Resisting the temptation – Flottentorpedoboot T28, Heller 1:400 von Roland Kunze

RCAF 404 Squadron sank the T24 on August 24, 1944 using high explosive rockets.  

24 Aug 44 strike photo

This is the only model kit available for an Elbing class Torpedoboat.

Heller T23

I thought of buying Heller’s rendition of a Torpedoboat to build the T24, but the price on e-Bay is much too high as well as the shipping rate. Furthermore the model kit is quite old and lack details at least according to this modeler…

Ulf Lundberg built this model from the Heller kit. Ulf noted that Heller’s Torpedoboot is a mid-aged product which was released some 25 years ago. Its quality remains more of the old days and the fit of main components is rather poor. The details were soft and lacked finesse and worse still, there were shrink marks in all the wrong places, necessitating more than fair share of filling and sanding for a model of this size.

This other modeler though built an impressive rendition of the ship, but with a lot of work put into it.







flottentorpedoboot-t28-heller (7)







Machine translation

T 28 belonged to the class of the fleet torpedo boats 1939, which were built between 1941 and 1944 at the Schichau shipyard in Elbing. The design underwent some modifications during the construction period: T 22 to T 24 had a long bridge construction with a 2cm flak on each cam. T 25 to T 30 had a shortened bridge superstructure, a weapon stand with a 2cm flak was built in the middle in front of it. T 31 to T 36 had one on port side and one on starboard side, in addition, to simplify the construction, the folding bulkheads in the bow area were omitted.

All fifteen units were in harm’s way the whole time, only T 23, T 28, T 33 and T 35 survived the war. France kept (ex) T 28 as Le Lorrain in active service until 1955.

With the Heller kit, only T 22 – T 24 can be displayed correctly from the box. A shortened bridge construction is included, but not a single central flak weapon stand. For the later boats the hull shape is not correct because of the existing buckling bulkheads.

Since I wanted to build a boat from the group T 25 to T 30, the kit was a good basis. In the Marine Arsenal Volume 44 I found photos of T 28, which were very helpful during construction.

The model could be built without any problems, there were also a lot of detail additions, and my etched part stash was plundered properly. Comparisons with drawings showed that the position of the superstructures had to be corrected: the bridge construction moved 2mm, the middle deckhouse 1mm aft.

I paid special attention to the torpedo tube sets. Since the kit parts were not usable because of the very simple and not to scale representation, I completely rebuilt the sets from brass tube, wire and Evergreen profiles. Also new are the front flak weapon stand and the platforms for the radio measuring antenna amidships and the 2cm flakvierling on the aft deck hut. Numerous structures were added to the walls of the superstructures. I rebuilt the masts from brass tube and steel wire. The boat was completed with four wabo launchers, a new winch for the aft deck and other gear including cranes, all of which I built myself.

On the photos of the prototype, T 28 did not wear a spotted camouflage, which was probably reserved for the first boats of this class. So my model got the uniform grey colouring with Tamiya and Revell colours, on which a careful oil colour washing was applied. For the rigging the yarn from WEM was used.

As a result I finally created a not everyday model, which I like very much.

If Trumpeter should one day decide to make one, I will probably be tempted to buy it honouring the sailors of the T24 since I have these two companion model ships in my stash.




When I bought them two years ago they were quite a bargain. Nowadays they are pricier which makes my decision to buy them two years ago a wise one.

If you are wondering how I got interested so much about the T24…then take a good look at these from the collection of a German sailor who was on that ship. His son sent me two weeks ago more than 100 never seen before photos who were part of his father’s collection.



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