Dragon 1/35 Flakpanzer IV ausf G 'Wirbelwind' (early)
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
The Flakpanzer IV "Wirbelwind" (Whirlwind in German) was a self-propelled anti-aircraft gun based on the Panzer IV tank. It was developed in 1944 as a successor to the earlier self-propelled anti-aircraft gun M÷belwagen.
In the first years of the war, the Wehrmacht had less interest in developing self-propelled anti-aircraft guns, but as the Allies developed air superiority, the need for more mobile and better-armed self-propelled anti-aircraft guns increased.
The Panzer IV's turret was removed and replaced with an open-top, nine-sided turret which housed a quadruple 2 cm Flakvierling 38 L/112.5. A closed-top design would have been preferable, but this was not possible due to the heavy smoke generated by the four anti-aircraft guns. Production of the tank was carried out by Ostbau Werke in Sagan, Silesia.
As the 2 cm shells used proved less effective against aircraft than the 3.7 cm shells the Wirbelwind was eventually replaced by the Ostwind' which was equipped with a single 3.7 cm FlaK 43.
The combination of armor and rapid fire from the four guns of the Wirbelwind also made it effective against ground targets.
It is believed that either 87 or 105 Wirbelwinds were produced during the war, but due to discrepancies between the recorded production numbers at Ostbau Werke and Wehrmacht service records, the exact number will probably never be known.
Many modelers really like flak wagons of various sorts and the Wirbelwind has to be one of the coolest ever done. Thanks to Dragon's attention to detail, we now have an accurate early version of this interesting vehicle. The armor plating on the turret is nice and thin and there is a ton of detail in the quad 20mm gun mount. Not only that, but the kit has a ton of smaller options in terms of frontal armor, track design and a bunch of other bits and pieces. The PR listing of features is pretty long and listed below. As you can see from the sprues layout, there are a lot of Panzer IV pieces that are not used with this one so can be consigned to the spares box.
Markings for this one are relatively generic. There are schemes for three late war vehicles.
Another great mobile flak tank for the German modeler and those who happen to like these sorts of vehicles. One thing for sure, the German Army sure had a goodly number of these sorts of vehicles when compared to what was fielded by the Allies.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wirbelwind April 2011 Thanks towww.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview kit. This fine kit can be found at your local retailer. If you would like your product reviewed fairly and quickly, please contactme or see other details in the Back to the Main Page Back to the Previews Index Page
Thanks towww.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview kit. This fine kit can be found at your local retailer.
If you would like your product reviewed fairly and quickly, please contactme or see other details in the
Back to the Main Page
Back to the Previews Index Page