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Tank Craft 32: Panther Medium Tank (Paperback)

IV. SS-Panzerkorps Eastern Front, 1944

WWII Tanks Modelling Photographic Books Colour Books Military

By Dennis Oliver
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Series: Tank Craft
Pages: 64
Illustrations: 200 colour & black and white illustrations
ISBN: 9781526791269
Published: 22nd March 2021

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During the summer of 1944 a series of massive Soviet offensives threatened to destroy the entire German army on the Eastern Front. As the Wehrmacht scrambled to hold what ground it could many formations simply disappeared and the available armoured units were used to plug the gaps in the frontline. One of the most important elements of the defence was the newly raised IV.SS-Panzerkorps which contained the veteran Totenkopf and Wiking divisions. Although both were well equipped their real striking power lay in the battalion of Pzkpfw V Panther tanks with which each was outfitted, perhaps the most effective armoured fighting vehicle produced by Germany during the Second World War. In Dennis Oliver's latest volume in the TankCraft series he uses archive photos and extensively researched colour illustrations to examine the Panther battalions of these famous units that fought to hold back the Soviet advance during the last months of 1944. A key section of his book displays available model kits and aftermarket products, complemented by a gallery of beautifully constructed and painted models in various scales. Technical details as well as modifications introduced during production and in the field are also examined providing everything the modeller needs to recreate an accurate representation of these historic tanks.

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WWII History

"For the ultra-realistic modelers, the historical text specifies when production changes altered the design."

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The Historical Miniatures Gaming Society

The Panther tank has been described in many books as one of the most successful tanks of the Second World War. The latest volume in the Tank Craft series by Dennis Oliver looks specifically at two SS Panther battalions in the IV.SS-Panzerkorps on the Eastern Front in 1944. It’s a fantastic combination of historical research and an examination of Panther model kits currently on the market. It is superbly illustrated with dozens of photographs, tables, maps, and most notably ten pages of side profile artworks depicting 20 different Panther tanks.
The IV.SS-Panzerkorps was created in August 1943 and comprised two SS divisions, namely 3. SS-Panzerdivison Totenkopf and 5. SS-Panzerdivison Wiking. Both divisions each had a panzer regiment that included one battalion of Panther tanks that were issued in early 1944. IV.SS-Panzerkorps was rushed to the Eastern Front to quell the Warsaw Uprising in August 1944. It later also participated in the failed relief of Budapest. But for the most part it spent most of the last year of the war fighting in Poland, Hungary, and lastly Austria where it tried to surrender to US forces but in most cases they were returned to Soviet custody. This book charts the introduction and employment of the Panther tanks within this panzerkorps in the desperate battles to hold off overwhelming numbers of Soviet tanks and infantry. Regardless of the fact that these units were Waffen SS and supporting an evil regime, the Panthers fought with tenacity in terrible weather and suffered from logistical difficulties. Dennis Oliver packs a lot of information into this compact volume and the rather large section on applicable model kits complete with photos of assembled models and reviews of specific kits will certainly appeal to serious model builders.
The superb combination of a unit specific history and model reviews for the Panther enthusiast certainly adds to the reader base for this book. The extremely detailed colour profiles of various specific Panther tanks is the standout item for this reviewer. If you are interested in the Panther tank or are a tank model builder then this book is for you.

Todd Shugart, Aviation News

This is another great book in the Tank Craft range and this volume is up to the high standards that we have come to expect from Dennis Oliver. Historians and model makers interested in the Eastern Front in 1944 will find much of interest here and this volume is highly recommended to all who are interested in this iconic German AFV.

Tom Cole, Miniature Armoured Fighting Vehicles Association

"There is a nice balance of modeling information, historical and technical facts to make for quick and enjoyable reading. This soft cover publication will offer a nice reference source for the armor modeler's library."

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IPMS/USA

Even though this is a slim volume it is packed full of useful information, which makes these books a great resource that should be on every WW2 wargamers bookshelf.

Irregular magazine, Issue 16 Volume 2 / Summer 2021 - review by Jason Hubbard

This is a neat book on Panthers.

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AMPS Indianapolis

The book is a great addition to any armor library and provides great images and information to further along your project.

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AMPS

"Well worth picking up."

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ModelingMadness.com

Video review featured on Scale Modeling Now

Scale Modelling Now

A welcome addition to the very popular Tank Craft Series. Aimed at model makers, this series has become popular with a much wider readership, due to the excellent text describing the subject vehicle and its deployment, including unit structures. – Very Highly Recommended

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Firetrench

This is another very nicely presented book in the TankCraft series from author Dennis Oliver and one that is primarily aimed at modellers, with the additional context of the historical story of these two SS Panzer Divisions in 1944. A deservedly popular book series and this is another good addition to their list, on this occasion with a very specific focus.

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Military Model Scene, Robin Buckland

This Panther Medium Tank is part of the intriguing Tank Craft series designed both for those into history and those who like to build models. There are also great diagrams of the tanks in various livery to suit the environment of the battle, but these are aimed more at the model maker. Another great book written to another high standard and highly recommended.

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UK Historian

Another excellent Dennis Oliver offering in the Tank Craft series. It cannot be faulted.

Michael McCarthy. Battlefield Guide

Michael McCarthy

About Dennis Oliver

Dennis Oliver is the author of over twenty books on Second World War armoured vehicles including Tiger I and II Tanks: German Army and Waffen-SS: Eastern Front 1944; Panther Tanks: German Army and Waffen-SS, Normandy Campaign 1944; Jagdpanther Tank Destroyer: German Army, Western Europe 1944-1945; and Tiger I and Tiger II Tanks:German Army and Waffen-SS, The Last Battles in the West, 1945.

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