of the Sd.Kfz.2 Kettenkrad started with a small pre-production series
(0-series) from July 1940 to the end of 1941. In the Summer of 1941
the vehicle was first fielded by the troops and only in 1942 series
production started [1,2]. Production of the vehicle ended well after
the war, in 1948.
from the standard Sd.Kfz.2, which could carry an especially developed
trailer (the Sd.Anh.1), two cable laying vehicles were produced as
the Sd.Kfz. 2/1 and Sd.Kfz. 2/2.
could tow the Pak38, 105mm Leichtgeschütz 40, 7.5cm Gebirgsgeschütz
36, and thus probably also a 2cm Flak or even a Nebelwerfer, although
I have not yet found any period photo's to confirm the latter. (Re-enactors
have proven that it is entirely possible, though.)
The kits: 72080
a cautious start, S-Model has become one of the more prolific producers
of 1/72 kits. This is one of their simpler releases, containing two
identical sprues (and a small PE fret) allowing the construction of
two Kettenkräder. No decals are included, which is a sad omission,
as these vehicles at least carried licence plates above the nose wheel
and at the rear, sometimes together with unit insignia. The single
color option is also somewhat limiting (and, as we will see, misleading).
of the vehicle were :
1000mm (i.e. 41.67 scale mm);
Length: 3000mm (i.e. 13.89 scale mm);
Track width: 170mm (i.e. 2.36 scale mm).
kit we measure resp. 42.4, 14.2 and 2.3mm, which is between 1/70.5
In comparison, the Academy
kit measures out as 37, 12.9 and 2.2 respectively, thus being
closer to 1/81 in length and 1/77 in width (not to mention the large
gap between the drive sprocket and the first roadwheel).
production versions of the vehicle existed with minor differences
This kit is of the S1 series (a type-designator introduced by )
as it has 6-spoked roadwheels, signalling lights on the front fenders
and (semi-)closed armrests. By removing the signalling lights, the
modeler can convert the kit to an S2, while removing the signalling
lights and the headlight will turn it into an Abschluss serie. Late
vehicles also tended to dispense with the licence plate on the front
mudguard or did away with the mudguard altogether.
Backdating it to an M1 would require opening the handrails, while
an M2 would require open handrails and a lack of signalling lights
on the fender. The early vehicles also had larger holes in the outer
(Note that these type-designators are not official names and dates
of their appearance are unknown ).
on contemporary photographs, it seems that the S1 was introduced after
January 1943 and would thus have been painted in a basecoat of dark
yellow, not the dark grey S-Models suggests.
The kits: 72087
after the release of kit 72080, S-Model followed up with a new kit,
containing the same Kettenkrad as above plus a Pak36. The manual was
expanded accordingly. Surprisingly, this kit now comes with decals,
but only containing some Balkenkreuze, not the desired licence plates.
This is especially strange as I still have to see the first Kettenkrad
and/or Pak36 with Balkenkreuze. (When fitted on top of a vehicle,
the latter occasionally did sport some crosses, though.)
The first impression of the Pak is that it is a simple, but nice kit.
As the price difference between kits 72080 and 72087 is minute, the
latter is better value for money.
Note that the Pak sprue and decals are exactly the same as in kit
of Holland website, used with permission.
kit was mostly built OOB with the following remarks:
kit has no distinct edge between wheel and fork. I started my
kits of as a quick build, but added stuff as I went along. I should
probably have made a deeper groove in this area.
did add an extra groove to the edges of the seat rests, though.
lost one of the front fender supports, which are tiny PE parts
in the kit. This turned out to be a good thing as it seems they
were actually round not flat like the PE. Stretched sprue is thus
front tyre has no thread pattern whatsoever. I engraved a pattern
without claiming any accuracy as I thought it would look better
whatever I did with it.
is some interior detail in the driver's compartment, but a little
bit more can easily be added. Like I said, I deviated from my
quick build plans well after construction had started and should
have done more work before closing the hull. Some levers go a
long way, though, and can still be added as an afterthought.
trapezium shaped panels that cover the sides of the engine compartment
in the kit are recessed. Some vehicles had a recess, while some
had a smooth area here.
rear convoy light and front Notek light are rather nice.
the headlight comes with the triangular frame that fits it to
the front fork, using this to keep the kit part in place is bound
to give all kinds of trouble. I added a small pin to the rear
of the headlight (B7) so that it has some support from the fork
having painted my kits, I noticed that many Kettenkräder
had small stubs just behind the driver to support a box over the
engine compartment. These were added at the last minute, after
painting. I should have thought of this before and added the small
fixing plates as well.
tracks are among the best I have seen from S-Model so far.
lot of Kettenkräder had rifle supports to the rear of the
vehicles. Some were outfitted with tools or jerrycans. I didn't
rear mudflaps are PE and, while nice, are a pain to glue to the
hull. Next time I'll replace them with plasticard or metal foil.
roadwheels are nicely done, but are all in the same position,
which is a thing all manufacturers choose to do (as far as I can
tell). You might get some variation by positioning the separate
outer roadwheels at a different angle, if you accept that in that
case their holes will not be aligned with the inner row. Note
that the inner roadwheels are represented as a single double-wide
wheel, but it is easy to overlook.
decals for this model were custom designed by Aleran.
finished model (awaiting decals and weathering).
This model was built in almost identical fashion
to the one above, with the exception of the kit-supplied (flat PE)
during the construction of this second vehicle that it is actually
better to follow the instructions and add the top hull (B9) only
after the rest of the hull has been assembled and the seems filled
model got a more complete treatment. The driver's compartment was
fitted out with a bit more detail, but more importantly, the whole
front wheel assembly was reworked by separating the wheel and fork
and building both up again with more realistic detail. The vehicle
represents the final version, without headlight or signalling lights
on the front fenders.
The rear mudflaps were replaced with metal foil and an exhaust pipe
was added to the muffler (underneath the rear hull).
weary of staying on the beaten track we might add that the vehicle
was popular with Allied troops as well, that some seem to have been
driven without the front wheel assembly and that after the war a creative
vendor gave a new life to his Kettenkrad. I decided to build one
as a vehicle used by American MPs and commissioned custom made decals
to complete it. The picture below was found at "Archives Normandy"
(http://www.archivesnormandie39-45.org/), a site which no longer seems
to be active and the picture only to be found here.
be an idea to try and test Kora set C7210 (containing the cable laying
equipment and trailer) with this kit.
than decent kit, especially remembering that S-Model is considered
a "quickbuild brand", and by far the best Kettenkrad in
1/72 available. With just a little bit of extra work, that I shied
away from with my first kits , it can be turned into a real little
gem. The only let-down is the lack of decals for the licence plates.
H. Hoppe & J. Vollert, Tankograd Wehrmacht Special 4011
Halbkettenfahrzuge, W.J. Spielberger. Band 6 der Reihe Militährfahrzeuge.,
samples purchased by the author.
S-Model kits can be