German Flakpanzer IV, Wirbelwind (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35 233-3000 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘German Flakpanzer IV Wirbelwind’.

German Flakpanzer IV Wirbelwind

History

The Flakpanzer IV “Wirbelwind” (Whirlwind in English) was a self-propelled anti-aircraft gun based on the Panzer IV tank. It was developed in 1944 as a successor to the earlier self-propelled anti-aircraft gun Möbelwagen.

The Panzer IV’s turret was removed and replaced with an open-top, nine-sided turret that housed a quadruple 2 cm Flakvierling 38 L/112.5. A closed-top design would have been preferable, but this was not possible due to the heavy smoke generated by the four anti-aircraft guns. The shape of the turret earned it the nickname Keksdose (“Biscuit Tin”).

The combination of armor and rapid fire from the four guns of the Wirbelwind made it very effective against lightly armoured ground targets such as trucks and armored cars; infantry were particularly vulnerable.

Source: Wikipedia

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German 88mm Gun FlaK 36/37 (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35 017-2800 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘German 88mm Gun FlaK 36/37’.

German 88mm Gun FlaK 36/37

History

The 88mm gun (commonly called the eighty-eight) was a German anti-aircraft and anti-tank artillery gun from World War II. It was widely used by Germany throughout the war, and was one of the most recognized German weapons of that conflict. Development of the original models led to a wide variety of guns.

The name applies to a series of guns, the first one officially called the 8.8cm FlaK 18, the improved 8.8cm FlaK 36, and later the 8.8cm FlaK 37. FlaK is a contraction of German Flugzeugabwehrkanone meaning “aircraft-defense cannon”, the original purpose of the eighty-eight. In English, “flak” became a generic term for ground anti-aircraft fire. In informal German use, the guns were universally known as the Acht-acht (“eight-eight”).

The versatile carriage allowed the eighty-eight to be fired in a limited anti-tank mode when still on its wheels; it could be completely emplaced in only two-and-a-half minutes. Its successful use as an improvised anti-tank gun led to the development of a tank gun based upon it. These related guns served as the main armament of tanks such as the Tiger I: the 8.8cm KwK 36, with the “KwK” abbreviation standing for Kampfwagenkanone (literally “battle vehicle cannon”, or “tank cannon”).

Source: Wikipedia

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German Sd.Kfz.186 Panzerjäger (Jagdtiger) (Early production) (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35 295-5000 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘German Sd.Kfz.186 Panzerjäger (Jagdtiger) – Early production’.

German Sd.Kfz.186 Panzerjäger (Jagdtiger) - Early production

History

The Strongest, Last Tiger – The middle stages of WWII saw the production of the world’s heaviest and most powerful tank of its time, the Jagdtiger.

Featuring on the Jagdtiger was a long barreled 12.8cm gun which showed great offensive capabilities. While based on the King Tiger’s chassis, the newly designed Jagdtiger was approximately 30cm longer. Along with its new design, the large sized fixed fighting compartment was given a 250mm thick front defensive armament which was unique to this tank.

First appearing at the Ardennes offensive in December 1944, and Jagdtiger mostly fought against Allied forces in Western Germany from January 1945. Until the end of the war, the Jagdtiger continued to menace and ambush Allied forces and U.S Sherman tanks from distances of 3,000m or more.

Source: Tamiya website

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German Möbelwagen 3,7cm FlaK auf Fgst Pz.Kpfw.IV (Sf) (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35 237-3900 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘German Möbelwagen 3,7cm FlaK auf Fgst Pz.Kpfw.IV (Sf)’.

German Möbelwagen 3,7cm FlaK auf Fgst Pz.Kpfw.IV (Sf)

History

In the latter half of World War II, the Wehrmacht, having lost air superiority to the Allies, turned to the development of anti-aircraft vehicles. The first vehicle to use the chassis of the Panzer IV tank as a base was the Self Propelled Anti-Aircraft Gun Mobelwagen.

The mass-production model started to be manufactured in February 1944. It was equipped with a powerful 3.7 FlaK 43 cannon capable of firing 250 shots/min, and thick armored plates surrounding the upper part of the vehicle, which could be raised or lowered for horizontal firing.

By 1945, a total of 240 vehicles were produced, most of which were deployed to the western front, providing a vicious defense against approaching fighters and bombers of the Allies.

Source: Tamiya website

Manufacturer

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German Heavy Tank Destroyer Elefant (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35 325-4800 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘German Heavy Tank Destroyer Elefant’.

German Heavy Tank Destroyer Elefant

History

Elefant Defense – The German heavy tank destroyer Elefant was armed with a powerful 8.8cm L/71 gun which could knock out T-34 tanks at a distance of 2,000m, protected by armor up to 200mm thick, and equipped with advanced features such as a hybrid drivetrain.

It had its roots in the Porsche-designed Ferdinand, which was first deployed into combat during the Battle of Kursk in 1943. The lessons learned from that battle resulted in modifications including the addition of a commander’s cupola, a machine gun for infantry defense, and better tracks and the enhanced vehicle received the new designation Elefant in February 1944.

Elefants were deployed to Italy and the Eastern Front, where they continued to defend against Allied forces until the final skirmishes of the war.

Source: Tamiya Website

Manufacturer

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British Matilda MK.III/IV (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35 300 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘British Matilda MK.III/IV’.

British Matilda MK.III/IV

History

“Queen of the Desert” – The Matilda was developed as a heavily armored infantry tank and was the British Army’s main tank in North Africa during WWII.

The Matilda swept aside Italian opponents and was respectfully called the “Queen of the Desert” by German forces. During Operation Battleaxe to lift the siege of Tobruk in June 1941, German forces famously used their 88mm AA guns in the anti-tank role as they were the only effective counter against Matildas.

The Matilda has written her name into the history books as a highly effective tank which continually proved her worth during many fierce battles throughout North Africa.

Source: Tamiya Website

Manufacturer

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German Self-Propelled Heavy Anti-Tank Gun Nashorn (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35335 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘German Self-Propelled Heavy Anti-Tank Gun Nashorn’.

German Self-Propelled Heavy Anti-Tank Gun Nashorn

History

8.8cm of Destructive Power – The self-propelled heavy anti-tank gun Nashorn packed a formidable punch courtesy of a mammoth 71-caliber 8.8cm Pak43/1 gun which was one of the largest on the battlefield in WWII.

The vehicle was developed in all possible haste after the German Army had the unexpected surprise of meeting such overpowering opponents as the T34 and KV-1 upon its invasion of the Soviet Union. The recently-developed III/IV vehicle was used as a base for the Pak43/1 gun, which was capable of destroying enemy tanks from great distance. Top road speed was 42km/h thanks to its relatively light weight of 24 tons.

While deployment started in July 1943 under the moniker of Hornisse, it was given the new Nashorn designation from January of the next year, reportedly at the command of Hitler. 439 units were produced up to March 1945, and they served on both the Eastern and Western Fronts, providing heavy firepower for German forces.

Source: Tamiya website

Manufacturer

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Russian BT-7, Model 1935 (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35309 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘Russian BT-7, Model 1935’.

Russian BT-7, Model 1935

History

The Russian Fast Tank – The BT-7 was a Russian tank produced from 1935 which incorporated some design features from tanks developed by American engineer Walter Christie. “BT” stood for “Bystrokhodny Tank (Fast Tank)” and the tank featured an excellent maneuverability.

Equipped with a 47mm main gun, it was one of the better-armed tanks of that period and it also had sloped frontal armor, a feature that would make its way into later tanks such as the T-34.

BT-7s were first deployed during the Spanish Civil War and also took part in battles against German forces on the Eastern Front until enough T-34s became available to replace them.

Source: Tamiya website

Manufacturer

Russian BT-7, Model 1937 (Tamiya)

This is the Tamiya 35327 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘Russian BT-7, Model 1937’.

Russian BT-7, Model 1937

History

An Important Step in Russian Tank Evolution – The BT-7 was a highly-maneuverable tank with a powerful 45mm main gun in addition to sloped front armor, which made it the pillar of the Russian tank divisions.

The 1937 model was a defensive upgrade to its predecessors, featuring as it did sloped armor all around the body in place of the previous flat version. This design proved to be successful enough for use in its successor, the T-34.

Source: Tamiya website

Manufacturer

German Jerry Can Set (Tamiya)

This is the Taliya 35315 kit in 1/35 scale, of the ‘German Jerry Can Set (Early type)’.

German Jerry Can Set (Early type)

History

Essential Equipment for Early WWII German Vehicles – Jerry cans used by the German army featured a functional design. Early-type cans featured simple cross-shaped indentations for structural reinforcement while later types had more complex indentation patterns.

Early-type cans were seen from the Polish campaign to North Africa and the beginning of the Russian campaign, and some were continuously used until the latter half of the war.

Source: Tamiya website

Manufacturer