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Land Craft 8: SDKFZ 251 – 251/9 and 251/22 Kanonenwagen (Paperback)

German Army and Waffen-SS Western and Eastern Fronts, 1944–1945

Colour Books Military > Modelling Photographic Books WWII

By Dennis Oliver
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Series: Land Craft
Pages: 64
Illustrations: 200 colour & black and white illustrations
ISBN: 9781526791146
Published: 17th December 2020



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The Sdkfz 251 halftrack was one of the most versatile armoured vehicles produced by either side in the Second World War. Designed by the firm of Hannoversche Maschinenbau AG, or Hanomag, production ran to over 15,000 vehicles and it was eventually built as twenty-three separate variants serving as not only a personnel carrier, but also a command vehicle, mobile rocket launcher, armoured ambulance and bridge-layer. In his first book in the LandCraft series Dennis Oliver examines the Sdkfz 251 variants armed with the 7.5cm gun, initially used as an infantry support and reconnaissance halftrack and later as a tank killer as the result of Hitler's desperation to arm as many vehicles as possible with anti-tank weapons. Drawing on official documentation and unit histories Dennis investigates the formations that operated these deservedly famous vehicles and uses archive photos and extensively researched colour illustrations to examine the markings, camouflage and technical aspects of the Sdkfz 251/9 and 251/22 halftracks that served on the Western and Eastern Fronts in the last months of the war. 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.

A superb reference for modelers of German military vehicles. Clear information on Panzer units and brigades and some expertly built model examples.

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Vintage Airfix

This is a useful reference book, giving a good overview of what these vehicles were, where they were used and the best available models.

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History of War

"This does not however detract from the overall quality of the book which I can recommend to inform and motivate the modeller and gamer."

Richard Lane, IPMS No. 1 January & February 2022

Quality documentation that will delight vehicle modelers, historians and military researchers.

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Miniaturas JM

Another great book from Dennis Oliver that provides a good reference source that will appeal to historians and model makers alike.

Tom Cole, Miniature Armoured Fighting Vehicles Association

"This book has a good balance of historical and technical information together with modelling project and products."

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The Sdkfz 251 half-track was one of the most extensively produced armoured vehicles of the Second World War, with 15,000 being built and used in a very wide variety of roles, from personnel carrier and command vehicle to mobile rocket launcher and bridge layer. This superb modelling guide looks at the 251/9 and 251/22 variants, mounting a 7.5cm short and long-barrelled gun respectively, with the former seeing extensive service from early 1943 and the latter emerging during the final months of the war. It is beautifully illustrated throughout with numerous colour renderings of each type, showing a range of camouflage and markings relating to specific units at particular times and places. It also includes a brief history of the two variants, as well as an overview of their service in every individual panzer formation.

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Pegasus Archive

This book has a good balance of historical and technical information together with modeling project and products. If you like the SdkFz.251, you will want to consider getting your own copy of this book.


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Another offering from Pen and Sword's popular Land Craft series, the book is a great resource for historians and modellers with an interest in German World War Two vehicles.

Classic Military Vehicle July 21

A welcome addition to the very popular Land 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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The LandCraft series therefore adds another excellent and interesting volume (number 8 ) to the others that preceded it, a joy for the model maker and the enthusiast historian.

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On The Old Barbed Wire

"These books where you have a mixture of history, camouflage and models are becoming more and more the norm. This one is well done, as are the other books in the series. Well worth picking up."

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Video review on Scale Modelling Now

Scale Modelling Now

"...another quality booklet in the series."

The Historical Miniatures Gaming Society

This is one neat book.

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AMPS Indianapolis:

Another excellent instalment in the ever-growing Dennis Oliver section of the WWII German Tank/Land Cradt series. This time on kanonenwagen variants of the German half-track workhorse that was the SdKfz 251.

All the usual elements are in place: a brief history of the design and manufacture; unit histories; the ever inspiring colour profiles segment; model showcase/products; unit composition (under the official German 'kreigsstarkenweisung' heading!): technical details, etc.

Terrifically illustrated on all fronts, from contemporary black and white photos to the colour profiles and beautifully built models. One of the nicest builds, by Juanjo Domingez, is in my favourite/chosen 1/72, and, despite its tiny size, is the chosen and favoured 'cover girl', so to speak.

Perusing this inspires me to possibly try converting one of my extant 251s into a long-barrelled kanonenwagen! And I would, unhesitatingly, recommend this to those interested in the AFVs and suchlike of this fascinating era. Excellent!

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A Question of Scale

As a military history enthusiast and a modeller, I have to admit that the Sdkfz 251, sometimes referred to as simply a 'Hanomag', has long been among my favourite modelling subjects. Despite that bias, I am confident in saying that this one really hits the spot with detailed coverage of these particular variants, and makes another useful addition to the modeller's bookcase.

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Military Model Scene, Robin Buckland

As I happen to have two Dennis Oliver books to review I will cover both with the same review.
Tiger I and Tiger II Tanks, German Army & Waffen SS, Last battles in the East 1945
SDKFZ 251, German Army & Waffen SS, Western and Eastern Fronts 1944-1945

Both books follow the well-established Oliver format of meticulous historical narrative, on point and well curated images that are properly specific to the subject and detailed information on camouflage and markings. Then for the modellers there are examples of the main available models, mostly in 1/35 scale and inspirational thoughts on getting your model right.
These books are invaluable assets in both understanding the vehicles and modelling them.

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 Panzer III: German Army Light Tank, Operation Barbarossa 1941, Panzer III: German Army Light Tank, Tripoli to El Alamein, 1941-1942 and Stug III and Stug IV: German Army and Waffen-SS, Western Front, 1944-1945.

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