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Panzer IV Guidance

May 29 2017 at 8:30 AM
Scott Dutton  (Login duttons)
Missing-Lynx members
from IP address

I'm hoping someone can give me some simple guidance for a project, I generally model Allied armour but this is a foray into the other side. There is so much info out there it is overwhelming to try and decipher.

Its in relation to building a 1/16 Panzer IV.
I have purchased the Trumpeter Pz IV F2 kit and some figures, and wish to make a counterpoint to my 1/16 T-34/76 1941 which I built in a worn white wash finish with some snow still around, so Early spring I guess, year not specified but the crewmen I did id in blue overalls.

The figures I have purchased are SS grenadiers in Kharkov (S&T figures f I recall), and are seated so looking at placing onto Pz IV as tank riders. I chose the Pz IV F2 as I didn't want shurzen to complicate the riders placement

The figures have field grey uniforms with greatcoats so clearly winter type figures.

I'm looking to have my Pz IV in a similar setting time frame as the T-34, and therefore finished in a worn whitewash finish. I wish to do the Pz IV with the double muzzle brake, not the round type.

Queries are related to inconsistencies in time frame and what is presented for the setting specifically;

Is battle of Kharkov appropriate for this setting (T-34/76 41 in late winter early spring) with a Pz IV F2?
Which of the Kharkov battles is most appropriate?
Is the muzzle brake I wish to use appropriate for the time frame I have have for these vehicles?
IS the uniform selection consistent?
Would it be a Grey or Yellow base coat for the time frame?
Any other choice of common battles for these scenarios? Stalingrad, Kursk?
Did Pz IV drivers drive with head out the hatch, was this possible?

Appreciate any suggestions, not after 100% accuracy or trying to build a particular photographic scene just to have these 2 combatants viewed somewhere at the same point in time.


This message has been edited by atcockle from IP address on May 29, 2017 10:58 AM

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Kevin Tong
(Login KevT)
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Kharkov battles

May 29 2017, 9:38 AM 

The 3rd battle of Kharkov (Feb. - Mar. 1943) would be most appropriate for your vehicle. All three of the SS panzer divisions which participated in this battle were equipped with the panzer IV ausf. F2/G with the double baffle muzzle brake. I'm pretty sure the base coat was dark grey as the Dunkelgelb base color didn't start to be applied until that spring (1943) and you can see brand new Tiger Is from the same battle painted in overall dark grey (not whitewashed). Greatcoats would be appropriate for this battle although some of the grenadiers also had knee-length, fur-lined and hooded parkas that you can see in photos from this battle. I don't think it was possible for the Panzer IV driver to drive with his head sticking out of the hatch (unless he were a particularly tall fellow with very long arms and legs!) but I could be wrong.

[linked image]

[linked image]

(ref: The Battle of Kharkov, Restayn, J.J. Fedorowicz, 2000)

This message has been edited by KevT from IP address on May 29, 2017 9:39 AM

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Scott Dutton
(Login duttons)
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Perfect, Thanks

May 29 2017, 4:09 PM 

Thanks for such a concise answer with photos as well. Had hoped for grey base colour for the contrast so this is ideal.
I appreciate the effort you have taken to answer and give a reference.
Funny, just assumed that all tanks of the period had drivers heads out of hatches when not in combat, and it was a friend who suggested that the seat didnt rise so that may not be possible. You live and learn.

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Mario Raspagliosi
(Login raspagliosi)
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May 30 2017, 7:58 AM 

Hi Scott,
I fully agree with Kevin.
If You wish to use the double chamber muzzle brake, Your panzer will be mora a G than a "F2" (this nomenclature was changed during production) as double chamber muzzle brake was installed (not always) from September 1942.
So if You want to built an F2 (ore very early G) with the double chamber muzzle brake it sholud most probably be a field repair (barrel and muzzle or muzzle only) or a factory overhaul (complicating the features of the tank, as during factory overhauls some early features were changed to the last ordered).
You can choose (mainly) between: if the barrel lenght should be 43 or 48 calibers, if the rear engine hatches will have the "Tropen" slits for improved ventilation (present on most ausf. G produced from June 1942); if there will be any additional 30mm armour welded on hull and superstructure front; if the turrent front visors will be two or just one.

For an "F2 or early G" You most probably have dunkelgrau base paint, from 18 February 1943 the Order was to switch to Dunkelgelb base paint. But You also have the option of "Tropen" painted vehicle shipped to Ostfront, so with 2/3 braun RAL 8020 and 1/3 grau RAL 7027.

I quite never see photos of Panzer IV driven with the driver head out the hatch, but the hatch will be often left open (but depends, of course, from the climate too).

As Kevin wrote, SS grenadiers (fomr mid-war and in cold climates) were often characterized by the fur-lined and hooded parkas and (I'm sure regarding the Heer winter uniforms but not for SS practice) they were recovered in store at spring to reduce the wear. I don't think that greatcoats were taken away from the soldiers anytime.

So if You tank rider had the parka, he must be an SS soldier and the panzer (most probably) too; if instead he wears the greatcoat, he can be both SS or Heer.


Mario Raspagliosi

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David Parker
(Login afvmodeller)
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Driving position

May 30 2017, 5:01 PM 

Just to confirm, the driver's seat was not height adjustable,. It was fixed to the hull floor and was also offset from the hatch - compare the position of the driver's visor with the hatch. Any images showing the driver in his hatch are posed with him squatting on his seat.

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Scott Dutton
(Login duttons)
Missing-Lynx members

Thanks All

May 31 2017, 6:09 PM 

Thanks everyone for your input, that has cleared a lot up for me and made job a little easier especially in relation to crew.
Its amazing how preconcieved ideas cloud your thinking, you see photos of late war tanks and almost every post war tank with drivers head out, and personal experience and you then believe it is the norm. How wrong, thanks for setting me straight.

Will continue to research this battle(s) but heading to what seems to be described as an early G, my intent was just to get the later muzzle brake on that typifies a P IV to me, and to have the colour scheme and figures at least not conflicting.

its what I love about this hobby, something so simple can lead to a journey of research discovery and even travel. Thanks again.

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