This particular unit was due for completion much earlier in the year, but I lost the will to live after painting 12 Panzer IV's and was distracted by building and painting a LCT and finishing off my 10mm ACW...
Suitably refreshed after finishing off my ACW stuff, I got stuck into my Panthers. These are plastic models from the Plastic Soldier Company. I mentioned on my Facebook page that as I was in the process of painting them I discovered that the build instructions for the PSC Panthers are incorrect. I found this out by accident, noticing that my exhaust didn't match those of images of Panther A's I was referencing, and on watching a Fog of War video on YouTube, discovered that the instructions to make the Panther A are actually the instructions for the Panther D. The Instructions for the D are actually for the A, and there is some minor conversion work required to turn the model into a 'proper' A and correct some inaccuracies in the kit. So a bit of rework mid painting and I was back on track.
Have to say, this was a pretty annoying experience. Building the PSC kits is a nuisance enough, without the instructions themselves being wrong. Big shout out to the Fog of War channel for having the technical knowledge with the German kit that I really lack.
These tanks are part of the German counter attack on 8 August 1944 against Phase I of Operation Totalize. From what I can find, at some point during the day 5 Panthers of I./SS Panzer Regiment 12, which had been under repair and were rushed forward, joined the German forces. Specifically, to join Kampfgruppe Waldmuller in their attack through Robertmesnil and 'Le Petit Ravin' against elements of 1st Northamptonshire Yeomanry.
I could find no mention of what Kompanie these tanks were from, and it's likely they should have been a mixed bunch having come from being repaired. However, I just could not bring myself to randomly pick some turret numbers, so marked them up as belonging to the 2.Kompanie. I know the 2.Kompanie fought later on in Operation Tractable, so decided to go with that. If I choose to add to the unit later and make it up to a full Kompanie, then I can do that.
The other thing I would say about the PSC kit is the lack of zimmerit, despite the artwork on the box. I understand that most of the Panthers in Normandy over the period would have had zimmerit. I'm not sure if I would go for more PSC models, or spend the extra for the resin and metal ones (the BF plastics only make the G version and the Jagdpanther).
Period pictures have these tanks (generally) with a lot of foliage on them, and I guessed that if they were parked up hidden somewhere being worked on there would have been time to camo them up a bit.
The Panther is a tank I always forget the size of:
So, looking back at my painting chart (to be finished by July...):
I've still got a few bits to do to get everything done. Not sure how I feel about getting onto the StuGs right now, so I may pick something else to do. The Kubelwagons shouldn't be too tough to do. Time will tell!