1:35 Spähpanzer Luchs

In an attempt to continue with a New Year’s resolution, I am trying to complete the ever-increasing stash of the half-built/finished; to my eternal shame it’s now in double figures. I find the trouble is, I can be steaming ahead on a project, then wham! A tangent occurs and I head off in a totally different direction, all down, I have no doubt, to the stimulus and inspiration of the hobby.

Anyway, I’m currently trying to finish off a Spähpanzer Luchs; this is the ancient Revell kit but I found it good enough; I am aware of Takom’s kit.

The only additions were a set of wheels from MR Modellbau in order to facilitate an early version, not least to tie-in with the Gelboliv finish. That said, I decided I wished to depict it cammed up as on exercise so the paint scheme can hardly be seen. A million years ago, whilst enduring the British Army’s long (German) language course in Mülheim a.d. Ruhr, I recall our classroom was replete with Bundeswehr posters, one of which was of the Luchs; I later found the pic – much reduced – in one of those very useful handbooks the Bundeswehr then published. The image stuck with me, reinforced by some of those excellent films also produced by the Germans, portraying their kit on exercise.

Being a recce vehicle its very survival will depend on not being detected, so hence my attempt at a draped cam net, yet to be augmented by foliage:

I plan on having a few figures as well and these are shown below, still a work in progress:


That’s an excellent project you have going there Brian. The Luchs looks great! The camo netting looks spot on to me and the figures are coming along nicely. What figures are those?
I didn’t know the Luchs was painted in Gelboliv. I always saw them in the NATO scheme.
Don’t feel bad Brian, I made the same resolution at New Years and have just started a NEW project yesterday (ASU-57) when I shouldn’t have. I think I’m in the double digits as well.


Thanks Richard; Luchs was in service form the mid 70s, so definitely a candidate for Gelboliv. I was lucky enough to clamber all over one in around 1978 when one was present at the Brit Corps HQ at Bielefeld for the annual Commander’s Study period. A mate of mine was stationed there and he invited me up for a couple of days (I was then at an Army Group HQ at Moenchengladbach). It really was a huge beast and caused no small food for thought regarding the size of comparable recce vehicles.

Re your ASU: I know, it’s just the nature of the hobby, so inspirational, all rational thought seems to go out the window. I too have been dabbling off piste as it were and yet I’ve nearly a dozen half-built that really wouldn’t take that much to complete. Oh well, I’ll treat the Luchs as a test case. If I can finish it off by the end of the week I’ll feel that I’m going in the right direction!

Thanks for the interest.

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Looks great Brian.Ive seen a few on videos of NATO.exercises on youtube.Didnt rsalise they were around 1970s.

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Sorry Richard; forgot about the figures, they’re from Dolp with Hornet heads, save the one on the far right which is from Valkyrie. The 2 x drivers already installed are also from Valkyrie.

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Thanks for the interest Richard; the size is the thing, it demands as much a base (size that is) as those I use for an MBT!

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Hi Brian,
I had a lot of these posters in my room. They provided some modelling inspriation, instead. of rockstar posters. These posters and books were free gifts for potential draftees during Day of Open House shows.


A brief update while I wrestle with providing sufficient foliage; I’m using etched brass leaves and it’s a real chore to get an effect; splicing 2D branches to one another to create 3D bulk is essential, but then the stems need thickening up with something like Mr Dissolved Putty. I pre-spray the colours but then one is faced with all those glinting brass nicks and it becomes a labour of love to touch those up, but hey! That’s modelling right?

Also, a bit of preparatory work on the base:


That Luchs is coming along splendidly Brian. I also have some half finished kits to get to grips with, including a couple more M41’s and an M24. Those are in the final weathering stages at the moment, but progress is hindered by lack of workspace due to some building work needing finishing. When it’s done, I’ll have some entirely new workspace … and no excuses.

What did you use for the cam net on the Luchs, I was thinking tea leaves of course, but looking at it, I’m not sure?

Great to see you getting into a build again.

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I can only dream of dedicated workspace at the moment!

The cam net is an earlier iteration using tea leaves but you’ll note that the effect is not of a consistent size - they look sort of “bubbly”; however, we are where we are (one of the problems of leaving a project for years I suppose) I have since discovered a more constant brew and use them. I’ll have to soldier on with what I’ve got; I hope the “natural” foliage when I add it will help draw the viewer’s eye away from the discrepancies, or at least up to a point.

I do need to crack on, but it is indeed great to be - more or less - back in the groove(!)


I was actually thinking they looked rather good!

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OK; I’ll quit while I’m ahead!


Figures for my Luchs project now completed - save a bit of touching up and graphite on the weapons, and some re-glossing (goggles on the vehicle commander, and the map coverings - to replicate the talc).

Strictly speaking I need to consider applying camouflage cream on the two Panzergrenadier figures; it means the faces will sort of disappear, but well, that’s the idea.


And on and on and on it goes – the etch that is. A lot of effort but I end up with an effect of sorts. The real pain comes in touching up all the glints of brass where removal has taken place. Some will be reduced by matt varnish when I get to that stage, but I always find that I miss some.

So, work in progress:

And getting the effect I desire:


A lot more work on the Luchs using the etch foliage; sucked the fun out of Easter that’s for sure. 'Still have to touch up the glints where the brass was cut but I might save that for another day.

And another “Down, Test and Adjust” for the base and figures; a bit blurry I’m afraid:


That is looking awesome Brian. Very much looking forward to seeing that, if I make the Yeovil show.


Well, that’s about it for the Luchs; a project started so long ago I can hardly believe it. The eternal trouble I have in maintaining focus and not going off on tangents.

Anyway, here we are:

As mentioned above, the Revell kit moulded in their horrible green, but went together well enough, and looked just fine in grey primer. Because I started this so long ago, I used the Revell version of Gelboliv (their enamel 42). These days I tend to use Tamiya XF-51 as it just seems to be slightly lighter, thus factoring in a bit of scale colour; that said, to be honest once I’ve finished weathering and dusting my models, the base colour is almost often irrelevant.

I detailed the interior of the turret with a bit of gizmology as some is visible. The 2 driver figures come from Valkyrie as does the gunner figure.

The Commander figure – dismounted – is a metal figure from Dolp, with a Hornet Head and beret from Milliput. He is shown in discussion with another Dolp figure, again with a Hornet Head; he represents a Panzer Grenadier officer and he has a soldier figure accompanying him – another Dolp effort. I moved the Gunner figure over to the Commander’s station as I thought that might be Standard Operating Procedure when the actual Commander is away from the vehicle. I replaced the Dolp heads with ones from Hornet, and added name tags on the uniforms using thin plastic card. I should really have added an Uzi SMG and respirator case to the commander figure but completely overlooked it until it was too late.

The vehicle was covered in my normal method of depicting camouflage nets using gauze and used tea leaves. I further added some etched branches from Aber. After all this concealment, one can hardly see the base kit, and I know to some modellers that is anathema – all that lovely detail hidden, but I like to try and represent vehicles in service doing their job, hence my camouflage efforts – essential in this case for a recce vehicle.

The base was 12mm MDF, made specifically for me, and measures the same as an A4 piece of paper; I utilise A4 paper boxes to store and transport my models. I invert the box, which means the base is secure in what was the lid, and the remainder of the box gives me antennae clearance. I then label it all as necessary.

The scenic effects, such as they are, come from tiling grout over cardboard formers for the track banks, sprinkled with whatever model railway flock I have to hand, and again, tea leaves for a sort of forest floor scatter; a few ferns from etched brass, some stalky bits of grass from my long suffering shaving brush and that was about it. I had planned to impress the wheels from the model itself into the grout as if dried but was distracted and forgot; I normally do this by covering the base with clingfilm, then pressing the model into the groundwork. I ended up having to sand most of it off to enable the kit to sit level.

And that folks is really about it: on exercise, at the edge of a forest, a Luchs has stopped to facilitate a face-to-face discussion with an officer from the Panzer Grenadier unit they are supporting; judging by the pointing finger of the Panzer Grenadier, the tactical intercourse may not be going well! Such confrontations are not unknown on any exercise especially as fatigue and pressure all impact.

So, not too shabby a start to the New Year- perhaps; it took me longer than expected mainly because my modelling methodology had changed so much since I began this project. Anyway, onwards and upwards to address all those other half started/half completed projects!


Aaaargh! 'Just noticed that I’ve cocked up the first sentence. It should read, “Well, that’s about it for the Luchs;” - not the effort I originally posted. How do I correct this - anyone?

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Can’t you edit your post?

I like it a lot, very, very nice result. In fact, I like it somuch I am starting to wonder why I haven’t got a Luchs in my stash, I have loads of 4,6 and 8 wheeled vehicles but no Luchs… yet :grin:

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Hi Bert,

Probably “Yes” but am unsure being a very low-tech person(!)

Thanks for the comments; having seen the beast in the flesh so to speak, I hope I’ve done the German reconnaissance arm justice. I am sorely tempted to start my Fuchs next - like you, I do enjoy these multi-wheeled types!

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