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Building the Eduard Hetzer!

The Jagdpanzer 38 Hetzer was an attempt by Germany to counter the massive production capabilities of the Allies during the latter stages of the Second World War. Using existing chassis and effectively doing away with the need to produce complicated turret assemblies, meant that large numbers of Tank Hunter/Destroyer vehicles could be produced even with reduced industrial capacity. The 38 Hetzer saw the union between the Pak 39 L48 gun and the already battle proven Pz.38(t) chassis. This model from Eduard represents an early version probably produced around April/May 1944.

For an in-box review of the Eduard Hetzer: Look here ...and here For more information on the Hetzer Look here

the kit
This kit represents Eduardís first attempt at 1/35th scale armour. They now offer a late version also.

The kit is moulded in soft tan coloured styrene, thatís easy to work with, yet holds sharp detail. Inside the box there were 12 sprues of a very light tan coloured plastic and one small sprue of transparent plastic. Also included is a medium sized fret of photo etch. What is not included is Eduardís replacement photo etch schurzen, which I thought a little odd, especially since they are produced specifically for this kit. However, thanks to Eduard I was supplied with a set which I used for this model. The markings options for the kit are 3 different vehicles, one of which can be modelled in two styles to depict the vehicle after it was captured and used by Polish insurgents.

The instruction booklet that comes with the kit is fairly extensive, and uses computer generated images instead of the normal exploded line drawing type. They are clear however, and I found no real problem using them, although there were a couple of mistakes which Iíll mention as we come to them.
Unlike most armour kits, construction does not begin with the running gear, but with the inside details of the engine compartment. Since this kit comes with a full engine compartment and crew compartment, I wished to leave as many hatches open as possible, and so my first task was to gather as many internal pictures of the Hetzer as I could. There are quite a few pictures out there, but the Hetzer being such a compact, crowded vehicle, not many of them are as clear as I would like. The pictures I could find of the Praga AE 160K engine, were however very clear...... and they werenít much of a match with what was presented before me in plastic. Eduard have unfortunately the wrong shape engine. Since I wished to build the kit more or less out of the box I decide to take the plunge anyway and just add as much detail as I could in terms of wires etc.
I constructed the various components to fit inside the engine compartment but did not fix them in place, instead choosing to begin spraying the engine compartment walls and floor and then fixing the various parts in place.
  • Het001
    Before Painting
  • Het002
    Before Painting
  • Het003
    Engine Parts
  • Het004
    Finished Engine
  • Het005
    Finished Engine
  • Het006

About the Author

About Vinnie Branigan (Teacher)


Hello vinnie,well you builds just get better i do like this one,i was looking at your pics for some time thinking how the hell does he do it (lol). i have to say its one of your best,how long did it take from start to finish? big pat on the back mate,and thanks for shearing. cheers karl
DEC 28, 2005 - 03:36 AM
Great Article there, I esp enjoy those that show how you paint and finish a model like you did on this one as it helps all of us improve our skills. Keep up the good work.
DEC 28, 2005 - 04:36 AM
Excellent build review, Vinnie ! Looks like a great kit to build. The Hetzer is one of my favorite AFV's and having a new-tool kit like this is awesome Perfect timing too. I have had these on pre-order for some time now, and as of this coming Friday, I will have them in stock. In addtition to the Eduard Early Hetzer, I will have the new Late Hetzer kits in as well. The world of 1/35th armor kits continues to enlighten us all Cheers !! Alpen
DEC 28, 2005 - 07:25 AM
Great work Vinnie, great interior...you've given me great reference material.... thanks.............. Frank
DEC 28, 2005 - 09:38 AM
Nice to see the your Hetzer finished Vinnie , great job as allways. Nice touch with the barbed wire on the rear hull. It looks a great kit but it does seem wierd not including the PE for the schurzen ( maybe to keep the cost down on what is an allready pricey kit ) who knows The instructions are a little vauge as you say , but then again anyone whos built a DML kit will be familiar with that Ian
DEC 28, 2005 - 10:42 AM
Vinnie, these build stories are always great, you can learn so much from them. Keep 'em coming! Thanks Dave PS: 600th post! At this rate, I'll be at 1000 by about, well, July.
DEC 30, 2005 - 02:52 AM
Finally got around to reading this Vinnie..... Very nice article.....
DEC 30, 2005 - 05:19 PM
Hi Vinnie; Is there any photos of the engine for the Hetzer that show proper wiring and placement of the wires themselves Graham Ross
MAY 08, 2009 - 06:57 AM
Terrific! Blows away mine.
MAY 08, 2009 - 10:35 AM
Graham im affraid Vinnie is no longer with the site so you will have to sorce the photos somewhere else Im affraid.
MAY 08, 2009 - 10:49 AM