I present three dioramas (or are they vignettes) featuring Sd. Kfz. 9 FAMO Halftracks in 1/72 scale. The first is a Planet Models resin kit with Black Dog accessories. The figures are mainly from Preiser set 72505, augmented with others from one of their Luftwaffe sets. The crew has taken a break for lunch in the shade of a tree. The dog is painted to resemble one of my own.
This scene is the Revell FAMO towing an Italeri sFH 18 Field Howitzer, both very nice kits. The cargo is mainly Value Gear in the bed and Black Dog tarps on the fenders. Figures are a mix of Preiser and modified artillerymen from the Italeri kit. Value Gear here: http://valuegeardetails.com/UniversalStowage72.html
I have recently developed an affinity for tank transporters (like I needed another rabbit hole to climb in) so there will likely be more like this scene in the future. This is the Trumpeter FAMO and transport trailer with a Zvezda Panzer IV. Figures are from the CMK set designed for the FAMO and a few from Caesar, Value Gear stowage in the bed again. I like the casual poses, particularly the bored guy on the back of the trailer.
This is Trumpeter’s FAMO kit number 07203 which was issued in 2005. This kit has been issued in several versions and boxings over the years and is still available. Trumpeter’s kit is the most detailed FAMO and also contains the most parts by far. Track are individual links and have separately molded rubber pads. I found the kit to be over-engineered and fiddly. The advantages in detail will not be visible from normal viewing angles, but if you wanted to display a FAMO with the hood panels open or over on its side this would be the place to start. Value Gear cargo is in the bed.
Here is Revell’s FAMO offering from 2005, their kit number 03141. Tracks are link and length. I found this kit to be well molded and engineered and a pleasure to build. The canvas rolls on the fenders are from Black Dog resin, the cargo load in the bed is a mix of Value Gear resin bits.
This is Planet Model’s kit number MV 024, a multimedia kit released in 2002. Detail parts are provided on a small photoetch sheet and tracks are rubber. There is a low parts count as the chassis frame and running gear are simplified which is readily apparent when viewing the underside but not obvious from normal viewing angles. I used most of the Black Dog resin set on this one and tried my hand at blending with oils on the canvas parts.
This is the Zvezda Panzer IV Ausf. H in 1/72 scale, kit number 5017 released in 2018. I replaced the hull Schürzen with sheet plastic and I added Zimmerit made with Mr. Surfacer 500. A nice kit and loads of camo schemes to choose from. Decals are from Kagero Top Colors 32 and depict a Panzer IV from the 116th Panzer Division in Normandy, August 1944. I found the mixed camo patterns of the hull Schürzen and the rest of the vehicle interesting.
This is Trumpeter kit number 07249, the Sd.Ah.116 Tank Transporter. This was normally seen with the Sd.Kfz. 8 or Sd.Kfz. 9 FAMO halftrack being used as the towing vehicle with various types of loads – lots of diorama potential with a little research. I used this one to test various weathering techniques and was happy with the results, although there is much room left for improvement. I have posed the trailer with a previous build of a StuG III which was one of the more common vehicles transported.
For this build I’ll be assembling a small batch of the German army’s largest halftrack – the 18-ton Sd. Kfz. 9 “FAMO” using kits from three different manufacturers. Each manufacturer has taken a different approach to their kits and I’m interested to see how each one builds up and how they look when complete.