The publication of any images or informations related to nazism, fascism or any other totalitarian regimes must be understood as the reproduction of historical accuracy and not as apology to these regimes, leaders or symbols.
A publicação de qualquer imagem ou informação referentes ao nazismo, fascismo ou quaisquer outros regimes totalitários deve ser entendida como reprodução do rigor histórico e não como apologia a estes regimes, líderes ou símbolos.

Mercedes-Benz L4500R Mautier with spoked wheels - case report

      I would like to show you a project (2010) of a very interesting truck: the heavy half-track Mercedes-Benz L4500R Maultier - SdKfz 3/5.

German heavy half-track Mercedes-Benz L 4500 R Maultier
      But that is not all. In my pilgrimages through the internet, I found this interesting photo, in the excellent site of Kfz der Wehrmacht: an Mercedes-Benz L 4500 R Mautier with spoked wheels!! I've never seen this before a beast like this !!!
Mercedes-Benz L 4500 R Mautier with spoked wheels.
This truck was photographed on an Allied collecting point for war materials.
The spoke wheels of the running gear are unusual.
These wheel type could not be identified on other photos.
      Bingo! ... That was enough to trigger a new project with the brand "Panzerserra"! 
Mercedes-Benz L 4500 R Maultier - SdKfz 3/5
spoked wheels version.
      But first of all, as usual, let's know a little more about these girls:

      The Mercedes-Benz L 4500 was a heavy duty truck by Mercedes-Benz. It was built by Daimler-Benz from 1939 – 1944 in the Mercedes-Benz plant Gaggenau and from 1944 – 1945 by Saurer. The vehicle is a long-bonnet truck and was offered as a rear-wheel-drive truck (L 4500 S) 4x2: 
MB L 4500 S 4x2 with late wood cabin and wing fenders
Notice the front axle
      And an all-wheel-drive truck (L 4500 A) 4x4. 
MB L 4500 A 4x4 - Afrika Korps
      Later, a half-track version was built, with the designation of  L 4500 R. 

      The German Wehrmacht used the L 4500 with armoured and soft cabins as Flaks during World War II.
MB L 4500 A with armoured cabin with 37mm Flak 36
MB L 4500 S with metal soft cabin with 20mm Flakvierling
      Due to the lack of production material, the cabin was replaced with the simplified standardised Wehrmacht cabin and the front fenderss with simplified wings in 1943.
MB L 4500 S - interior of Einheits cabin
Brand new MB L 4500 S 4x2 with late Einheits cabin and wing fenders
MB L 4500 A:
      The L 4500 is a truck with a long bonnet, U-shape ladder frame and both front and rear rigid axle. Each axle has leaf springs. The front axle has single wheels while the rear axle has double wheels. The tyres have the size 10.5—20. A pneumo-hydraulic brake-system is used, each wheel has a drum brake, the parking brake locks the rear wheels only. For steering a ZF Type 721 is used. From the engine, the torque is transmitted to a manual five-speed gearbox with a single disk dry cluth. The gearbox also has a reduction gear. Only the rear wheels are driven. Unlike the L 4500S, the L 4500 A has an offroad gear which automatically switches on the front-wheel-drive as well. The Mercedes-Benz OM 67/4 Diesel engine is used. It is a six-cylinder inline four-stroke precombustion-chamber-injected and water-cooled diesel engine with OHV-Valvetrain.
OM 67 - OHV Valvetrain Diesel engine - 7274 cc
MB L 4500 R Maultier:
      The German combat experiences in Barbarossa Operation demonstrated that in Russia, with virtually no paved roads, thousands of wheeled vehicles stuck in the mud and snow and were abandoned in the first winter of that Operation. Even the four-wheel drive Mercedes-Benz L 4500 A could not carry cargo on the Russian off-road conditions. Therefore in 1943, Daimler-Benz built the half-track Mercedes Benz L 4500 R Maultier. Mechanically, it was the chassis of the MB L 4500 S 4x2 heavy truck with the rear suspension and transmission replaced by a tracked suspension.
MB L 4500 R prototype
Notice the rear suspension
MB L 4500 R prototype
rear view
 Later, opted to used one suspension derived from the light Panzer II, for standartization.

MB L 4500 R rear suspension
Based in the Panzer II Ausf D suspension
Father and son...
      The half-track had his weight increased, the cargo capacity has dropped to 4.5 tons, maximum speed dropped to 36 km / h and fuel consumption reached 200 liters per 100km. The MB L 4500 R released until 1944, having to build in 1486 vehicles. Other reason for their production were delays in development and then production of Schwerer Wehrmachtsschlepper (sWS).
Schwerer Wehrmachtsschlepper (sWS) cargo version
      Like his wheeled sisters, the Mercedes-Benz L 4500 R Maultier was built with metal cabins and Einheits type. They were considered excellent transporters for rough terrain, being used as cargo transporters, guns and artillery tractors.
MB L 4500 R with soldiers and a rabbit - cargo version - metal cabin
MB L 4500 R as GMC: Flak 36 - 37mm gun in the winter

MB L 4500 R as tractor: towing  a PAK 43 88mm AT gun
MB L 4500 R as tractor: towing  a PAK 40 75mm AT gun
In his natural habitat: snow and mud

MB L 4500 R as tractor: towing  a Flak 36 - 37mm AA gun
MB L 4500 R as cargo transporter in the mist...
MB L 4500 R Einheits cabin - rear view

MB L 4500 R Einheits cabin
Olive drab and allied star - captured byBritish and under avaliation
"WVEE 1573" meaning Wheeled Vehicle Enemy Equipement, number 1573
Notice the drive sprocket is smaller than the ones in the metal cabin versions.
The end of a warrior...

My version:
      My kit was built based in the actual pic and nothing is known about why she be using spoked wheels. Much was discussed at the time of the construction of this kit (2010) which wheels were ... As it was a German vehicle, the logic indicates that they were German wheeled wheels: I opted for Panzer I spoked wheels.

Panzerserra's guidance blueprint
     Another intriguing detail: a white stripe on the engine's bonnet of this vehicle. Would she be using a piece of an old DAK vehicle ?? Or even a whole desert vehicle would have suffered a full overhaul?  Who knows ?? But my girl will wear this band, I guarantee!
Notice the white band in the engine's bonnet... 

Mercedes Benz L 4500 R Maultier
Daimler-Benz (1943-1944)
Number built                                                                                   
Technical specifications
Heavy half-tracked truck - tractor
6 cylinder in line , Daimler-Benz OM67/4 Diesel - 7274 cc
112bHp at 2250 rpm
7900 mm
2350 mm
3350 mm
Half leaf springs and 1/4 elliptic leaf springs on the track wheels
5 speed OD (ZF license),"fak 45" with reduction (5/1 x2 gears) at a 1:9.2 ratio
Pulled load:
4,5 t
5,0 t
Action radius:
25 to 36 km/h
400 km.
The kit:
      I used the excellent kit from Zvezda (#33603) for this girl:
Zvezda's 3603 kit - Very good!!
      And I had an old Zvezda Panzer I kit in my scrap box:
My spoked German whells option

Law of the Conservation of Matter applied to the military models:
"Nothing in your collection is lost, everything can be transformed. "
      Open the holes in the spoked wheels...

Wearing the wheels in my mini-lathe ... This vehicle was very used ...
Final results!!

       By the book, building the Maultier chassis and suspension...The kit is gorgeous!!
      As I used "scrap" wheels ( I hate "kill" new kits...), some alignment adjustments were needed. Here, making washers to adjust distances

In position...
And the links in position. Perfect!!!
Cargo bed!
Right view...
adding details in the cabin...
       And my decals, made with my Lasercolorprint. The Gulf badge is for my pump-fuel...
The previous painting...
...and the decals in position!!! Good
Next step: close the cabin!!
      I have decided to use the plastic canvas that comes with the kit. I thought she looked pretty convincing ...

Preparing the white band (faixa branca in Portuguese...)
and modifying the rear fender ...
New fender in position...
  Painting time: girl from 1943...German dark yellow:  not soo dark!!

The canvas...
The canvas, ready for painting...

Luftwaffe!! left side
Luftwaffe!! right side
Rear view
Keep distance!!
The canvas glued in position...

The canvas was a great surprise ...
I like of this canvas!!

Now, the weathering...
       And the Mercedes-Benz L 4500 R Maultier - SdKfz 3/5 was ready.

Mercedes-Benz L 4500 R Maultier - SdKfz 3/5
front view

The two sisters toghether: tracked and wheeled!!
Two Mercedes girls...with big nose!!

      Well... Another oddball (with references...) to my collection. Thanks, Gents !!
See you soon!! 

4 comentários:

  1. Hallo, mein Kamerad im Kampf
    Nice, nice :)
    A lot of change and influence the very light, when the equipment is the so-called cannon wheel or spoke wheel. Fit well, and much better than the overgrown built

  2. Hallo Marcos, your selection and construction of the German girls unusual is again perfect. Perfect studying German military history, perfect build... Good Luck!