In the building of the Panzer I Ausf F, during the research on this monster, I found many similarities between the Panzer I Ausf F and Panzer II Ausf J. They shared the same philosophy of construction and use, same suspensions, wheels, tracks and engine. They are first cousins!!!
|Panzer I Ausf F|
|Panzer II Ausf J|
Well, if they are so similar, why not build them together??
So let's stop rambling and let's work!!
First of all, the real thing...
The VersuchsKetten VK-1601 (experimental fully tracked vehicle 16 tons model 01) was a tank slightly based on the Panzer II. The object was to improve the armor and therefore the survivality in the battefield. In order to do so the frontal armor was 80 mm and 50 mm in the side hull /turret. This tank copied the crew layout in the Pz II , with an Tank commander/gunner/ loader, radio operator and driver.
The development for an "ZERO" series was issued in December 1939, development of the chassis was entrusted ton MAN and the turret went to Daimler-Benz. The fisrt VK1601 was completed in June 1940.
This tank had an interleaved suspension of similar desing to the prototipe "VK901" but more strongly built in order to support the aditional weight. The hull and the superestructure was buil as one unit ( A departure from the German practice up to this time wich was a bolted superestructure.)
Command who can... Obey who has sense!! - Notice the Vk 1601 turret
|A VK-1601 in summer cammo|
In total 22 VK1601 were manufactured between April - December 1942, The "Ausf J" designation was a extraoficial one used mostly by the soldiers. The armament being a 20 mm automatic KwK 38 gun and a 7,92mm MG-34 with 2150 AP bullets. The turret was traversible only by hand. Photos of this tank are very hard to find.
|Panzer II Ausf J in good company: following a Panzer IV|
|Other angle of the same situation above|
Seven VK 1601 (Ausf J) were issued to 12th Panzer Division, which was fighting on the Eastern Front. Some were delivered to the 13th Polizei Panzer Kompanie, in 1942.
In 1944, one of them was converted into a recovery vehicle - Bergepanzer II Ausf J. Later on in 1944/45, the same vehicle served with Panzer Werkstatt Kompanie (Tank Repair Company) of 116th Panzer Division.
|Pz II Ausf J in Eastern Front|
|Another shot of one VK-1601 with Panzer IV and infantarie|
|Bergepanzer VK-1601 - profile|
All of those designs finally led to the development of VK 1303 - Panzerspahwagen II Ausf L Luchs.
|Designation||Panzerkampfwagen II VK-1601 Ausf j|
|Crew||3 (cdr, gnr, drv)|
|Armament||1 x 20 mm KwK 38 L/55|
1 x 7.92mm MG34 machine-gun
|Armour Thickness||50mm to 80mm|
|Engine||Maybach HL45P petrol,|
285cu in/5 litre, 150hp
|Transmission||Maybach double differential|
|Suspension||Transverse torsion bar|
Like the Panzer I Ausf F, the kit is very simple. Comes packaged in a thin cardboard box with the pieces in a single sealed plastic bag.
|Sprues in one sealed plastic bag|
|Adding the rear grill|
The alignment of the drive sprockets:
The interleaved wheels in position:
Fast, is not it?? Now, these two German Girls will walk together!!
Thanks, Tankers, for the incentive...
The Panzer II was painted with Panzer I, as you guys saw the pictures of the other topic ...
|The two girls in yellow...again...|
|Panzer II Ausf J in tones of yellow|
|...and with camouflage in stripes.|
After the camouflage, I applied a layer of Future, for decals. I choose for my Panzer II Ausf J the marks of 12th Panzerdivision (Heer), serving in "Kompanie Bethke", Eastern front, 1943.
|Panzer II Ausf J - 12th Panzerdivision (Heer) - "Kompanie Bethke" - 1943|
|Panzer II Ausf J - right side|
|Panzer II Ausf J - rear view|
The final step of this project: Pummelig (Chubby) is ready for action...
|Panzer II Ausf J Pummelig (Chubby) - the nickname is justified...|
|Panzer II Ausf J - left view|
|Panzer II Ausf J - right view|
|Panzer II Ausf J - 12th Panzerdivision (Heer) -Kompanie Bethke - Eastern Front - 1943.|
Thanks, Tankers, for the incentive...