S-38 Boats 1941/42

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    invisible officer

    Yesterday evening I did the first of my S-38 boats.
    For that I wanted one of the Schnellboote finished with 40mm Bofors, “found” in France.

    The original design of the Entwurf Lürsen 1939/40 had 2 single 20 mm guns. But it was seen in combat 1939/40 that this was not enough to fight the RN MGB. The original tactical idea was against fighting small targets with guns. The valuable Schnellboot was intended to use the torpedoes against valuable targets. First merchant ships and second big warships.

    The idea about the 40mm aft was to give the flotilla a rearguard boat that would be last in retreat. Just a few “S-38” got them at shipyard before delivery to the front unit.

    S 39, 42,44,45 and 46. These are the boats with 0mm and the open bridge. S-67 was bult with a clear plexi glass Kalotte (For camo, but the reflections made that not working) and from S-68 most (all??) came from the yard with a light metal Kalotte and 67 got one too.

    The S-100 had one made of 10-12mm armor steel.

    For the historian and gamer the many conversions are a nightmare. The surviving old front boats got converted. But not all.

    invisible officer

    My boat got a scratch built 40mm without shield. Like some it got a wooden bandstand base. And the Abweiser that prevented the gun from hitting boat parts.
    I also added the rails for the 2 x 3 depth charges that got carried in ASW and patrol missions.

    Most alterations are around the bridge. The Back was longer, covering the side of the torpedo barrel. And the position of the port/starbord markings got added. On top I added the loop of the wireless direction finder, the horn and the prominent rails at the outlook’s position left. And on back the ladder and outlook positions.

    I also added the UKW antenna and the fixings for the long distance wireless antennas that lead to a post added to mid of boat. There I added the flagstaff. And a bit of railing for the look.

    These pics are intended to show part of the conversions and a comparision with S-100

    Green Clutch

    These conversions are spectacular. I just got my sets from Santa and now that I’m starting to assemble the models myself, I’m even more impressed by your work.

    Have you had a chance to play yet?


    invisible officer

    Thank you. The conversions are real fun to do.

    I did not play a full game. A friend bought the rules and we will do some conversions to them too.

    Next on my painting desk is a 2 x 2cm S-38. And five minutes ago the DHL brought me a Warlord German Minesweeper.

    The big order from 20th is unfulfilled with many more ships.

    invisible officer

    A second S-38 boat finished. This has the original 2 x 2 cm guns. Canvass sides to protect the crew from water and adding camo.

    Painted camo was used on boats that got sed in daylight too. For night action Schnellbootweiß or grey was thought to be better.

    The camo style on my boat was used in Baltic and Mediterranean sea but rarely in Channel and North sea. Interesting how much it blends in with the painted blue-green-white water.

    invisible officer

    Alterations started again with extension of the foredeck side protection at the torpedoes. I have no idea why the kit’s designer showed them open.

    The canvas screen is metal foil.

    Bridge top again with antennas, lookout position and the steps.

    The bow 2 cm was cut down a lot and the aft one totally scratch built. I looks asymmetrical because of the big “Hülsenfänger” that collected the cases

    invisible officer

    Another early S-38 finished yesterday.

    Again I gave the area at the bridge sides the correct form along the tubes rear. I scratched a single 2 cm AA aft and added the usual IO reeling stuff.

    The camo I used on this is from a boat in Norway post Weserübung. The boats that had taken part in that operation got painted dark grey for day use.

    Those that remained in Norway got repainted in Schneebootweiß light grey with camo splotches. They differed from boat to boat. Most had a mid grey and a greyish brown.

    My boot got a darker base than Schneebootweiß, but most had a near white one. In some the dark Weserübung grey showed through and that’s what I wanted.

    Paul G. Overend

    Fantastic, as usual io! I’d swear you are working on 1/72nd kits as I have to use magnifying goggles to see my boats and then maneuver things with my fat fingers. 😀

    invisible officer

    Thank you. Well, not everything went well at first try. Some swearing, some parts done more than once……

    If the carpet Monster gets the third cut part of reeling…


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