Hobby Boss 1/35 39M Csaba Armored Car

KIT #: 83866
PRICE: $35.00 shipped
DECALS: Four options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: 2016 release. Includes p.e. fret

HISTORY

Hungarian expatriate Nicholas Straussler designed several armoured cars for Britain while living there between the two world wars. Straussler came to an agreement with the Weiss Manfred factory of Csepel, Budapest to produce vehicles from his designs for use in his home country  the most prominent was the Csaba (named after the son of Attila the Hun) which was designed based on his experience of the Alvis AC2 armoured car.

After successful trials in 1939, the Hungarian Army placed an order for 61, and a further order for an additional 40 vehicles was placed in 1940. Of these, twenty were used as actual fighting vehicles, with the remainder serving as armoured command cars and reconnaissance vehicles.

The Csaba had a 20 mm Solothurn anti-tank rifle and an 8 mm machine gun fixed on a centrally mounted turret, with 9 mm armoured plating. The vehicle was also equipped with a detachable 8 mm light machine gun fired through the rear hatch in the anti-aircraft role. The crew could dismount and carry this MG when conducting reconnaissance on foot. It also had two driving positions  one at the front as normal, and an additional one at the rear.

The type was relatively successful as designed, but unable to handle fire from anything other than small arms. It proved to be quite useful when combating partisans as it's 20mm canon proved to be lethal in those conditions.

THE KIT
I've always liked armored cars and when I read a book on this vehicle, I looked for a kit. To my delight, Hobby Boss has produced one so I found a very good deal on the internet and purchased one.

The kit is molded in tan plastic and typical of Hobby Boss, has excellent detailing. It is a curbside with no real interior detailing aside from doors. The turret builds up in such a manner than all the guns can be trained if one wishes. There is a small p.e. fret for things like inner door handles, brackets, and a pair of small exterior plates.

Once the turret is built up, work starts on the upper hull. Then the suspension pieces and fenders are built. The lower hull is a single piece and one spends time building up the bits that fit to the side. With that done, the suspension pieces are attached. Then the rubber/vinyl wheels. There are two sets that differ only in tread so you can choose the ones you wish.

Then the upper hull is attached followed by the fenders. There is a large, U-shaped antenna that fits next. Finally the turret.

Instructions are nicely drawn and quite large with notes as needed. Four markings options are provided differing only by the style of insignia used. All options provided are on the multi-colored camo scheme in tan, brown, and green. This was brush painted so the edges are hard. Later in the war, surviving cars were repainted in overall green when overhauled. The decal sheet is nicely printed and the Hobby Boss decals should work very well.
CONCLUSIONS

Hungarian military vehicles are few and far between, but Hobby Boss has provided a few. They will add interest to any military collection

REFERENCES

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/39M_Csaba

September 2022

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