The 15cm sIG33 auf PzKpfw IB was an early form of self-propelled gun, mounting a heavy infantry artillery piece atop the chassis of a small battle tank. A total of 38 were produced, and saw action on the western front in 1940 and later on the eastern front.
This model is based on the FUJIMI Panzerjaeger I kit, with the main weapon modified from a CROMWELL MODELS kit, and the gun shield supplied by US CASTS.
US CASTS makes this rendition of the Marder I in 1/76 resin. This German SP gun carries the 75mm Pak 40 AT gun mounted in a protective superstructure on a captured french Lorraine "Schlepper" (it was also designated SdKfz 135). This kit can be assembled with an open engine compartment, and has some interior detail. The figures and decals came from my spares box.
About 170 of these were converted during July and August of 1942. It saw action mostly in France, serving at least into 1944. It weighed a mere 8 tons with a maximum of 12mm armor thickness. Top speed was 34 km/hr, had a 135 km range, and it carried a crew of 5.
The Marder II was a PAK40 mounted on a Pzkw IIF chassis. 576 were produced between 1942 and 1943, and they saw service on all major fronts.
US CASTS produces a resin 1/76 kit of the Marder II. I used their hull, but replaced the suspension with Matchbox parts, and the gun with Fujimi parts. The figures are also Matchbox. The vehicle bears the markings of an Afrikakorps vehicle from the 21st Panzer Division (in Afrika, the vehicle was used in small numbers in Tunesia only).
Only one dozen of these "Sturminfanteriegeschuetz 33 auf Fahrgestell Panzerkampfwagen II" were produced, and all saw action exclusively with the Afrikakorps. To make room for the gun and crew, the Pzkw II chassis was lengthened by adding an additional road wheel.
This resin 1/76 kit was made by MILICAST. Overall good casting and lots of parts, except that the right side of the gun shield was too thin and warped. I filled it in a bit but left it a little dented. Other than that I only added decals and the antenna.
Low silhouette, good crew protection, stylish body.....these attributes were sadly lacking in the first version of the Marder III. Basically a bashed vehicle made from a Pzkw 38(t) chassis with a new superstructure and a captured Soviet 76mm AT gun. Improvements led to the H and M models.
This kit is also a "bash". The hull and gun are from US CASTS. I used the suspension and some stowage parts from a FUJIMI Pzkw 38 kit. Some fidgeting allowed me to make the gun elevate and rotate on its carriage. The figures are from MMS. Decals are from the spares box, and the antenna is stretched track-sprue.
The manufacturer of this 1/76 metal kit, MMS, refers to it as the Marder II. In my references I find it under a variety of names; Panzer Selbstfahrlafette 1 fuer 7.62cm PaK36(r) auf Fahrgestell Panzerkampfwagen II Ausf D (Sdkfz 132), LaS 762, "Rutchboom", and even Marder I. Whatever you call it, this is a very interesting German SP gun. A total of 201 were produced between April 1942 and June 1943, seeing action mostly on the Russian front. These self-propelled anti-tank guns mounted captured Soviet weapons.
The kit is very nice, with high quality casting and several small parts (on- board tools, aiming controls, etc.). I added the figures (also from MMS), decals from Skytrex, and stowage from Crusader Models. I only scratch built two seat backs. The camo pattern is Panzergrau with Olivgruen mottling.
This 1/72 resin kit of the Jagdpanzer IV is made by CPL. OVERBY'S MOTORPOOL. It actually represents one of the prototype (O-series) vehicles, only a few of which were produced. The JgPz IV replaced the StuG III, and a total of 769 were produced. The vehicle served on the Italian, Russian, and French fronts from 1944 to war's end. Armor thickness was a maximum of 80mm on the gun mantlet, and this version is armed with the 7.5cm PaK39 L/48 (the similar Panzer IV/70 had the PaK42 L/70, and Matchbox made a 1/76 kit of that tank hunter). Road speed was 40 km/h and it was operated by a crew of 4. The Vomag plant actually stopped producing the Pzkw IV and focussed on the Jgpz IV instead. Overall a formidable tank hunter.
This is a nice solid kit with very good casting. Small parts require some cleanup and removal of excess resin, but the medium is good to work with. The outer road wheels, idlers and drive sprockets are separate pieces. Both hatches on the hull top can be left open. I added the antenna, decals, and figure. it sports the ambush camo scheme with heavy sand-colored dusting. Many of these vehicles also carried zimmerit coating.
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