Tank Craft #1 Tiger I & II Eastern Front 1944

This book is the first in a new series. The second book in the series on the Sherman is available now and the third on the Panther will be coming soon.

The book starts with an introduction that explains the impetus behind the development of the Tiger tank being the Wehrmacht’s first confrontation with the Russian T34. It continues to outline the organisation of a Tiger tank unit and the organisational changes that happened in 1943 and 1944.

The book then gives a 1 to 2 page synopsis for each of the Tiger formations of both the Wehrmacht and the SS. This continues up to page 57 although some of the pages in the middle of the book are used for other purposes.

Pages 17 to 26 contain full-colour profiles of 19 Tiger I and II. The images are very good and also contain part views to show other parts of the vehicles. You can see an example of one such page in the image gallery below. Pages 27 to 39 is a model showcase. It contains photographs of six high quality builds. The texts describe the idiosyncrasies of each vehicle as well as some description of the modelling techniques employed. Finally, pages 14 to 51 contain a comprehensive list of the modelling products currently available for Tiger tanks. Many different manufacturers are covered, both kit manufacturers as well as aftermarket producers. These pages give you a good idea of what is available on the market.

The description of the Tiger tank formations is finished on pages 52 to 57. Page 58 starts with a detailed list of modifications that were made to both the Tiger I and II. There is a paragraph dedicated to each month that some changes were made, such as in December 1943 the single headlight was moved to the centre of the front plate and the amounts for the Feifel air filters no longer attached.

This book is squarely aimed at modellers. With this book you can branch out on your own knowing you have enough information to place a tank belonging to a certain unit in the right area of Europe and hence apply the correct weathering. You can also ensure that the tank is at the right modification state for the period of the war that you’re aiming at.

From the author’s website:

In spite of the relatively small numbers produced, the Tiger I and Tiger II tanks are arguably the most famous armoured fighting vehicles of the Second World War. This book, the first in the TankCraft series, uses archive photos and extensively researched colour illustrations to examine the tanks and units of the German Army and Waffen-SS heavy panzer battalions that attempted to hold back the Red Army during 1944.
A large part of the book showcases available model kits and aftermarket products, complemented by a gallery of beautifully constructed and painted models in various scales. Technical details as well as modifications introduced during production and in the field are also examined providing everything the modeller needs to recreate an accurate representation of the tanks that fought from the snow covered fields of Byelorussia and the Ukraine, through the Baltic States and into Poland and Hungary.

The details of the book are:

  • By Dennis Oliver
  • Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
  • Series: TankCraft
  • Pages: 64
  • ISBN: 9781473885349
  • Published: 12th October 2016
  • Costs £12.00 ($15.19 at today’s exchange rate) from the authors website
  • Also available at Casemate in the US

A highly recommended source of inspiration and ideas for diorama and model builders looking to build a Tiger tank. Look out for In Focus 2: Panzers in Berlin 1945.

Paul Tosney – Editor
ModelBuilder International

Paul Tosney

Paul has been with Model Builder International since almost the beginning. He started building models as a boy, and took a hiatus, but started building again a few years ago. He builds pretty much anything, but mostly WW2, with a smattering of modern and the occasional SciFi model.


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