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About Bigglesof266

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    Too many to list, but these days cycling, astronomy, model railways and plastics modelling take up much of my time.

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  1. Hahaha. Even with availability of Flames of War making it easier than ever before, I suspect it's a dying if not close to dead hobby today war gaming with actual miniatures with RTS PC games like Company of Heroes and Blitzkrieg about Bob. I used to war game with Avalon Hill's fun Squad Leader and successor Advanced Squad Leader back in the day before computers, but even then back then, had a very limited experience with tabletop miniatures. I bought a stack of Fujimi 1:76 to try it beginning of the 1980s. Built a lot of the T-34s, but still have a few in the stash. Off the top of my head, several T-34/76 & Sd.Kfz 251, a KV-1, Matilda, Valentine come to mind amongst others.
  2. I agree Nikolay. I only received my kit a week ago, and although I checked it out, I didn't really pay note how unrealistic the creases in that tarp look. Poor sculpting. That kind of large rolled treated (waterproof or resistant) canvas used by military is called a tarpaulin, usually contracted to "tarp" in English Nikolay. We used them all the time back in the day, that size, smaller and larger. Not being a smartie. Just wanting to help expand your already impressive English vocabulary.
  3. I'd managed to figure that out Bob all by myself Bob. Hence jokin'. One would have to either rich as Crassus to wargame in 1:35 or a tad batty. Impressive accumulation of T-34s regardless.
  4. I'm with Nikolay Bob. Leave 'em. Nostalgia will regret it one day if you do. P.S. You must have a very big wargaming table.
  5. Agreed Bob that many things such as that detail you mention about the Tamiya T-34/76 Model 1943 including scale accuracy reflect the age of kits from that era, e.g. their Panther Ausf A, but, they still build into visually good looking and unmistakable identifiable standoff models of type. Truly, who not having seen a real T-34 or Panther Ausf A, alerted by comparison with another kit, or researched the topic thoroughly would ever know? For me, it depends upon each individual's modelling objective and I do appreciate that that objective might be different for others. While I do look for scale accuracy with accurate crisp detail preferred, at my age with my eyesight I'm not anal to a point of pedantic absurdity about it that I might once have been. Life's too short, getting shorter by the day not to enjoy what I do have. For 45 year old kits at their price point, Tamiya from that era are great to have available and with characteristic Tamiya fit.
  6. Steady progress. Nice work Nikolay. Love the substitution of the turned metal barrel. With turret buttoned up & presumably driver's hatch to be closed, are you going to decorate/display it with infantry desant common during the period?
  7. Similarly the Cyber-Hobby Orange Box Series, although Tamiya old moulds are an easier build less likely to present any fit issues. Although Dragon feature more prominently in my collection/ stash, I do have a couple of Orange Box whose scale fidelity is true which scrub up very well in their warpaint as built OOTB. In particular, with knowledge and a modicum of inexpensive if laborious modification they can be detailed to close to contemporary kit accuracy. e.g. StuG IIIb kit. Mod the shot trap, bolts and hinges, common PzKpfw III hull escape hatch in the lower side hull. In both cases, I really like the value adding inclusion of figurines. Tamiya give us three crew figures in their older T-34/76 1943 kit and both early/late types of wheels and turret hatchs/cupola fuel storage tanks alternatives. Not resin sculpted quality, and not Modelkasten state of the art injection moulded, but still decent enough to use. Or the were in mine bought in '82 moulded when the moulds were still relatively new. Orange box include a complete Dragon figure set. Albeit their older series sets, they are well sculpted and detailed. Importantly both keep modelling affordable so everyone can afford to participate. A particularly pleasing factor is less annoyance with self when I screw up, which I note increases proportionately with the price paid for a kit, and by probability the more aftermarket etch included.
  8. Outstanding result and effort put into achieving that green mottling Gaz. That said, and I understand the internal drive to finish that way - I'm find myself internally conflicted about it constantly, it's not necessary as a reflection of realism. Check out the many photos of mottling application on the real thing in those final desperate days, Kobayashi's mounts in particular. Inspirational build.
  9. Odd isn't it?! I went and looked at the painting and detailing reverse box art, and there are none illustrated indicative confirming they aren't supplied in this current boxing if they ever were previously. Could understand if it was a Pak 40 model crew later in the war after national insignia were removed from helmets for operational reasons. Although Pak 36s were certainly still around late war when everything was pressed into service, other than extant surviving examples, the gun like the Ausf C (?) doors of Tamiya's Sd.Kfz. 251/1 'Hanomag' are early period and so this model and its crew provided would more frequently be modelled early war than not. I wonder if Zvezda do in their more recent Pak 36 kit? Edit: PS. Just DL and looked at the Zvezda kit instructions. Sprue legend only shows the three kit sprues, No decals, so surmising not.
  10. Hi Robert It was Nikolay who linked you to the Wikipedia 'history' entry, Had I offered up anything on Lidice outside the relevant significance of it's inscription on the tank, Wikipedia is not a link I'd provide for anything resembling a factually accurate report of historical events. If you want a T-34/76 or /85, I can endorse these two recent mould offerings from Zvezda. Similarly to Soviet aircraft types from the period in 1:48, decent recent mould T-34s in 1:35 have been a largely neglected subject for some inexplicable reason a mystery to me? I couldn't cope with the issues with Academy's T-34/85 releases a few years ago and passed on them as I did Zvezda's 3533 previous mould hailing from 1993. Dragon's 1997 & Cyber-Hobby Orange Box rebox pressings have long been unavailable unless fortunate enough to live in the US where extant examples pop up for resale on eBay at silly prices. So I'm over the moon that Zvezda has provided us with two contemporary class mould examples, and at a very affordable price leaving plenty of meat on the bone to afford aftermarket detail. Hopefully with more variants to come if it sells well. I also have a rather nice (2003 tooled + new parts in 2007) Dragon (6418) T-34/76 Model 1941 with two man cast turret along with the venerable (1975 tooled) Tamiya Model 1943 with cast hexagonal turret which though showing its age and inaccuracy to those in the know, is still a looker on the shelf, and now finally, a T-34/85 in Zvezda 3687. Woohoo!
  11. Nikolay (& das Abteliung) the Uralmash model 1943 turret was stamped -with a 10,000 tonne press, not cast. It shouldn't have a rough cast texture any more than you'd see side plate welds on a cast hexagonal Model 1943 turret.
  12. No it's not Robert. Easy mistake to make unless you're a T-34/76 aficionado. Nice pic, but it' s a T-34/76 Model 1943 with cast hexagonal turret not UZTM stamped which are an unmistakably identifiable shape, and although I can't quite make it out in the photo from the angle and body in the loader's top hatch obscuring it, what appears to be the late model cupola behind him indicating it a very late production Model 1943. Other giveaways in conjunction affirming that are the all rubberised road wheels and drum type 90 litre fuel storage tanks. Join us. You know you want one. At an educated guess, the "Lidice" name annotaton is probably a patriotic reference to the town where mass reprisals were exacted in response to the murder of SS-Obergruppenführer Heydrich in Czechoslovakia by Czech agents deployed by the Brits. Ilya Ehrenburg would have had propagandised it to the max. Although that incident occurred early in the war, the image is possibly a late war pic with a Czech national crew, as although superseded by the T-34/85 in mass production, large numbers of extant T-34/76s were deployed right up until the end of the war.
  13. I have Zvezda's new mould T-34/76 3689 (and their new T-34/85). The former is a stamped turret Model 1943 variant assembled in UZTM Sverdlovsk -formerly Yekaterinburg since reverting (1991) to its original name, where those turrets were manufactured rather a turret exported to (Kirov) Chelyabinsk. According to Zvezda, the unit they have modelled was built there in early '43, which tallies with its "Mickey Mouse" type turret access hatches. "Uralmash" is a contraction of Ural’s’kiy Mashinostroitelnyy Zavod, which is coincidentally the adopted name for the surrounding urban residential area serving the factory. "Zavod" literally translates as plant. AFAIK the curved fenders of this kit are accurate for T-34s manufactured in that plant as are the all rubber rimmed road wheels and pattern, although anyone into Soviet armour of that desperate period probably already knows the situation regarding fitting wheels according to availability and swapping between Model 1943s once in the field. Tamiya's venerable far less accurate hexagonal cast turret early/late Model 1943 (35059) offers an either or or mix wheel choice. along with early-mid "Mickey Mouse" or late cupola. The overall fidelity and quality of the mould is typical new Zvezda, though not arguably over-engineered as some of their outstanding new 1/48 aircraft kits -of which I have most. It's clear Zvezda are both price point and contemporary modeller sensitive/aware. If you've assembled Academy's superb 1:35 Hetzer, that'll give you an idea of the Zvezda T-34 kits' fidelity and pragmatic implementation. It's not contemporary Tamiya or Dragon, but nor is it anywhere near their current price points. And Dragon has of recent years along with simplifying their kits, drastically reduced inclusions regardless of the stratospheric price points for their more recent mould kits now in my country. Usually DS continuous run tracks only included now, no metal barrels and little etch although in fairness to the latter, their slide moulding detail is better than mere excellence rendering the tedious job of applying endless minuscule etch detail largely redundant. Tamiya are a bit more compromising with even their most current kits at a lower price point than Dragon, but similarly if you want the detail it's multiple Tamiya aftermarket pushing the price right up or proprietary aftermarket e.g. Aber, ArtWox etc at additional expense. I like Zvezda's affordable practical approach letting the user decide. 3689's length and link tracks are especially well done IMV, and the provision of a jig in the manner they have, typical Russian practicality. Similarly the grill over the air filters access hatch. Whilst I'd have preferred a small piece of etch as Academy supply in their Hetzer kits, TBH I'm not entirely sure whether that's just conditioning? The piece of synthetic material Zvezda supply does do the job adequately, and will outlast me. Their decals have improved a lot even since the newer initial 1:48 aircraft releases. I also recently bought Zvezda's very recent reboxing of Accurate Miniatures Yak-1b, and the decals in it are superior to those in their La-5 series, Yak-3 or Bf 109F-2 &-4. Instructions are decent in the Tamiya foldout style, with a sprue legend. and the inclusion of a separate glossy colour painting guide with callouts in Zvezda and Tamiya colours a very nice touch. Overall I like Zvezda's approach with their new T-34s, and love their price points. The only aftermarket I have purchased for either Zvezda T-34 so far, are F-34 and ZiS C 53 metal barrels. I've only recently bought the kits, and those barrels and some eye magnet figures notwithstanding, am yet to decide whether to bother to detail them any further than the kit already provides. I think Zvezda are definitely getting up there with Trumpeter. e.g. KV-I. For modellers Zevzda getting into the serious game is great IMV.
  14. "Bored" facial expressions. Well worn 1975 release injection moulding at 1975 moulding reflected prices, adjusted for inflation. Depending upon the sculptor, even back then with Tamiya figure poses, some were really so good they'd stand up OK today, whereas others ranged from illustrative mediocrity to good for the kids' toybox only. The troop inclusions with the Hanomag fit in between the last two categories unfortunately. Solution is out there as always, at a price. Buy resin heads, or complete figures. The are now some superb resin figures available at much more affordable prices than Alpine miniatures if you know where to shop. Similarly, some manufacturers do stunning injected moulded figures with facial features now recognisable as historical individuals illustrative of what is possible. e.g. Modelkasten's 1/48 New Guinea Japanese pilots. They do produce a superb 1:35 Japanese tank crew/commander. Unfortunately, TMK Modelkasten don't yet do any German figurines. Question for you re Tamiya's Pak 36 kit. Were hemet decals included with your kit? I
  15. Nice one Jeff. Given current of recent Dragon and Tamiya mould releases in AU these days. those Cyber-Hobby Orange Box are super value and as you demonstrate, scrub up very nicely OOTB. Some with scale accuracy better than others require only minor work to improve overall fidelity but were nevertheless, very good for the day and stand up well enough today. e.g. Stug IIIb. I have an Orange Box PzKpfw III (E/F) along with a tonne of much more expensive Smart Kits. Although they've improved the III's detail in later releases, the old release still stands up well enough for me to get enjoyment from looking at on shelf display and is incredible value buying with the Dragon Figure set included.
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