Cyber Hobby 1/35 Sd.Kfz138/1 Munitionswagen 38m fur sIG 33/2

KIT:  Cyber Hobby 1/35 Sd.Kfz138/1 Munitionswagen 38m fur sIG 33/2
KIT #: 6471
PRICE: $41.99 from 
DECALS: Two Options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Another unusual variant from the folks at Dragon


The Grille series of self propelled artillery vehicles were used by Germany during World War II. The Grille series was based on the Czech Panzer 38(t) tank and used a 15 cm sIG 33 infantry gun.

The second Grille variant was based on the Panzer 38(t) Ausf. M, which had its engine in the middle. As with the earlier version, the turret was removed and replaced with a new superstructure and armored compartment. Unlike the Ausf. H variant of the Bison, this was located at the rear of the vehicle, as well as somewhat smaller and higher. This version also carried the 15 cm schweres Infanteriegeschütz 33.

From April to June 1943 and then from October 1943 to September 1944 a total of 282 vehicles were produced, as well a 120 ammunition carriers (the subject of this kit), which replaced the main gun with ammunition racks. These could be converted back to normal configuration in the field, by mounting the 15 cm gun onto the vehicle.  

As mundane as ammo carriers might seem, they were as important to operations as the guns themselves, for without ammunition, any tank or SPG is little more than a moving target. Generally it was wise to match up ammo carriers with the weapons they are supporting, hence using un-gunned Grilles to haul ammunition for those vehicles. This would have the added benefit of proving another base on which to put a gun or to provide spares for a disabled vehicle.


Another very limited run kit is the more unusual vehicle, but one that is as important as the guns that it services. Molded using the latest injected molded technology, this is part of Dragon's Smart Kit series that provides every thing one needs to produce a superlative reproduction. The list of features is rather long so I'll let the folks at Dragon tell you about it.

- "Ultra Slim" injection-molded armor plates.
- Fighting compartment frontal armor plate can be assembled open or closed.
Newly tooled upper hull and driver's hatch with authentic detail.
Newly tooled lower hull frontal armor with spare track rack with crisp detail.
- Crisp detailed seat for crewman.
Newly tooled firing data board, cartridge storage and tool storage with sharply defined details.
- Fine detail s.I.G. 33 gun mount is newly tooled.
- Handrail accurately reproduced.
- Two options of handrail with authentic detail.
New weather tarpaulin supports finely reproduced.
- Nut and bolt armor plate detail rendered realistically.
New fighting compartment with full interior detail.
Newly tooled engine compartment rear panel has sharp detail.
- Delicate detail on FuG.16 radio set with transformer.
Newly tooled rear armor plate can be assembled open or closed.
- Two options of ammo shells.
- Antenna base has fine detail.
Newly tooled cartridge storage with crisp detail.
- 98k rifle rack accurately represented by photo-etched parts.
- Brand new fully detailed gun travel lock.
- Well-detailed fire extinguisher.
- Transmission system with excellent detail.
- Slide-molded one-piece chassis with delicate details.
- Two optional types of sprockets and idlers.
- Sprocket and idler wheels accurately tooled.
- Magic Tracks with casting-number detail embossed on every link.
- Bonus perforated storage box made from photo-etched parts.
- Perforated storage box finely made from individual parts.
- Engine exhibits delicate detail thanks to separate parts.

In other words, it has a lot of parts and there are a considerable number that you will not use, thanks to the now-standard method of providing sprues even if only a few parts are needed. More stuff for your parts bin.

Dragon's instructions are excellent as usual, and if like most Dragon instructions, will probably have a misprint in there somewhere so the wise modeler always double-checks to be sure. Colors are given in the Gunze and Model Master range, as usual. as this has a full interior, there are a considerable number of construction steps. Any need to modify the kit parts is clearly delineated and as long as one goes about things methodically, there should be no problems. Two vehicles are shown in the painting section. Both from Unknown Units and one in overall panzer yellow with the other being the box art vehicle with a nice camouflage pattern. Insignia are all that are provided for decals. 


Another interesting 'designer' armor kit and thanks to Germany's penchant for a seemingly endless list of variants for their weapons, I'm sure we will see more. If you have not built one of Cyber-hobby's fine kits, give this one a try. I'm positive you will be impressed.


July 2008

My thanks to for the review kit. Get yours at your favorite shop or ask them to order it for you.

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact the editor or see other details in the Note to Contributors.

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