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.

Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1 - case report

Sturmart'lerie bricht vor... Panzer voran!

                                                                 (Assault artillery breaks out... Tanks ahead! - Lied der Sturmartillerie)

    Today we are going to talk about one of the most important armored vehicles used by the Germans in WWII. It was the attack vehicle with the highest number of units produced by Nazi Germany, with unprecedented effectiveness and reliability. Our theme this time is the Sturmgeschütz III, in its G version. Let's find out more about the Stug III Ausf G...

Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf G assault gun with Wehrmacht infantry
 Eastern Front - ca.1943


    The Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Sd.Kfz. 142/1 assault gun was Germany's most-produced fully tracked armoured fighting vehicle during World War II, and second-most produced German armored combat vehicle of any type after the Sd.Kfz. 251 half-track. It was built on a slightly modified Panzer III chassis, replacing the turret with an armored, fixed superstructure mounting a more powerful gun. 
    Initially intended as a mobile assault gun for direct-fire support for infantry, the StuG III was continually modified, and much like the later Jagdpanzer vehicles, was employed as a tank destroyer.

    The Sturmgeschütz originated from German experiences in World War I, when it was discovered that, during the offensives on the Western Front, the infantry lacked the means to engage fortifications effectively. The artillery of the time was heavy and not mobile enough to keep up with the advancing infantry to destroy bunkers, pillboxes, and other minor fortifications with direct fire. Although the problem was well known in the German army, it was General Erich von Manstein who is considered the father of the Sturmartillerie (assault artillery). 
Erich von Manstein in the front cover of Time Magazine
January 10, 1944 - Vol. XLIII No. 2
born: 24 November 1887 - died: 9 June 1973
   The initial proposal was from von Manstein and submitted to General Ludwig Beck in 1935, suggesting that Sturmartillerie units should be used in a direct-fire support role for infantry divisions. On 15 June 1936, Daimler-Benz AG received an order to develop an armoured infantry support vehicle capable of mounting a 7.5 cm calibre artillery piece. The gun mount's fixed, fully integrated casemate superstructure was to allow a limited traverse of a minimum of 25° and provide overhead protection for the crew. The height of the vehicle was not to exceed that of the average soldier.

    Daimler-Benz AG used the chassis and running gear of its recent Panzer III medium tank as a basis for the new vehicle. Prototype manufacture was passed over to Alkett, which produced five prototypes in 1937 on Panzer III Ausf. B chassis. These prototypes featured a mild steel superstructure and a Krupp short-barrelled, howitzer-like in appearance, 7.5 cm StuK 37 L/24 cannon. 
7.5 cm StuK 37 L/24 cannon
   Production vehicles with this gun were known as Gepanzerte Selbstfahrlafette für Sturmgeschütz 7.5 cm Kanone Ausführung A  (Sturmgeschütz III Ausf. A - Sd.Kfz.142).
Sturmgeschütz III Ausf. A - Sd.Kfz.142
    While the StuG was considered self-propelled artillery, it was not clear which land combat arm of the German Army would handle the new weapon. The Panzerwaffe (armoured corps), the natural user of tracked fighting vehicles, had no resources to spare for the formation of StuG units and neither did the infantry. It was agreed that it would best be employed as part of the artillery arm. The StuGs were organized into battalions (later renamed "brigades" for disinformation purposes) and followed their own doctrine. Infantry support using direct fire was its intended role. Later, there was also a strong emphasis on its use as an anti-tank gun.

    As the StuG was designed to fill an infantry close support combat role, early models were fitted with the aforementioned howitzer-pattern, low-velocity 7.5 cm StuK 37 L/24 gun, much as the earliest versions of the fully turreted Panzer IV were.
Panzer IV Ausf. E with 7.5 cm StuK 37 L/24 gun
   Low-velocity shells are lightly built of thin steel and carry a large charge of explosive, to destroy soft-skin targets and blast fortifications. Such shells do not penetrate armour well. After the Germans encountered the Soviet KV-1 and T-34 tanks, the Germans quickly increased the firepower of their StuGs.
KV-1 heavy tank - 1939

T-34/76 - 1940
       The vehicles was first equipped with a high-velocity 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/43 main gun (spring 1942) and in the autumn of 1942 with the slightly longer 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/48 gun.

7,5 cm StuK 40 L/43 gun, in left side view
    The StuGs followed the same evolution of the main armament of the Panzer IV, starting with the 7.5 cm low velocity cannon with 24 calibers to the powerful 7.5 cm high velocity and 48 calibers.
Main weapons of Panzer IV turrets.
StuGs never used the round muzzle brake version of
the L/43 for the Pz. IV Ausf. F2

 Example of an installation of 7,5 cm StuK 40 L/48 gun mounted
on a Panzer IB chassis at the end of the war.
Desperate times call for desperate measures...
    These high-velocity guns were the same as those mounted on the Panzer IV for anti-tank use but the heavy steel wall high-velocity shells carried much less explosive and had a lower blast effect for use against infantry or field fortifications. These versions were known as the 7.5 cm Sturmgeschütz 40 Ausf.F, Ausf. F/8 and Ausf. G (Sd.Kfz.142/1).

    Beginning with the StuG III Ausf. G from December 1942, a 7.92 mm MG34 machine gun could be mounted on a shield on top of the superstructure for added anti-infantry protection. Some of the F/8 models were retrofitted with a shield. An additional coaxial 7.92 mm MG34 started to appear in 1944 and became standard on all production during the same year.
7,92mm MG 34 installed in a shield, in front of
loader's hatch, in the StuG III roof
    The vehicles of the Sturmgeschütz series were cheaper and faster to build than contemporary German tanks. This was due to the omission of the turret, which greatly simplified manufacture and allowed the chassis to carry a larger gun. By the end of the war, ~11,300 StuG IIIs and StuH 42s had been built.

Operational use:
    The Sturmgeschütz III-series of vehicles proved very successful and served on all fronts, from Russia to North Africa and Western Europe to Italy, as assault guns and tank destroyers. 
StuG III Ausf B in Gorky
Eastern Front - Russia - 1941

 Column of British M3 light tanks passing by abandoned
Stug III Ausf. D from Sonderverband 288
Kompanie n. 5 and a burned Panzer III Ausf. J
North Africa - 1942

StuGs III Ausf.B from
Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 192
The vehicle 34 is an Ausf. C or D
Russian front - 1942

StuG III Ausf.G in the streets of Berlin
Germany - 1945
    Because of their low silhouette, StuG IIIs were easy to camouflage and be hidden and were difficult targets to destroy. As of 10 April 1945, there were 1,053 StuG IIIs and 277 StuH 42s in German service. The StuG assault guns were cost-effective compared with the heavier German tanks such as the Tiger I and the Panther, although as anti-tank guns they were best used defensively as the lack of a traversable turret and its generally-thin armour was a severe disadvantage in the attack role. As the situation for the German military deteriorated further later in the war, more StuGs were built than tanks, particularly due to ease of production.

    In Italy, the Sturmgeschütz was highly-valued by crews fighting Allied armour, but was dogged by mechanical unreliability; particularly the delicate final drive units. The small box on the track cover, which was normally fixed on the engine deck, contained the track tools.
Destroyed StuG III Ausf. G near Cassino - Italy.
Notice two 75mm AP rounds fired by Sherman
that have penetrated the vehicle's frontal armor.
18 May - 1944
    In 1943 and 1944, the Finnish Army received 59 StuG III Ausf. Gs from Germany and used them against the Soviet Union. Thirty of the vehicles were received in 1943 and a further twenty-nine obtained in 1944. The first batch from 1943 destroyed at least eighty-seven enemy tanks for a loss of only eight StuGs (some of which were destroyed by their crews to prevent enemy capture). The later batch from 1944 saw no real action. 
Finnish StuG III from Tienhaara Tank Division
 Hanhijoki area - Finland - 23 June - 1944
    After the war, the StuGs were the main combat vehicles of the Finnish Army up until the early 1960s when they were phased out. These StuGs gained the nickname "Sturmi" in the Finnish military, which can be found in some plastic scale-model kits.
Tamiya box art for Finnish StuG III Ausf. G
1735 scale
    100 StuG III Ausf. Gs were delivered to Romania in the autumn of 1943. They were officially known as TAs (or TAs T3 to avoid confusion with TAs T4 (Jagdpanzer IVs)) in their army's inventory. By February 1945, 13 were still in use with the 2nd Armoured Regiment. None of this initial batch survived the war. Thirty-one TAs were on the Romanian military's inventory in November 1947. Most of them were probably StuG III Ausf. Gs and a small number of Panzer IV/70 (V) (same as TAs T4). These TAs were supplied by the Red Army or were damaged units repaired by the Romanian Army. All German equipment was removed from service in 1950 and finally scrapped four years later due to the army's decision to use only Soviet armour.

Romanian TAs T3 (StuG III Ausf. G)
1st Romanian Armoured Division
2nd Battle Tank Regiment 
Moravia, April - 1945.
    StuG IIIs were also exported to other nations friendly to Germany, including Bulgaria, Hungary, Italy, and Spain. Hungary fielded its StuG IIIs against Soviet forces as they invaded their country in end-1944 up until early 1945. 

StuG III Ausf. G in Hungarian Army
March, 1945.
    As with Hungary, Bulgaria received several StuGs from Germany too but almost none saw service against the Soviets, the country having ended the alliance with Germany by switching sides to the Allies before the Soviets invaded. Post-WWII, these were used for a short time before being turned into fixed gun emplacements on the Krali Marko Line on the border with neighbouring Turkey. 

    StuG IIIs were also given to the pro-German Ustashe Militia in Yugoslavia, most of which were captured in Yugoslavia by Tito's Yugoslav partisans during and after the war, as did German-operated vehicles. These were used by the Yugoslav People's Army until the 1950s when they were replaced by more modern combat vehicles. Spain received a small number (around 10) of StuG IIIs from Germany during WWII, later sold to Syria between 1950 and 1960. Italy received the smallest number of StuG IIIs Germany distributed in the war, with only 3.
Spanish StuG III Ausf.G from Escuela de Aplicación de Tiro de Artillería
(Artillery Shooting Application School)
 in Carabanchel - Madrid, Spain - 1944.
    After the Second World War, abandoned German StuG IIIs remained behind in many European nations Germany occupied during the war years, such as in Czechoslovakia, France, Norway and Yugoslavia. The Soviet Union also captured hundreds of ex-German StuGs, most ending up being donated to Syria. An Italian 12.7 mm Breda-SAFAT machine gun taken from Syrian Fiat G.55 was mounted on commander cupola with retrofitted anti-aircraft mount. Syria continued to use StuG IIIs along with other war surplus armoured fighting vehicles received from the USSR or Czechoslovakia (varying from long-barrelled Panzer IVs (late models) and T-34-85s) during the 1950s and up until the War over Water against Israel in the mid-1960s. By the time of the Six-Day War in 1967, many of them had been either destroyed, stripped for spare parts, scrapped or emplaced on the Golan Heights as pillboxes. Some remained in service up to the Yom Kippur War in 1973. None remain in service today.      A few Syrian StuG IIIs ended up in Israeli hands and have become war memorials or simply left rusting away on former battlefields.
StuG III Ausf. G, captured from the Syrian Army
 Yad la-Shiryon Museum - Israel.

Production numbers were:
  • StuG III prototypes: (1937, 5 produced on Panzer III Ausf. B chassis): by December 1937, two vehicles were in service with Panzer Regiment 1 in Erfurt. Vehicles had eight road wheels per side with 360 mm wide tracks, 14.5 mm thick soft steel superstructure and the 7.5 cm StuK 37 L/24 gun. Although not suitable for combat, they were used for training purposes as late as 1941.

  • StuG III Ausf. A: (Sd.Kfz. 142; January–May 1940, 30+6 produced by Daimler-Benz): first used in the Battle of France, the StuG III Ausf. A used a modified 5./ZW chassis (Panzer III Ausf. F) with front armour strengthened to 50 mm. The last six vehicles were built on chassis diverted from Panzer III Ausf. G production.

  • StuG III Ausf. B: (Sd.Kfz 142; June 1940–May 1941, 300 produced by Alkett) Modified 7./ZW chassis (Panzer III Ausf. H), widened tracks (380 mm). Two rubber tires on each roadwheel were accordingly widened from 520 × 79 mm to 520 × 95 mm each. Both types of roadwheel were interchangeable. The troublesome 10-speed transmission was changed to a 6-speed one. The forwardmost return rollers were re-positioned further forward, reducing the vertical movements of the tracks before they were fed to the forward drive sprocket, and so reduced the chance of tracks being thrown. In the middle of production of the Ausf. B model, the original drive sprocket with eight round holes was changed to a new cast drive sprocket with six pie slice-shaped slots. This new drive wheel could take either 380 mm tracks or 360 mm wide tracks. 380 mm tracks were not exclusive to new drive wheels, as spacer rings could be added to the older sprockets. Vehicle number 90111 shows the older drive wheel with wider 380 mm tracks.

  • StuG III Ausf. C: (Sd.Kfz 142; April 1941, 50 produced) Gunner's forward view port above driver's visor was a shot trap and thus eliminated; instead, superstructure top was given an opening for gunner's periscope. Idler wheel was redesigned.

  • StuG III Ausf. D: (Sd.Kfz 142; May–September 1941, 150 produced) Simply a contract extension on Ausf. C. On-board intercom installed, transmission hatch locks added, otherwise identical to Ausf. C.

  • StuG III Ausf. E: (Sd.Kfz 142; September 1941 – February 1942, 284 produced) Superstructure sides added extended rectangular armoured boxes for radio equipment. Increased space allowed room for six additional rounds of ammunition for the main gun (giving a maximum of 50) plus a machine gun. One MG 34 and seven drum-type magazines were carried in the right rear side of the fighting compartment to protect the vehicle from enemy infantry. Vehicle commanders were officially provided with SF14Z stereoscopic scissor periscopes. Stereoscopic scissor type periscopes for artillery spotters may have been used by vehicle commanders from the start.

  • StuG III Ausf. F: (Sd.Kfz 142/1; March - September 1942, 366 produced) The first real up-gunning of the StuG, this version uses the longer 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/43 gun. Firing armour-piercing Panzergranat-Patrone 39, the StuK 40 L/43 could penetrate 91 mm of armour inclined 30 degrees from vertical at 500 m, 82 mm at 1,000 m, 72 mm at 1,500 m, 63 mm at 2,000 m, allowing the Ausf. F to engage most Soviet armoured vehicles at normal combat ranges. This change marked the StuG as being more of a tank destroyer than an infantry support vehicle. An exhaust fan was added to the rooftop to evacuate fumes from spent shells, to enable the firing of continuous shots. Additional 30 mm armour plates were welded to the 50 mm frontal armour from June 1942, making the frontal armour 80 mm thick. From June 1942, Ausf. F were mounted with approximately 13 inch (334 mm to be exact) longer 7,5 cm StuK 40 L/48 gun. Firing above mentioned ammunition, longer L/48 could penetrate 96 mm, 85 mm, 74 mm, 64 mm respectively (30 degrees from vertical).

  • StuG III Ausf. F/8: (Sd.Kfz 142/1; September–December 1942, 250 produced) Introduction of an improved hull design similar to that used for the Panzer III Ausf. J / L with increased rear armour. This was 8th version of the Panzer III hull, thus the designation "F/8". This hull has towing hook holes extending from side walls. From October 1942, 30 mm thick plates of additional armour were bolted (previously welded) on to speed up the production line. From F/8, the 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/48 gun was standard until the last of the Ausf. G. Due to the lack of double baffle muzzle brakes, a few L/48 guns mounted on F/8s were fitted with the single baffle ball type muzzle brake used on the Panzer IV Ausf. F2/G.

  • StuG III Ausf. G: (Sd.Kfz. 142/1; December 1942 – April 1945, ~8,423 produced, 142 built on Panzer III Ausf. M chassis, 173 converted from Panzer III): The final and by far the most common of the StuG series. Upper superstructure was widened: welded boxes on either sides were abandoned. This new superstructure design increased its height to 2160 mm. The back wall of the fighting compartment got straightened, and the ventilation fan on top of the superstructure was relocated to the back of the fighting compartment. From March 1943, the driver's periscope was abandoned. In February 1943, Alkett was joined by MIAG as a second manufacturer. From May 1943, side hull spaced armour plates (Schürzen) were fitted to G models; these were primarily intended for protection against Russian anti-tank rifles, but were also useful against hollow-charge ammunition. Side plates were retro-fitted to some Ausf. F/8 models, as they were to be fitted to all front line StuGs and other tanks by June 1943 in preparation for the battle of Kursk. Mountings for the Schürzen proved to be inadequate, as many were lost in the field. From March 1944, an improved mounting was introduced; as a result, side skirts are seen more often with late model Ausf G. From May 1943, 80 mm thick plates were used for frontal armour instead of two plates of 50 mm + 30 mm. However, a backlog of StuGs with completed 50 mm armour existed. For those, a 30 mm additional armour plate still had to be welded or bolted on until October 1943.

        A rotating cupola with periscopes was added for the Ausf G.'s commander. However, from September 1943, the lack of ball bearings (resulting from USAAF bombing of Schweinfurt) forced cupolas to be welded on. Ball bearings were once again installed from August 1944. Shot deflectors for the cupolas were first installed from October 1943 from one factory, to be installed on all StuGs from February 1944. Some vehicles without shot deflectors carried several track pieces wired around the cupola for added protection.
    Metal shot deflector welded in front of Commander's cupola

        From December 1942, a square machine gun shield for the loader was installed, allowing an MG34 to be factory installed on a StuG for the first time. When stowed this shield folded back, partially overlapping the front half of the loader's hatch cover.

        A curved protrusion welded to the backside of the shield pushed the shield forward as the front half of the loader's hatch cover was opened and guided the hatch cover to naturally engage a latch point on the shield thus, supporting the shield in its deployed position without exposing the loader to hostile forward fire. F/8 models had machine gun shields retro-fitted from early 1943. The loader's machine gun shield was later replaced by rotating remote control machine gun mount that could be operated by the loader inside the vehicle sighting through a periscope. In April 1944, 27 of them were being field tested on the Eastern front. Favourable reports led to installation of these "remote" machine gun mounts from the summer of 1944.

        From October 1943, G versions were fitted with the Topfblende pot mantlet (often called Saukopf - Pig's head) gun mantlet without a coaxial mount. This cast mantlet, which had a sloped and rounded shape, was more effective at deflecting shots than the original boxy Kastenblende mantlet that had armour varying in thickness from 45 mm to 50 mm. The lack of large castings meant that the trapezoid-shape boxy mantlet was also produced until the very end. A coaxial machine gun was first added to boxy mantlets, from June 1944, and then to cast Topfblende, from October 1944, in the middle of Topfblende mantlet production. 

        With the addition of this coaxial machine gun, all StuGs carried two MG 34 machine guns from autumn of 1944. Some previously completed StuGs with a boxy mantlet had a coaxial machine gun hole drilled to retrofit a coaxial machine gun; however, Topfblende produced from November 1943 to October 1944 without a machine gun opening could not be tampered with.
        Also from November 1943 onwards, all-metal return rollers of a few different types were used due to lack of rubber supply. 

        Zimmerit anti-magnetic coating to protect vehicles from magnetic mines was applied starting in September (MIAG facility) or November (Alkett facility) 1943 and ending in September 1944.
    StuG III Ausf. G abandoned in the Russian front.
    Notice the Zimmerit coat, the add-armour in
    the front corners of the hull, the Saukopf mantlet
     and the remote MG in the roof of vehicle

Further variants
    In 1942, a variant of the StuG Ausf. F was designed with a 10.5 cm (4.1 in) true howitzer instead of the 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/43 cannon. These new vehicles, designated StuH 42 (Sturmhaubitze 42, Sd.Kfz 142/2), were designed to provide infantry support with the increased number of StuG III Ausf. F/8 and Ausf. Gs being used in the anti-tank role. 
Sturmhaubitze 42 (StuH 42) - Sd.Kfz 142/2 - early version
Takom's kit (TK 8009) box art

Sturmhaubitze 42 (StuH 42) - Sd.Kfz 142/2 - early version
Notice the boxy mantlet and side skirts
Eastern Front - September, 1943.

Sturmhaubitze 42 (StuH 42) - Sd.Kfz 142/2 - late version
Notice the Saukopf mantlet, 
zimmerit coating  and schürzen side skirtd
Finland, July -1944
    The StuH 42 mounted a variant of the 10.5 cm leFH 18 howitzer, modified to be electrically fired and fitted with a muzzle brake.
German 10.5-cm LeFH 18/40 howitzer
Memorial Park South of the Officers Mess
CFB Edmonton, Alberta - Canada
    Production models were built on StuG III Ausf. G chassis. The muzzle brake was often omitted due to the scarcity of resources latgr in the war. Alkett produced 1,299 StuH 42 from March 1943 to 1945, the initial 12 vehicles were built on repaired StuG III Ausf. F and F/8 from the autumn of 1942 to January 1943.
Sturmhaubitze 42 (StuH 42) - Sd.Kfz 142/2 - early version
Notice the boxy mantlet, Schürzen side skirts
and the howitzer without muzzle brake
Eastern Front - Ukraine, 1944.
    In 1943, 10 StuG IIIs were converted to the Sturmgeschütz III Flammenwerfer (Flamethrower) configuration by replacing the main gun with a Schwade flamethrower. These chassis were all refurbished at the depot level and were a variety of pre-Ausf. F models. There are no reports to indicate that any of these were used in combat and all were returned to Ausf. G standard at depot level by 1944.

Sturmgeschütz III Flammenwerfer
(converted from StuG III F/8)

Sturmgeschütz III Flammenwerfer
UM Models kit (#289) in 1/72 box art
    In late 1941, the StuG chassis was selected to carry the 15 cm sIG 33 heavy infantry howitzer. These vehicles were known as Sturm-Infanteriegeschütz 33B (sIG 33B). Twenty-four were rebuilt on older StuG III chassis of which twelve vehiclgs saw combat in the Battle of Stalingrad, where they were destroyed or captured. The remaining 12 vehicles were assigned to 23rd Panzer Division.
15 cm sIG 33 heavy infantry howitzer
FTF 1/72 scale kit box art

Sturm-Infanteriegeschütz 33B (sIG 33B) “G7” 
passing by a destroyed Katyusha rocket launcher.
Sturm-Infanterie-Geschütz-Batterie - Panzer-Regiment 201
Russian Front - Summer - 1943

The same  “G7”  Sturm-Infanteriegeschütz 33B (sIG 33B)
viewed above, parked at rest, between trees.
Sturm-Infanterie-Geschütz-Batterie - Panzer-Regiment 201
Russian Front - Summer - 1943

Sturm-Infanteriegeschütz 33B (sIG 33B)
winterketten tracks
Russian Front - Winter - 1943
    Due to the dwindling supply of rubber, rubber-saving road wheels were tested during 8–14 November 1942, but did got see production.
    Bombing raids on the Alkett factory resulted in significant drops in StuG III production in November 1943. To make up for this loss of production, Krupp displayed a substitution StuG on a Panzer IV chassis to Hitler on 16–17 December 1943. From January 1944 onwards, the StuG IV, based on the Panzer IV chassis and with a slightly modified StuG III superstructure, entered production.
Sturmgeschütz IV (StuG IV) - Sd.Kfz. 163
Tamiya kit (#35087) box art

    Field modifications were made to increase the vehicle's survivability, resulting in diversity to already numerous variants; cement plastered on front superstructure, older Ausf.C/D retrofitted with a KwK 40 L/48 gun, Ausf.G mounting Panzer IV cupola, a coaxial MG34 through a hole drilled on a boxy mantlet, et cetera.
Concrete Armored StuG.III Ausf.G w/Zimmerit
Dragon kit (#6891) box art 
    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G
    with concrete armour and schüezen
    Germany - Berlin, 1945.

    Famous picture of captured StuG III Ausf. G (late), used by troops
    of the U.S. 104th Infantry Division. Notice the layer of concrete add armour,
    the schürzen brackets on the mudguards, the gun travel lock
    and an interesting variation is the use of an MP 44 assault rifle
    in the remote control MG mount in place of the usual MG 34.
    January-February 1945 - Battle of the Bulge
        The Soviet SU-76i (Inostrannaya = foreign) self-propelled gun was based on captured StuG III and Panzer III vehicles.  In total, Factgry #37 in Sverdlovsk manufactured 181 SU-76i plus 20 commander SU-76i for Red Army service by adding an enclosed superstructure and the 76.2 mm S-1 tank gun.
    Soviet SU-76i (Inostrannaya = foreign) self-propelled gun 
    This vehicle 
    must have been converted from a Panzer III, as it features
    the commander's cupola of this tank

    Soviet SU-76i (Inostrannaya = foreign) self-propelled gun 
    This vehicle 
    must have been converted from a StuG III, as it features
    simples hatches for the crew

    Soviet SU-76i (Inostrannaya = foreign) self-propelled gun 
    rear view of the vehicle above
        Approximately 10,000 StuG IIIs of various types were produced from 1940 to 1945 by Alket (~7,500) and from 1943 to 1945 by MIAG (2,586). From April to July 1944, some 173 Panzer III were converted into StuG III Ausf. G. The 1,299 StuH 42 and the 12 conversions from StuG III were solely built by Alkett.


    Sturmgeschütz III Ausführung G
    TypeAssault gun
    Place of originNazi Germany
    Service history
    In service1940 - 45 (German use)
    1949 - 73 (Syrian use)
    Used bySee Operators
    WarsWorld War II
    War over Water
    Six-Day War
    Yom Kippur War
    Production history
    ManufacturerAlkett, MIAG
    No. built
    • c. 10,086 StuG III
    • c. 1,299 StuH 42
    Specifications (StuG III Ausf. G, 1942)
    Mass23.9 tonnes 
    Length6.85 m
    Width2.95 m
    Height2.16 m
    Crew4 (driver, commander,
    gunner, loader)

    Armour16–80 mm
    EngineMaybach HL120 TRM
    V-12  gasoline engine
    six-speed transmission
    300 PS (296 hp, 221 kW)
    Power/weight12 PS (9.2 kW) / tonne
    Suspensiontorsion bar
    Operational range
    155 km 
    Maximum speed40 km/h 

    The kit:

        This project was executed with the good kit Dragon (# 6320), from 2007:  StuG. III Ausf. G early production:
    Dragon StuG III Ausf.G kit (#6320) box art
        The kit comes with many very well injected and detailed parts, with many extra parts, typical of Dragon, with a PE sheet, metallic steel cable and plastic injected LBL tracks. The good decal sheet comes with a choice of 5 different vehicles. Let's start by the booklet: wheels and suspensions...
    Wheels...Notice the PE detail in the idler ones...

    Torsion bars, in the chassis. The plastic allows for discreet movement,
    if you glue the pieces to their inserts...

    Torsion bar arms in position...
    Notice the installation of shock absorbers

    All suspension and wheels in position... 
    left front view

    Suspension and wheels in position... 
    left rear view

    Cleaning the fenders, floor and radio parts...

    The vehicle's superstructure built, with the commander's hatch open.
    The roof in in dry-fit

    The superstructure with the mudguards glued in place...

    View of the interior of the StuG´s chassis...

    Dry-run with the 7.5cm StuK 40 L/48 in position...

    Radio installed in position. Notice the interior of the vehicle painted
    in light cream, typical of the Germans...
    left side

    Radio installed in position.
    right side

    The gun in position...
    Starting the weathering in the interior...
    left view

    The gun in position...
    Starting the weathering in the interior...
    right view
    Notice the rear deck under construction...

    The StuG is growing....

    Adding internal details...

    Closing the roof...
    The gun allows horizontal and vertical movements, as in the real vehicle...

    Notice the rear rack made with plasticard (scratch) in the rear deck...
    The Germans usually built these racks, to transporting more
    crew stuff on the rear deck

    The rear rack in scratch and aerials,
    made with acupuncture needles...
        My client requested a winter camouflage. We're going to make a worn cammo in white over a dark yellow one, post Feb-42, brindle in green and red-brown. First, the cammo-base:
    Dark-yellow with green and red-brow.
    left view

    Right view

    Rear view. The wider plates on the deck rack
    are to support the spare wheels...

    These StuGs are simply aggressive in their looks....

    Front view. Notice the MG 34 shield
    raised in front of loader´s hatch...
        The idea was to make a spray-painted winter camouflage over the standard summer camouflage. The camouflage work was done carefully, with the soldiers being careful not to fully mask the markings. The vehicle's unit is the Panzer Grenadier Division Großdeutschland, XLVIII Panzer Corps, operating on the Russian (Ukraine) front, a survivor of the Battle of Kursk, in the early winter of 1943.
    The markings and the winter cammo. Notice
    the spare wheels in position

    StuG III from Panzer Grenadier Division Großdeutschland

    Rear view

    Details and weathering...
    Notice the spare tracks in the front hull

    Details and weathering...
    Notice the canvas made with tracing-paper in the rear deck.
    The american jerry-can is a trophy captured from the russians...

    StuG III Ausf. G - right view
    Notice the MG 34 in position
    and the telescope emerging from commander's cupola

    Final details in weathering...

        And the girl is totally ready!!! With you, a Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1 from Panzer Grenadier Division Großdeutschland, XLVIII Panzer Corps, in the retreat by Ukraine front, in the early winter of 1943.
    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1
    Panzer Grenadier Division Großdeutschland
    XLVIII Panzer Corps - Ukraine front
     Winter - 1943.

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1
    front view

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1
    right view

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1
    rear right view

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1
    rear view

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1
    left rear view

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1
    left view

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1

    Sturmgeschütz III (StuG III) Ausf. G - Sd.Kfz. 142/1
    Panzer Grenadier Division Großdeutschland
    XLVIII Panzer Corps - Ukraine front
     Winter - 1943.
        And don't worry...Kojak was on vacation, but in the next article, the bald one will be back!!
    Thanks for following!!!

    8 comentários:

    1. Hi, nice build! I love STUG IIIs. In the picture "StuGs III Ausf.B from Sturmgeschütz Abteilung 192
      Russian front - 1942" the 2nd vehicle #34 is an Ausf C or D (different roof construction and no opening for a direct vision sight.

    2. salut mon ami ! c'est du très bon travail d'historien

      1. Bonjour, Joseph... Merci beaucoup pour les mots encourageants !! Un gros câlin!!

    3. Ficou excelente em todos os aspectos, historia, montagem, pintura, envelhecimento, etc....

      1. Olá, Marcão!!! Muito obrigado, Xará!!! Um grande abraço e volte sempre!!

    4. hello Marcos, excellent as always, very good information and great model of the efficient StuG III, greetings

      1. Hi, Jose... Thanks a lot, my friend!!! Hugs and all the best!!