Best Tiger 1 Late in 1/35 and what are the issues with Tamiyas late Tiger 1

Thank you for your opinion

The Dragon (DML) Tiger 1 Late kits are overall outstanding. Hard to say which is best because:

  1. Some folks want molded in Zimmerit and some don’t.

(I don’t like molded in Zimmerit.)

  1. Some folks like the DS molded tracks others like individual link.

(I hate DS tracks as they often fall apart and I like individual link.)

  1. Some folks wants lots of photo-etch and I don’t like working with PE.

(I dislike excessive PE.)

Dragon pretty much has a late Tiger kit to match any of those preferences. Dragon 6253 (2005 issue) is my preference. Perth Military Modelling - Dragon DML Late Tiger #6253 The excellent Dragon 6406 is my next choice. However, Dragon 6383 would be an easier build with molded in Zimmerit and DS one piece tracks. I think Dragon #6383 matches your criteria best.

Note, I put my money where my opinion is as those are the three are all in my stash. Some with multiple copies.

Others will have different views.

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So Dragon is much better than the Tamiya offering.

Part of the answer would also be your modeling experience. The Dragon kits are excellent as Armor Buff replied, however have a lot of parts to them, and are very accurate, if you stay with the kits he mentioned.
The Tamiya kits have much less parts, and are not as accurate as the Dragon kits, but are much easier to put together. You can just add one of the many after market zimmerit sheets that are available, and you are good to go.

I would recommend this website…Partial list of scale model kits | TIGER1.INFO.
It is made by a frequent contributor here, and is the go to site to see what the inaccuracies in the different Tiger 1’s are.

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Also I forgot to mention Dragon’s instructions can also be a pain to follow, as they are usually very busy, just make sure you pay close attention as you go. Tamiya instructions are pretty much known for clarity of assembly.

Based on what you listed as priority, I think Dragon is the better match. It really depends on your priorities. Only you can decide what’s most important to you. Overall, what’s your model building experience?

The David Bryden site is outstanding as mentioned above.

As @Floridabucco mentioned Tamiya’s kits are overall easier to build. If easy building is most important Tamiya’s Late Tiger kit would be a good choice. Their individual link tracks will be challenging for most folks looking for an easy build. However those can be replaced with workable aftermarket tracks like Sector35 or Fruilmodel and so forth. There’s also as mentioned aftermarket Zimmerit solutions. Zimmerit is often times very frustrating to do by hand for folks looking for an easy kit build.

Of course if issues like the turret being completely wrong shape bother you, the Tamiya kits are poor choices. The Tiger turret is asymmetrical and Tamiya’s turret is symmetrical. If I recall correctly, the road wheels in the Tamiya Late Tiger are also wrong being 2 scale inches or so too small or something.

I have more Tamiya Tiger’s (6) than Dragon (5) because overall I like Tamiya’s engineering, easy of assembly & superior instruction sheets better than Dragon’s. I also have a ton of aftermarket tracks, aftermarket aluminum main guns and aftermarket photo etch engine decks screens etc for improving the Tamiya kits. Dragon generally puts all of those goodies in the box and gets the major details correct unlike Tamiya’s Late Tiger 1. For detail, slide molding, accuracy and completeness (PE, Zimmerit & nice tracks) Dragon is superior by far. Vast majority of modelers, I’ve talked with seem to like Dragon better for those reasons as well. They don’t seem to mind Dragon’s slightly annoying more intensive part clean up, higher part count, slower build and annoying instruction sheets.

Well I think the Dragon kits are great, plenty of options, and the instructions are most of the time messy,but a few years ago I had the chance of buying and building AFVClub Late Tiger, and the level of detail matches Dragon’s with better instructions, almost half the price of Dragon’s kits .
I have built two Dragon Tigers and I think they are great too. Never built a Tamyia Tiger.
My vote would go for AFV Club, even if Dragon can have a few more options, even if you add an ATAK Zimm set on AFVClub kit it’s still cheaper than a Dragon kit.
The detail is very very good, clear instructions and good value for your money

So is the AFV club turret correct as compared to the incorrect Tamiya kit? I have build AFV kits and I like them a lot and as you said their instructions are correct.

This can help with evaluating details and accuracy of diffent kits. David Bryden - Tiger tank kits reviews & comments

Bryden is a little biased towards the Dragon kits, however they are quite good, but their prices have gone up quite a bit in the last few years. As stated above, Dragon’s instructions can be confusing, including occasional errors, and it’s best to read all the steps carefully before starting to build.
:smiley: :canada:

I’m going AFV at this point thanks a bunch

I have two or three late Tigers from Dragon. None have the Zimmerit, and I think Dragon’s is a joke.
Still there’s plenty after market to choose from. I have one AFV late Tiger setting right in front of (well I can see part of the box anyway. Kit looks good, but not my favorite. I’ll go with RFM most every time. They are almost half the price of a Dragon, and they go together very well. They don’t need after market tracks if you’re will to take the time to assemble them. They are not perfect, but are an excellent start. The more I stare at that AFV box the more I want to build it! Nice thing about RFM is the options.

I’ve built them all, Tamiya… ease of assembly and the one piece tracks. Dragon… the instructions :face_vomiting: :face_vomiting: but great fit and detail but the prices now are stupid crazy ! AFV, I built mine so long ago I can’t remember either good or bad. Let us know how it goes !
I also have a Border Tiger. It’s still in the box. Lot’s of extras included. I built their Leopard II and I really enjoyed it.
Have fun what ever you decide !

Surprised only one person mentioned RFM. They are excellent kits!

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The only thing I ever really liked about the Dragon kits is the box art. Ive been a Tamiya fan since the 70’s.

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Tossing some rocks into the Hornet’s Nest just for fun with my personal opinions & observations. No personal offense intended if I bash someone’s pet favorite. Other folks will view differently as we all have different priorities for a kit etc.

I wish we could have an open poll for folks to vote in to see how our community views the various manufacturers Tiger kits.

The Tiger Extreme’s According to Armor Buff

Dragon - very high price now days, worst instructions, lots of parts, lots of parts clean up due to mediocre engineering and lots of sprue gates, excellent crisp mold quality, best details, most accurate, most variety of Tiger I’s, select early issues have plethora of defacto aftermarket upgrade parts in the box. (Not a Dragon fan boy, as in general I don’t like or buy many Dragon kits due to poor instructions) Grade A+++

CyberHobby “white box” - highest price, limited production, collector status, harder to find Dragon kits. Grade A++

Border Models - their Tiger kits? Cheap, inaccurate, wrong due to being research adverse yet popular. Grade D+

RFM - best value, good details, well engineered. Grade A-

Tamiya - long in the tooth, needs updating, good instructions, decent price, simplified, easy to build other than punch mark covered individual link tracks supplied in most kits, nostalgic. (Still my pet favorite) Grade C+

I have no relevant comments for:

Takom - do they have a 1/35 Tiger available? Grade Incomplete?

Amusing Hobby - zero experience with, only seen via **internet **

Academy - zero experience with, only seen via **internet **

Nichimo - 1970’s relics, interesting as in a modeling historical sense only

AFV Club - I have a very strong personal bias against this company. Bad experience with horrible mold quality on two kits in a row with 40+ sink marks per parts tree in past so I don’t buy their products. Dislike their vinyl tires in tank kits in the extreme. I’m sure today’s product is much better than the garbage kits I purchased in the past.

MiniCraft - I have a very strong personal bias against this company. Bad experiences with horrible mold quality of early products.


I am thinking about using the AFV club turret and wheels on the Tamiya kit and if I can find the Dragon Magic tracks possibly use them. I found a.guy on eBay Rogues Cove Hobby Shop that makes his own with a 3D printer that look really good

I love me the Dragon line of Tigers,no problems even as a new builder at the time, very crisp molding and detail,good fit,instructions busy, but just need to pay close attention and follow along.Now when they 1st came out they were better values with lots of stuff in the box and Magic Tracks,they were great kits.Newer kits have less extras and are pricey.


Tamiya corrected the turret molds on their Tiger kits nearly twenty years ago. Rather than announce the fix, they did it with no fanfare–apparently, it was an embarrassment to them. Unless you happen upon a kit from the 1990’s, you should be fine.


Wow I had no idea on that one at all, thanks a ton