The Sd.Kfz. 10 1 Ton halftrack was first developed by the Demag firm in 1934 with the goal of towing lighter artillery and FlaK guns, as well as smaller trailers. The most common tow loads were the 3.7cm PAK and the 2cm FlaK gun. Additionally, it was used as a platform for chemical warfare and decontamination equipment. Over the course of the late 1930s and then during World War 2, anywhere from 14,700-17,500 were built (depending on the reference source).
However, early on it was decided the vehicle was too light at its original 1 ton towing weight, so it was more and more likely to be modified to serve as a gun platform for the 2cm FlaK 30 and later, the FlaK 38 (an improved version of the 30), as well as the 3.7cm PAK gun. Seven different German firms manufactured the Sd.Kfz. 10, along with most French car & truck companies pressed into military procurement service by the Nazis. Yet the vehicle has become known as the Demag, primarily due to a series of kits released by Italeri. The release of a new Dragon upgraded version of the 2cm FlaK 38 platform perhaps means an end to that misconception, and will be helped by the coincidental release of Chris "Toadman" Hughes's latest CD-ROM.
The CD has an interactive menu and contains 240 clear color photos divided into four folders:
The photos are of a restored Sd.Kfz. 10 located at the Military Vehicle Technology Foundation
in Portola, CA. Originally built by Sauerwerke in 1941, the radiator logo says "MIAG." This was either a field repair, or the only option available to the restoration team. Restored vehicles always run the risk of being inaccurately rebuilt, including the wrong tire treads or "fantasy" camouflage patterns. The MVTF (often called the "Jacques Littlefield Collection" after its founder) has tried to avoid some of this controversy by rendering its vehicle in standard Dunkelgelb
. Given the manufacturing date, dark gray would have been the correct option, but the dark yellow makes distinguishing details on-screen much easier, so I'll take the inaccurate paint job any day.
Unlike many books about WW II vehicles, this CD is explicitly intended for model builders, not historians. If you want more information, it has a brief bibliography that points you in the right direction (including Halftracks of the German Army
reviewed by me here
. Instead it's packed with views of every conceivable nook and cranny that should please even the fanatical scratch-builder. Both outside and inside views are abundant, allowing kit builders to answer any and all questions about their variant. Even better, parts are identified; if you've ever wondered about an Sd.Kfz. 10's carburetor, or what a Notek light looks like head-on, this CD is for you.
Whether you're building the new Dragon Sd.Kfz. 10 OOB, fixing up one of the old Italeri versions, or just have a fascination for Wehrmacht half-tracks, the disk is money well-spent. The Toadman website
has free views of many AFVs, but there is no comparison to the bright, clear, detailed and exhaustive views on one of their CDs.
For the money, this is simply the best resource on the market for model builders undertaking one of the Sd.Kfz.10 kits. The gun platform variants will require some additional research, but this disk nails the regular version that forms the pattern and underlying chassis, driver's cab and engine.
And let's face it, most of the time we buy reference books to help us build better kits, not to make us experts. If that's your goal, this is the most cost-effective solution. With loads of good photos of virtually every inch of the vehicle, I can't imagine any better tool for improving a build.