere accept a “how to order” or subscribe page on the front and back. I really like this a lot but the price is and I literally mean the price is €11 which is probably 1/3 more or double some other mags that you might find in the newsagents. The choice then is yours. Half a magazine and half advertisements or a more expensive mag with no ads. 
Most of the book is in an “SBS” (Step by Step) method with a little intro and background block text in each story. As long as this compliments and doesn’t interrupt the story like it does here (for the most part) it’s good. To me this issue feels like an episode of a much larger book than a magazine. The hard(ish) premium feel cover adds to the swish feel. A good start! Let’s look at the stories in this edition.

Firstly we look at this (1/32nd scale) World War One vintage A7V Sturmpanzerwagen from Tauro Models. Now the MENG kit is out people like this modeller Carlos de Diego Vaquerizo found that the Tauro kit was not at all in 35th scale. More like 32nd. He also found out from comparing drawings that none of the panels are really very accurate. Now Meng has raised the bar what to do? 
Well… his answer was to rebuild this kit with all new scratch-built panels, and new tracks, rivets, machine guns – well nearly the whole kit. He kept parts of the caterpillar drive mechanism and the best part is he shows you – complete with scaled plans provided in the mag and rivet and other detail. The article is a very good one, with how to paint your own kit in Lozenge pattern realistically with some subtle weathering. 
The diorama and the figures are explained as well as a great aside to the kit. The focus is on the whole thing rather than just a pristine model out of place.
We go French next with the second build from Laurent Stankoviak. His massive Saint Chamond tank is built up here in a nice way that shows just how easy and also the few fault that make this build slow down pretty openly. It’s nice to see more construction in magazines – and not just a paint selling exercise.
Hang on did someone say paint? Well the camouflage pattern of French vehicles is discussed and shown next. You can tell the modeller had a little learning curve with this paint because the AMMO stuff goes on a little thick and layer upon layer of this in masked patters is difficult to achieve. The result overall however is well done and the diorama it is on looks good – although we do not see how it comes together in this article as we did in the A7 story.
We get the chance to see the inside and outside of the SAINT CHAMOND "Walkaround" from the great (did I mention it is great?) AFV museum in Saumur in the Loire valley in France. Nice pictures from all around this old tank are quite good for reference – you do not see many pictures of the insides of these beasts so it’s a great inclusion.
The classic tank of the war – the MK. IV Male British tank is next up. From the very talented modeller José Luis López, this kit is the Tamiya new mould so interesting to many modellers, and he doesn’t hide the harder parts of the construction. On the two pages with pictures that could slightly better emphasize his points instead of just showing the kit, he talks construction before painting the kit.
Using the black and white technique he tries to liven this monochrome kit up as much as he can, and the results and how he got them are interesting and the result is really very good (better than many a model you will see.) The base road section of this kit has been explained over a few pages as well – it’s a really good addition to the build and the only shame is we don’t see any figure painting included. 
Lastly Michel Pérez shows us his (small by comparison to the earlier vehicles) CA1 Schneider tank. This small French number came from a tractor design and the smaller scale makes the figure with it more important. Although we do not see ANY of the building of the tank we see a lot of the complex paint job and of the autumn surrounds as the leaves fall from delicate looking trees.
This is the contents of issue 49 - the fact that it is a WWI special should interest a lot of modellers looking for something different and a bit more agricultural. I like the builds and the varied approaches to articles is interesting although I tend to like the larger articles like the A7 build where we see everything from go to whoa.
It’s a great magazine usually and this issue is just as worthy. A good read and very educational.

Adam Norenberg

This issue is available now - you can order it directly from the publishers at this link from their website.