Wednesday, June 8

Preview: Gecko Models new 1/16th scale WWII German Army Panzer II Ausf.F light tank

Gecko Models new tooled WWII-era German Army Panzer II Ausf.F light tank is the perfect size to be scaled up into 16th scale. We can see this one in France, Africa or in Russia with plenty of stowage & equipment, battle damaged & worn. We look at the tank & the kit in CAD to see what Gecko are offering in our preview...

 Preview: Gecko Models new 1/16th scale WWII German Army Panzer II Ausf.F light tank

WWII German Army Panzer II Ausf.F light tank
From Gecko Models
1/16th scale
Kit No #16GM0009
The kit consists of plastic injection parts & Photo-etch metal.
The Subject: Panzerkampfwagen II Ausf F
The Panzerkampfwagen II Ausf F was the last standard version of the Panzer II light tank. It had been intended that the Ausf F would replace the Ausf C on the production lines in the summer of 1940, but the design of the new model was delayed, and production did not begin until March 1941, by which point the Panzer II was disappearing from the Panzer units.

A restored Panzer II F in a museum in early WWII, Western front colours.
The Ausf F saw changes made to the front of the hull and of the superstructure. On the hull the rounded front was replaced by a single 35mm plate attached to the flat armour plate originally added to older tanks after the Polish campaign (the newer tanks can be distinguished from modified older models by the lack of a shadow at the front.

A Soviet officer examines the German Panzer II Ausf. F light tank of the Nazi Panzerwaffe, captured by soldiers of the Red Army on the farm Sukhanovsky. The Don front.
The angled right-hand corner of the superstructure was replaced by a single panel running across the front of the tank, with a dummy visor on the new right-hand section.

From the snow to the heat of Africa, the Afrika Korps used many Panzer II's and especially F models throughout the campaign.
By June 1942 it was clear that the light tank was becoming obsolete, and so it was decided to mount the 7.5cm Pak40 gun on 50% of the remaining production, to produce the Marder II self-propelled anti-tank gun (also known as the 7.5cm Pak40/2 Auf Fahrgestell Panzerkampfwagen II (Sf)). In July the ratio was increased to 100%, but production of the standard Panzer II continued until December 1942, overlapping with production of the Marder II, of which 576 were built from scratch between June 1942 and June 1943.

Panzer II's were even used when captured by the Allies. Here some G.I.'s with a war prize
By the time the Ausf F entered service, the Panzer II had been withdrawn as a battle tank, but it was still in use as a reconnaissance vehicle, equipping a platoon at Regiment, Detachment and Company level; it was withdrawn from the companies in 1942 and from regiments in 1943.

The new kit from Gecko Models
New tooling of Gecko 1/16 scale WWII German Army Panzer II Ausf.F light tank model with a full turret interior structure is a great choice - Just the right size for a small tank to be scaled up, and with the clear turret as supplied in the box, you can see the full interior of the turret.
More details of the kit with the mesh covered guards, the convoy and full headlight on the left fender are on display. Of course, there will be photo-etch, as this example shows by the holders on the spare road wheel on the front fender.
The rear engine deck. You can bet that stowage will be layed thickly on this detail. There is pleanty of room here on the grilles and no engine to display, so that will be the order of the day.
Not only the interior of the turret, but the leather look padding for the inside of the cupola hatch is included in the kit.
A walk around the kit with two looks at the CAD drawings...
The kit will be available we estimate, in August 2022.

You can find out more about Gecko Models kits on their Website