Russian F-22 76.2mm gun kit comparison

Kit #:

ACE Models
Kit 72233 F-22 76 mm Field Gun / PaK 36(r)
Kit 72571 7.62 cm German Field Gun PaK.36(r)
Kit 72572 F-22 Soviet 76.2 mm Field/AT Gun

Military Wheels
Kit 7269 F-22 Soviet 76.2 mm Divisional Gun
Kit 7270 Pak 36(r) antitank gun

Article by Stephen Brezinski - sbrez1(at)comcast(dot)net
Edited by Rob Haelterman

In late 2021, ACE Models from the noble and independent nation of Ukraine opted to replace their F-22/Pak 36(r) artillery kit 72233 with separate kits 72571 and 72572. With kit 72233 we have the parts and option of building the kit as either a Soviet 76.2-mm field gun or as a German captured gun converted to a substantial antitank (Pak) gun. The conversion to a Pak 36(r) involved: converting from an indirect artillery sight to a direct gunsight with an opening in the gunshield, moving both the elevation and traverse handwheels to the left side under the direct gunsight, cutting the shield lower and adding the plate to the shield to double the shield thickness. The below artwork from the older ACE kit 72233 illustrates the Pak 36(r) features well, including a German post-1942 Ostfront or 1942-1943 Tunisia campaign camouflage scheme; I understand the unmarked M3 Medium tanks portrayed in the background were used in both Ukraine and in Tunisia in that time period.
(A comparison review of this model kit may be found here.)

The boxart for ACE’s newer revamped smallscale Pak 36(r) model borrows its artwork from the earlier kit 72233 minus the background. Notice that in the lower right corner it states “Digital Design”, implying a new computer enhanced engineering of the parts and assembly. The long 75-mm rounds lying on the ground bother me though as I think the gunners would want to keep their ammunition clean and free of dirt? The double-baffle muzzle brake is a German addition to compensate for the much more powerful German ammunition. I understand the chamber was milled to accept the longer standard Pak 40 ammunition case and a new driving band on the shells to fit the 7.62-cm barrel. This was written to be an effective AT gun but at 1730 kg (weight in action) was larger and heavier than the 1425kg Pak 40. Another review of this model kit can be found here.)

The earlier F-22/ Pak 36(r) kit 72233 includes parts to build either version of this artillery, with Pak 36(r) kit 72571 and F-22 kit 72572 this option is removed. With the newer F-22 model kit 72572 we can only build a 1/72-scale F-22 model. According to the kit instructions, the boxart for the F-22 model portrays a Red Army gun in the Kursk region in summer of 1943. The shield for the F-22 is higher than that for the Pak 36(r) and this gun features the solid rubber tires and no muzzle brake. In German use this unmodified F-22 field gun was designated FK296(r).

One of the two sprue from the older F-22/ Pak 36(r) combination kit 72233 in lighter gray color compared with the newer Pak 36(r) kit 72571 in darker gray shows that these are two different models not just a re-release. The kit 72233 sprue is one of two included and together contain parts for both gun variants: both gun shields, optional muzzle brake, two different sets of wheels, both 7.5-cm and 76.2-mm ammunition. The sprue from kit Pak 36(r) kit 72571 has parts for only the Pak 36(r) gun in 1/72-scale. The newer Pak 36(r) kit 72571 features finer, sharper detail in the molding, additional parts like a shovel (part-5), and a muzzle brake molded into the kit gun barrel (part-62).

The next photo shows the 2nd sprue of ACE’s F-22/ Pak 36(r) combination kit 72233 on the left holding 7.5-cm and 76.2-mm rounds and parts for the gun carriage. To the right are the sprues for the ACE F-22 kit 72572. It appears that to make the Pak 36(r) kit or the F-22 kit, ACE removed one of three sprues. For all three kits the sprue parts are clearly numbered and match the sprue diagram. The small sprue for kit 72572 contains the gun shield for the F-22 and seven 76.2-mm rounds and a gun barrel without muzzle brake. The muzzles on all three kits should be drilled open except when building the Pak 36(r) in kit 72233 with the 2-part muzzle brake (parts-1 and 5).

One thing I wanted to see is whether my ACE F-22 kit 72572 had the same problem that Al Magnus found on his kit, a slight mis-molding of trail levers used for spreading the trails, part-8 at far right in this photo. This is where the two mold halves do not line-up correctly creating kind of a stepped oval cross section. Unfortunately, the ACE part-8 and part-51 in my kit also has the same mis-molding even though purchased a year apart from different shops. For comparison the same part in the Military Wheels (MW) kits 7269 and 7270 is at left with the corresponding trail lever (MW part-3). The MW kit part does not show this molding defect on part-15 & 20, but ironically does exhibit mis-molding on MW parts-16 & 21 which is the brace for the gunshield (part-3). Overall, I am not too bothered by this mis-molding as these parts may be better replaced by wire which is more in-scale, or they may be carefully sanded to shape.

When assembling the older ACE F-22/ Pak 36(r) be sure to center the axle part-43 in the gun carriage (parts 15 & 32, etc.), as this assembly effects the fit and centering of other parts such as the gun shields (parts 38, 39, 46 and 56). When assembling this model, I found I needed to clean molding seams and sharpen edges with fine files, and to drill out all the holes to get better fit of the parts.

The box art for Military Wheel’s releases of the F-22 and Pak 36(r) guns looks realistic and well done. These views should be helpful in building and painting the models. The only question I have is the ammunition cases portrayed with the F-22 kit 7269 boxart; they appear too long to be for Soviet 76.2-mm rounds. We can see one of the major differences between the two guns: the F-22 does not have a viewport in the lower shield for the telescopic direct gunsight. In the kit 7270 Pak 36(r) boxart we see it is fitted with the solid rubber tires which I have not seen on any period photos of this Pak 36(r) AT gun.

These two sprues A and B are for MW’s F-22 kit 7269 kit and are included in MW’s Tacam T-60 model kit 7268 but also builds a complete towed F-22 gun model in smallscale. MW kit 7270 has the same large sprue-A containing the wheels and sprue and has a different small sprue for the Pak 36(r) variant. I note a small sinkhole in the gun breach on part-5 and the carriage part-12. These parts are definitely not the same or related to the ACE Models parts.

The instructions in the MW Pak 36(r) kit 7270 are very similar to the instructions for the F-22 kit 7269 and shows that it includes an additional sprue holding parts for the Pak 36(r): lower shield, 2-part muzzle brake (like ACE’s kit 72233), and recoil guard (part-46). Looking at the instructions we can see the different approach and design of the parts and assembly. The unused parts are shaded in gray.

All five models: the older ACE combination Pak 36(r)/F-22 (kit 72233), the newer ACE Models (72571 and 72572) and the newer MW kits (7269 and 7270) are all basically good kits and reasonably accurate smallscale representations of this artillery piece. All appear to be short run molds with some minor defects like flash, soft edges and perhaps a sinkhole or two. Looking for the best display model my vote goes to the newer ACE Models kits 72571 and 72572 as the newer molding offers sharper, more delicate detail. I have only built kit 72233 as a Pak 36(r) and had to do a lot of scraping, drilling holes wider and sanding mold-seams but got a reasonably good result.

ACE kit 72233 has a total of 76 pale gray injection-molded parts, 58 parts used to build an F-22, and 54 parts for a Pak 36(r) model. The MW kit 7269 uses 42 medium-gray styrene plastic parts to assemble a F-22 and MW kit 7270 uses 41 parts to build MW’s Pak 36(r). In contrast, the newer ACE kits 72571 and 72572 supply 73 and 75 injection-molded parts respectively. These parts counts do not include the five or six rounds of ammunition included with each model. The increased number of parts in these newer ACE models reflects more accurate detail in addition to better molding, but I cannot comment on how well it builds at this time. None of these kits offer any resin parts, etched brass parts, decal markings nor crew figures.

This WW2 period photo shows an unusual (transition?) pair of what appear to be Pak 36(r) guns, sort of. The left-most gun exhibits the lower gun shield, the gunner’s recoil guard, and handwheels moved to the left side but no muzzle brake. This is a good view of the travel lock (kit 72233 part-26, and kits 72571 and 72572 part-7) on the trails of both guns that secures the recoil trough to the trails. On the side of the trail appears to be the bracket for the shovel. Leaning against the gun trail we see a long 7.5-cm Pak 40 round (kit 72233 parts-35) on the left, and a shorter 76,2-mm round for the F-22, Zis-3 and the F-34 tank guns (kit 72233 parts-36) on the right. Looking at the long size of the Pak 40 rounds we can see why the Pak 36(r) needed a muzzle brake.

The gun on right has the muzzle brake of the Pak 36(r), but has no gun shield, no recoil guard, and has a handwheel that is still on the right side. Both guns have pneumatic tires. In period photos I have not yet seen any Pak 36(r) with the solid rubber tires (kit 72233 parts-41 and kit 72572 parts-14 & 61). In German use these guns would be towed by the Sd.Kfz.11, Sd.Kfz.6 and Sd.Kfz. 251 halftracks, a Sd.Kfz.3 Maultier halftrack-truck, or 3-ton trucks (preferably 4x4 trucks). In Soviet use the F-22 would be towed by Zis-6 4x2 trucks, Studebaker 6x6 trucks and the Dodge ¾-ton.4x4 truck, etc.

In a diorama or vignette the F-22 may be modeled in Soviet use in, for example, the Khalkhin Gol battle with the Japanese, in the Russian-Soviet 1939 unprovoked invasion of Poland with ally Germany, the 1939-1940 Soviet Winter War Soviet invasion of Finland, the 1940 invasion of Romania and Russian takeover of Bessarabia, and the 1941 and 1942 Eastern Front battles. By the time of the 1956 Soviet subjugation of Hungary and the 2022 Russian aggression against independent Ukraine these guns would be museum pieces. During WW2 captured Soviet F-22 guns were used by the armies of Finland, of Romania (towed and on the Romanian Tacam T-60 tank destroyer), Germany, and possibly used by Slovakian and Hungarian forces on the Russian Front.

As a captured gun used by the Germans, the towed Pak 36(r), could be seen on all fronts from France to North Africa, to Italy and especially the Eastern Front. The Pak 36(r), was also used on the German Marder II and Marder III tank destroyers.


Under circumstances of the 2022 visit to Ukraine by Russia, ACE Model kits may be difficult to obtain.


German Artillery of World War Two, by Ian V. Hogg, Greenhill Books (1997)


These products are available from Tracks & Troops

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Article Last Updated: 26 March 2022

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