WWII German Panzer Crews

Kit # HB03 Preview by Rob Haelterman

Apart from the well known Preiser sets, there are not that many plastic tank crews available in our scale. This set is therefor a very welcome addition to the market. Caesar sets are mostly labeled as "soft-plastic", by which I understand that they are the same material as figures from Revell, Italeri, etc. I don't know about the other Caesar sets, but one thing is certain: they are not. The plastic seems to be close to regular styrene, although a bit softer, which means that the mold lines can be removed with a new/sharp scalpel given enough care. I still have to see how they react to glue, but I would guess they could be easily modified by repositioning or exhanging some limbs or other body parts. As the sculpting is as good as any, with vivid facial expressions, lifelike poses and good attention to detail, and as they scale out perfectly to 1/72, my conclusion would be that this set is one to rival Preiser's.

If there is one down-side to this set, then it is that you only get 18 figures of which 7 are doubles, meaning 11 unique poses.

As the pictures show, most figures have relaxed poses, while one is firing an MG34. The latter immediately made me think of the loader of a StuG firing the machine gun on top of the roof, although he seems to wear a regular Heer tunic and not a Panzer jacket. More about that below.
Seven figures wear the model 1943 cap, six the earlier peakless visor, three the Schirmmütze (mostly associated with officers or senior NCO) and two are bare-headed.
What is a bit odd is that only ten figures (counting doubles) wear the Panzer jacket. The remainder is wearing 1942-style infantry-like uniforms. The latter is not that common for tank troops, except for Akrika Korps and late war Waffen-SS units. In the latter case they would be camouflaged like the boxtop shows (although the uniform on the boxtop shows the far more commen coverall). Alternatively, they could represent infantry or other support troops.

As you can see in the pictures below, there is one figure that is cut in half. Assembly will be straight-forward, and this might make it easier to fit it to a hatch.


The double figures.

The one-offs.

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Article Last Updated: 17 March 2012

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