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Manufacturer: SMK (Ukraine)
Scale: 1/87 HO
Paint: Unpainted, Unassembled, Kit do not contain paints and glue.
Condition: New in Box
The Flammpanzer 38(t) (Sd.Kfz. 138/2), later known as Hetzer ("chaser"), was aGerman light tank destroyer of the Second World War based on a modifiedCzechoslovakian Panzer 38(t) chassis. The project was inspired by the Romanian "Mareşal" tank destroyer.The name Hetzer was at the time not commonly used for this vehicle. It was the designation for a related prototype, the E-10. The Škoda factory for a very short period confused the two names in its documentation and the very first unit equipped with the vehicle thus for a few weeks applied the incorrect name until matters were cleared. However, there exists a memorandum from Heinz Guderian to Hitler claiming that an unofficial name, Hetzer, had spontaneously been coined by the troops. Post-war historians basing themselves on this statement made the name popular in their works, the vehicle was never named as such in official documents.Also from August 1944, new rear idler wheels were introduced. These had 8, 6, and 4 (not necessarily in that order) lightening holes instead of 12. These simplified the manufacturing process. In September 1944, front 16 spring leaves were increased in thickness to 9mm per leaf, rear 16 leaves maintained 7mm each in thickness. Also in September side Schurtzen's front and rear tips were bent inward to prevent them from catching bushes and get dismounted. It was discovered that driver's periscope housing acted like a shot trap, preventing incoming shells from bouncing off the front glacis. The protruding housing was removed, instead periscope was inserted into vertical cuts to the front armor from October 1944. Also from October 44, flame reducing muffler was introduced. These reduced visibility and backfire. Commander's head cushion was added to the hatch from October 1944. At the same time, road wheel's rims were riveted instead of using bolts. To cope with heavy front, and the necessity to traverse the vehicle to aim, gear ratio was lowered to 1:8 instead of 1:7.33 to reduce the stress on final gears from January 1945. Button-down Jagdpanzer 38(t) was blind to the right side. Since 20mm side armors (same as late model Panzer II's side armor) were only adequate to protect the crew from fairly small caliber guns, it was important to face the threat forward. Hence, commander's field of view was planned to be improved by installing a rotating periscope in Jagdpanzer 38(t)-Starr, just as Sturmgeschutz III and Elefant had evolved from a single pair of periscopes to all around vision blocks. However, Jagdpanzer 38(t)-Starr came too late to see the action in the field.
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