German Assault Pioneer Team and Goliath

Published: April 5th, 2018     
Product Image
Box Art
Reviewed by: 
Eric Christianson, IPMS# 42218
Scale: 1/35
Company: Tamiya
Price: $19.00
Product / Stock #: 35357

Tamiya has recently released their own boxing of the diminutive Goliath tracked mine. The kit comes complete with two mines and control boxes, tethered by steel wire to one of three highly detailed figures. Molded in crisp, yellow plastic, the contents of the box are typical of Tamiya kits, and the three figures are just about as good as it gets in terms of detail and craftsmanship.

History

The Goliath tracked mine - (Leichter Ladungstrager Goliath or Goliath Light Charge Carrier) was a name given to two German unmanned, disposable demolition vehicles used during World War II. These were the electrically powered Sd.Kfz. 302 and the petrol-engine powered Sd.Kfz. 303a and 303b. The -302 is the version represented in the Tamiya kit.

Employed by the Wehrmacht during World War II. They carried 60 or 100 kilograms (130 or 220 lb.) of high explosives, depending on the model, and were intended to be used for multiple purposes, such as destroying tanks, disrupting dense infantry formations, and the demolition of buildings or bridges. Goliaths were single-use vehicles that were destroyed by the detonation of their warhead.

Initially fielded in early 1942, Goliaths were used by specialized Panzer and combat engineer units on all fronts where the Wehrmacht fought; most notably in Anzio, Italy, during the Polish Uprising in Warsaw, and on the beaches of Normandy.

Although a total of 7,564 Goliaths were produced, the single-use weapon was not considered a success due to high unit cost, low speed (just above 6 miles per hour, poor ground clearance (just 4.5 inches), the vulnerable control cable, and thin armor which could not protect the vehicle from small-arms fire. The Goliath was also too big and heavy to be easily man-portable. Mostly, they failed to reach their target although the effect was considerable when they did.

Large numbers of Goliaths were captured by the Allies. Even though they were seen as having little military value, the Goliath did help lay the foundation for post-war advances in remote-controlled vehicle (ROV) technologies.

Opening the Box

This is a Tamiya armor kit - which means it can be described in five words: not many parts, perfect fit. The tiny track for each vehicle is produced using link-and-length plastic parts from the sprues. The contents of the box include:

  • 2 identical sprues if soft, yellow plastic, each containing one Goliath
  • 1 sprue containing parts for three fully equipped figures, also in soft yellow plastic
  • 1 plastic bag containing a round of very thin steel wire for use as control cables
  • 1 single, fold-out page of black and white instructions with 8 steps (including figures)

Paint callouts are provided for Tamiya Acrylic-Lacquers and represent a single finishing scheme in German Yellow (Goliath) and German Grey (Figures).

Instructions

The instructions are excellent; but curiously, do not include a parts map. Beginners will find the page full of quick hints and images showing where to trim, cut, use tweezers for small parts, etc.

The Build

Goliath

Looking through the instructions for my notes I find that there is very little written besides the occasional 'Cool!' and 'Nice!'. You have a choice to build the front hatch closed or open (which exposes the spool of control wire). The only problems I encountered were with the track, some parts of which were very small. I am an experienced modeler and I still could not get the track completely around the running gear without leaving some minor gaps. The rest of the vehicle went together without a hitch.

Figures

The three figures come together very well and have separate parts typical for the scale; separate head, arms, legs, torso and helmet. Each figure contains a full combat load of gear molded separately. One figure holds the control box while the other two figures come with personal weapons.

Finish

After priming everything with rattlecan Flat Black, I painted the vehicles using Model Master Enamels, starting with Dark Tan for the base coat, and lightening that with Model Master Flat White for the post-shade coat. I used AK Interactive Track Wash on the track and then weathered everything using several Mig pigments.

I have yet to do justice to a 54mm figure, so simply applied a light grey primer to these. Someday...!

Conclusion

What more can I say about Tamiya kits? There is something for every kind of modeler in each kit, the fit is usually perfect and the instructions are excellent. The tiny link-and-length track gave me some issues, however, leading me to recommend this kit only for modelers with a little experience.

Altogether, the contents can be made into an interesting vignette. The relatively tiny mines will also fit side-by-side in the back of a halftrack or truck, or perched on a German utility trailer.

I would like to thank Tamiya USA for providing this kit for review, and to IPMS USA for giving me the opportunity to build it.

  • Observer Figure 1
    Observer Figure 1
  • Observer Figure 2
    Observer Figure 2
  • Observer Figure 3
    Observer Figure 3
  • Operator Figure 1
    Operator Figure 1
  • Operator Figure 2
    Operator Figure 2
  • Operator Figure 3
    Operator Figure 3
  • Prone Figure  1
    Prone Figure 1
  • Prone Figure  2
    Prone Figure 2
  • Prone Figure  3
    Prone Figure 3
  • Goliath Full Set
    Goliath Full Set
  • Goliath Pair 1
    Goliath Pair 1
  • Goliath Pair 2
    Goliath Pair 2
  • Goliath Pair 3
    Goliath Pair 3
  • Goliath Pair 4
    Goliath Pair 4