Friday, 17 January 2014

Zvezda Panzer II review

One of the Early war workhorses of the German Armoured forces was the Panzer II.  It was the most numerous tank in the German Panzer divisions beginning with the invasion of France. It was used in both North Africa against the British and on the Eastern Front against the Soviet Union.



Panzer II Fact - A rare model with only 155 made was based on the same suspension as the Ausf. D and Ausf. E tank versions, the Flamm (also known as "Flamingo") used a new turret mounting a single MG34 machine gun, and two remotely controlled flamethrowers mounted in small turrets at each front corner of the vehicle. Each flamethrower could cover the front 180° arc, while the turret traversed 360°.

Zvezda have a great 15mm model in their range of the Panzer II, so being a sucker for armour I had to pick one up even though I do not have an early war army yet.

Once more you can see the attractive box art that Zvezda use for their kits. Very eye catching.

Its another simple to put together model in only a few pieces and glue is not even needed, though I did, just for gaming safety since I did not want it coming apart mid battle. Simple to build, even simpler to paint in early war colours and a fab looking little tank for a bargain price!
Panzer II Fact - Most tank versions of the Panzer II were armed with a 2cm KwK L/55. Some later versions used the similar 2cm KwK 38 L/55. This cannon was based on the 2cm KwK FLAK 30 anti aircraft gun, and was capable of firing at a rate of 600 rounds per minute (280 rounds per minute sustained) from 10-round magazines. A total of 180 shells were carried.
Panzer II Fact - The 2 cm cannon proved to be ineffective against many Allied tanks, and experiments were made towards replacing it with a 37 mm cannon, but nothing came of this. Prototypes were built with a 50 mm tank gun, but by then the Panzer II had outlived its usefulness as a tank regardless of armament.

Panzer II Fact - One of Germany's first attempts at developing an amphibious tank, the Schwimmkörper was a device built which consisted of two large pontoons that attached to either side of a Panzer II tank. The tanks were specially sealed and some modification to the engine exhaust and cooling was needed. The pontoons were detachable. The modified tanks were issued to the 18th Panzer Regiment which was formed in 1940. However, with cancellation of Operation Sealion the plan to invade England, the tanks were used in the conventional manner by the regiment on the Eastern Front
The model is surprisingly detailed for such a simple mini, and is a good addition to any model collection or gaming army.
Its simple to put together, with little or no flash or cleanup and can be built in minutes. Well worth picking up some more, I want to try a desert themed one next!