From looking at popular entertainment you might be forgiven for thinking that the German army in World War II was entirely motorised, but in fact they relied very heavily on good old-fashioned horse power. This set provides an artillery piece with a six-horse team, and will be familiar to those who have seen the Revell version of this product.
The gun is the 10.5 cm le FH 18 Light Field Howitzer, which was Germany's standard medium field howitzer and proved very reliable in all conditions. Here it has been very well sculpted, with a choice of trails either open, as when in action, or closed, as when being transported. Since the set includes the limber and team we chose to build it with a closed trail. The detail is of a very high standard and is very accurate.
The limber and horse team that are provided with the gun are also extremely nice. The limber has optional parts depending on whether you want to model it on the move or standing, and you can even choose to have it configured to be towed by a lorry (although of course no lorry is supplied). The six horses, all of whom are in a different pose, connect to the limber via traces which are very thin in this scale, and unless the model is to have a permanent home these would be liable to break when moved, so we have omitted them for our picture.
The outriders and the gun crew riding on the limber are very nicely sculpted and with plenty of detail. A feature of this set is the considerable amount of extra items included - items such as weapons of all sorts, spare helmets and saddle packs, pistol holsters, bags, gas mask holders and various items of kit that allow you to have these men as fully or lightly kitted as you wish. There is even a spare head, although we could not see why. All these tiny items are finely sculpted and will be very useful for the spares box if nothing else.
This hard-plastic set was designed with Revell, who made a soft plastic version which we have already reviewed. Apart from the material, the most obvious difference is that Revell included a crew manning a second gun. Also this Preiser kit is made in 1/87 scale, so it is very noticeably smaller than the Revell version. Finally, it has a good many more parts than Revell, which allows for a more accurate representation of the equipment. Basically this kit is a high detail display model, whereas the Revell version is more practical for wargaming and rougher handling. Which is preferably depends on your needs, but the differences in scale mean they are not compatible with each other. Still this is a splendid model that offers a lot of scope for customisation.