PzIII ausf J Winter 41/42

My current PzIII build is inspired by a couple of photos from the old squadron Panzer Color series.

 

 

Below is the run down for the build.

 

 

The kit is Dragon's PzIII Ausf.J "Initial". This is just Dragon's way of distinguishing the kit from their other Ausf J releases with the armored air vents on the rear deck. The Ausf J was the last of the short barreled L42 50mm PzIIIs. When the longer L60 50mm was phased into production, these Ausf Js were re-designated Ausf Ls. I chose to try and replicate the PzIII in the photos because of the many interesting subtle features. Hand painted turret numbers. Partial hand applied white wash. Lack of stowage. Asymmetrical snow pack on the polished tracks. Missing fender section. Missing bow lights. Spare track held with s-hooks. There are a lot of little things you don't catch at first.

 

AM Used

Aber Barrels

Aber PE set for Ausf J/L

Voyager PE - misc clasps

Fruil Tracks

Eureka XXL Tow cables

Turned brass aerial.

 

I started assebly by working on the lower hull. And as a departure, I assembled the tracks early on this time.

 

 

The molded parts were pretty nice, but I wanted to replace the stowage box clamps. The hinges are from the Aber set and worked before I glued them closed. The stowage box clamps are from a Voyager set. The tool clasps were all made at once so I could get in a groove. I made a few too many but these go into the "special" spares bin to save me time on a future project.

 

 

The basic assembly was pretty quick. Installing the tools and clasps were the real challenge. A stowage box is just visible in the front view image but the construction style is a mystery. I chose to model a stowage box based on one similar from an earlier version. Most of the details are from Aber but the fender bracket fingers are from a Voyager fender set for a StuG.

 

 

After that, it was finishing the turret and adding the tow cable assembly. These were not as difficult as it looks. It took a couple of hours to form the brass bits. The tricky part was getting the tow cable to snake around the clamps without breaking anything off.

 

 

The base color was a custom mix of Tamiya colors with an application of lighter gray to accent  the panels and edges.

 

 

I used a number of warm filters to tone down the contrast from the modulation.

 

 

I utilized the hairspray technique to add the frosty dust effects.

 

 

The icy snow is Woodland Scenics Snow mixed with Clear Acrylic Gel.