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Hummel


Model by Matt Ward.


Officially designated the 15cm Schwere Panzerhaubitze auf Geschützwagen III/IV (Sf), the "Hummel" was one of the more effective attempts to provide a self-propelled chassis for larger caliber artillery. Designed to provide artillery support panzer units, the Hummel was built on the same Panzer III/IV hybrid chassis as the "Nashorn" (armed with the 8.8cm PaK43/1 L71). This vehicle utilized a lengthened Panzer IV chassis, along with the running gear and 400mm tracks of a Panzer IV Ausf. F. The Drive system (drive sprockets, final drives, brakes, transmission, and engine)were all taken from the Panzer III Ausf. J. The engine fittings (fuel pump, filters, cooling fans, fan drives/belts, batteries, muffler and radiator) were a combination of Panzer III and Panzer IV components. The engine was moved amidships and a special narrow driver's compartment was fitted into the front plate. This narrow compartment was later replaced with a hull width compartment. Apparently though the old compartment provided better side- to-side visibility, communication was superior in the new compartment.

Hummel was only one of the many weapons which made its combat debut at Kursk in 1943. A total of 724 Hummels were eventually produced (though Hitler eliminated the name ‘Hummel' in late February, 1944) along with an additional 157 Munistionsträger (ammunition carriers sans main armament). Each panzer division was initially allocated six of the vehicles forming a single battery. Eventually some divisions received a second battery. The vehicle served until the end of the war with all Panzer Divisions.

15cm Schwere Panzerhaubitze auf Geschützwagen III/IV (Sf), "Hummel"
Crew: 6 Armament: One 15cm sFH18/1 L/30, one 7.92mm MG34
Weight: 24 tons Traverse: 15o left 15o right (hand)
Length: 7.17 meters Elevation: -3o +42o
Width: 2.97 meters Engine: Maybach HL 120TRM
Height: 2.81 Gearbox: 6 forward, 1 reverse
Radio: FuG Spr f Speed: 42 km/hr


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