To counter the threat of anti-tank rifles and hollow-charge projectiles, the Germans devised a system of lightweight armoured sheets, hung from a rail along the side of a vehicle, to protect the most vulnerable parts of the hull and suspension. These ‘Schuerzen’, or skirts in English, work on the principle of reducing the kinetic energy of a anti-tank rifle round before it hits its target, or detonating the hollow-charge projectile before it reaches it’s target. These skirts and the mounting rails were very lightly constructed, and prone to damage. The skirts hung on large triangular ‘hooks’, and were easily lost during transport or battle.
Traditional injection plastic skirts as included in model kits are to thick, due to the constraints of the injection moulding process, and are difficult to damage convincingly. The Photo-etch skirts look much better and are more to scale, and if you show some of the skirt panels to be lost, the exposed rail and brackets look like thin angle iron, not girders.
what’s in the bag
The set is packed in a resealable bag and consists of one sheet of Photo-etch containing 110 parts to construct the brackets, hanging rails and skirts as well as a one-page double-sided instruction sheet. Both are sandwiched between two cardboard cards to protect them from damage. The two page instructions are simple and clear, and apart from removing the mounting stubs for the brackets on the kit, no surgery to the kit is needed.
This set is very easy to use, as there are no complicated pieces to bend, apart from the two rails, which need a long fold along their length, for which a photo-etch folding tool would be an advantage.
This is a very useful set, as it is both easy to construct, as well as a big improvement over the plastic skirts included in the kit. It would be a good introduction to Photo-etch for those who have not used it before. At $7.95 it is also good value for money, and I highly recommend this set.
A simple but effective set to replace the overscale plastic kit parts.