Wednesday, 26 February 2014

eBay bargain - Deagostini Steyr 1500A/01 & 20mm Flak 38

A chance find on eBay was this diecast (and plastic) Deagostini Steyr and AA gun set, and so I popped in a speculative (low) bid but much to my surprise I won it!

It arrived this morning and I have to say that I am very pleased with it - particularly for a war game based project. I got this two-piece set for half the price of just an equivalent plastic Steyr 1500 kit on it's own!

Now, to the purpose of this purchase...

I've been mulling over what to use as a generals staff car for my Finnish army project. At first I was going to convert a lovely Wespe resin Opel Kapitan into a c1940 Ford sedan (the two are so similar and the sedan was such a common car in Finland at the time). But then I came across mention of the supply of 3 Steyr 1500s to Finland as a gift from Germany on the very useful Axis Forum.

Marshal Mannerheim's collection of 'posh' staff cars! Including a couple
of superb Mercedes gifted to him by Adolf Hitler himself!

Apparently, Hitler himself presented Finland's Marshal Mannerheim with several different staff cars - among them a brace of Steyrs presumably for his visits to the field.

These three Styers were also presents from Herr Hitler.
Now, as you can see from the photos above the Deagostini Steyr model differs somewhat from that which the Finnish general staff had. In fact Marshal Mannerheim was given the A/02 Kommandeurwagen version - what I presume was a pretty cutting edge military car at the time - rather than the version represented by my model which is the A/01 Infantry Carrier.

If I was going to be really picky and a stickler for authenticity I guess I could cut and shut the model - removing the spare wheels - and cobble together a passable A/02, but I don't think I will. Mainly because my car is a representation of 'a' staff car, but mostly because it's a pretty sweet little model and I don't want to hack about with it. [I reserve the right to change my mind. LOL]

As for colour, well I think the Finns probably kept the German field gray colour and didn't repaint it. As much as anything it will have denoted that this car was 'something special'.

The Flak 38 presents less of a problem. The Finns ordered a quantity of these and I am guessing that they used them straight from the factory (only repainting them with white winter camo when needed I suppose). The Deagostini Flak 38 is ideal for me as it represents the gun in it's towing configuration...

I already have a nice little (cheap) model of the Flak 38 by Zvesda to represent the gun in action (I am going with the wargaming convention of having both a towed and decamped artillery piece).

Final thoughts...
I'm really pleased with this little set as it has saved me time and money. Additionally it's nice to have models that are already just to be pin washed and weathered and Bob's yer Uncle!

You might ask 'why not use the set as is?' - after all, I will need a tow vehicle for the Flak 38. Good point! Well, although I know that the Finns did use the Flak 38 I am pretty sure they didn't have the Steyr troop carrier. I was thinking that the Finns would use whatever light transport they had available - probably something like a captured GAZ truck or even a seconded commercial vehicle.

But we shall see how my collection of the models pans out. But it's nice to have these in the bag.

1 comment:

  1. I am using quite a few of these collectables, took them off the bases, and run them as late war 20mm multipurpose guns in games: