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Panzer III

Richard’s Kampfgruppe Mildebrath Flames of War force

By Richard Carlisle

Inspired by yet more pictures I’d found during my research, I’m building up a few conversions to give my force the rough and ready look. The kind of look veterans, long accustomed to life in the harshest of combat theatres acquire.

Kampfgruppe Mildebrath...

Right: An Afrika Korp Panzer III crew have loaded up their engine deck with all the gear they will need on campaign. 

The Panzer III

I love building and converting vehicles, especially German tanks. I started with my PzIIIs needed for the core of my force.

The equipment on the decks of these vehicles is made of Balsa wood and green stuff.

Green stuff is modelling putty that sculptors use for creating the figures. It is great for small detail work as it allows you about 20 minutes to get it into shape before it cures

The recognition flags are easily made by mixing a small amount of ’Green stuff’, flattening it out, and then folding it on to the tank just like the real thing might be done by the crew.

Panzer III, an early model with the L42 5cm gun
The finished flag ready to warn off friendly aircraft

Pictures definately help when you are trying to visualize how the folds of material work.

If you don’t have any pictures then get yourself a blanket and throw it across the bonnet of your car as though it were a flag, look at how the folds work and then replicate this by using a needle to work the green stuff.

Other details such as the crews’ helmets hanging out side the turret were obtained from excess troops that I had in my bits box. I just chopped off their heads, sanded off the face and glued the helmet on to the tank with super glue. 

 A close up of the helmets The Panzerbefehlswagen Ausf E

Above right: The Key to Kampfgruppe Mildebrath’s success was their command and control, command vehicles like this played a vital role.

The Panzerbefehlswagen Ausf E

I took a slightly more detailed approach to my command Panzerbefehlswagen

These command communications vehicles were essential to the German army providing far superior command and control tactics than any other army at the time.

To make mine I used a fine brass wire bent to shape along with the same wire cut to the correct lengths as supports.

Right: Look at what can be achieved with some wire and a few tools. 

The Panzerbefehlswagen Ausf E
The Panzerbefehlswagen Ausf E

Using a little ’green stuff’ and super glue I fixed the aerial to the rear deck and the turret.

The turrets on these tanks were actually welded in place and could not turn, they also had dummy main guns to try and fool the enemy (who had by now recognised, in some way at least, the value of these vehicles).

The dummy gun on mine is the standard 50mm gun but you could also use the 37mm gun glued of to the right hand side slightly. Create the MG34 with a bit of brass wire then with green stuff, create the canvas dust cover over the MG.

Doing a few little things to your figures often is all it takes to make your army stand out on the battlefield. It can often give you the psychological edge in battle. Although your opponent will never admit it, when they see a highly detailed unit they will be more inclined to either avoid it or focus too much on destroying it. Both of which can be to your advantage.

Right: Ready to do battle the Command of Kampfgruppe Mildebrath races accross the desert. 

A close up of MG and cover

Command of Kampfgruppe Mildebrath

Last Updated On Friday, May 16, 2008 by Wayne at Battlefront