Ref : Modelkrak #PT-91 Twardy Erawa
Tamiya #35160
Eduard #34002

The PT-91 Twardy is an upgraded version of the Russian T-72M which has been developed by the Polish defense industry. It features many improvements to the active and passive protection systems as well as to the fire control.
The passive protection comprises the new ERA of the ERAWA type which covers the glacis, the skirts and the front part of the turret. It is complemented by OBRA laser warning sensors.
The active protection is characterized by the new smoke dischargers array. Each array comprises 12 tubes which increases by two-fold the number on standard T-72's.
Poland has produced 58 PT-91's now in service with the armored brigades. Another source estimates the number of tanks as 233. In 1998, due to budget restrictions, the production came to an end and a less expensive variant, the T-72M1Z, started.
The PT-91M, export variant, shows major differences in the fire control systems. Up to 48 (or 56) tanks have been purchased by Malaysia.

Modelkrak conversion is designed for the Tamiya kit. It has approximately 30 parts of which the main ones are a new turret, the up-armored skirts and the glacis armor plate.
The instructions come as a A4 sheet written in Polish with 2 drawings. The carving and the cast are good. Few air bubbles are present but the existing ones are ill-located on the smoke dischargers caps.
The accuracy is the weak point of the kit. The ERA tiles lay-out on the turret is wrong.

The building begins with the Tamiya kit preparation. The add-on armor plate on the glacis must be sanded away as well as most of the cables. The skirts first sections are cut off and will be glued on the resin ones later. The triangular stiffeners of the mud fenders are cut away.
The gun barrel is cut straight ahead of the mantlet fabric protection. On my model, the barrel is the Eduard one. It is a turned aluminum one with separate PE straps for the thermal sleeve sections.

The corrections needed by the conversion are mainly concentrated on the turret area. The ERA tiles are sanded and new ones done from plastic card. They are supplemented by the separate ones issued by Modelkrak. Each tile measures 4x4mm.
On the glacis, Modelkrak missed a tiles row near the towing hooks. With the separate tiles, the upper glacis is complemented.
The front skirt is glued at the junction between both hull halves. The upper part is done from plastic card according to the instructions.
The numerous smoke dischargers are set on their base which gets a grab handle missed by the manufacturer.

Then, you'll just have to set the Tamiya parts to the conversion ones. The headlights and their protections require some attention. The protections legs need to be cut by several millimeters.
The parts designed for the turret do not raise any problem. On the TC cupola, two tiny holes for the searchlight mount must be filled. The schnorkel must be glued above and slightly forward the left rear OBRA sensor. (the in progress pics are wrong in this area)

The remaining stages of the building is simple and just follow Tamiya instructions.

The decoration follows a 3-tone scheme similar to the NATO scheme. The used shades are Black XF1, Flat Green XF5 and Brown (a mix of Red Brown XF64 2:3, Orange X6 1:6 and Flat Yellow XF3 1:6).

The weathering is done with a very diluted wash of Flat Earth XF52 and various pastel chalks.
The orange circles with a black triangle inside come from a PART PE set for another vehicle.

Modelkrak provides us with a good basis to get a early PT-91. Some work is still necessary to get close to reality. But this set enables us to have another original T-72 variant.