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Armor/AFV: Axis - WWII
Armor and ground forces of the Axis forces during World War II.
Hosted by Darren Baker
Review-Blog: Schienen Panzerspähwagen 204 (f)
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Monday, May 01, 2017 - 06:11 AM GMT+7
Hello together,

Following the in-box review of the said vehicle, I will now shed further light on this one with the accompanying build blog.


After the end of World War I the cavalry had become a medium of debate and by 1931 the French Army was focusing on the mechanization of its cavalry. Panhard, Berliet, Latil and Renault had acted upon the request for proposals for a vehicle meeting the following specs, 4 tons, 400km range and a maximum speed of 70km/h amongst others. In October 1933 Panhard’s ‘Automitrailleuse de Découverte Panhard Modèle 1935’ (the official designation of the vehicle) was completed and by 1934 Panhard won the bid after trials. The vehicle was now simply being called ‘Panhard voiture spéciale type 178’ or ‘Panhard 178’. The vehicle was significantly heavier with 8 tons and its range was limited to 300km, however it was chosen as the best of all the prototypes. The ‘Panhard 178’ was a 4x4 vehicle and had a driver seat in both forward and backward facing directions, distinguishing it from many other armored cars.

*

Production of the first 30 vehicles started in 1935 and by 1937 many flaws were apparent and major modifications and new trials were carried out after the production of the first 30 vehicles. By May 1940 some 339 ‘Panhard 178’ had been produced. By June 1940 a total of 491 vehicles had been completed of which 480 vehicles were in service in “Escadron” units according to French sources. In total there were 729 units built, including 176 during the German occupation in 1940. As the German Army did not have organized cavalry units as the French, the captured Panhards were used as ‘Panzerspähwagen’, or reconnaissance vehicles attached to armored divisions. In total 40 of all 190 captured vehicles were modified to receive rail wheels and classified as ‘Schienenpanzer’ or ‘Eisenbahnschutzfahrzeuge’, though some sources claim 43 vehicles were converted.

The converted vehicles were in some cases attached to armored trains, however, they were mostly used for anti-partisan duty in the East, patrolling important railway lines and driving ahead of important cargo trains guarding their path.


Before we begin, a bit more information is needed. According to OKH Akten 457 ** of Panzerzug 3, the respective vehicles were classified as Pz. Sp. Wg. aka Panzerspähwagen, without any further annotations distinguishing the different kinds of such vehicles. See the image from official OKH documents from 1943. As there are 640 pages, and I only got to page 54 so far, it will take some more time going through this one.


As such, I will comply and refer to the vehicle as the Panzerspähwagen (Pz. Sp. Wg.) from now on unless more insights to the official nomenclature arise (or are given to me by experts).

As stated in the review, about 40 or 43 of the captured Panhard 178s were converted and were fitted with the late type APX3 turrets. These distinguish them from the earlier models, which lacked a rear view episcope and the two Gundlach periscopes on the turret roof. Most, if not all of them saw action on the Eastern front.

The vehicles were modified so that the wheels could be changed from rail to roadwheels in about ten minutes. As such it was a very versatile and highly mobile vehicle.

Further readings and research suggestions for interested modellers:

For photos of the original Panhard 178, check out:
http://bit.ly/2qqbAH8
This French page is loaded with info and has some nicely written text about its qualities.

Further information can be found on tanks-encyclopedia:
http://bit.ly/2qqk94S

Some live-footage is available on youtube:
http://bit.ly/2qlBHC3

Have a good day,
/Stefan


sources:
*) On Tbof
http://bit.ly/2pAZPji
**) OKH Akten 457 p.12:
http://bit.ly/2pPLujB
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Thursday, May 04, 2017 - 04:28 AM GMT+7
A little update on the build of the Panzerspähwagen.

As mentioned int eh review, the louvres are not too nice and I have decided to replace them with the VModels PE set # 35102
Review: http://bit.ly/2qwhrO0

The kit ones before removal:

And after removal with the replacement parts of VModels. After cutting and drilling out the interior of the louvres, it is now time to bend and adjust all these PE parts. In total, about 50 of the 80 are used for the 3 doors.

This will take quite some time.

In the meantime, I have assembled the first parts of the hull. Nothing spectacular... As you may notice, I ran out of primer, so need to wait for the new one... The fan is towards the rear of the vehicle. Looking forwards, the engine is located in the right rear, the rear driver's seat to the left.



The handbook indicates using FLAT WHITE for the interior. Wouldn't this one be rather ivory though? Some people might know, I hope. Thanks for your help in advance. Also I am no painting pro, so it might be awkward to the experts and feel free to shout out any comments a

A few shots of the real thing, the non-rail version:
*
Notice the wooden poles to hold the bed antenna. I'd assume it would be the same with the rail version? Any ideas? So far I have not identified a photo to prove either one (steel or wood) as the way to go...

The front of the vehicle

**
A shot from the rear:

***

I hope this is of interest and amusing to some.
Have a good one,
/Stefan

sources:
* http://www.imcdb.org/
** http://ww2photo.se
*** http://www.warwheels.net/


ivanhoe6
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Wisconsin, United States
Joined: April 05, 2007
KitMaker: 1,220 posts
Armorama: 751 posts
Posted: Thursday, May 04, 2017 - 05:09 AM GMT+7
Stefan, First, welcome to Armorama ! Secondly, that was a very well written review of this kit. And last but not least, thanks for doing the build log of this interesting kit ! Great links & fotos !
I don't think that the Germans would repaint the insides Elfenbein. My GUESS it would of remained what ever color the French painted it.
Anyway, please keep posting your build fotos.
Tom
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Thursday, May 04, 2017 - 09:58 AM GMT+7
Hi Tom, welcome aboard and thanks.
Amongst the AFV stuff, I am a rail fan and as such, am really thankful that Darren supplied the kit to a new guy like me. I am trying to keep it informative and a bit photographic.
Hmm, 178 Panzerspähwagen or more were built in 1940 under German supervision... Maybe they did switch this to Ivory, or kept the French paint or...^^?
Would the colour of the below picture be reasonable, else I'll stick with the flat white as Tom suggested? I need to read about French tank interior colors, I guess, as I have no clue...

*

Prost,
/Stefan

Sources:
* http://bit.ly/2qFiPeh
kandahar
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Tokyo-to, Japan / 日本
Joined: December 29, 2013
KitMaker: 47 posts
Armorama: 47 posts
Posted: Thursday, May 04, 2017 - 12:30 PM GMT+7
Hi Stefan

French armoured vehicles were painted white inside not ivory. Two other sources for the Panhard 178 are in Editions du Barbotin's Trackstory series. No. 2 (out of print) and No. 14 both cover the Panhard 178 in detail with No. 2 being perhaps more detailed about the German versions.

Christopher
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
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KitMaker: 140 posts
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Posted: Thursday, May 04, 2017 - 05:55 PM GMT+7
Christopher,
Thanks for sharing this. I wanted to order the no2 two weeks ago, but had not found it for sale so far. White it is then. I'm still trying to get hold of the no2 issue.
/Stefan
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Monday, May 08, 2017 - 08:09 PM GMT+7
Good day,

while I am waiting for my new compressor for the paint brush, I am continuing with the OKH and OKW research.
Due to bad view range during the night, a searchlight was requested for all 8 Pz.Sp.Wg. of Eisenbahn Panzertriebwagen 15 on October 31st, 1943. This was to be better able to search the tracks and to find the way of passage during the night on narrow paths.

*p297
(I got more detailed drawings available of requested).

Additionally, a red/green light switch was to be installed for the commanders and drivers. This was to be included as communication was impossible due to the loud sounds within the vehicle (according to the OKH report). A green flashing light would indicate the request of more speed, flashing red lights of lower speeds, red light equals stop, green light equals, keep the speed, no light = engine off.

And for those interested in vehicle numbers and unit assignments and more, this might be of interest:

*p295
This table shows the names of the following for the 8 vehicles assigned:

Commander
Forwards driver
Backwards driver
Radio operator
Vehicle number (WH)
Engine number
Chassis number
The engine number of the 2nd vehicle of GRUPPE I is missing, due to the "missing engine sign plate".

Have a good one, enjoy the day, keep modelling.
/Stefan
For the fun of it, here a one day change of the front around BOROMLJA (Ukraine near Charkiw), showing the Eisb.Pz.Tr.Wg.15:


*p622 and 623

sources:
* OKH Akte 518 page 293pp
http://bit.ly/2qlvLcH
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 10, 2017 - 10:31 AM GMT+7
Some minor progress...

My new compressor arrived today, so painting can resume and thereby this build. I have continued work on the engine in conjunction with the HL 42 TRM engine. The Panhard engine is fairly crude and basic. As it is hidden within the vehicle, only minor wiring up top where it might be seen through the louvres, will be added.
Compare it with the HL 42 TRM (of SKP Models with major modifications). I will add more grade and darker shades to the Panhard engine as it is still way too shiny and newish-looking.



The colours are according to ICM's instructions. It seems a bit too aluminiumish and too bright. I will collect grease and thick and dirty tractor oil of a friend's tractor and add some, well grease to the tiny engine^^.
In the end, I want to get it kind of like this one here, from there I can move on with detail painting and add the grease, or what do you think?

And here an engine parade...
[/url]
The four right-most engines will all go into vehicles for the BR52 dio. The size difference to the Tiger engine is quite impressive.

Take care, thanks for looking in, hope it is of interest to you.

/Stefan
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Wednesday, May 17, 2017 - 05:49 PM GMT+7
Good day together,

I have begun spraying the interior with colour. I am using Revell acrylics colour, flat white in this case.


The engine compartment received a coat of Dunkelgelb.


Dry-fitting the engine

Some parts will be added here, as the engine is just too basic and I am not really happy with it. Looking at some photos of the detail, some parts of it are actually too small.
*1)

The floor received a coat of RAL 7021 and had to be taped.
The instructions do not suggest painting all in white beforehand, but a review of the Panhard 178 by another forum member did say so, very useful bit of information there, I read it too late.

After all, it is a fairly small vehicle:


Have a good day,
Stefan
sources:
*1) http://www.warwheels.net
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 05:04 AM GMT+7
A quick engine update.
As said, the engine was too crude and I modified it accordingly as best I could.
Here the original and the modified one.

Original (source see above):

Modiified:

The fit of all the parts is just perfect.

The right hand side interior wall with the MG ammo boxes. There will be quite a few additions to add some more detail to the driver's compartment. I need to find a FUG now and produce 25mm rounds, as the kit 25mm ammo is the only useless part there is!
The "Hotchkiss 25mm SA35" gun was renamed to "2.5cm KwK 121(f) L/53" it is a shortened 25mm SA-L Mle1934 gun "2.5cm Pak 112(f) L/72)". The KwK used a few varieties of ammo, i.e. 2,5cm Pzgr patr 122(f), 123(f), 124(f) & 125(f), according to axxishistory.com
I am not paying attention to the order of construction, as I am doing minor modifications and the research progress is dictating the work order.


Thanks again Darren,
this is an amazing kit!
/Stefan

Further readings about the ammo and guns:
http://bit.ly/2rvJ5bp
http://bit.ly/2rvJryf
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 11:51 PM GMT+7
After the engine, it was time to add a (maybe a FuG 20 SE 30), which was common with radio vehicles. As this vehicle will be depicted later in the war, for sure the French radio was exchanged for something German. I took parts of a Brummbär kit and scratched the rest. It is not ready yet, I could not finish it last night, will try and finish the radio tonight and continue with the 25mm ammo.
The original French radio:

The real thing:
*)
The replaced FuG and some of the cables:

The cable towards the antenna is also ready, but not yet added to the connector rod (running through the two black mini boxes to the right side of the main radio equipment( Torn.E.b and 30-W.S.a). The batteries are mounted on top, it was the only space for them, so I assume they must be placed like this. The controls for the internal radio will be on top of the batteries.



I also tackled the fire extinguisher box.
It was depicted as closed and I wanted it to be open ad the vehicle will be depicted during repairs and as such maintenance was carried out.

The original French ones can be seen here, I have added red German ones. They do look bad as of now, I need to modify them as they totally suck, but the parts are so small and I cut myself badly with the copper which I used for the casing.
*)


The interior may be kept as it is with the kit as it is, it is looking nice, however I just wanted to adapt the interior to the time period and theatre of war.

Cheers,
/Stefan
sources:
* http://www.pangea-systems.com/
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Friday, May 19, 2017 - 10:05 AM GMT+7
The vehicle was around steam locomotives and therefore vapour, steam and humidity would have taken their toll on the vehicle. I am no fan of exaggerated weathering, but I went a bit heavier here, due to the above effects. Also grease and such would be readily carried into the vehicle and where hands would go to keep the balance or to open doors, I added filth and dirt to the walls. It looks a bit intenser than the real thing, I will also tone it down slightly. For the vapour "damage" to the paint, I used light blue with 90% water. Around the feet and arms of the drivers, I added intense decoloration as the constant touching of the wall (due to gear shifting and such) with the arms and legs would have made them pretty dirty.
I will later also add four gas masks and 1 or 2 MP40s.


As I was not happy with the ammo of the kit, I redid the 25mm rounds. As they were 194mm long, I cut them 5.5mm long then sanded the tips of each one individually, as the drill broke them while trying to do it with a power drill. It took ages, but I am happy with the result. The plastic block to the left, was the part of the kit.

Now they look like this:


Above the 25mm shells is a little hole (to the right of the MG ammo), I will add a pin there, which was there to hold MG ammo rounds. I don't want to place all rounds there, I will leave this one off and simply add the respective pin. The vehicle came back from an anti-partisan duty and had used some ammo along the way.

Let me know what you think of it.
Have a good weekend,
/Stefan
brekinapez
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Georgia, United States
Joined: July 26, 2013
KitMaker: 706 posts
Armorama: 704 posts
Posted: Friday, May 19, 2017 - 12:58 PM GMT+7
Looking good so far; like the extra bits you are adding in.

Like it so much that while I was waiting for the primer on 3 other kits I'm building to dry plus building a Revell Spitfire Mk IIa, I started this kit as well and managed to finish through Step 13 my first evening. You definitely made me not leave this one on the shelf.
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
Armorama: 130 posts
Posted: Friday, May 19, 2017 - 04:21 PM GMT+7
Lol how funny is that, nice, so we are now 2 folks building this one. We should start a rail /traincampeign^^
Are you following the instructions? I need to check out yours, any link or photos to your buil? Feel freee to add your pictures here.
The front driver has a gun to its side... a french sub MG, I might replace this with a StG 44 or MP40 as it suits the vehicle better. That is another thing to think about for you also. Will you do some modifications or an OOB?
/Stefan
GazzaS
#424
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Queensland, Australia
Joined: April 23, 2015
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Posted: Friday, May 19, 2017 - 04:51 PM GMT+7
Very interesting build Stefan. I've been dropping by periodically and enjoying your work on this best looking of all French armor.

Keep it up!

Gaz
brekinapez
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Posted: Friday, May 19, 2017 - 06:48 PM GMT+7

Quoted Text

Lol how funny is that, nice, so we are now 2 folks building this one. We should start a rail /traincampeign^^
Are you following the instructions? I need to check out yours, any link or photos to your buil? Feel freee to add your pictures here.
The front driver has a gun to its side... a french sub MG, I might replace this with a StG 44 or MP40 as it suits the vehicle better. That is another thing to think about for you also. Will you do some modifications or an OOB?
/Stefan



I kind of jumped the gun with my post; I meant to clarify I was building the Revell rebox of the earlier ICM kit (35373) and not the rail version. I fully intend to get that one eventually.

I am basically doing it OOB, although I might add some stuff here and there. Like I said, I actually have 5 other builds I need to finish plus one for a friend, so this was meant to be a head-clearer before I started spraying more paint - I am not going hardcore. I am thinking of adding figures in the main hatch and the turret top hatch and will make those areas more presentable. I also want to do the later 3-color camo. I don't have any pics posted yet, but I am accumulating a bunch for later.
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
Joined: December 15, 2016
KitMaker: 140 posts
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Posted: Friday, May 19, 2017 - 09:11 PM GMT+7
Gary, thanks. It's the first French armour I am building and it is awesome! The kit too!

Mr USA (whats ur name btw?) okay, I misunderstood your post, sorry. Anyway, for the original Panhard, not many mods are needed - does it have both turrets the early and late APX3, or only one of them?. Keep the doors shut and it will be a super fast build. Good luck with all your other builds, I have got 4 others atm, too^^.

For those interested in the ammo:
The one I depicted is the third one f.t.l. on the pic below, I might add some tracer rounds (green tip) for the fun of it or high explosive ones with a blue ring and a flat cap...:
*)
Some more reasoning to the build and why and how what is done:

Above the 25mm shells is a little hole (to the right of the MG ammo), I will add a pin there, which was there to hold MG ammo rounds. I don't want to place all rounds there, I will leave this one off and simply add the respective pin. The vehicle came back from an anti-partisan duty and had used some ammo along the way.

Let me know what you think of it. I will actually take some MG rounds away fro the door also. Kind of like this one here, notice all those pins and the early type APX turret, from the first 30 produced Panhard 178, not the type which was present on later batch vehicles (600+), it lacks the two Gundlach periscopes and the air filter on top of the commander's hatch.


Have a nice Saturday,
/Stefan

sources:
* http://www.warrelics.eu/forum/attic-old-barn-finds/german-shell-case-2-5cm-what-nationality-weapon-3994/
brekinapez
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Posted: Saturday, May 20, 2017 - 06:24 AM GMT+7
The Revell kit comes with both turrets. I think it is pretty much the same as your kit, just minus the railway gear and antenna frame.

Like I said, I will likely keep the larger side door open even if it slows me up a bit just because it seems a shame not to show some of the interior - but as a figure will be in the door it will block enough that I won't have to super-detail it.

Do you know how well this vehicle would fit on Dragon or Trumpeter railroad tracks without being modified?
Blaubar
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Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany
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Posted: Saturday, May 20, 2017 - 07:16 AM GMT+7

Quoted Text


Do you know how well this vehicle would fit on Dragon or Trumpeter railroad tracks without being modified?



Trumpeter has different track sizes (I think I read in some forums here or elsewhere) The BR52 track has the correct width of 41mm i.e. 1435mm = standard gauge. The ICM kit also. I put them side by side and had a look again for you, they are exactly the same. The K5 or some other kits had different gauges afaik. I have no clue about Dragon, there will be smart people out there (Bill C I'd assume) who know so.
/Stefan

I have added 2 MP40s and reduced the MG ammo rounds and added the pind.
One besides the radio

and one just behind the forwards driver.

I have also added 3 HE shells and 3 tracer shells, cartridge needs some paint now.
On to fixing the fire extinguishers.
Have a good one
brekinapez
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Posted: Saturday, May 20, 2017 - 08:36 AM GMT+7
Replacing some of the ammo cans with the hanger pins is a great touch that adds to the "vehicle in use" effect, rather than the "museum display, all items accounted for" approach.

I am copying you on that one. Like an idiot I already attached the bin holding the rounds, so I have to think how to fix that or hope my passenger can block it from scrutiny.
Blaubar
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Posted: Saturday, May 20, 2017 - 08:50 AM GMT+7
I added them "like an idiot, too" and had to take them off again. As I used little glue, it was easy. It does add a remarkable difference I must say.

Mind: You need to add a third pedal to each driver to the right of the two existing ones! The accelerator/throttle control is missing in the kit, see below
Some of the wiring and the detail at the backwards driver could be modified (better 3D look), but this is too crazy. At some point there will be someone doing changes to this section, but the kit is good enough, they included them all (except for the one pedal). I am thinking of buying this kit again, having two of them^^


sources:
http://www.pangea-systems.com
Blaubar
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Posted: Sunday, May 21, 2017 - 05:52 AM GMT+7
I have found the perfect spot for the gas masks... Three below the radio equipment, and the one for the forwards driver a bit further towards his seat beside the 2nd MP40. I need to paint and finish detailing the FuG 20 SE now.

The second MP40. Installed with primer only on the support mechanism, maybe it was rushed and installed in a haste...

The current vehicle status with the finished 3 HE and 3 Tracer rounds:


Have a good Sunday,
/Stefan
Sth for the eyes...
I have found a video on some shady youtube channel. But the footage was just too good. It seems that the Pz.Sp.Wg. was painted and in perfect new condition for the "photo shooting", actually newly painted.


Beginning of the tyre change

Tyre change completed:
Blaubar
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Posted: Tuesday, May 23, 2017 - 08:45 AM GMT+7
Radio Gaga...
Big problem ahead, I cannot add a FuG 20 SE as there is no space for the 30 W.S.a as such I need to add a FuG 4 SE, which consists of the following parts:

The commander's intercom connection is yet missing and I need to paint all the new cables and their clips. On both sender and receiver, I have added some clear plastic on top of the white areas as there was glass plating on the MHz frequency scale. You can not really see it and on the UKW sender it has kind of wiped out the white..
The FuG20Se would have had another layout and wiring...
Mind the 30W.S.a would have been quite a bit larger than the UKW.S.c
Some Kasten Pz 22 are missing (1 for the forwards driver, one for the gunner) they will be added to the very right, above the MP40 where the cable ends (green one).
Here without the ugly infostuff:


That's the end of the intercom for the rear driver:

The second MP40s position, the bracing is in primer only, as it was added later and none bothered painting it, we are talking about 1945...so hope it is a reasonable scenario:


Hope you enjoyed it.
Prost, have a great evening