A brief history of the Panzer II Ausf. N, from the below website https://germanwarmachine.com/weapons-technology/tracked-vehicles/panzer-iii-ausf-n
The Panzer III Ausf N was an attempt to increase the potency of the tank by arming it with the 75mm KwK L/24 gun. This weapon fired an effective high-explosive round and an excellent shaped-charge that had better penetration than the long-barreled KwK39 L/60 which it replaced. The initial order was for 450 tanks, but the troops at the front liked the Ausf N so much that Ausf M models were also equipped with the short-barreled 75mm gun. With additional Panzer IIIs being so armed, the total number of Ausf Ns was brought up to 700. The Ausf N was recognizable by its short-barreled gun and the lack of spaced armor on the mantlet. Many of the later Ausf Ns were fitted with a new cupola with thicker armour and a single hatch in place of the earlier split-hatch design. Ausf Ns were also given side skirts for greater protection from March 1943.
In the field the Ausf N was used to provide close support for the Tigers (each heavy tank company had 10 Ausf Ns to nine Tigers), as the smaller vehicle was more agile at close quarters, whereas the Tiger was rather slow and vulnerable. The Ausf N was also used in the panzer regiments of the panzer divisions. In mid-1943, during the Kursk Offensive, German panzer units were equipped with 155 Panzer III Ausf Ns.
Specifications DesignationSdKfz 141/2TypeMedium TankLength5.65m (18.53ft)Width2.95m (9.67ft)Height2.5m (8.2ft)Weight23,418kg (51,520lb)CrewFiveMain Armament75mmSecondary Armament2 x 7.92mmEngineMaybach HL120TRMRange155km (96.8 miles)Speed40km/h (25mph)Fording.8m (2.62ft)Trench Crossing2.59m (8.5ft)Armour (hull)50mm (1.96in)Armour (turret/superstructure)50mm (1.96in)
Hello, started working on a quick little Operation Citadel diorama this week. I finished the tank commander and started on the beautiful Tamiya 1/48 scale Panzer III Ausf. N. This will be a basic scene of a Panzer III heading up hill 257.7 “Panzer Hill” on July 05, 1943. Below I have added so basic information on the Citadel.
Operation Citadel Begins
In the early morning hours of July 5, 1943, among the beautiful, yellow wheat fields that surrounded the Kursk Bulge, Operation Citadel was ready to launch.
But before Germany could strike, the Soviets unleashed a bombardment hoping to preempt the German offensive. It delayed the Germans for about an hour and a half but didn’t have a major impact.
The Germans unleashed their own artillery assault on the northern and southern parts of the salient, followed by infantry strikes on the ground supported by the Luftwaffe (Germany’s air force). Later that morning the VVS (the Soviet’s air force), attacked German airfields but were unsuccessful.
Still, the Red Army’s ground defenses prevented German tanks from making much headway in the north and penetrating the heavily-armored salient. By July 10, the Soviets had halted the 9th Army’s northern advance.
Battle of Prokhorovka
In the south, the Germans had more success and doggedly made their way to the small settlement of Prokhorovka, some 50 miles southeast of Kursk. On July 12, the tanks and self-propelled artillery guns of Russia’s 5th Guards Tank Army clashed with the tanks and artillery guns of Germany’s II SS-Panzer Corps.
The Red Army suffered huge losses but still managed to prevent the German’s from capturing Prokhorovka and breaching their third defensive belt, which effectively ended the German offensive.
The Battle of Prokhorovka is often referred to as the largest tank battle in history; however, Russian military historians with access to recently-opened Soviet archives claim the title belongs to World War II’s little-known Battle of Brody, which took place in 1941.
The German Offensive Ends and Russia’s Begins
On July 10, Allied troops landed on the beaches of Sicily, forcing Hitler to abandon Operation Citadel and reroute his Panzer divisions to Italy to thwart additional Allied landings. The Germans attempted a small offensive in the south known as Operation Roland but were unable to breach the Red Army’s might and withdrew after a few days.
In the meantime, the Soviets launched a counteroffensive, Operation Kutuzov, north of Kursk on July 12. They broke through German lines at the Orel salient and by July 24th had the Germans on the run and had pushed them back beyond Operation Citadel’s original launching point.
Battle of Kursk Aftermath
The Soviets won the Battle of Kursk and ended Hitler’s dream of conquering Russia. Arguably, Germany won the tactical battle but were unable to break through the Red Army’s fortifications and so lost the advantage.
But the Soviets won at great cost. Despite outnumbering and outgunning the Germans, they suffered many more casualties and loss of armament. Definitive casualty data is hard to come by, but it’s estimated there were up to 800,000 Soviet casualties compared to some 200,000 German casualties; some historians believe those numbers are much lower than the actual casualties.
Had a good day on last Saturday, I took a gold award at my local Games Workshop store #everchosen contest Open category. Fun time and great models in all three categories.
IPMS Orange County hosts an annual model contest each October or September called OrangeCon.
OrangeCon has proven to be the largest and most respected gathering of modelers and their models in Southern California for more then 20 years. The models displayed cover all types and eras of subject matter.
OrangeCon features Vendors and Special Events, but is most for the contest portion of the event with a large number of contest categories as well as special theme awards and as many as 600 entries which is remarkable as it is only a one day event.
We invite modelers of all ages and experience to participate in OrangeCon as well as those interested in only viewing the models to attend our event.