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About DByrden

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  1. So, I looked for some examples. Bovington have an actual Tiger that actually drives around a few times per year. Firstly, this is their sprocket not long after a repaint. The paint is not being worn off the tip of the tooth, only the lower sides. Surprise. After a few more drives, most of the paint is gone from the tooth. But rust has set in. It's brown, like you said. However, it's worth remembering that a Tiger in service would at times do a lot more driving than this one. There wouldn't be time to rust. David
  2. What? Where do you get that information? I would expect them to be silver, for the simple reason that they get polished by the tracks every time the vehicle moves! David
  3. Actually, most of the Tigers sent to the Eastern Front at that time, were painted in RAL 8000 / 7008. Only the ones earmarked for Leningrad were Dunkelgrau. So "131" didn't need any repainting for Africa. David
  4. It's very difficult to model realistic damage in plastic skirting. This is why people pay for metal ones. David
  5. That's not a great name. African Tigers rarely went near a desert. Farms and orchards were their usual surroundings. David
  6. The decal sheet / history information has problems. The real Tiger " 823 / 832 " was not exactly the same version of Tiger as this kit builds. Its turret bin was quite different. The real Tiger " 823 / 832 " was destroyed in Operation Citadel, so Airfix are wrong when they tell us it went to France and fought after D-day. Airfix drew 2 camouflage schemes for Tiger 823/832. The real vehicle did have 2 schemes but they were not the same as the Airfix ones. The brief history of the Tiger, which Airfix put on the side of the box, describes some very specific Tiger actions near Leningrad but has no bearing on the Tiger 823/832 that the decals represent. FYI, the reason for the overpainting of the number 832 is that when the crew were given the new 1943 paints (red+green+dark yellow), they decided to not apply the green because their tank was already greenish. So they left part of their tank untouched, keeping the old digits. Later they were obliged to paint new digits, and they didn't bother to erase the old ones. How do I know that? Because we have many photos. Photos that Airfix' researcher apparently didn't find. David
  7. No, 131 was not towed all the way to the UK. It went from the point of capture, to a secure vehicle park south of Medjez el Bab. There it was repaired. David
  8. That kit actually builds Wittman's Command Tiger (allegedly) so you'd have to convert it to a normal Tiger for starters. There were a couple of Early Tigers fighting in Normandy, in Kampfgruppe Schulze and Panzerkompanie Hummel. They are reasonably well covered by photos. David
  9. Obvious question: why didn't Airfix put decals for "131" into this first Tiger kit? It's the correct version. Just needs a few new parts, including the side cable.
  10. Airfix have now released details on some of the armour kits, so I looked closely at the Tiger which is my area of expertise. It's an Academy rebox as we deduced: their "early" Tiger without an interior. It's a little crude in all details, with a couple of "bloopers" that a modeller could fix (e.g. bolts out of place at the hull MG). There's one big error : the "late" style cable on the hull side. Tigers of this vintage had a very different cable layout. Academy's cable is a single plastic part, so this is not easy to fix. Airfix apparently left Academy's plastic as-is but they designed new decals and two paint schemes, for the same Tiger on different dates. This new work is poor. Both paint schemes have wrong colours. One of them resembles the B/W photos reasonably well, but the other is pure fantasy - the subject tank only ever had a single camo scheme. The schemes are labelled with approximate dates and places. One of them is totally wrong. The decals are for a slightly different version of Early Tiger than what the kit builds. This need not have happened - there are plenty of good subjects and photos. This information is not obscure. Two years ago Revell made all of these same mistakes with their Tiger "812" which was a stablemate of the Airfix "832". The colours and features of these Tigers were therefore discussed online and the correct info was published. David
  11. I'm puzzled about that new Tiger kit. It may not build the version shown on the box art. Have asked Rye Field about this in their Facebook feed but they didn't reply. I'll keep this analysis updated as new information gets released: Wittman's Tiger Early Production David Insert other media
  12. Those other parts don't really matter the way a gun barrel matters. David
  13. I'm afraid that documentary is wrong. The Tank Museum at Bovington were mixing up 131 with another Tiger for years. They corrected their information only a couple of years ago, and now they would tell you the same thing about that documentary. Tiger 131 didn't knock out any tanks in the battle where it was captured. I'm maintaining an up-to-date account of the capture of Tiger 131 David
  14. The debate about the colour of African Tigers is pretty much over, following detective work on "131" and systematic study of hundreds of photos. "131" was in the 504, not 501 as you said. The reference to "Afrika Corp Sand Yellow" is just guesswork because there was no colour with that name. The "tropical" colour RAL 8020 sort of fits that description, however it was not used overall on African Tigers. Some components on Tigers of the 501 were painted with it. It's been claimed that African Tigers were repainted with green Italian or American paint. Close examination of Tiger photos, where we can follow certain individual Tigers from Italy through to the end of the African campaign, fails to reveal any overall repainting. The conclusion from these studies is that the colour scheme for all of the African Tigers was the same one restored at Bovington for "131". In other words, RAL 8000 and RAL 7008. Individual variations are few. Some Tigers of the 501 seem to have more 7008 than usual. Some have their battle repairs "touched up" with RAL 8020. But overall, these were green Tigers. David
  15. That doesn't agree with the events of 131's recovery. The tank was not put on a transporter; it was towed. We have actual film of this, as well as the written report. The spot where 131 was captured, was almost immediately in British hands because it was the center of a battle. It remained in British hands from that day forward. There was no need to assemble a team to secure the spot. Perhaps he was referring to another Tiger? David
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