Arguably one of the most efficient and deadly military weapons platforms of World War II, there is no question the Sturmgeschutz III series of vehicles played a significant role in whatever successes the German military experienced throughout the war. With its low silhouette, reliable powerplant and bevy of main gun upgrades, the Stug III, and its assault gun Sturmhaubitze variant, proved it a worthy opponent regardless of campaign.
Befitting the near-legendary reputation of this vehicle Osprey Publications has pulled out all stops in releasing Volume. 22 in their Osprey Modelling series, “Modelling the Sturmgeschutz III”.
Written by accomplished Canadian modeler, Gary Edmundson, this book follows the familiar format of preceding single-author Osprey Modelling volumes, so I won’t delve into explaining this aspect further.
The author completes four 1/35 scale Sturmgeschutz III models for this book and from cover to cover he offers the reader a wealth of insight and information. Whether it is basic assembly or advanced construction techniques, Edmundson excels at explaining each with completeness of text and bolstered by terrific images. His painting and weathering methods are also on display and he covers each with equal aplomb.
Following a very brief introduction the author gives us a three-page synopsis of his preferred tools and materials used for this book. Of particular interest to me was the photo of his workbench as it looked remarkably like mine most of the time … very busy.
The subject of the first build features an impressive Dragon StuG IIIB representing a vehicle from StuG Abteilung 192 in Russia, circa 1941. The model is adorned with new Tamiya running gear, Friulmodellismo sprockets, Modelkasten tracks and further detailed with wonderfully executed Aber photoetch. An interesting note is the fact that Edmundson is one of the few modelers I know of that often paints with Floquil lacquers. It is nice to see someone still employing this excellent paint and yielding such terrific results.
A StuG IIID representing one of three in service with Sonderverband z.b.V.288 during the North African campaign in 1942 is the subject of Edmundson’s second model. He takes the novel approach of backdating a Dragon StuG III F to create this vehicle and this conversion is adeptly covered in a handful of images and thoroughly explained in the text.
The third build is the most ambitious project of this book. The author goes all out to incorporate a trio of CMK resin interior sets, as well as a full compliment of aftermarket offerings to represent an early ‘Das Reich’ StuG III G from the Kursk campaign.
Of particular note is the incredible work he does with this interior. Not only is the assembly flawlessly executed – no mean feat for such a complicated subject - but his expert use of lacquers, enamels, oils and pastels yields a weathered and worn, but not overly done, finish. It has to be one of the finest examples of tasteful restraint I’ve seen in quite a while.
With the final build Edmundson creates a May 1944 production StuG III G by incorporating the excellent Tamiya Sturmgeschutz III G Fruhe kit with a Chesapeake Model Designs StuG III G Late conversion. He also utilizes an Atak resin zimmerit set, along with skillfully crafted Aber brass jewelry.
The last two pages of this chapter describe his method of creating a simple vignette. I thought it a nice touch. The following six pages are devoted to a gallery of various StuG III models. This is the area I personally have an issue with as I’ve never been a big fan of this feature. I thought the book would have benefited from additional pages of Edmundson’s detailed work rather than a handful of ‘beauty shots’ of other StuG IIIs.
The final chapters include a rundown of StuG IIIs on display in museums and collections worldwide; a listing of books, magazines and websites containing information germane to the vehicle; and a complete (as of the publishing of this book) listing of available kits and accessories. Rounding out the book are the index and a valuable chart complete with colour plates explaining the various paints Edmundson used throughout this volume.
185mm x 249mm
80 pages with additional page of colour plates
Color photographs with captions
Tools and materials
Sturmgeschutz IIIG (December 1942 production)
Sturmgeschutz IIIG (May 1944 production) and vignette
Gallery of Sturmgeschutz models
Museums and collections
Further reading, media and websites
Available kits and accessories
Color reference chart
This book was one of the most enjoyable and informative I have experienced in quite a while. I literally found myself unable to put it down once I started perusing its pages. It seemed as if each chapter offered up something different and most certainly of value to armor modelers regardless of your area of interest. Not only can I highly recommend this book, I consider it essential reading for any AFV enthusiast.
A superb addition to any modelling reference library, by one of the most well-known names in modelling.
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About Mike Kirchoff (drumthumper) FROM: KANSAS, UNITED STATES
Modeling for more than 35 years, I have many diverse areas of interest. Presently, those areas include WW2 Soviet and German armor and figures. I also design master patterns with my company Signature Models and have had the honor of working with some of the premier resin manufacturers in the world. ...