Germany’s distinctive Panzerbekleidung is normally associated with the Panzer division’s tank crews, or with the SS. Furthermore, it is easy to forget that this service dress was not only issued in black or camouflage patterns. It was also issued to other branches within the Panzer divisions in feld-grau, such as the Assault Artillery (Strumartillerie).
PT-029 “Panzer Assault Gunner, 1944” is a 1/35th scale resin figure sculpted by Yoshitaka Hirano with box-art by Luca Cardoselli. The gunner is portrayed in a casual pose seated pose mid-cigarette - the box-art shows the gunner seated on the turret of an unidentified vehicle.
The feld-grau uniform worn by self-propelled artillery (Strumartillerie) personnel of all classes was identical in cut to the black Panzer uniform. There was, however, no piping around the collar – this was never worn by the artillery. The grey sidecap ( Feldmütze), however, has a soutache of artillery red Waffenfarbe piping.
The shoulder-straps are piped in artillery red, are one of several types of collar-patch associated with the self-propelled artillery branch is sewn to the tunic. It is the dark bluish-green patches with red piping edging and silvery-grey skulls, identical in design to Panzer patches.
As an artilleryman this gunner wears the bronze General Assault Badge rather than the Tank Assault Badge, and the ribbon of his Iron Cross 2nd Class is worn in the buttonhole.
At his waist strapped to the standard black leather army belt with an aluminium or silver-painted, steel buckle is the standard personal weapon of the tank crewman: the P08 Luger in its distinctive holster.
The set, moulded in Platoon’s traditional light grey coloured resin, comes in a kit form consisting of a total of four (4) pieces. The kit is packaged in a small, soft cardboard box with the figure’s parts in a small zip-lock bag.
Figure PT-029 Panzer Assault Gunner, 1944 consists of the following four (4) parts: Full figure, excluding head and arms;
Left and right arms;
Head wearing Feldmütze.
The figure is very well sculpted. The casting is crisp, generally clean, and has captured the sculpting of Yoshitaka Hirano.
The heads is nicely sculpted, and the face has quite a pleasant and well-defined expression, although some hair texturing would have enhanced it further. The head gear is well proportioned and nicely detailed. The casting block is unfortunately positioned along the length of the rear of the head from neck to crown of the cap, so modellers should remove this carefully for fear of damaging any detail.
The figure proper is well detailed. One gets a very good idea of the fit of the jacket and the bagginess of the trousers. Folds gather realistically for the material portrayed. All the finer details such as epaulets, awards, and the pistol holster are satisfactorily detailed for this scale.
The casting blocks are placed on the soles of the boots, and the hard resin should be cut away carefully so that the attached areas are not damaged. A fine casting seam also runs along the inside of the legs, although this should be easily removable with a fine file.
The arms, as with the rest of the figure, are well detailed and cast, although the placement of the casting block of the right arm is a bit perplexing. The left arm’s casting block is placed in a common place amongst resin figures: on the inside of the shoulder. However that of the right arm runs the full length of the back of the arm, although it is relatively thin and easy to cut away.
WWII German Panzer division figures certainly are not a unique subject, and too be honest I do not find this figure all that distinctive. That said, the figure is well sculpted, and despite a few small gripes the casting is still good. In addition to this, the figure’s pose makes it fairly versatile and can be placed in a number of scenarios. This figure also need not only be painted to represent a Panzer Assault gunner, but indeed a member of one of the other Panzer divisions as well.
The following references were used for this review: “The Panzer Divisions”. Men-at-Arms. Martin Windrow. Illustrated by Michael Roffe. Osprey Publishing. 1972.
“The German Army 1939-45 (5) Western Front 1943-45”. Men-at-Arms 336. Nigel Thomas. Illustrated by Stephen Andrew. Osprey Publishing. 2000.
“Panzer Crewman 1939-45”. Warrior 46. Gordon Williamson. Illustrated by Velimir Vuksic. Osprey Publishing. 2002.