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German infantry uniform 1945 question

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Hi guys,

 

I’m doing a little diorama set in 1945 and I have two sets of German infantry figures. I wanted to know if these two sets of uniforms would have been fighiting alongside each other. 

 

24785969167_1c986b7063_b.jpg

 

25124674747_e083627b98_b.jpg

 

I’m guessing that at the last days of the war it was all a bit of a mess so there’d be all sort of units fighting together, I’d really appreciate it if anyone could shed some light on this as there’s poses in both sets that would go really well with what I have planned.

 

Thanks for looking!

 

Tom

 

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I don't consider myself an expert on German WW2 uniforms but I can add that one aspect of the uniform changed quite a bit: the boots.

The style of high boots so closely associated to WW2 German soldiers was abandoned during the war for a cheaper type that had actually been used earlier as part of fatigue uniforms. This style was lower and worn with gaiters. Even late in the war the standard early uniforms could still be seen with many troops as not everyone had received the new fancy camo items so I'd say that the ones in the Tamiya set could be used. Finding the old boots, particularly on frontline soldiers, would have been harder.

Different story if you want to reproduce a single unit, in this case it may be less likely that men wore too many different items

Edited by Giorgio N

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Thanks, Giorgio! It’s always amazing the stuff you can learn on here!

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I think the uniform pretty much stayed the same with the exception of the boots.  But various camouflaged smocks and capes were introduced to wear over the top.

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8 hours ago, Grey Beema said:

I think the uniform pretty much stayed the same with the exception of the boots.  But various camouflaged smocks and capes were introduced to wear over the top.

 

The uniform did change somewhat during the war. Some of the changes were of detail only, like the replacement of silver thread with grey for insignias and badges, others were introduced to make the uniforms cheaper to produce. The number of buttons also changed over time.

IIRC the main types were:

M36: used at the beginning of the war, 5 buttons, pockets with pleats and scalloped flaps. Collar and shoulder straps were in dark green

M40: with the dark green replaced by the standard field grey colour

M41: as above but with 6 instead of 5 buttons

M42: as M41 but with no pleats on pockets

M43: as M42 but with straight cut pockets

Then there was the M44, that was only used at the very end of the war. This was a totally different design, shorter at the waist and similar in appearance to the British battle dress

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As far as I'm aware, the use of camouflage smocks in the German military was predominantly used by the SS Waffen and the second pack of soldiers can be identified by Waffen by their black collars, so that's a good start. It would have been unusual to see a group of soldiers fighting together, some in smocks and some out of them. It would have also been a bit unusual to see them fighting together in different patterned smocks, but there were multiple patterns that were worn to blend into different terrain.

 

The marching boots went out of service in 1943, but you would have still seen the odd soldier wearing them if they hadn't had the new kit. You would've even seen some with bottle green collars on the uniform which was meant to be replaced with mouse grey in 1940, but that was rare.  The shield that can be seen on the side of the helmet in the second picture wouldn't have been common to see, as these were meant to be removed by 1940 as well. Some painted over them, scratched them off or even covered them up with mud if needs are. Late war German uniform was very much a copy of the British army's, which going back to the boots, they were replaced by boots similar to the British.

 

However, going back to what you said, everything was carnage to the end so in many cases anything goes, and mixing stuff up making soldiers unique makes a diorama authentic I think.

 

PlasticSoldier

Edited by PlasticSoldier

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I have that set but haven't quite got the camo painting to my liking yet. Have you thought about equipment?

When I'm mixing figures from various manufacturers I try to use bags, ammo pouches and helmets etc. all from the same manufacturer (Not necessarily 'all' from one company but maybe the bread bags and gas mask cases from Dragon; MP40 pouches from MB and so forth. Or everything from one company if I have enough in the spares box!). You'd be amazed at how the dimensions can vary from one manufacturer to another.

I also try to do this with weapons.

Enjoy yourself

Tom

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Hi,

 

There are quite a few books around about German military uniforms. I have some in the loft but cannot get to themfor titles but I have recently been looking at some titles by the publisher Schiffer. They look like good books but not seen one in the flesh yet on uniforms.

 

Have a look on their website for titles and ISBN number so you can borrow from local library.

 

Hope this helps.

 

Another thing to consider is the use of 'liberated' bits of uniform from enemy soldiers. If doing Berlin for instance could have a Russian hat or boots and weapons. I have read some items were considered desirable as often better quality.

 

Cheers

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I can't add to the expertise above about the regular German Army uniform but those recruited in the occupied territories, eg Bulgaria, Poland, and the Hitler Youth were wearing the early style uniform at the time of D-Day and the Battle of Berlin in 1945

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