Earlier this month the long-awaited Zvezda quick-build IS-2 finally reached the local hobby shops, so I was quick to grab myself a copy. It’s close to an year late and I was anxious to see what do we actually get.
There are a hull tub (discussed lower), two grey sprues with parts for the hull and turret, a black one for the tracks, decals for 1 main variant (as on the box top) and additional generic numbers.
The first sprue shows the upper hull and most of the suspension and running gear parts. Yes, just as advertised the set does represent the later war production variety, the IS-2m with the “straight nose”, so it supplements rather than replaces the Italeri kit. As opposed to the Italeri kit, the cooling louvres here are molded angled, with spaces between them, so you can see through the grid.
In the first part of the build I basically completed the lower half of the vehicle and the cargo bed. Back to the crew compartment.
The AT-T’s front lights reside at the very front of the bonnet/hood on metal supports. In the kit these are PE parts, which supposedly butt-join the resin engine compartment, and on top of which the lights are glued. Images of broken-off detail in my mind lead me to soldering a piece of wire (in red) through each support like this (looking from the front):
I started construction with the chassis tub. First thing to do is gluing the back wall. Next I cut the suspension arms out of the casting block and it turned out the holes for their pins are much too small. Off with the pins, arms are drilled through, as is the tub itself – naturally observing the locations of the original holes.
I decided to use thick copper wire passing through the whole tub to make new pins. This would ease me in terms of affixing the pins and make the whole thing stronger.
The AT-T (Russian “Artilleriyskiy Tyagach – Tyazholiy”, Artillery Tractor – Heavy) was developed in the late 1940s using elements of the T-54 MBT (notably the running gear).
The main purpose of the vehicle was to tow heavy artillery pieces like the KS-30 130mm AA gun, the S-23 180mm gun and the B-4 203mm howitzer, so the machine got a 415HP version of the famous B-2 V-12 tank diesel. The standard 5-roadwheel chassis was used for a number of recovery and engineering vehicles. Extended versions (7 roadwheels) include the P-40 „Long Track” mobile radar, and an entire family of polar expedition vehicles.