African-style operational maintenance

February 4, 2021

The AML Panhard of the EFAO armoured platoon

Maintaining the French Elements of Operational Assistance (EFAO) in operational condition in Africa.
The EFAO are an episode in the long history linking France to the Central African Republic.
They were deployed from 1979 to 1998.
Armored resources are essentially made up of a platoon of AMLs, located on an independent site in the center of the capital.
In the 80s, this platoon was armed alternately by the 1st squadron of the 4th Dragons Regiment and the 2nd squadron of the 501st Chars de Combat Regiment.
This armored platoon is built around three AML 90s, two AML 60s, four Hotchkiss M 201 jeeps and two light trucks


African-style MCO

AMLs are not new, but as the only armored reserve, they benefit from unfailing support.
In addition, their almost daily use requires regular maintenance by the crews, which contributes to a high availability rate.
Their hardiness is well suited to a demanding environment, characterized by, among other things, often rudimentary communication routes, sometimes very high temperatures (you can cook an egg on AML armor!), above-average humidity and laterite dust that creeps in everywhere.
  • Diorama-AML-Panhard-1/48

The work on the model was quite substantial to achieve this result, as opening the innards of a miniature not designed for the purpose requires a great deal of meticulousness and documentation.
The staging is very realistic, and you expect the mechanics to arrive to reposition the turret for immediate availability.
You can be sure of the authenticity of this diorama's creation, for it was not created by inspiration but by the author's own experience.
Dioramas are an excellent medium for setting the scene, and for telling a story - in this case, our author's story.
You can find metal AML Panhard miniatures in our Prometal range.
The quality of the diorama captures the atmosphere of the Central African Republic, with its distinctive earth color derived from laterite rock.
The whole set is very well arranged, showing the "temporary" aspect that must last for African missions...
The French Army's resourcefulness with the means at hand is clearly evident.

Historical text, model and diorama by Thomas Seignon
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