Panzer mark 4 (IV).
Finding myself in a position of having panzer mk4s from both Rubicon Models and Warlord Games. I thought it would be a great opportunity to do both unboxings at the same time and look at both kits to see what one I find the best. This is a new avenue for my articles and I will be trying a different format than usual for it.
In this unboxing/review I will be looking at both kits to see where they perform the best and least, why to that factor, and other contributing things that folk might want to know before they make a choice in buying one or the other.
Rubicon models are a company I have only came across first hand just recently thanks to a Mr Paul Walker from WarHq. He bought a sample of these model kits into my local club for a game of tank wars (a game he won I may add) so I could get a look at them. Paul has started to stock this range recently and has said that the kits were fantastic to build.
Warlord games are a company that not only produce some fantastic infantry and rules but tanks too. I have bought many tanks from warlord recently for a winter tank wars project I have been working on. With my local model shop Marionville models starting to stock warlord products I picked up a mk iv last time I was there for this project.
The box provided by warlord games is slightly smaller than the rubicon box, and features a great picture of a company of panzer iv in a battle scene (maybe to inspire the buyer than more than 1 is better)
There is some small areas of information on the sides and reverse of the box letting you know what’s in side, what period that the tank was manufactured and a small advert by osprey on the publications of their books for colour patterns and history.
The box is clearly advertised as containing a panzer iv ausf. f1/g/h.
The box provided by Rubicon models is slightly wider than warlords and features a more computer generated image of a mk 4 in action.
Although a lot plainer the sides are clearly advertised as to what’s in the box, a nice feature is a coloured bar of red black and white that I can presume is across all German ranges with this company.
The reverse of the box contains a history of the panzer mk 4 and what the box contains. Over all the box has less on it that warlords and apart from a tiny advert stating that Vallejo acrylics are recommended. The gloss finish is a nice touch.
The plastic kits.
The warlord plastic kit is spread across 3 frames. The grey plastic frames contain 70 individual parts. The kit has some great details including stowage, separate tracks, and armour skirts.
The mould lines are there but are minimal and most will be hidden when built. The main cannons are peg fitted and with a push can be swapped at will.
The parts are numbered so construction should be easy following the steps in the construction guide.
The frames after being removed from their individual protective bags are clean and crisp. The 49 individual components are clearly marked and their detail is more defined than warlords.
The dark grey plastic feels stronger and has a gloss feel that may be due to a release agent. The cannons are peg fitted with 2 turret mounts.
The tracks are a one piece design and the armoured skirts are also one piece. The contact points are slightly larger than warlords, and not as easily hidden when the model is built.
The decals found in warlord games panzer mk iv box are a basic sheet. They contain black and white decals, with numbers and unit markings.
A nice feature on the sheet is the inclusion of a couple of panzer division markings including the hitlerjugend, wiking and das reich.
I know that the tigers, stugs and half tracks don’t include these decals and following a guide I wrote before on how to use decals these will add a little something to the finished model.
There are some massive differences here, the protected decals Rubicon have included are on a larger sheet and in 3 colours, white, black and red.
The numbers are a bit of a let down with no 0 to 9, but 3 numbers together with the largest number on any being 5. There are more crosses than warlords and have a nice little Africa corps army badges. Great if you want to model and paint your kit for that theatre of war.
The instructions warlord have produced for this kit are found on a single 2 sided insert.
Each step is clearly visible, and They are clearly numbered in conjunction with the numbers on the frames.
The build is split into 5 parts, with sub builds including the hull, turret, and armoured skirts. The pictures are a photo shopped pictures of the actual model.
These instructions are a booklet, with the cover having the frames shown with the part numbers on there too.
There are 8 steps to this build, and the pictures are done in a Add to dictionary style, with each step clearly numbered.
So, having built both kits, I have to say that although slightly more expensive, the Rubicon panzer mk iv wins hands down.
The extra cost of the kit you gain back with the detail the kit contains, the fact the tracks are on piece, the armoured skirts being a push fit, The added details to the instructions are the main reason I would buy a Rubicon kit over that of warlords.
The kit feels more expensive that what it actually costs, with a superior feel and packaging .
The warlord kit I believe made by a company called Italia has its uses with it being cheaper, and I like the decals for warlords over Rubicon’s too.
As always this is just what I have found, hope you like the write up.