Tuesday 24 May 2022

Blitzkrieg Era Tanks for Chain of Command

Since last you saw my ramblings I have completed another artillery master model for Perry Miniatures. Photos exist and you will be getting them in my next post, but I had already taken these ones of German tanks, which complete the tour of 1940-based Chain of Command stuff. So, proper order being a thing when 1940 Germans are around, they must be shown first. 

By the way, I posted on the Chain of Command forum, thinking this 1940 stuff done specifically for these rules would be of interest to at least some of the inhabitants. And so it proved, more or less. I even had the pleasure of meeting up with one them at the Partizan show. His name is Von Wreckedoften, so I was disappointed to find he lacked any sort of monocle or even a duelling scar. Huh, I bet he isn't really a German aristocrat at all!

We start with an Sd.Kfz.232 (8-Rad) armoured car, which was an old plastic kit that I worked up a little bit. Very noticeable are the "antennae" poking up from each corner to help the driver judge whether he could get the vehicle through a narrow gap. I could do with these on my own car... 

I like the commander figure here. He has the golden-yellow piping of a reconnaissance battalion and wears the forage cap of the service dress uniform rather than the ghastly padded beret affair that was supposed to go with the black armoured vehicle uniform. This was was little worn in fact, presumably because the crews feared banging their head on a steel vehicle less than failing to look smart. Soldiers were ever thus.

Today's second subject is a panzer IV of the same period from a resin kit You will have noticed the finish of these vehicles is more "first days of the victorious campaign" rather then the "pulled through a swamp backwards" school of weathering so popular with AFV modellers these days. Their were two reasons for this. Firstly I wanted the shading and finish to be crisp and neat, emphasising the angular, mechanical look of the originals. Secondly when I made these about eight years ago, modern weathering products just weren't around in the same way as now.

Finally there's a pair of Panzer II's. When you do a skirmish game it's all too easy to end up with just one of every type of vehicle rather than anything like a unit. Doing two of these was my nod towards 
avoiding this slightly crass approach. I also felt better for these two being marked as from the same platoon, and they even belong to the same company as the Panzer IV. The three-digit numbers on German tank turrets indicate the company, the platoon and the individual vehicle within that, so all three tanks are from the 4th company (the one that had Panzer IV medium tanks) of a tank battalion within the 10th Panzer division. The latter's symbol in 1940 was the yellow inverted "Y" and three dots. These insignia were strangely understated and cryptic, which is curious in an army so obsessed with badges and symbols.


  1. What a lovely range of AFV's there John:). I must admit a soft spot for German armoured cars and certainly the Panzer II, after having the Matchbox kit as a kid way back when. A nice touch to make the tanks from the same unit too.

  2. Very nice indeed :) I like the less-weathered approach myself, I can't help but think the platoon NCOs would get very upset at the state of many model AFVs I see on the internet! I see you have wisely avoided the topic of which shade of grey is the correct "Panzer Grey". Great stuff.

  3. Thanks, as ever, Steve and Kym, my trusty, non-lurking friends! To be honest I was in two minds whether to bother posting pics of these tanks: they are only models I bought, tarted up a bit and painted, which is no more than many folks do, some of them distinctly better than these. Anyway, that's all my 1940 stuff posted, so after this it's an artillery master for the Perrys, then historical scenery, which is what brings the punters rolling in -in their half-dozens!