Life is short, break the rules. Forgive quickly, kiss slowly. Love truly, laugh uncontrollably and never regret anything that makes you smile. - Samuel Longhorne Clemens (Mark Twain)

Friday, October 10, 2014

My PzKfw III (SdKfz 141) Library

As I have indicated in other posts the PzKfw III (also known as the SdKfz 141) is one of my favorite tanks of WWII. I thought I had a pretty extensive library for it  but it turns out to not be as extensive as I thought. I went to pull out my books and discovered that I don't have nearly as many direct references as I thought I had. I have lots of books that talk about it and have pictures but they aren't specific to the vehicle itself but to units and campaigns. I have been developing a good sized want list at this point but I do have some excellent material already. So here is the list (a couple of these are truly golden oldies and are long out of print).

Panzer III in Action, Signal Armor Number 1, Squadron/Signal Publications 1972 (no author credits)
The first book in the Signal Armor series. It is essentially a picture book with captions. There are some great photos but almost half the books is dedicated to the StuG III. The only color plate is on the back cover. This is one of my eye candy books, lots of pictures with out a lot of detail to go along with it, any book in this format falls into this category.

The Panzerkampfwagon III, Vanguard 16, Osprey Publishing, 1980, Bryan Perrett
This book goes through a basic description of the variants and the different fronts it was employed on. Its a good generic resource. There are 8 color plates in the center.
Yes, there is a version of this in the New Vanguard series but the material is so similar I have put off buying it

PzKfw III in Action, Armor Number 24, Squadron/Signal Publications, 1988, Bruce Culver
Much like the original #1 (long out of print) this is essentially a picture book with captions. There is more text than the original  and a lot of pictures. There are line drawings for each variant as well as drawings for some of the more important features like the suspension. It has two pages of color plates on the interior as well as the back cover.
16 years for the update!

Panzer III & Its Variants, The Spielberger German Armor & Military Vehicles Series Vol. III, Schiffer Military/Aviation History, 1993, Walter Spielberger
Contains historical information, specifications and line drawings. Plenty of pictures with text to go along with it. Information on the variants includes the StuG and StuH family of vehicles as well, not just the Pz III variants. There are four pages of color plates in the center of the book.

Panzer III, Schiffer Military/Aviation History, 1994, Horst Scheibert
In the same basic format as the Squadron/Signal Publications. It has a bit more historical text and the line drawings point out the major changes between the variants. Many photos in this one that I hadn't seen before. The only color plate is on the back cover.

Panzerkampfwagen III, Osprey Modelling Manuals 15, Osprey Publishing, 1992, 2001, Rodrigo Hernandez Cabos and John Prigent
This book is all about building models of the PzIII, It includes builds of different models, reference photos, walk around photos, line drawings, model kits and book references (some of which are part of this list and some others that I would like to acquire). When working on a kit or even super detailing a game piece this is really my go to book as its concerned with the things I'm concerned with on the bench rather than just from an historical perspective. Its a modelling reference guide so there are lot of color pictures and plates inside.

Panzer III, PzKfw III Ausf A to N, Tanks in Detail, Ian Allen Publishing, 2004, Terry Gander
If you are in to the technical details this is definitely the book for you. It goes into the development, the main variants, armaments pretty much the whole nine yards with lots of close up photos. If I'm working on a modelling project this is the other book I grab. There are six pages of color plates in the back. One of my favorite books.

Sd.Kfz. 141 Pz.Kpfw.III, Model Hobby, 2005, Waldemar Trojca
This is a massive tome, 376 pages of Pz III goodness. The pictures are organized by variant with technical information proceeding each section. Each of the special variants have their own sections as well, like the command and flammtanks and other special variants. There are close up shots, line drawings and plenty of color plates in the back. It also comes with two poster sized
 sheets with color plates from the book. Its pretty much the bible for the Pz III. A bit on the expensive side but well worth it.

Call it 22"x17" (no ruler close at hand) 

Workhorse Panzer III in North Africa, Battleline 1, The Oliver Publishing Group, 2011 Claude Gillono
This is my latest acquisition and I covered it in a post last month. For a small book it has a lot of bunch. From the historical standpoint it shows the Pz III at its finest in Africa. It includes historical commentary, unit organizations, lots of photos and 4 pages of color plates. On a page per page basis probably the most expensive book in the bunch and its only 33 pages long. If you are a fan of the Pz III in North Africa though, this is probably a must have book.
I think it cost more to ship than the book itself, but not by much its still an expensive book even without the shipping from Australia. Although I managed to get this one from the UK.

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