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Das Abteilung

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  1. Just seen listings on eBay for the Asuka PzII Luchs and M4A3E2 Jumbo in Academy boxes. Asuka logo also on box. I wonder if this is Asuka's way of getting better market penetration? AFAIK there is still no UK agent for the brand and according to a post over on M-L the same is true in Australia. Selling through Academy might work for them. The Jumbo was priced at US$61 from Korea with "free" shipping, which works out at about £46, which is not at all bad. But there is the risk of another £20 in VAT and Post Office fees........... If they make it to Europe it will be interesting to see if the pricing is more Academy or Asuka.
  2. More authentic colours box sets listed on eBay today.
  3. And a "military equipment" box set listed today.
  4. I spotted a couple of Authentic Colours naval boxed sets newly listed on eBay a couple of days ago. The detail in those rotating photos is staggering.
  5. The top one of the 2 Panzer Art turrets would be a direct replacement for the kit turret. Uralmash is the post-Soviet name for the factory that was called UZTM duriing WW2, Ural Heavy Machinery Building Plant (WW2 name) at Yekaterinberg. So the kit factory and the Panzer Art factory are one and the same. The grab handles varied in design by model and factory. Some were bent rod, some were straight rod with end brackets. Not sure that all factories and variants had them. However, AFAIK UZTM used the straight rod type with little end brackets as shown here. Relatively simple to make.
  6. And yet look how well DS has worked out for Dragon. Not............! An open screen could be injection-moulded in sections, as could a closed one. With separate plastic and etched parts for some of the inner structure plus struts. Some could be moulded integrally with satisfactory finesse and detail. Disguising the join lines would be a pain as there are no natural joins or seams to speak of. With the later self-locking struts each of them has an air line for unlocking. There's a lot of fiddly parts inside the screen. This is just the back of the screen across the back of the hull on a III DD, Tubes not inflated.
  7. Rhine crossing and Walcheren DDs were all III DDs AFAIK, i.e. M4A2 diesels. The skirt internal structure was improved somewhat and they may have had power steering and air compressors: lessons learned from D Day. Bovington's DD is a III and has the improved skirt but still has the air tanks and manual steering. It may also be one of the almost-mythical Pullman Standard built tanks: especially rare. Not sure how it would work in injection plastic, especially the skirt. Lots of fine parts in the structure. I guess both folded and erected configurations could be tooled. Flexible material sounds like a non-starter
  8. Just to confuse you further, Tiran 6 was a conversion of the T-62! Note the different wheel spacing. Sticking with the Israeli theme, T-54s of assorted production versions became Tiran 4s while T-55s became Tiran 5s. There were sub-variants according to degree of modification and armament.
  9. And as if by magic or psychic connection, appropriate crew figures announced today by MiniArt.
  10. Three basic problems with the stand-off screens on that T-72. First, the mesh is too wide to reliably catch or detonate an RPG. Second, it is far too close to the vehicle structure to provide adequate stand-off in the case of detonation. Although there are the rubber side skirts (=useless vs RPG) and seemingly some sort of plate (more rubber?) inside the turret cage. The rear bar amour is better. Third, parts of the fuel tanks are unprotected. Most of the expedient stand-off protection seen on vehicles in Syria and elsewhere fails to appreciate the 2 key design criteria - but the people involved have to work with whatever they can get hold of. First, you provide an outer screen that catches the RPG so that it does not initiate: no boom. Second, should an RPG strike one of the bars and initiate then it does so at a distance from the vehicle skin sufficient to nullify much of the warhead's effect. The nose cone on the warhead provides the optimum stand-off for maximum penetration. Interfere with that and you will not get effective jet formation. Of course none of this is much use against the kinetic energy or larger-calibre higher-velocity HEAT projectiles fired by tank guns. So, back in the room, the BMP model probably copies a similarly-configured conflict vehicle.
  11. That's definitely scratchbuilt, presumably copied from a photo of a real vehicle. Relatively simple, I would think. It's all flat plates for the hull and turret. If the anti-RPG skirt is to scale then the holes are too large and would let an RPG through. Even the largest calibre RPG7 warhead (100mm) is only 3mm in 1/35. Most are smaller. So 2-2.5mm mesh would be about right. But maybe the original was like that. In which case I don't want to be inside the BMP!
  12. Quick change of plan re the Sherman. Just spotted the Asuka M4A4 75mm on eBay new for £38 including shipping from Germany. So I bought one. Which means there are several after-market parts I no longer need to modify the Dragon kit, such as an M34 mantlet, smoke dischargers and open-spoke idlers to name 3. So it works out at better value. But the kit still needs some fettling. The kit's vinyl T62 tracks will still go in the bin as they're vinyl with 2 joins and T54E2 tracks are appropriate to my build date. For all of Asuka's alleged Sherman-fu there are some inconsistencies with the kit. They give early and late M34 and M34A1 mantlets without giving the track types appropriate to each build period. T62s are only appropriate to M34A1 as a factory fit. They don't give the padded lift rings appropriate to the M34 mantlet period. And they say you can use open-spoke roadwheels anf flat-plate sprocket rings, neither of which were ever used by Chrysler. Open spoke idlers, yes at first. At some point I was going to backdate a Dragon M50 into an early VVSS M4A4T-based M50 but maybe I'll recycle this Dragon M4A4 for that. I have a Shapeways turret conversion.
  13. Technically it isn't a tank. Its an Infantry Fighting Vehicle. In this case a Russian BMP-1 of some sort (there were several models) with field-fitted add-on protection. No real indication of by whom or which conflict zone. Could be South Ossetia, Chechnya or even Syria.
  14. Very nice finish indeed. I'm currently planning a Tiran 5 kitbash at some point from MiniArt and Legend parts - although MiniArt have told me that they do intend to do a Tiran 5 in the future. Maybe I'll wait........... Tamiya goofed the wheels for the front axle. The T55A introduced a noticeably enlarged reinforced front wheel hub, later commonly found as a replacement part on earlier T55s and T54s. If anyone else is planning to use a Tamiya T55 or Tiran kit, MiniArt sell their wheel sets separately. Their T62 set has 4 enlarged hub wheels (front and back on T62). The old Tank brand resin replacement wheel pair is long OOP. If I may, IDF antennas are quite rigid and when tied back they flex at the spring base and lie back almost straight rather than bending.
  15. Thank you. I already knew the DD history and am currently trying to ascertain if the Bovington III DD is a comparatively rare and enigmatic (in preservation, at least) Pullman Standard tank underneath, Everything visible points to that being the case, mid-late 1942 build. In DD terms, despite having the self-locking skirt struts and the turret-mounted skirt struts it does not have the air compressor or power steering of the DD Mk II and so is something of a mix. My point about the Normandy tank is that it is a welded hull but is marked as a US tank, which is not correct. As you point out, all US DDs were cast-hull M4A1s and excess stock were passed to the UK to make up for a shortfall, the III DD being delayed beyond D Day availability and more Vs having to be allocated to DD conversion. Sadly, none of the uncertain number of III AY DDs sent to the UK survived. The sole survivor is in a US museum's back yard.
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