Sunday, June 29, 2014

Trio of antitank guns

There unfortunately isn't anything to report from a painting table perspective, since we spent the weekend in North Jersey at our in laws' new house. We had fun at the pool, just hanging out in general, and I managed to sneak away for an hour this morning to grab nine easy geocaches nearby. So it was a good weekend, if a washout from a hobby progress perspective.

On the way home this afternoon, we stopped at a local VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) post on route 206 not far from their house and took a few pictures. We have driven past this place at least a dozen times and I am not sure why I never bothered to stop. Today we did.

Now...I've seen lot of VFW posts over the years, and with them a great assortment of Korean War and Vietnam era U.S. tanks, cannons and howitzers. But I've never seen anything quite like this.

Tucked in conveniently next to the Wee Nee Wagon in front of the VFW post is a trio of German WW2 era antitank guns.
Pair of PaK38 50mm antitank guns

There are a pair of PaK38 50mm antitank guns. One is in pretty good condition, with the traverse and elevation controls and most if not all of the other mechanicals still present. The other is in worse condition, but still seems relatively complete. The tires are crumbling with age but seem original.
The better preserved PaK38 50mm with intact controls

Across the driveway is a PaK40 75mm gun. Standing next to it, this seems like a big gun, and while there certainly were larger bore and higher velocity pieces in the German arsenal, it is obvious to see why this was such a feared weapon. I could stick my arm down the muzzle.
Big brother - The PaK40 75mm antitank gun

The PaK40 seemed to be in rougher condition than the others, with controls missing, and a serious case of rust, but was still an impressive weapon nonetheless. I wouldn't want to be driving my tank down a country road and stumble on one of these hidden in the hedgerow...
PaK40 in rough condition

Regardless of condition, it was still pretty cool to see and touch these pieces of history.

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