In-Box Review
221 Early Wheels
Early Version Road Wheel Set for SD.KFZ221
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by: Dave O'Meara [ GRUMPYOLDMAN ]

"The Leichter Panzerspähwagen (German: roughly "Light Armoured Reconnaissance Vehicle") were a series of light four-wheel drive armoured cars produced by Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1944." from Wikipedia.
Not having the Bronco 221 kit, makes it pretty difficult for me to decide if these wheels are necessary to complete or correct the kits wheels. I received these in a package from Staff Jim, along with some other items to review, and I'm willing to pass them on to any member that has the Bronco 221 kit that might like to use them to build an Early Version, as I can only assume that the kit comes with different or later wheels and tires.
the kit
So what do you get for your money?

The package contains five beautifully molded tires. The tread pattern is nicely defined with NO mold seam to clean up, or to distract from the finished piece. (It would be nice if all injection molded tires came molded like this, well hopefully in the future they will be!)
The package also contains the wheel fronts, and these fit the tires excellently, and with sharp details.
I would recommend careful removal from the sprue, and careful clean up of the molding pips inside the tires, and on the outer edges of the wheels to keep the excellent fit.

I want to thank Armorama, and Stevens International for the chance to review this item.
Highs: Excellent tread pattern, and sharp details.
Lows: Can't think of any.
Verdict: A nice little affordable update set to znazz up your 221 to earlier tires. Well worth the 5 or 6 bucks.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: AB 3518
  Suggested Retail: 6.00 USD
  PUBLISHED: Oct 03, 2009

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About Dave O'Meara (Grumpyoldman)

I'm rewriting this in a much more humoristic way, to help over inflate my ego, and place my self on a pedestal, because I don't have a life, and plastic models are the only thing I live for. I plead guilty as charged to excessive babble, light hearted humor, and continued encouragement to youngsters...

Copyright ©2021 text by Dave O'Meara [ GRUMPYOLDMAN ]. All rights reserved.


I second Dave's comments about the quality of these tires. They come from a six part mold--4 quadrants for the inner tread and two halves for the outer faces--with almost undetectable seams. You must look very close to find them. To convert a given 221 model to an "early production" version really requires these tires, early visor covers, and an MG13. MG13 ammo stowage would also help given the full Bronco interior. Bronco could have offered a more useful set by including, at minimum, the visor covers and MG13, which they already make. However, since Bronco sells "early" and "late(r)" versions of this vehicle, I doubt many people will need these tires for a Bronco kit. But wait! The entire 221, 222, 223, 260, and 261 range of vehicles used the same chassis and wheel assemblies. The "early" pattern tires offered by Bronco definitely appear on 221, 222, and 223 vehicles. The 260 and 261 were manufactured later and I have not seen a picture of either vehicle with these tires. But in theory all 5 vehicles could use them. Probably the best use of these parts is for improving an old Tamiya 222 or 223 kit. The Bronco outer tire and rim parts fit corresponding Tamiya hubs, leaving only a small gap on the backside of the wheel to fill. I believe the full Bronco wheel assemblies will mate with a Tamiya chassis assembly but cannot (yet) confirm this. The Bronco and Tamiya parts are almost identical, dimensionally. If you do this, make sure to put the correct wheel assembly in the correct position. These vehicles have mirror inner hubs, front to back. For those who really want to get particular, there may be two versions of the "early" pattern tire, one with solid face chevrons and one with grooved face chevrons. I have seen both on these vehicles, but cannot tell if the former is a worn version of the latter. Based on the depth of the tread, I think not. Anyway, the Bronco "early" tires represent the type with grooved chevrons. For the tire conscious, there are also at least two version of the "late" tire--one with perpendicular V cuts and one with angled V cuts. Hi Dave, I will trade you something for those tires if you don't want them. Just send me a PM if you are interested. -Doug
OCT 03, 2009 - 05:05 AM
PM me your address Doug. I'll get them in the mail some time next week.
OCT 03, 2009 - 07:45 AM
Not being an expert on this AFV, but I bet later in the war you might have seen these vehicles with a mix of new and old tires on them. When you think of Germanys rubber sortages late in the war any tires would have done, what ever was in stock would have been fitted to keep these AFV's running
OCT 05, 2009 - 07:58 AM
You are completely right. I found at least two photos of vehicles (in Ryton's book "Panzerspahwagen") with both pattern wheels mounted...
OCT 05, 2009 - 08:19 AM
OH- I agree. I don't think the Germans were as self-absorbed as the "roll-over minutes boy" on the television.
OCT 05, 2009 - 08:35 AM
I see I am not the only one going cross-eyed looking at these things. Here is my list of tire mismatches from the Ryton book: p47, left picture, first vehicle, straight wedge front, early back p59, first vehicle, straight wedge front, angled wedge back p60, right top and bottom, straight wedge front left, early front right, rear may be angled wedge p70 top right, early front right, straight wedge front left p78 bottom, angled wedge both front tires, but oriented in opposite directions p93 bottom, angled wedge front right, straight wedge front left p112 right, straight wedge front left, angled wedge front right -Doug
OCT 05, 2009 - 12:27 PM
That's a good idea, using them on the Tamiya kits! Too bad they won't work for the 232. I spent much more for resin upgrades, and they often don't fit all that well. Welding resin to styrene is also tricky IMO. Thanks, Doug, for the insight!
OCT 06, 2009 - 10:13 AM

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