I have now finished the vignette showcasing the Sd Kfz 231. I added the civilians (figures from MK35), the bar tables and chairs (from Mini Art) and two other German soldiers (converted from Alpine tankers).
During finishing the Sd Kfz 231, I started working on a long planned idea, an ambushed Kuebelwagen and two SS soldiers carefully exploring the situation. The soldiers are the well known ones from Alpine, and the Kuebelwagen is from Tamiya, with some PE add ons from Aber.
I have already almost finished the build of the vehicle. To ease painting, I will add the doors, seats and other details after I painted the chassis. The rods holding the canvas are from the Aber set and are soldered together. The canvas itself was added from putty. The gratings on the floor are carved out and will be remade from styrene sheet.
In the meantime, I closed the vehicle after painting the interior:
I also finished the chassis, and painted it. By pure magic, all the open hatches survived this without damage, so I went on an fixed the vehicle (still without turret) to its base. Then I painted the first two soldier figures and added them also to the base:
Currently, I am working on the two civilians, and also on the turret of the scout car:
I started to work on the Sd Kfz 231 by building the undercarriage, which is quite elaborate due to having eight wheels that are all steered and used to propel the vehicle. As I would like to open quite a few hatches, the interior also has to be detailed, which is not as easy, as with the kit comes only little interior. I also looked around on the web, but I found almost no information on the interior. I did not find anything that is not included in the Nuts & Bolts vol 35, which has some pages with pictures and explanations from one of the few surviving Sd Kfz 231.
So I added some parts (mainly the ammunition racks for the 2cm KwK) and some storage for the personal equipment of the crew. This is then how the interior looks like before and after painting:
I also started to work on the figures. I will use four tankers from Alpine and two French civilians, one old guy walking along and one guy running a coffee house. Two of the tankers are ready for painting, one of them was reworked a little. It actually had an open jacket, which I found much to casual, so I closed it using Magic Sculp. I also started painting the faces of the two French guys:
Now I have finished the Puma build. Construction went well and very fast, as I didn’t wanted to show interior details, apart from the two hatches on top of the turret. But these two were planned to be filled with the two SS tanker figures, so also no need to apply more detail than the rudimentary gun breech from the kit.
The vegetation on the base is from Silhoutte, and turns out to be quite realistic. The grass on the base was airbrushed and highlighted using Tamiya acrylics, but the foliage on the “bushes” that were used to camouflage the vehicle were used from the box, after receiving a layer of matt varnish (also to cover the shiny spots from glueing the foliage to the branches). Attaching the foliage is a quite stressful endeavour, and finally I got the best results by cutting the foliage material into small pieces, that were then attached with a slow, gel-like superglue from the hobby shop. CA used for PE dries out to fast, and also the gel structure helps to attach the material much better. I also tried white glue, but this dries way to slow.
Actually applying the bushes as camouflage was fun, and I managed to strike the balance between applying an sufficient amount of bushes to appear realistic (which is a lot, as can be seen from historic reference fotos), and still being able to show some details of the vehicle.
The figures are stock Alpine.
I somehow fell in love with the 8-wheel German reconnaissance cars, as I really enjoyed the built of the Puma, which to me is a very elegant and surprisingly modern looking vehicle. Now I embark on a more museal endeavor, and start to build the precursor, the 8-wheel Buessing NAG reconnaissance car SdKfz 231.
The kit I am going to use is the AFV one, depicting a very early version. I also bought the Nuts & Bolts volume 35, and the reference photos show some very seasoned vehicles also during later stages of WW2, when already later versions of the SdKfz 231 where in production. I added a PE set from Voyager, and also a cheap set from Eduard. Usually I do not like Eduard PE set, but this particular one features the additional front armor plate that was introduced after the French campaign, and on almost any vehicle seen after, e. g. in Russia or North Africa.
But finally I changed my mind and will use the kit without the front armor, showcasing a scene in France in 1940. I will also add some Alpine tanker figures, and some left over civilians featuring a street cafe in a small village.
Construction starts with the chassis, and resembles the SdKfz 234 construction, apart from the fact that all parts look more fragile. The plastic of the AFV kit is a bit soft, and tends to break away when cut from the fret, so some filling will be needed.
After quite some time I finished the little Nebelwerfer scene. Building the launcher itself was fun, as the kit is very good, although sometimes a bit tricky to assemble. The Verlinden figures were a bit weak, so I added some volume to the clothing using Magicsculp. Now they look much more like wearing German winter uniforms. The third figure lifting up the launcher grenade is scratchbuilt. The heads are from Hornet.
Having finished the Panzwerfer and also on the way to finish the Nebelwerfer, I started work on a new vehicle, the eight – wheeled recon car 234/2, which is the version using the turret of the abandoned “Leopard” project, featuring a 5cm gun. The German eight – wheeled recon cars proved to be very useful despite some shortcomings, exhibiting a very good off-road performance, and influenced many post-war designs. I also like the look of the 234s, which to me are among the most elegant German vehicles used in WW2.
The vehicle will be from SS-Panzer-Aufklaerungsabteilung 1 located in France during the summer of 1944.
The kit is from Dragon, and I also bought some PE add-ons from Aber (covers of the stowage cases in the fenders) and Voyager Model, a turned gun barrel and a PE / resin set from Voyager to make the wheel suspension movable.
The latter turned out to be quite unnecessary, as I used the kit´s plastic parts instead of the resin parts, which can be used as well after some cutting and drilling. Actually, the suspension can be made fully movable with only using the kit parts and some brass rods.
I started to work on the suspension. The quality of the kit is very high so far, with nice and crisp details.
Now I glued the halves of the Panzerwerfer together, added the final details and painted the vehicle. The camouflage pattern is based on a picture in the very useful Nuts & Bolts Vol. 30 issue. The launcher was built from brass, and parts from a Royal Model kit. I glued in nine of the ten launcher rockets, the last one is handled by the figures that will be added to the model.
Now I will start with the weathering steps and also add the last details…