ITA has widened its range with a new series dedicated to the Leopard 2 MBT.
This reference intends to improve the Leopard 2A5/2A6 models of
the following brands: Tamiya, Revell and Hobby Boss.In the box, we get a photoetched (PE)
parts sheet for the hull, two others for the turret, a last one for the
score of resin parts, two lengths of styrene rod, a bit of brass rod and a bit
of clear plastic as well as the parts from the other ITA following references
(separately available): 35068 Straight weld beads
(although marked 35066 on the fret) and 35071 German tool clamps.
The sheet dedicated to the suspension is marked 35065a but is separately available as reference 35077 Leopard 2 suspension upgrade.
The set comes in a sturdy cardborad box and is protected by wrapping bubble film. The various sheets and parts come in re-sealable bags.
The instructions come in a PDF file in a CD-ROM.
Unfortunately the review sample was unreadable. After a simple mail to ITA, the
PDF file was quickly sent by Chris.
The drawings are generally clear but the set being designed for any existing Leopard 2 kits, no part number is mentioned. So it is necessary to be cautious during the assembly. Moreover, ITA does not give any indication about the diameter and the length of the styrene and brass rods to use.
The PE parts are fine and systematically present folding lines. The resin parts are free of air bubbles. However a thorough cleaning will be required to remove the excess of flash more specially on the turret baskets frames.
The bulk of the parts are PE parts. The set improves the suspensions with new PE return rollers brackets, new resin shock absorbers with PE protections.
The rear deck is detailed with weld seams issued in four sizes. The tow cables keepers are also present. However their shape is not exact and should have a cut-out at the top. The mud flaps are multi-parts and can be folded up.
The engine deck will require some work to remove the molded on parts before using the resin and PE parts for the engine grilles, the various brackets and locks of the access hatches. The engine deck lifting device comes in many parts and is a kit in the kit. It can be assembled in the stowed position or deployed.
The turret certainly is the part of the Leopard which benefits from the best treatment. The parts enable to improve or replace the main sight, the tank commander PERI-R17 panoramic sight, the MG3 ring, various brackets for the turret bustle, the chains for the smoke-dischargers and new resin and PE side baskets. The resin basket frames are two parts and require some cleaning to remove the excess of flash.
This reference is warmly recommended to improve your Leopard 2A5/2A6 model. However it is advised to master the work with PE with such a huge number of PE parts.
Thanks to Chris from ITA for the review sample.