by James Blackwell


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of St.Mrs.K. 1001

The Tiger I is arguably the best known tank of all time. It is therefore somewhat surprising that there was only one variant to the basic tank. This was probably a reflection of Germany’s desperation to produce as many of the heavy battle tanks as possible.

The Sturmtiger was this sole variant.

wpe64994.gif (54088 bytes)The gigantic self-propelled mortar was designed to destroy heavy fortifications and urban structures. Ironically, by the time it entered service Germany was fighting a defensive war on all fronts. The Sturmtiger was therefore an inappropriate weapon for its time.

The Sturmtiger featured a heavily armoured, block shaped superstructure on a largely unmodified Tiger I hull. Its armament was a massive, 38cm rocket mortar which traces its origins as a naval gun.

This model represents a vehicle of HQ staff in the service of Sturmmorser Company 1001which operated in the Drolshaven and Bonn areas during early 1945. Vehicles of this unit displayed a number of general features including a prominent counterweight collar on the end of the mortar muzzle and bolted applique armour on the front lower hull.

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These photographs and the one above them illustrate some of the extra detailing on the completed model before and after painting. Note the copper wire aerials, the plasticard armour "bolted" to the front hull, the Eduard sideskirts and mesh grilles, the tow cable from picture wire and the scratchbuilt lining on the loaders hatch.

The base kit is Tamiya's 1994 Sturmtiger release (kit number 177). Eduard's brass etched set 35 085 supplied some extra details. However, many of the parts required modification or replacement, including inaccurate rifling (pretty obvious on a 38cm gun muzzle!), the Commander's vision block assembly, lifting rings and various OVE mounts. A mass of extra detail has been scratchbuilt and modified to improve the basic kit. These improvements include drilling out the lightening hole in each individual Tamiya track link!

wpeB.jpg (16891 bytes)The completed model was finished in the basic camouflage using Tamiya paints. This stark finish was softened with a light "fading" overspray of Tamiya XF-57 Buff. The mud was a combination of garden dirt, static grass and water applied liberally to the lower hull and running gear. Final weathering was applied using pastel chalks and a 2B lead pencil to highlight edges. The "I" marking was handpainted in red and white.

The relaxed crew are a combination of Tamiya, Verlinden, Dragon, Armour Accessories, Hornet and a quantity of Tamiya putty!

wpeA.jpg (21026 bytes)James' Sturmtiger took Best of Show against about 600 other excellent models at "Expo '97", Australia's open plastic model championship.








Model and photographs Copyright 1998 by James Blackwell.
Text Copyright 1998 by Brett Green.
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Last updated 26 July 2007.

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