MIRAGE 1/35 POLISH C7P LIGHT TRACTOR & CARGO CARRIER IN CAPTURED GERMAN MARKINGS
MSRP: $14.26 (approximately)
The C7P tractor was manufactured in Poland by the Panstwowe Zaklady Inzynieryjne (State Engineering Works) from 1935. Its design used components of the Vickers 6T tank - built under license in Poland - in a modified form as the 7TP. The tractor was designed by Witold Jakusz, who used the engine, body, suspension, and transmission. The first tractors were introduced into service with the 1st Heavy Artillery Regiment at Gora Kalwaria, which converted in 1935 to the 220 mm mortars purchased from Czechoslovakia. Eventually, five C7P tractors were required for each mortar: one for the barrel carrier, one for the carraige, one for the undercarraige, and two for equipment and ammunition trailers. According to the establishment, each two-gun battery should have 11 tractors. Outside of the 1st HARgt the C7P tractors were planned to be used as recovery vehicles in light tank companies: two vehicles per company, and mobile armor units would include 14 vehicles each. C7P tractors were also used in railway engineer units, each railway bridge company scheduled to have one to three machines, either on platforms or on rail wheels.
According to incomplete information, the following number of tractors were in service prior to entry into WWII: seven at the Armored Weapons Training Center at Modlin, five in the 2nd Armored Battalion at Zurawica, four in the 3rd AB in Warsaw, two in the 4th AB at Brzesc nad Bugiem, and three in the 5th AB in Krakow. Immediately prior to the outbreak of war, four surplus vehicles of the type from the Main Depot of Armored Weapon Materials were allocated to the 12rh AB at Luck, and for the 21st Light Tank Battalion, which was equipped with the French R-35 tanks and just being formed. After the war broke out, single tractors were still at this depot and no.1 Armored Weapons Replacement Center. A number of C7P's were allocated to 30 mobilized railway bridge companies, and at least one tractor on rail wheels was used at No. 1 Railway Bridge Engineer Replacement Center.
Fates of the C7P tractors during the 1939 campaign are difficult to ascertain. More information is available only on the vehicles of the Independent 11th, 12th, and 13th Heavy Artillery Battalions of the 1 HARgt, which had a total of 99 C7P tractors. Some vehicles, used by the 11 HAB were destroyed on the 23rd of September 1939 at Tarnawatka, near Tomaszow Lubelski, while some were damaged and captured by the Germans. (subject of this kit). Tractors of the 12th HAB were captured by the Soviets on the 27th of September 1939 at Melelin near Hrubieszow, while vehicles of the 13th HAB were captured by the Soviets on the 19th of September at Zorawno in Podole. It is estimated that the Germans captured 15 to 20 tractors, while the Soviets some 70. The scope of use by the captors has not been accertained so far.
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