The latest title from the Nuts & Bolts team is part two of the Pz.Spähwagen series. Although I have other great reference works such as the Panzer Tracts for scale plans and production information, this is still a worthy addition to the library. Since the title’s target group includes modelers, I will state that AFV Club recently released kits of the Sd.Kfz. 233 & 263 in 1/35th scale.
As printed, the book has 208 pages not including the heavier covers which also are used and are bound in a glossy heavy paper. The authors are Holger Erdmann and Martin Block but the editor is still Heiner F. Duske , scale plans by John L. Rue, color artwork by Carlos de Diego, and models built by Vinnie Brannigan and Tony Greenland.
The images are a mix of color and gray tones. A total of a whopping 435 are provided of which 232 tonal photographs of the subjects in service (not including the many insets showing details close up), 99 color images of museum items (since there aren’t any known surviving vehicles), and the last are 81 color images supplemented by 3 black and white photographs of superbly done models.
Text is included which provide a bibliography, some background in the form of chapters. They cover the deployment, Camouflage and markings, Judgment, a short anecdote, surviving vehicles, and models.
It is worth mentioning that the captions are most informative and all text is in dual English/German languages.
The scale plans include the Sd.Kfz. 233 (Conversion) (5 view and 4 perspective drawings), Sd.Kfz.233 4th/5th Series (final model) (5 views), Sd.Kfz. 263 1st Series (1939 Production Batch) (5 views), Sd.Kfz. 3rd/4th Series (5 view and 4 perspective drawings), Panzermesskraftwagen (5 view and 4 perspective drawings). These are followed by a dozen color profiles which include an inset with a photograph of the actual vehicle and others clarifying markings.
The next section covers components used on the vehicle found in museums and private collections with 99 color photographs and the book ends with a plastic modeling section. It should be noted that one will find extended antennas and collapsed, all necessary to detail out the model parts.
The bottom line is simple, pick up this one as it will be invaluable when tackling either the many 1/35th scale mutations with the multiple detail sets available for each. Of course, many of these subjects have been released in other scales.