Friday, April 26

Takom add to their re-issued 35th scale Object 279 with NBC Commando

Takom has already given us the Object 279 in 72nd & 35th scale. But this kit in the larger scale is long out of print. They have re-released the kit - this time with an NBC commando to escort it. Very fitting. We look at the CADs for the kit in our preview...

Object 279 with NBC Commando
From Takom
Kit No# 2188
1/35th scale
Dark grey Injection moulded plastic (+1 clear) + coloured P/E + cable
The Subject:
The Object 279 was an experimental and extremely strange Soviet heavy tank that was developed from 1956 to 1959. In fact, this tank is so strange in appearance that there is no real consensus as to what it looks like. Some have said that the tank looks like a frog, some have said it looks like a clam, and still, others state that it looks like a UFO.

Object 279 during a demonstration at Kapustin Yar, 1960

The tank's purpose was equally strange. The Object 279 was designed to traverse and fight on extremely rugged and hostile terrain, which would be inaccessible to almost any other vehicle. The tank's second and more well-known purpose was to survive a nuclear shock wave and fight in contaminated conditions, even those at the epicentre of a nuclear blast.

Development of the Object occurred in the Kirov Plant in Leningrad by L. Troyanov, an experienced and respected Soviet engineer. The tank was first envisioned in 1956, and work started in 1957. A pilot tank had been produced by 1959. This truly bizarre and highly unique vehicle had superior cross-country capability to anything that came before it. The tank ran on a four-track propulsion system, with two tracks to each side. Each pair of tracks was mounted to a rectangular beam that ran in a longitudinal direction. These beams were hollow and doubled as fuel tanks. The tank used an advanced hydropneumatic suspension system with a hydro-pneumatic transformer coupled with a three-speed planetary gearbox.

Due to the track layout, the vehicle had a huge amount of track in contact with the ground, which gave the vehicle reduced ground pressure and amazing crossing capability over boggy and torn ground. The track arrangement also allowed the Object to cross fallen trees and most anti-tank obstacles. An immensely powerful 1000hp 2DG-8M diesel engine was able to propel the 66-ton Object at an astonishing 55km/h. However, it must be noted that this tank had a horrendous turning circle because of the four wide tracks.

The tank was also extremely heavily armoured. The turret boasted up to 330 mm of armour, while the hull made around 270 mm. The effective thickness, as well as 'bounciness', would have been very high due to the extreme slopes and angles of the hull and turret. The hull was also covered by an elliptical shell of thin armour which would have given the tank protection against shaped charges. The hulls form was designed to keep the tank from flipping over in the event of a nuclear detention, and the cast armour was of variable thicknesses.

The armour layout of the tank

Armour panels ran around the hull as well as the turret to protect the Object from HEAT (High Explosive Anti Tank) shells. The crew of four were shielded from a potentially contaminated environment by a CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear) protection system, which slightly increased the pressure inside the tank to keep out unwanted agents.

Kubinka's Object prior to being repainted

The armament of the Object 279 was a 130 mm M-65 rifled cannon that was 60 calibres long. This weapon was stabilized on two axes by a 'Groza' stabilizer system, allowing the tank to shoot accurately on the move.

Secondary armament was a co-axially mounted 14.5 mm KPVT heavy machine gun with 800 round of ammunition. A semi-automatic loading system and an automated loading tray allowed the Object's rate of fire to reach 7 round per minute. Fire Control included a stereoscopic rangefinder and optical sights as well as an L2 night sight with an active searchlight. The Object 279 was intended to have been under the Supreme Command Reserve, though it never entered serious production.

The Object 279 was never used in combat, and only 3 examples were ever created. The project was costly, and out of favour. This was mainly because the Soviet Union was moving more towards missile technology, and away from heavy tanks to smaller MBT's. The Object 279 was an amazing vehicle in its performance and capabilities, however, it stayed as an experimental vehicle, never entering production. Eventually, all Objects were scrapped except one, which survives in the Kubinka Tank Museum.

The tank as it is now at Kubinka.

A wonderful video from Wargaming showing all you need to know about this tank...

This new kit from Takom:
Familiar territory to us, as we built one of these in 35th scale and reviewed the 1/72nd scale kit. Here, below are a few images of the first version of the model. Back when Takom used to be known for releasing whacky subjects (cough cough VK100.01 (p) K3382...).

The kit we made waaay back in 2013...This new kit does NOT include this figure in green - the older kit did.
The new kit's detail sin CAD: First up the two variants, one with the long gun, the other with the bigger, wider cannon.
The choice of barrels, from this illustration and from the photo above of the completed kit you can see the large difference between them.
There is phot-etch included for the engine grilles and the headlight cover
Apparently there are workable tracks for this kit - but having to fix four sets of tracks after driving it around your desk top is NOT encouraged (take it from me I made two of these kits - 8 track runs for two models)
A very Warhammer looking NBC commando is included as the figure in this set. 

That is all we have on this one for now - keep tuned for more info on the kits soon...
You can see more about Takom's kits on their website or on their Facebook page.