nº31 – Altaya Opel Maultier Sd. Kfz. 3

Opel Maultier Sd. Kfz. 3 4 Pz. Div. Ponyri (USSR) – 1943

Technical details:
2 Crew
160 Km range (on road), 80 km off road.
Opel Motor 3.6 – 68 CV.
Weigh 3930 Kg.

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This half-tracked vehicle was design during the war on the east, to afford the hard conditions of the terrain. It was a conversion from the common 2 Ton, truck , Opel Blitz. Around 4000 units were produced until 1944. The last years of the war wasn’t over Russian land and the conditions were changed, so a quick vehicle for the roads were needed, so some of them, were reconverted to wheels again.
Altaya model is basic again, with a few bad details , although the track looks better in this model. A nice truck what isn’t on other Diecast Manufacturers.

Gulliver Confederate Cavalry

Gulliver Confederate Cavalry

This treasure has been purchased through ebay, for a reasonable price of 12€ . This was the only set never made by this manufacturer. It has a great paint guide and a brief history, the set seems to be made very well. It’s a pity never made more sets, the sculpture and pose looks very nice. They have to wait to be painted and based, so i let the set pictures as a taste.

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nº26 – Altaya Schwerer Zugkraftwagen 18 t (Sd.Kfz.9) “FAMO”

Schwerer Zugkraftwagen 18 t (Sd.Kfz.9) “FAMO” Stug.Abt.201 Wjasma (USSR) – 1941

Technical details:
9 Crew
280 km range (on road) 100 Km (off road)

This half tracked vehicle was produced between 1938-1945, around 2500 units were produced with different purposes. Most of them for heavy artillery transport, but also was used as recovery vehicle, able to recover a Pz.III or Pz.IV , but some of them (3 or 4) were needed to recover a Tiger I and II or a Panther.

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Altaya model has basic finished, in Easy Model catalogue there are listed 4 versions of FAMO, but is not listed in their site neither at diecast72.com. Maybe it will be a future release for this year. We will see.

nº20 – Altaya Panzer Kpfw. II Ausf. F (Sd.Kfz. 121)

Panzer Kpfw. II Ausf. F (Sd.Kfz. 121) 21 Panzer Division Gambur (Libya)

Technical details:
3 crew.
20 mm Kwk 30 L/55
7,92mm MG 34
Armour 35 mm
200 Km range

The Ausf. F version was developed for reconnaissance purposes, as some earlier version. Was developed from March 1941 to December 1942 (over 524 units were produced.) It was upgraded with 35 mm armour on front, and 15mm for lateral and back armour. As a light tank, the Pz. II, was used in early campaigns, until it was retired from fire line to reconnaissance , occupation and minor fronts.
His chassis , developed before war, was debugged during years, and was used for a large number of specialized vehicles , as self-propelled guns including the Wespe and Marder II.

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The Altaya’s model depict a Pz. II in Africa campaign, and is basic finished as always, but one more time, this model is not available in other diecast manufacturers.

Esci Churchill MK III

Esci Churchill MK III

This set was forgotten in a box during too much years, at least 17. It was very bad assembled, and poor painted. The first pics are after a wash in warm water and some clean with an old toothbrush. This model comes to reinforce the British infantry, and make a pair with the Forces of valor model, to beat the growing German army.

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After clean, the model was primed with “Army Green” from “The Army Painter” , and then dry brushing with Citadel Catachan Green a black (3:1 more or less). Some dry brush with Citadel Bolt Gun Metal, a few details , and so on.

nº25 – Altaya Panzer Kpfw.I Ausf. B (Sd.Kfz. 101)

Panzer Kpfw.I Ausf. B (Sd.Kfz. 101) 5. Panzer Division. Pszczyna (Poland) 1939

Technical details:
2 crew
2 MG 13 (7,92 mm)
Armour 13 mm
170 Km range.

The Panzer I was a light armour vehicle intended for practice purposes, developed in early 30’s years. It was used in Spanish civil war, where first time panzer’s crew became into combat action, and also during Poland and France campaigns. It became completely obsolete for 1941. His poor weaponry and his weak armour shield made this vehicle worst than others contemporary light armour, as the soviet’s T-26 , also deployed in Spanish Civil War.

During World War II, his chassis were used for many specialized vehicles. Take a look to wikipedia article to see the wide range of Pz I.

The Altaya’s model represent Panzer I ausf. B, which was produced to solve some problems detected in first version, aus. A, as overheating motor and suspension’s problems. This version was produced between 1937 and 1939, although several authors aren’t agree about which number of units were produced.

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As always, Altaya-IXO quality is not the best, but once more, this model isn’t available through others Diecast manufacturers, which is in favour for Altaya. The model is nice, and fit pretty to Spanish civil war period, and Poland and France campaigns till 1941.

nº08 – Altaya Panzer Kpfw. III Ausf.L (Sdkfz. 141/2)

Panzer Kpfw. III Ausf.L (Sdkfz. 141/2) Sch. Pz. Abt. 502 Tortolowo (USSR) – 1942

Technical Details
5 Crew
Main gun 50mm Kwk 39 L/60
2 MG 34 (7,92 mm)
165 Km Range.

The Panzer III is one of the most characteristic tanks on world war II. It was developed during 30’s and was scheduled to be the main battle tank , but when invasion of Russian begun, the supremacy of the T-34 invert the roles between Panzer III and Panzer IV. Panzer IV was initially intended for infantry support, but his superior fire power and armour, made it more capable of face other tanks.
The version L was manufactured on 1942, around 653 unit, and is characteristic by the additional armour plates on driver’s zone and turret, clearly visible in the model.

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The chassis, developed before the war, was reliable and was widely used for specialized vehicles and by the Sturmgeschütz III, which was active until the end of the war.

The model of Altaya is basic but nice, except the ugly “mail envelope” as lateral sight in the drivers and radio operator zone. I think the model would be better without this bad painted details.
Panzer III models are available in other diecast manufacturers as Easy Model or Dragon.

nº09 – Altaya Sd.Kfz. 9 FAMO 88mm Flak 37

Sd.Kfz. 9 FAMO 88mm Flak 37 – 26 Panzer Div. – Nettuno (Italy) – 1944

Technical Details
9 Crew
1 Flak 37 (88mm)

The model is fixed in a transport mode, which isn’t the most desirable for wargames. I think is not possible to easy modify the model to a fire position. The detail and the finish is basic, as always in altaya-ixo models, but is a nice and not usual model in diecast.

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CAESAR H052- H053 German Infantry – German Panzergrenadier SET I – II [UPDATED]

Both sets are nice and well detailed. Easy to paint.

Caesar H053 German Panzergrenadier SET II

The set have 11 different poses, 10 stand up, all in the following photos. The uniform try to be the Sumpfmuster 44 widely used in 1944 and 1945. The detail for this uniform is available at Artizan designs.

Paint Guide

Uniforme Sumpfmuster 44 Uniform
Citadel Vermin Brown + Vallejo Model Color German Cam. Dark Green 70979 + Citadel Vomit Brown + Vallejo Sepia Shade 73200

nº28 – Altaya Pz.Kpfw. 38(t)

Panzer Kpfw. 38(t) 7. Panzer Division Bereziná river sector (USSR) – 1941

Technical Details:
4 Crew
250 Km range.
1 Skoda A7 (37,2mm)
2 ZB53 (7,92mm)

An interesting model for early years of world war II. The Pz. 38(t) was successfully deployed on Poland and France campaigns, but once begun the invasion of Russia, the terrible T-34 make this panzer, as others, became obsolete.

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This model is not available in other diecast manufacturers, which is in favour for Altaya-IXO.
The Pz.38 was made in Czechoslovakia before the German annexation, and his reliable chassis was used for a wide range of vehicles, as the Hetzer tank destroyer.

African House

This pretty model could cover a wide range, from medieval Saracens to African world war II, even modern desert warfare. Is my first building, bit i’m satisfied with result. The sand bags are from an Imex ACW Accesories, and the structure for the canopy is made with wire and milliput. Is painted with Citadel paints, and some Vallejo Sepia Shade wash 73200. I thinking in use another kind of paints to save some money. I don’t know the manufacturer of the house, is a resin model, purchased on “La Flecha Negra” by 14€. A great complement for my Airfix Africa Korps

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How to make trees

Woodland Scenics trees. Those are from 5 to 7,6cm. A bit small for 1/72 scale, but they look nicely as small trees and bushes.

Woodlan Scenics TR-1121

There are 57 trees, maybe too much, in three diferent sizes.

Detail Woodland Scenics
The branches are quite flexible and easy to manipulate, achieving a good appearance.

Woodland Scenics
CLUMP FOLIAGE DARK GREEN FC-184

They are at Hobbies Guinea

Clump Foliage CLUMP FOLIAGE DARK GREEN. The 500 gr bag is enough for at least 20 trees.

Put white glue (like Elmer’s Glue) on trees, and then put clump foliage covering they. You can drop the tree into a bag full of clump foliage, but after this sure you must fulfil some gaps.

Done tree
Done tree
Done tree
Done tree

Apply shadows or lights to achieve more realism. The result is quite good, unless they look fragile.

Done trees

A best option is take natural branches from a dead tree, with a good appearance.

Natural tree branches

The result is quite good and get a lot diversify.