|Sdkfz 251/10 B in Ukraine circa 1942.|
In the following article I will show four different models available to the wargamer. It may surprise some to see just how much the size of these vehicles varies - although all are marketed toward the "25/28mm" gamer.
In order of size (biggest to smallest) here goes:
|Second City's 251 B.|
This kit comes in five parts (body, tracks and wheels) No machine guns are supplied. The vehicle is large being near to 1:48 scale (In fact I suspect it is a cast of a commercial kit) That said, if your funds are limited and you are prepared to do a fair bit of work, this may be an option to consider. Personally, I am tempted to take a crack at one and see if I can make it look acceptable - that is if it doesn't dwarf my Marder III!
|BAM/Warlord's 251 D.|
The track details had been chipped off before packaging and unless these were covered in scale "mud" they would disfigure an otherwise fine model. I remember asking BAM for replacements and getting these only after a few less than pleasant exchanges. If Warlord has rectified these casting and service problems I would wholeheartedly recommend the model, if not I would be wary. Sold as 1:56 scale the height appears spot-on, although they look a little narrow compared to an Artizan figure.
|AGNM excellent 251 B.|
This hunk of resin is beautifully cast with no flaws present. Like the BAM/Warlord model, this 1:56 beastie looks to be of correct height. However, this time the width looks a little better. The one problem is the length, I think it is slightly shorter than it should be. I haven't measured it but my ageing eyeballs suggest that an extra 5mm or so would improve things. This is a fairly minor niggle considering the overall excellence of this model - recommended.
|The diminutive Westwind version.|
The model is formed from hull halves that, for some weird reason, join vertically passing through the front, deck and rear of the vehicle. This is a very poor design feature as the resulting seam is extremely hard to fill. Additionally, the joining of two large hunks of metal is not for the faint-hearted. When it comes to scale these are 1:60 and therefore very small compared to modern "heroic" 28s. Westwind produce their own range of "25mm" miniatures that work well with this model but I doubt many would wish to mix these little fellas with the more modern style of figure.
As an incidental note, I have seen Westwinds SPW used to great effect with Valiant Miniature's supposedly 20mm figures!
There are other options nowadays, Tamiya (1:48) and JTFM/Die Waffenkammer (1:56) spring to mind. Sadly I don't have these to hand for comparison. Both look to be of great quality albeit in different scales.
|Comparative sizes of the four models.|
Whilst spot-on in terms of height, both the AGNM and BAM/Warlord models are not really big enough for an heroic 28 crew. If you tried to seat ten miniatures in the rear you would soon see that it just won't happen. Even if you imagine that your little men are suddenly rendered malleable, it is readily apparent that they are too broad and squat. The vehicle was cramped - but not that tiny.
|Reenactors and their mount.|
Personally, I would say that any of the first three can work with heroic 28s - just don't mix and match.