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Building the T-70 - Techmod 1/35 scale

by  Patricio Delfosse © 2003 Modeler Site


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During the Second World War, the Soviet Union displayed thousands of T-34s, KVs and JSs. Also, they used a huge number of smaller armored vehicles. Among them we have the T-70, a simple light combat vehicle.


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The T-70 is a landmark in the evolution of light tanks among the Soviet arsenal in those days. It was developed in 1942 as from the T-60, with an extra wheel in the undercarriage, a better armor and very powerful weapons for a vehicle within this category, i.e. the 45 mm.1938 cannon.
It had two GAZ 202 engines of 6 cylinders in line, placed longitudinally in tandem on the vehicle's right side. Both engines shared the differential and the main clutch. Its 15 Hp/ton (power/weight) and the low pressure on the ground gave it an excellent movement capacity.
Anyway, those great characteristics faded away when coming to the point that there was only one soldier in the minute turret. That only soldier would perform the functions gunner, loader and commander all in one. It goes without saying that so many functions at the same time could not be properly fulfilled by just one man at a time.
It was initially conceived as a reconnaissance vehicle but it was set aside on account of the breathtaking power and weaponry increase experienced in the armored vehicles used in the Eastern front.
A total of 8226 vehicles were manufactured until the autumn of 1943 when the concept of light tank was dropped. An offshoot of this vehicle, the SU-76 self-propelled cannon, was produced until the end of the war and participated very actively in the 1950-1954 Korea War.

The model

The kit represents a 1943 version of the T-70 with its turret armor thicker than the 1942 version and broader link tracks too.
Even though I bought the kit knowing that it would not have Tamiya or Dragon's quality, I never thought I would encounter so many failures. The details are almost inexistent and very little beyond the basic hull's shape and the undercarriage is usable. The turret is the worst part of the kit. The shape simply does not coincide at all with the 1943 T-70. I could not find even one T-70 with a turret mount similar to the one provided with the kit. This makes me think that Techmod just took the 1972 models that appeared in "Scale model fighting vehicles" by Kenneth Jones as a reference without checking their accuracy. Just to achieve some historical authenticity I tried to reproduce my T-70 taking the one in the Parola Museum in Finland as a reference.

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