Jump to content


Gold Member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About Valenstitch

  • Birthday 11/17/1961

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    In a shed, in Portsmouth.
  • Interests
    More than when I joined!

Recent Profile Visitors

926 profile views

Valenstitch's Achievements

Established Member

Established Member (3/9)



  1. A few more jobs to strike off the list of things to do on the Big Old Girl! I started pottering around this morning and before I really thought about it I had fitted the main armament. I had been putting this off for ages, because once it`s in thats it as far as the internals go. That's it, done, It`s now fixed in place, forever! Just the radio sets to slip in now! The mantlet cover in the kit is a nasty DS rubber thing, so that went in the bin and I have started a milliput replacement. Next weekend I can add creases and seams and so forth to the basic infill, it will also help to hold the weight of the aluminium aftermarket gun barrel. The glacis plate will get some texture as well, not too much, I don't want to hide the weld lines I did at the outset. Before I fit the bins on the track guards I need to make a bracket to support the drivers hatch when it is open and I also need to make the external handles for the internal fire extinguisher system. There are four spare track links which are stowed on the track guards, on the actual vehicle they are held in place with two long bolts that go through the link with a plate on the end held with a nut, so I started fabrication of them and for good measure I drilled out the holes for the track pins. So all in the Win column today so far! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  2. Some more fots! Dry fit of the turret and hull top with the turntable fitted and the FCT interior dropped in as well! Gunners safety shield visible through the hatch, also .30 cal stowage for the FCT and CoAx. Gunners sight and rangefinder visible, and part of the Mollins gear. Turret turntable visible in this one! The breach of the 120mm will fill this void completely! Radios! These sit on top of the .30 cal stowage rack visible in the previous image through the FCT opening. FCT dropped in FCT interior again and a nice view of the Gunners shield! Even the Operators step is visible in this image through the top of the gunners safety shield! I`m Happy with that!!! Right more shed!
  3. Just a quick update before I head off down to the shed for what I hope will be a leisurely morning of plastic based fun since the "Leg Iron" is off to visit her Granddaughter! Earlier in the week I got a shot of clear on top of the silver in the fighting compartment. Yesterday II went to work with the Flory!! I also fitted the Gunners safety shield, this was designed to prevent him being "Scoffed by the Recoil Monster" during moments of heightened excitement! The Operator also had to keep his wits about him because the "Recoil Monster" and the "Traverse Monster" could be reasonably indiscriminate! I know from personal experience what a Hohne Battle run is like from the inside! As far as the Gunner is concerned this is the safe side of the Gunners safety shield, despite the size of Conqueror, the crew positions were cramped. There are just two sub assemblies to be fitted on the Turret turntable now, GCE and ready round bracket. Hopefully I can get the hull buttoned up today and hide all this for ever! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  4. I couldn't resist a dry fit of the turret bits and removal of the masking tape........................... Turret basket in, guide roller nicely in contact Masking tape off! Gunners seat in place............. Gun control equipment in place............... 7 round stowage on the turntable, clips still to go on.................... Coming together nicely now! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  5. Time for another half bottomed update! Working off and on I finally managed to populate the fighting compartment with sufficient bits and get a shot of Stynylrez on it! Across the rear bulkhead are the L/H air cleaner with the Charger Unit air cleaner on top of it, the generator blowers top L/H Ammunition stowage across the front of the access plate, R/H air cleaner surrounded with .30 cal stowage and the vehicle interior lights at the top of the bulkhead. This`un shows the L/H side hull wall with all its stowage. the 120mm case clips need trimming back a tad. The final addition was the turret basket roller guide. On the R/H hull wall are the two Co2 extinguisher bottles. And just now I hit it all with silver! Blingtastic! The rippling visible on the hull floor is Mr Hobby dissolved putty, not excess paint. Next will be a shot of clear before light weathering and I can button up the interior! Forever! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  6. Oooh Progress! Things are settling down, the "Leg Iron" is back at work......Just, and moaning that the holidays are too short, which as a teacher she is contractually obliged to do apparently, she's had 24 weeks off, but it`s still not enough, My Lad is starting College, he`s actually looking forward to it, and the two dogs are play fighting all day every day, which means I can get some shed time in! And this is what I did with it! Here is the fighting compartment, main engine air filters are fitted, charger unit air filter is fitted, just a hose/pipe to go, moving clockwise from the left, the boat shaped container on top of the air filter is to hold two thermos flasks, then, charger unit air filter, blower regulators, internal lighting, ammunition stowage 120mm case, gun tool stowage box with 4 x 120mm HESH behind, 2 x .30 cal box brackets on hull floor, 2 x 120mm Sabot bracket above the left hand main engine air filter, fire horn to the left of it, internal lighting above, stowage for 3 boxes of .30 cal, ammunition stowage along the hull wall (120mm case, 3 x 120mm HESH, 120mm case, 2 x 120mm Sabot and just in shot 120mm case stowage, tool stowage on the hull wall above the HESH stowage! The drivers compartment has now been fitted permanently. An overhead view! The white stuff all over the walls and floor is Mr Surfacer dissolved putty to give a rougher finish. More of the internal stowage in place, Battery box behind the drivers seat. And the hull top dry fitted. Another two box bracket for .30 cal, to the right of that will go the Co2 fire extinguishers.........possibly! And finally the turret turntable dry fitted on the RBJ, there really isn't much room left, so it`s getting there, various straps and clips still to go, but the basic structure is in, I might even get a shot of primer off before dinner! Still to do, Gunners safety shield, fit GCE on the turntable, fit the 7 x 120mm case ready round stowage on the turntable, fit the radios, and traverse indicator, fit the main armament and make a canvas cover for the mantlet, commanders .30 cal mounting bracket, paint and weather the interior, button it all up, and then get cracking on the exterior..........not much then! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  7. Thank you for the comments Gents, In answer to Kiwidave4 I am going to leave the hatches open! My original intention was to just put enough detail in to draw the eye away from the void, but I got carried away......... Being an ex-Army Tank crewman I don't like seeing models of armour closed down, We rarely did it in my time (70`s-80`s), only on a "Battle run" on the ranges or for NBC guff in "Troop tests", the rest of the time the lids were open, in the summer we got dusty, in all other seasons we got wet, because the engine drew its air in through the turret. Most Commanders and NCO "Bean stealing pad" Operators invested in Barbour Jackets, because they could afford to, Gunners got wet backs, and Drivers would more often than not put a poncho on under their helmet and over the back of the drivers seat to avoid sitting a puddle all day! Drivers also got the added bonus on areas like Soltau, of getting a mud bath when the vehicle in front stopped for whatever reason and his bow wave came back at you, closely followed by your own, which was nice. My Regiment was the first to get Chally 1, we did a lot more closed down driving from then on, but the turret crews were always hanging out the top posing, our immediate action on contact was to high speed reverse out of trouble which was a good test of confidence in your commanders ability to effectively "steer the panzer backwards at 30+mph while controlling the shoot and telling all and sundry on the net that he was about to be on the receiving end of some incoming! Glad I never had to do it for real! But I digress, I think enough detail will be visible through the hatches to make all the blood, sweat and tears worth it in the end! Granto
  8. Well, I had hoped to get a bit more done in the last two weeks, however the addition of another rescue dog to our family put paid to that, but the last two days have seen some definite progress! The curved stowage bin for the FCT .30cal ammunition has been painted and fitted. The three small compartments are for spare episcopes. And as I expected, once the FCT is dropped in you can hardly see it! The main engine air cleaners have been fitted, each one consists of 43 parts, most of which will not be visible! The stowage bases for four of the 120mm main armament cases have been installed, there will be corresponding upper brackets for these, there are also 7 HESH/Sabot round brackets to go in here, four in front of the bulkhead and three on the left hull wall, plus two, two round Sabot brackets, one on the rear bulkhead the other on the left hull wall and racks for five .30cal boxes. I still have to fit the charger unit air cleaner and the generator blowers above the RHS air cleaner, plus two interior lights and the fire alarm horn With the turret turntable in place you can see there isn't much room, virtually the entire left side of the hull is ammunition stowage. There is ammunition stowed on the right side hull wall, but with the gunners platform in place it can`t be seen, so I`m not going to bother with it! I`m still pondering about the drinking water tanks which are in a bracket above the battery box to the rear of the drivers seat.......Typical of British military kit, from personal experience I can confirm there is no unused space! There is a stowage for 9 120mm cases in front of the bulkhead, two Sabot rounds on the hull wall, there are another 7 120mm cases stowed vertically on the turntable. Plus the Gun Control Equipment of course! And 14 cases and 9 rounds, 6 Sabot, 3 HESH stowed here, you can get two Sabot rounds in a tube but only one HESH. In my opinion it would have been a nightmare to bomb up, Chieftain and Challenger 1 were a breeze compared to this! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  9. Yes it is! Four years! I`m back on it today after a slight delay due to the arrival of our second rescue dog, she has kept me out of my shed for two weekends straight! Granto
  10. So with my enthusiasm boiling over I got cracking on the stowage at the crack of late morning! This will be the FCT .30Cal stowage, it goes around the left rear of the turret bustle, this will require some fettling since it is already very tight in there! This little stowage box goes on the hull floor just behind the vertical stowage of 8 or 9 120mm charges which stand in front of the 14+ horizontally stowed ones next door to the driver, it is supposed to contain two respirators and a four man 24 hour ration. To the right and left are roughed out 90 degree bends that will connect the main engine air cleaners to the engine bulkhead/firewall The two main engine air cleaners got some D section rod stuck at roughly 51 degree intervals around the lid, these sections will be fettled to resemble cast bulges which were drilled and threaded to receive wing bolts that hold the cleaner caps on. And then I punched out some discs to resemble the flanges of the wing bolts. The charger unit air cleaner I made previously, it sits above the right side one in the fighting compartment. Horizontal stowage roughed out. I also cut down (or should it be up) the underside rim of the turret turntable/basket. And finally this very indistinct image is of the emergency release/run lever at the base of the gunners safety shield. A jolly productive morning, even if I do say so myself! It all goes in the win column! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  11. I started this beast four years ago. I love the Conqueror, from my first day at Stanley Barracks I was mesmerised by the hoofing great lump of a gate guard. Later on I got to go inside it, it was awesome, a proper tank. Loved by many of its crews, but not all, loathed by an Army that never got to grips with it logistically, mechanically or tactically. I couldn't wait to get the Dragon kit when it came out , despite its flaws. I intended to build OTB and just correct the major faults.......Glacis height and front roof armour, rear profile of the turret and gun barrel length/fume extractor position. Like I said, that was the plan......Mission creep! I ended up scratching most of the fighting compartment.....It killed my Mojo for Armour. But now its back, and I want this done and dusted! Here is the glacis modified. This is exactly the same modification as the real tank, when I was researching this build I went to Stanley Barracks and took loads of photos of the real thing and this mod is very visible! I doubled the number of engine louvers and replaced the moulded handles with captive wire ones, they lie flat unless I pop them up for photo opportunities! Main engine bulkhead, an RBJ and half of the front bulkhead where 14 120mm charges sit! Main engine air cleaners, these go on the aft bulkhead. turret internals, loaders side Turret turntable/ basket. Gunners platform with seat and Perspex safety shield, gun control equipment and the bottom end of the Molins gear FCT interior, commanders seat. FCT cupola, with the rangefinder head 120mm main armament breech and .30cal coax Drivers compartment and turntable dry fit. Turret guts FCT dry fit FCT cupola dry fit 120mm gun barrel, radios, battery box, part of the turret basket, modified drivers hatch, FCT guard, and the gunners traverse indicator. Everything else is in the box! So I guess this lot is already in the win column! I have the stowage to finish off internally, fit the gun in the turret, sort the mantlet cover, fit all the running gear.........it`s a big old list, but I`m two pints of Gin and tonic the right side of overconfidence and up for the challenge! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  12. Well, here is My Lancaster ASR III, I tried to take some better images but like a lot of things this year, it hasn't turned out as I expected! Base kit is the Revell Lancaster, with a Freightdog ASR conversion. In addition I used the Extradecal Post War Lancaster set, and Eduard canopy masks, paint was Vallejo air. This was my first group build and the largest Aeroplane kit I have completed since I joined the Army 42 years ago! When my Mojo for 1/35 armour evaporated I returned to 1/72 Aircraft, vowing to steer well clear of the mainstream Spitfires/Lancasters/Mosquitos that appear every day..............there seems to be a theme here about things not going as expected, so far I have built four spitfires, one Lanc, a Mosquito, a Tiffy and two Corsairs and have another eight Spitfires/Seafires, three Lancs, two Mozzies, a Tiffy and a Corsair all sitting awaiting my attention! But thats a horse of a different colour, having built my first Lanc in 42 years I have learned enough about the pitfalls of the Revell kit that my next one will be considerably better than this`un, not that I`m unhappy with it, but I know the areas that are below par, and more importantly, how to overcome them! Next time, I probably wouldn't bother with the Dihedral correction, because, as has already been mentioned on here, a fully fuelled Lancaster sitting on the ground would have an awful lot of weight in those wing tanks and we all know things bend under load! I would shorten the pilots raised deck and move him and his controls closer to the instrument panel, contrary to my expectations the canopy is excellent and a lot is visible, some PE enhancement has already been added to the stash for next time, this also includes the gubbins to sort out the turrets, in their OTB condition they seriously need improvement! I would fully assemble the canopy and attach it in one piece rather than front and rear as I did with this one to avoid the slight step. I would sort out the inboard engines exhausts, they protrude more than the outboard ones because they are intended to be fitted to the merlin engines included in the kit, I didn't use the engines, I just blanked off behind the cowling, My Bad! The kits carb intakes are poor and definitely need replacing, the Freightdog kit includes new intakes and the fuselage intake above the starboard wing, so aftermarket will be required next time, I will try a couple of brands and see what fits, also the kits main wheels are dreadful, the Freightdog ones on this are delightful so a few more pennies required there. I used Vallejo air to paint the kit, I have used this several times now, and I`m still not convinced, I read somewhere that there is a latex compound in it, which allows the paint to stretch which makes unmasking somewhat fraught and I have had some finish issues that I don't tend to get with Tamiya acrylic. Not that I`m about to ditch a pile Vallejo, but I shall be careful where I use it in future! Finally, Eduard Canopy masks, to paraphrase Baz Luhrman "If I could only offer you one tip for the future, Canopy Masks would be it, the long-term benefits of canopy masks have been proved by scientists, where as the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience" Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  13. Done! Right I`ve had enough of this one now I need to take some better images, but as far as the Lanc is concerned we`re done. I`m happy with some parts of it, and less so with others. I consider it a good kit for twenty two quid, there are several assemblies that are below par IMHO, turret interiors, flight deck/cockpit, I have a couple more of these in the stash, so I know what to tackle next time, but on the plus side the surface detail is nice and it is a reasonably easy build with only a few mistakes in the assembly instructions, the Freightdog conversion was ok, no real issues, I think the flare chute should be more horizontal, and the Lifeboat is a poor fit on the Revell kit, but the manufacturer recommends the Airfix kit, so you can`t really argue about that, the main wheels are lovely, I really like them, I thought the Revell decals that I used were excellent as were the Extradecal set, I wasn't tremendously happy with the Vallejo paint, it has a nasty rubber/latex consistency once it is laid down which has given me some issues with masking, but thats about all. The Eduard canopy masks were excellent, I shall definitely use them again. The lifeboat is only held on with bluetac, I might use it somewhere else yet! Ta for lookin` no G Granto
  14. Proper Minging, just like every one I pulled up alongside during countless tactical "Replens" on Soltau and across Germany in the 80`s, Excellent! You just need the SQMS`s "choggy wagon" parked at the end of the line now! Oh an Wolfgang's blue Merc to get the heads up on where you were going the next day! Granto
  • Create New...