T-55 Enigma: kitbashing an old Esci kit – 1/35 scale

by Patricio Delfosse © Modeler Site

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Up to the arrival of the Tamiya kit, the T-55 from Esci was the best we modelers had to hand to represent the tank most manufactured by Soviets after the WWII. I had one since time ago, but with the arrival of the Tamiya’s, it was condemned to obscurity until I got the Verlinden conversion for the Enigma’s. My doubts about the conversion turned my project in an experimentation platform and, so the T-55 Enigma was born, based on the Esci kit.


Every Enigma seems to be different, they can be found in several museums; looking at reference pictures, they have differences. Thus, the best is to take one as reference and have it as example for our construction.

The rear fenders were made out of aluminum sheet, the ribs were marked with a ball point pen. The reactive armor shape at the front, is wrong, they were rebuilt from plastic with the correct shape and size.

I used the original Esci tracks, good enough for the period the kit was.

The Verlinden conversion set has visible mistakes I had to correct with scratch.

As usually happens every time we finish a scratch-built or semi scratch -built project, some manufacturer offer the kit, in this case, Tamiya. So, I decided not to paint the model and leave everything exposed so that all the work is visible. I hope you enjoy it!

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