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Wittmann’s Command Tiger from Dragon

Dragon Models is releasing a new 1/35th-scale kit in their ’39-’45 Series depicting Michael Wittmann’s Tiger: Item 6730 – Tiger 1 Early Production Pz.Kpfw.VI, Ausf. E Wittmann’s Command Tiger. Dragon’s brand new is designed to represent Wittmann’s famous “S04″ Tiger on the Eastern Front with 88 kill markings painted on the 88mm gun barrel.

dragon-wittmann-command-tiger

 

Dragon Tiger I Ausf. H2

Dragon Models has announced a new 1/35th-scale kit in their ’39-’45 Series depicting an unusual Henschel prototype panzer, No. 6683: Tiger I Ausf. H2 7.5cm KwK 42.

tiger-ausf-h2-prototype

 

Dragon Panzerkampfwagen VI(P)

New in Dragon Models 1/35th-scale ’39-’45 Series: No. 6797: Sd.Kfz. 181 Panzerkampfwagen VI(P) w/ Zimmerit. The model kit depicts the Porsche design for the German heavy tank which would become the Tiger. Five Tiger(P) prototypes were produced, and one saw combat with sPzAbt. 653 as a command tank on the Eastern Front.

panzerkampfwagen-vi-porsche

 

Dragon Tiger I Mid-Production with Zimmerit

New 1/35th-scale kit announced by Dragon Models: 1/35 Sd.Kfz 181 Pz.Kpfw. VI Ausf. E Tiger I Mid-Production w/ Zimmerit (No. 6700).

Dragon Tiger I Mid-production with Zimmerit
 

Trying to Capture an Intact Tiger in Tunisia

Brief note on British attempts to capture an intact German Tiger I tank in Tunisia from “The Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers in Action”, Military Review, Vol. 23. Presumably, this Tiger is #231 of sPzAbt. 501 which was initially captured by the British largely intact, but the Tiger was then destroyed. Reports differ as to whether the Tiger was destroyed by the Germans or the British.

The work of keeping the minefields clear of wreckage or of immobilized vehicles has already received considerable public notice; no less important nor less hazardous is the location and salvaging of damaged equipment in close proximity to the enemy, and many a tank and gun has been so snatched from under the very noses of the enemy. Sometimes much stalking and considerable planning has been rendered abortive by some adverse turn of fortune’s wheel, and amongst such abortive effects may be mentioned a plan, almost successfully completed, for taking intact one of the earliest German Mk. VI (Tiger) tanks to be knocked out in Tunisia. After a stalk occupying one night and a day’s lie-up awaiting darkness for the actual removal of the tank, the Light Aid Detachment party were denied their success during the last few hours of daylight through circumstances over which they had no control. More frequently, however, as is testified by the astonishing proportion (eighty-three percent) of tank casualties restored to their owners without evacuation during the difficult opening stages of the action at El Alamein, the stalking and the plans are alike successful.

 

Aberdeen Tiger Tank Moving to Fort Benning

The old Aberdeen Museum Tiger I tank is finally being shipped from RAF Alconbury, England back to the United States to the U.S. Army Armor and Cavalry Museum at Fort Benning, Ga. At the Fort Benning museum, the German Tiger I is scheduled for complete restoration. This particular Tiger I originally served with the German sPzAbt. 501 in North Africa. The Tiger was captured by U.S. forces in 1943, and sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds for evaluation.

48th Fighter Wing Public Affairs RAF Lakenheath Press Release: WWII Tank Relocated by 48th LRS

One of the most feared and powerful tanks of its time is making its way to the United States courtesy of the 48th Logistics Readiness Squadron. The German Tiger 1, World War II era tank, is to be shipped from RAF Alconbury, England, to the U.S. Army Armor and Cavalry Museum at Fort Benning, Ga., for repair and full restoration….

“There are only six known Tiger 1s that are still in one piece that are left in the world,” said Len Dyer, Director of the Army Armor and Cavalry museum. “This particular one was captured by the British in Tunis, North Africa, in 1943. She has plenty of combat action and a few combat scars that have had repair work done them.”

Although the tank is now being broken down to be relocated, the battle scars that have since been patched can still be seen on several parts of the tank.

This unique task of moving this battle hardened tank came down from the U.S. Army to the 48th LRS.

“I received an email from the Secretary of the Army requesting whether we could support the moving of this back to the United States and talking to the 48th LRS commander we decided we would go ahead and try to help the Army get this tank home,” said Bill Pratt, 48th LRS Transportation Management Office chief of cargo movement….

This particular cargo is slated to be completely broken down, cleaned, and made ready to be taken back to the U.S. within the next month to join other pieces of military history at the Fort Benning U.S. Army Armor and Cavalry Museum.

 

Air Attack at Hunt’s Gap

The following correspondent’s report from the UP (United Press) describes the fighting at Hunt’s Gap in Tunisia in February-March 1943. Compare this account of the battle to the German commander Oberst. Rudolf Lang’s account and British observer Howard Marshall’s account.

BRITISH BOMBER SCORES AGAINST 6 GERMAN TANKS
Northern Tunisia Fighters Receiving Allied Air Support

BY EDWARD W. BEATTIE

ON THE NORTHERN TUNISIAN FRONT, March 1.—(UP)—There were six enemy tanks—big boys, probably Mark VI’s—massed north of the Mateur-Beja road when a bomber went in and dropped two bombs squarely into the middle of them.

British soldiers threw their helmets into the air and cheered. And well they might, for troops in this area never before had such air support as they are now receiving.

The British bombers caught Rommel’s supply columns in a narrow valley above. Beja Sunday. There was a thick fog lying across the valley and it was not an ideal day for bombing.

But, starting at dawn, the Allied bombers made eight sorties low into the valley and when they got through, the hair-pin road along which the Axis transport was concentrated was pock-marked with bomb craters.

Enemy Immobilized

I talked to the returning pilots and they said most of the enemy vehicles were stationary and some of them immobilized by the fury of the Allied attack.

The Germans threw an attack against Allied lines above Beja Sunday, using about 10 Mark IV tanks. British Churchill tanks rolled out to oppose them and knocked out three and perhaps four of the Mark IV’s. A heavier enemy attack may come, however, because a force of about 30 German tanks was seen just off the Beja road.

Allied air power was thrown against the Germans as early as Saturday, and ground troops then reoccupied two important positions.

The British early Saturday morning took Fort McGregor—named after a young American lieutenant from Brooklyn—south of Medjez-El-Bab. The American garrison of Fort McGregor was withdrawn some time ago.

British Surprise

The Germans took it Friday. Crack German tank forces and other elements penetrated through a dry river bed to the south. The British surprised them with a counterattack, killed 40 and captured 60.

The British reoccupied Tally-Ho corner after the Germans withdrew into the hills east of the Medjez-El-Bab – El-Aroussa road during the night. When darkness came Saturday, the British were mopping up a few remnants halfway along the road.

The attack toward Beja made little progress Saturday, and was heavily bombed and shelled. The Germans sent forces of roughly a battalion (1,000 men) through the hills between the Beja-Mateur and Beja-Medjez-El-Bab road, intending to cut around the latter around over Zarga. By Saturday night, the battalion had not been in contact with the British, although artillery had shelled the Germans heavily.

Germans Use Planes

The Germans have been using their planes liberally to attack Allied positions and shoot up transport behind the front. They attacked Tally-Ho corner three times without much result.

Roughly, it was estimated the Germans threw 13 battalions (13,000 men), with supporting troops of two divisions (perhaps 30,000 men) into the action on the northern front, but paradoxically, fighting was more restricted Saturday than the day before.

Of an estimated 50 German and Italian tanks involved, It was estimated that at least 15 to 20 have been knocked out.

 

Cyberhobby Tiger I Mid Command Version

Tiger Tank Plastic ModelGreat buildup and detail photographs from Dragon’s website of the new Tiger I Mid Command Version Cyberhobby kit: 1:35 Sd.Kfz.181 Pz.Kpfw.VI Ausf.E Tiger I MID Command Version Winter 1943 Production.

 

Villers-Bocage after the Battle

This wartime film shows black-and-white video of Villers-Bocage after the town’s capture by British troops in August 1944. British engineers search for mines around the wreckage of Tigers and Panzer IVs lost by the Germans in Villers-Bocage. In June 1944, Villers-Bocage was the sight of a famous battle between Michael Wittmann and the Tigers of sSSPzAbt. 501 and the British 7th Armoured Division.

 

New Mid Tiger I

New “Mid” Tiger I announced from Cyberhobby — full name: Pz.Kpfw. VI Ausf. E Tiger I MID Command Version January ’44 Production.

Befehlstiger -- Tiger I Command Version

Continue reading New Mid Tiger I