The use of explosive ordnance such as mines and so-called ‘booby traps' has been, right up until the present time, a way to effectively restrict enemy movement. The focus of this threat in current German Army foreign operations is the improvised explosive device. The Bundeswehr is therefore continuously adapting methods of clearing explosive ordnance.
In 1996-98 it procured Minenräumpanzer Keiler mine-clearing tanks, to present day the German engineer's heaviest tool of trade and currently being upgraded.
The most modern mine-clearing system of the Bundeswehr is the German Route Clearance System consisting of a TPz 1 Fuchs A8A12 protected Operator Team Vehicle, two remote-controlled elements, the Detection Vehicle based on the Wiesel 1 and the Manipulator Vehicle Mini MineWolf MW240, plus support vehicles.
In this publication the Keiler and the Route Clearance System are described in full for the first time.
This new title from Tankograd Publishing is a duel language publication; German on the left side of the page and English on the right. The font and text size make the text easy to read I am pleased to say. The book consists of 64 pages of a good quality glossy paper inside a card cover that should keep the book in good condition if it is not abused.
This title from Tankograd Publishing begins with a short piece covering the the use of mines and the methods of clearing them, also presented here are three Sherman variants used for mine clearance in World War two. The text then moves onto the Keiler mine clearance vehicle, this section covers both the prototype vehicle and the production vehicle. Tankograd Publishing have supplied information on the Kieler mine clearance vehicle title released under the ‘In Detail Fast Track’ series of books. I am very pleased to see that while some images appear in both title Tankograd Publishing has provided some all new images. One of the images show the Kieler doing its thing and it is an impressive shot showing mud being thrown in the air to a height six or more times the height of the Keiler itself. The photographs are all of a very high standard in my opinion and show some great detail when you study them, I should also point out that each of the photographs is accompanied by good duel language captions.
Moving on from the Keiler this title covers the Route Clearance System currently in use by the Bundeswehr. Tankograd Publishing has broken this down into four sections as follows; Route Clearance System
Detection Vehicle Route Clearance System
Mine Wolf MW240 Manipulator Vehicle
Operator Team Vehicle
This system is covered really rather well under this four sub headings and I think Tankograd Publishing deserve a very well done for covering this system to the extent they have in a publication of this size. I like that Tankograd Publishing has covered not just the clearance system vehicles, but also the support vehicles needed to make the system work as a well oiled machine. Having looked through these sections I really do hope that one or more of the after-market manufacturers opts to make at least some aspects of this system available to the modeller.
The final section of this title covers the Minebraker 2000/2, a humanitarian mine clearance vehicle that can deal with mines up to 300mm deep, that is quite an impressive feat. This vehicles is based on a Leopard 1 chassis and looking at the images this is one vehicle I would love to have in my collection. This may be painted red, but regardless of which way you look at it it is an incredibly impressive looking machine that has great presence.
This new title from Tankograd Publishing looks at perhaps an aspect that appeals to many modellers due to the aggressive look of mine clearance vehicles, in particular the flail and blade type clearance vehicles. The book has a great deal of information and reference material for a title with 64 pages and Tankograd Publishing have out done themselves with the detail in this offering. If you like impressive looking vehicles this is a title that should meet your interests.
Highs: A lot of detail has been packed into 64 pages which I find impressive.Lows: None of which I am aware.Verdict: If you like domineering and impressive looking vehicles you need this title.
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About Darren Baker (CMOT) FROM: ENGLAND - SOUTH WEST, UNITED KINGDOM
I have been building model kits since the early 70’s starting with Airfix kits of mostly aircraft, then progressing to the point I am at now building predominantly armour kits from all countries and time periods. Living in the middle of Salisbury plain since the 70’s, I have had lots of opportunitie...