Kit Preview : 1/76 Fujimi Tiger I Late
About the manufacturer
Fujimi is the only remaining active major 1/76 plastic injection molded kit manufacturer. They took on the Nitto range about a decade ago and have been rereleasing tehir catalog gradually. Their latest kits include link and length hard plastic tracks. Be sure to check if the kit you are buying has the old rubbery tracks or the new ones. Just a hint: the cheaper ones have the vinyl tracks.
Henk of Holland has a very useful list of all the serial numbers of Fujimi and Nitto kits.
About the vehicle
There is an abundance of information on the Tiger tank available on the web. Here is the Wikipedia article on the Tiger I. It links to other sites as well.
About the kit
This is a re-release of Fujimi's Tiger tank with link and length tracks. They issued several of these kits each with markings for a different unit (501, 505, 506). I will check with my Tiger in action book if it matches the required features for a "late" model. I really wonder how accurate this kit is. Having seen seemnigly better 1/72 and 1/35 Tiger kits get flamed on modeling forums makes be doubt it. The turret seems slightly asymmetrical, as it should be. The one thing lacking is Zimmerit. The molded track puller cable on the left side will have to be scraped off and rebuilt. The tow cables on the hull deck lack any thread pattern and are better replaced.
After hull and track assembly, zimmerit is being added from soft wax. I used a fine toothed razor saw to sculpt the pattern. Any mistakes can be easily corrected. Just apply heat locally to smooth the wax (I use a small soldering iron) and start over. The wax is from Babybel cheese wrappers. It is very soft and malleable. After the zimmerit panel is compled, I brush on a coat of liquid CA to harden the surface for durability.