Starting a KV-85 project

Hi all,

I’m starting a new project based on Trumpeter 1/35 KV-85.
KV-85 was a transitional tank based on a slightly modified KV-1S chassis and the future IS-1 turret waiting for the new chassis being fully developed and produced. It was produced in relatively small number (about 140 units) and introduced in august 1943 just after the battle of Kursk.
IS-1 turret was close to IS-2 one but with a 85mm D5-T gun (also equipping T-34/85) as the 122mm D25-T gun wasn’t yet developed.
Noticing the heavy casting and some kind of molding scars on the turret I modify Trumpeter pieces to try to replicate these specific textures.
Front bustle was texturized using Tamiya glue stippled with a hard brush, molding lines and “scars” reproduced with a Dremel and filled with epoxy putty (2 components) then covered with Tamiya grey putty diluted with Tamiya extra fluid glue.
I’ve added the welding seam line on the turret roof which is missing on the original part.


If you’re concerned about accuracy, the turrets in the Trumpeter KV-85 and DML IS-1 kits are wrong. They are asymmetrical IS-2 turrets. The KV-85 and IS-1 turrets were symmetrical. The difference was because the left side of the turret had to be expanded to make room for the 122mm gun used in the IS-2. As far as I know in plastic the only correct KV-85 turret was in the Eastern Express kit. There have been a couple of aftermarket turrets, but they are difficult to find as is the Eastern Express kit.
On the plus side if you replace the gun and mount you have a perfectly lovely early IS-2 turret! I recommend consulting the 4bogreen website for a lot of useful information on W.W. II Russian heavy tanks and assault guns including what is wrong and right with many of the existing kits, how to correct them, and what aftermarket items are available. Hope this helps!
Regards, Bob


Thanks for your comments.
I guess I will go further without 100% accuracy… :confused:
But that’s okay for me as long as it looks like a KV-85.
Too much work to correct that, especially now (taking in account that I’ve already thrown a kit of this tank in the bin :grin:).

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Goinf further detailing the missing details on the inner side of turret hatches.


You are putting some really nice texture work into this. :+1: :+1:

And you can always decide to do a what-if paint scheme since accuracy is not going to be a concern, some whitewash, or try the brown-green camo the Soviets used and so on.

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Thanks :blush:
I’ll keep one of the box scheme. For multiple colors schemes I have other projects :wink:

Nice start, I’ll be following along.
Dave :slightly_smiling_face:

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Thanks Dave :blush:

I have the Bronco version in the stash and it is a nearby starting project for me, too. I am following with interest, Hope to learn useful building ideas.
Good luck!


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Ho my god, I didn’t notice that Bronco propose this tank…
Their turret seems more accurate :smiling_face:

Yeah, I forgot about that kit. I’ve never actually seen one or even read a review about it so don’t know what you get in the box.

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It seems pretty accurate according to reviews I’ve read. I’ve also never seen a finished model.
I’ll try later this one and their SU-152 too with a Kursk diorama project :wink:

Broncos SU 152’s(I believe they do an ‘early’ and a ‘late’)have gotten pretty good reviews overall. I’ve ordered a Bronco KV 85 and I’m interested to see how it measures up. By the way your Trumpeter SU 152 was a very nice build.

Due to some missing detail-up parts in other projects, I had to find a new kit to start working on. Having read your thread here I decided to build the Bronco KV-85 kit (build log will be uploaded in a separate thred, of course).
The Trumpeter might be less correct but surely way more easier build than the Bronco. I have spent many boring hours on tiny superdetails which may be l’art pur l’art made by Bronco (most of them are visible only with open hatches but I will likely build the hatches closed) and after some 4-5 hours hardwork I still have a little progress on the tiny-fidly parts. Almost every part is designed to follow the original subject (like the Miniart kits but less smart). Otherwise the parts look great and I think the end result will be amazing.
I think you will complete the weathering by the time I finish the hull… it may be great for the advanced modeler with enormous patience to dryfiz test everything. All the parts are very tight fit and a minor mistake will cause the builder headaches some steps later.
Good luck and fun with the Trumpy kit!

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I fell into an Eastern Express kit a while ago and kind of cheated. I used a modified Trumpeter hull and the EE turret. It looks the part but I’m sure has several inaccuracies.
Hull mods:
IMG_1481 by Russel Baer, on Flickr
I blanked off the driver’s hatch, moved the turret ring forward and added the splash shield. The EE turret ring went on and I moved the hull bulges accordingly.
And done:
IMG_4167 by Russel Baer, on Flickr
It was still a fun project.