Because I close in the afternoons I am in the habit of leaving my solo game table in place as I am not in a great hurry to finish the games and make them last a few days so that I do not have to run out of things to do, interesting things unlike what the missus would like me to do.
Imagine my surprise when a guy looked at the table and then came over and identified the tank lying there as a T34/76 and then told me he used to own one! So we got talking about the T34 and he was telling me it was a swine to drive and very uncomfortable, but a Panzer IV was well designed and very comfortable. We then discussed all sorts while he took in my WWII collection of vehicles and then told me he still has a PAK40, a 251/1 an Opel Blitz and several other bits and pieces, it also transpired he lives only a short distance from me, a 20 minute walk or five minutes in the car, and that I should visit sometime.
I finished a couple of officers for my SYW force and then thought, I have to go and see this stuff, I got in the car and off I went, I pulled up in the drive and saw a couple of guys at work, one on an old Mini and the other on what looked like a VW type van, the third guy noticed me, welcomed me and told me his name. He introduced me to one of the guys working and I knew the other, who was surprised to see me.
Duncan then proceeded to show me around, the first thing I noticed was two very tidy Kubelwagen's, inside one was a replica panzerschrek, next was a Zundap motorcycle under restoration, next to that was an Opel Blitz. Duncan's vehicles get used in movies, the most recent being 'Fury' and he knows his Opel should be yellow but movie people always want it in grey with large crosses on the doors, this annoys him and he got fed up painting them out, so he now supplies magnetic crosses for the doors.
Next was one of the vehicles I really wanted to see, the 251/1, this is mainly a replica but that didn't matter, I got to board and he told me its story, the seats by the way have two settings, travel and combat, bet you didn't know that, I didn't. The machine gun positions were empty but he has replica MG42's and 34's in the house. Next to the halftrack was a Sabre tank, and a small Ford truck of some kind.
Outside in his yard are more vehicles, an M8 Greyhound in full working order, some Russian Cold War vehicles, one which had been captured and upgraded by the Israeli army. More Cold War stuff lay around, two Zis AA guns, a twin and a quadruple mount, a real FlaK 38 carriage and a Russian replica. And then the PAK 40, under wraps but you could not mistake it, simply wonderful, this has mostly authentic parts. Duncan said I could spend more time looking about and that I could take the wraps of some of the vehicles but I did not want to overstay my welcome, things finished when he lent me a book which he says I would enjoy as it was a memoir of a Kampfgruppe on the Eastern Front. A gentleman.
What a day.