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Rare Wheels - A Pictorial Journey from Canfora Publishing


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Rare Wheels

A Pictorial Journey of lesser-know soft-skins 1934-45

Canfora Publishing

(Grafisk Form & Förlag)

Author: Petr Dolezal

ISBN: 978-91-982325-1-6

Price tag: 29,50€ (plus shipping)



Canfora release another book with an isoteric subject: rare wheels soft-skins.

Canfora Publishing is quite well known by their high quality standards books and this one at the first sighis not off route.


It’s a Hardcover, A4 size in landscape format with more than 100 pages, full of rare pictures.

The inside paper is glossy/satin finish with high quality definition, giving a killer quality overlook to the book.


Its a photographic book about less known soft-skin vehicle, used by Wehrmacht, distributed in 10 chapters, between the pre-war until May 1945.






On the cover a Peugeot 402 in Policka 1945 with mottled camouflage make a introduction to this book.. No doubt that this book starts on the right foot.


A Peugeot 402 with tricolor camouflage? For mew is totally new, and indeed stand for the book – Rare.


In book`s back cover and in the last page the only two color pictures, tanken in the same place, separate by frames, in each one you can se a Horch Kfz and Hanomag SS 100. I never saw these pictures before and they are quite amazing as they give us a full color piece of history and are begging for a diorama. Quite inspirational! You will have to get the book to see them! ;)



The book is divided in several chapters, separating the periods to which they relate the pictures, allowing a chronological order and better organization in the picture display.





Training and preparation is the first chapter which focuses in military vehicles soft skin pre-war types. While it’s the very first chapter, it`s already my favorite.


I do have a soft spot for vehicles inter wars. The images do have a relaxed atmosphere among the soldiers and rare vehicles and some of which did not even know.


I just love the Schneider H chassis. Please Plusmodel or Brach Model, make us modeller even more happy  - just do one!!! 



While the polish campaign chapter is quite brief with few pictures, there's one that stand out.... An Rare Ursus A30. The sidenotes of the pic, is quite interesting with technical observations.



The Battle for France chapter is much more extended with lots of fantastic pictures where all the soldiers are with a confident look. 

The Matford F917 is ugly awesome looking truck.. There several of civilians cars with NSU-Fiat 1100 (Fiat-508 Balilla) in evidence.



However the most intriguing picture is a rail bench NSU. What an extraordinary conversion and diorama this will be... A NSU motorcycle with a rail wheels and a garden bench. 






Passing along to the Eastern Front chapter  and surprise: mud mud  mud and destroyed vehicles and more mud! And some pretty awesome and rare Mercedes-benz O 3000 bus and Marigus O 145 taken in Ukraine 1941.










Some Russians vehicles are included like a ZiS-12, with a soviet anti-aircraft searchlight Z-15-4B fitted in the cargo area. 


Another highlight is an extraordinary photo: a BMW 303/309.


I confess that never saw a pic of this BMW, even more with a big white G belonging to Hermann Goring regiment unit.


Other highlight on this chapter is MatfordF917 in Stalingrad 1942. Almost looks like a Tatra. 


Adventures Around the Mediterranean. Italian vehicles, what else? And boy do I love them!

The first two pics are just fantastic: a Lancia 3RO and an Alfa Romeo 430RE. 




Next, some great pics of Ford-30 and Ford-60. 

The chapter really gave a sense of too little! For now the only negative point: not enough pictures of Italian vehicles.



Then we jump right to the end of the war, "The German withdrawal through Polička” , a town of the Bohemia-Moravia frontier,  in the basin at the White Stream about 17 km west of Svitavy


The chapter is all about German retreat, with all types of vehicle on the photos and quite busy ones.


In page 67 and 68 the pics is almost the same... Its the same Place, same view, its just almost the next photo frame. The title is the same of the pic but the explanation text are different. On the first pic a Citroen T45 In full move, on the second a Opel Blitz that follows the Citroen. 


A pic of a Sd. Kfz8, Sd. Kfz 251 in 9.5.1945 in Polička is a truly expressive photo of that time. Troops leaving with civilians watching, baby car, trailer with a horse/donkey…


The cover pic (the Peugeot 402) is in the chapter telling that was taken in Polička. A quite rare car as the production ended in December 1941.







Going around in “Touring Czechoslovakia” the first pic is quite a fantastic one. I never hear of this soft-skin before: Gräf & Stiff truck. This picture was taken at Jicin, 1945. This truck is equipped with a wood-gas generator. Now that an odd looking truck but a cool one. 

This tour gives us again quite odd looking vehicle like Tractor Svodada, and MIAG electrical crane.

Another great pic is with a Jawa Minor I… that even existed?



The author did make a real tremendous effort and all the study and work are in the book like we can see in the legend of the picture of page 79, that is from the same company of picture 39 and 43 and the author invites the reader to compare both, being an interesting comparation.


In “Prague, May 1945”, we can see the truly end of the war, with Russian vehicle and a number of interesting vehicle of the Revolution Guards (Czech Resistance units). On these pages we can some odd looking vehicle like a GAZ-AA, 937. IAP with a superstructure AS-1 or Büssing-NAG 4500T with red cross.





The Surrender of Schlachtgeschwader 2 do have some curious and interesting photos with a side note that commander of Schlachtgeschwader 2 at the time was Oberst Hans-Ulrich Rudel that fly away in his Ju-87to Kitzingen, leaving behind all the unit members.


The two final chapters a lot of soviet trucks, lend lease vehicle and Czech resistance vehicle representing the end of the WWII and the defeat of Nazi Germany . Also some recovered vehicle live a BMW 326.


A final amylase to a brief chapter (only two pages) with a several pics of one last event: “The Last Drama of Brandenburg Division” which represent the inspection of a Citroën C11 being checked under gunpoint. All the pics sow the specific inspection with all the historic information.




Another killer publication from Canfora Publishing and an awesome work By Peter Dolezal to give us the reader some interesinting pics and history.

Beside the paper quality and printer definition, the content of this book is a quite inspirations one to all the AFV modeller and dioramas modellers, even if most of soft-skins in the book simply do not exist in kit form. I confess, most of them I didn’t even know them.

The quality of the pics, their rarity and the side note text make this book a fantastic reading and a mojo inspiration.

Sorry the low number of pics… I have lots others but being this book a pictorial journey, lots of pictures would reveal this fantastic book to all… We just want to lift the veil and leave all eager to get one copy! J

Highly Recommend


Francisco Guedes


Our thanks to the Toni Canfora and Canfora Publishing for this review sample and all the support.

To purchase this directly, click THIS link.


If you found this review helpful and decide to purchase this product, please tell them you read about it at Large Scale Modeller!


Disclaimer: all photos all in low quality to preserve and prevent all copyright.

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