My basic idea was to build German Halftracks, the legendary sdkfz 251 as chimera tanks for my whole army. There are a lot of superb conversions around on the internet. A lot of them are just pure genius. See here, by 8rad on WIP , and here by Sgt. Wallace from Warseer a Puma like Chimera.
Some are converted chimeras and some look like plastic kits from other firms but are instead complete plasticard constructions. All fantastic and all with some minor flaws, not in its design or how they were made but for me personally.
At first most of them are big, I mean really big. Nearly twice the size of the original chimera. Also most of them require really a lot of time to build them. Plasticard scratch build with chimera parts is just too much for me. Especially when I think that I would need 5 to 7 of them just as chimeras. Not to mention manticors, basilisks, griffons and everything else which uses the chimera chassis.
So I made the decision to walk a path that I didn’t want to walk. Get a non GW Model kit and make it 40k-ish. So once you went there you will always have to talk with tournament organizers before the event and can say goodbye to GW-Tournaments altogether. Not that I go to GW Tournaments, but you have to think of your options. But I’m not sure if I still can beat that 75% rule. As I’m half in the conversion I still think I can reach that tally.
Ok, so lets get started. What I want to build is an Imperial Manticore Missile launcher Tank. WW2 Germany had two Halftracks who fulfilled that role. The “Panzerwerfer 42” which were 8 Tubes on the backside of a German Halftrack, an armored “Opel Maultier”. And the second one, six mounted Rocket throwers “Wurfrahmen 40” on the sides of a Sdkfz 251/1 Ausf.D.
Naturally as a Company of Heroes friend my choice was the later one. The Idea for the “Stuka zu Fuß” i.e.” Stuka on Foot” was in my head right at the beginning of the army project. Although it was a chimera as a mount at that time.
Anyway. I took one of the tamiya kits my older brother had for 8 years lying unbuild in his model storage. He was quite upset about it; actually he saw his kit when it was lying in my room. Yeah, like he would tomorrow begin to build it. Ok, I saw it and then bought one myself from my local toyshop. The old Tamiya 1:35 Sdkfz was designed in 1979 and haven’t changed since then.
I opened it and start to make notes on its size and realized that it was big enough, but actually too big. It is almost 5 centimeters longer than a GW unaltered Chimera. And that was actually the reason why I Didn’t t wants to convert a real chimera the first time. So I ventured forth the internet and found out that Tamiya in the recent years has improved its 1:48 line. A size usually reserved for aircraft models. So I bought the 1:48 Sdkfz for around 20€ and made a size compare. Its length is exactly like that of the GW chimera, but it is only half its wide. Which makes sense as the GW chimera is actually a driving rectangle. So far so good. So I began to compare the mini sizes.
GW uses 28mm Hero size if I’m correct. The 1:35 kits I used where actually too tall for my fellow guardsmen. As also the 1:35 men are two heads taller the IG ones. The 20mm Flak I liked to convert and the Pak 36 (which worked fine) are way too big for the imperial guardsmen. But the gear of the 1:35 tamiya men fits perfectly for their size. In comparison with 1:48 tamiya men the imperial guardsmen looks like übermuscled bodybuilders. But they are the same height. Also the tanks of that line should fit their size better. So I went on with the 1:48 for the chimeras then. And instead of building a vanilla chimera out of an Sdkfz, I went straight into a Manticore count as.
|The “Marauder zu Fuß”|
The “Marauder zu Fuß”