Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Getting a broken Panzer IV model back on the gaming table

I may have mentioned that at FAll IN 2016, I purchased a batch Panzer IV H from a guy in Wally's basement. The were assembled, basecoated and given a heavy coat of weathering, which covered the basics of what I wanted. Given closer inspection, these appear to be Plastic Soldier Company Panzer IV kits.  I say this because one of the tanks is clearly a Panzer IV F1 with the 75L24 gun.

The remainder appear to have been done up as Panzer IV H with the 75L48 gun and schurzen skirts.
Unfortunately, one of the models was missing a gun barrel. A bit of a bummer as it's otherwise a nice tank model and was the only one with the tank commander modeled as exposed in the cupola.

The Panzer IV missing the barrel. The original owner never painted the tank commander.

Alongside one of it's Pazer IV H compatriots. One odd note - the cupola hatch is correct for the G and earlier, but not the "H".
But having knocked out a number of the Battlefront kits I wondered if I could find a spare part. Scrounging the used sprue trees, I found a couple of guns intended for Stug III G models. Now the Stug III G mounted the 75L48 - same as the Panzer IV H, so good news! 

Two spare barrels, but one is for a 105 howitzer! 

Selecting the 75mm barrel and removing it from the sprue, I used a Zona saw to cut the barrel of at the manlet. But looking at the resulting barrel after being cut off the mantlet, it was shorter than the barrels on the Panzer IV H models.  Sigh.

Anyway, pressing ahead, I used ABS cement to attach the barrel to the turret. A little care is needed to have the muzzle brake aligned correctly.

Here you can see the new barrel glued to the turrent of the table. Looks a bit shorter, yes? 

In this overhead view, we can say - yes, yes it does look shorter.
So I've got a tank with a barrel a little shorter than the 75L48. Looking at the data archives we find a happy coincidence, the Panzer IV G model (also known as the Pzkw IV F2) mounted the 75L43 gun - just a little shorter than the L48. This could work! Late in the G model production run, the Shurzen began to be fitted - that fits too!

Good news everyone! The model actually works out nicely as a late model Pzkw IV G refit with Shurzen. This will make a nice somewhat unique model for the battle group.

Goes to show you, there are no problems, only solutions waiting to be discovered!

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