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John Tapsell

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  1. You have the answer in your question - 'the more obsessive modellers...' The vast majority of kit purchasers are omnivorous consumers of the hobby rather than scale-focused modellers. Forums and social media groups are unrepresentative of the bulk of the model-buying public. They only tend to attract those who have decided to take their interest more seriously than just purchasing and building kits as the manufacturer intends. It's the same for many other hobbies too. The minority of 'serious' or 'obsessive' modellers wouldn't support the number of manufacturers we see in the market today.
  2. Sprueman - You've answered your own question. There are many scales because there are many manufcaturers and whilst most of them stick to common scales there is no requirement for them to do so and some of them choose to plough their own furrows (and the market is prepared to purchase those 'different' scales and thus support their continued existence).. Most scales have their origins in the imperial measurement system and tend to be keyed to various 'fractions' of an inch as you surmised. Architectural scales are standardised on a decimal basis but that has seen limited transfer to the scale modelling community: 1/25 - 1/50 - 1/100 - 1/200 - 1/400 - Then there is the correlation with railway scales (because that hobby developed before mass market plastic models) The early days of plastic kits also saw many companies operating a 'box-scale' policy - sizing the model to a scale that fitted into a standard box. Whilst each was a scale model, there was less emphasis on consistency across the range. The use of different scales for different genres also has a lot to do with 'shelf presence'. A 1/600 ship, 1/144 airliner, 1/48 fighter, 1/72 bomber, 1/24 car. 1/35 tank, 1/16 figure all have similar visual impact and footprint when placed on a shelf. For many modellers that's more important than building to a constant scale across multiple genres. That's significant because the vast majority of modellers do not build to a constant scale or to a limited subject area - they build whatever takes their fancy and 'scale' is a minor factor (if at all) in their decision-making process. You haven't even touched on figure and wargames scales (all measured in mm) based on a ground to eye-level measurement standard for a 'typical' human male. In wargames, the situation is further muddied through the use of 'heroic' standards and concepts regarding the angles when viewing figures from above. It won't change because there is no commercial incentive to standardise on a more limited number of scales. Those of us (me included) who prefer building to a constant scale are a minority within the model-buying public.
  3. The M151 is a completely different vehicle to the Willys Jeep - no connection between the two types. Officially, the M151 was never called a Jeep (because it's a trademarked name not owned by Ford) but a Military Utility Tactical Truck or MUTT. However, Jeep is such a generic term that you still see them referred to as such. A quick google search ('1960s Shore Patrol Jeep') brings up photos of ex-Navy CJ4s restored in US Navy markings - they have a deeper bonnet/hood and different headlamps, plus they seem to sit higher off the ground. I think they also had a tailgate fitted. These might be more likely what you were thinking of for that period? CJ3 M151A2
  4. They could have been post-war M38 Jeeps or by the late 60s/early 70s, most likely the Ford-designed M151 series which survived in service until the mid 1980s (being replaced by the Humvee family). Tamiya offered the M151A1 and A2, as did Academy. The M38 series was kitted by AFV Club. The wartime Willys Jeep series was being slowly replaced by the outbreak of the Korean War by the CJ2, but survived well into the 1950s. The two types are easily confused at first glance.
  5. ASAM Models (www.asam.co.uk) offer both a TACR1 (HT209) and a TACR2 (HT348) in 1/48 scale. They are white metal/resin and are offered as kits or can be purchased ready-assembled.
  6. For some reason my second post didn't appear last night - so here we go again...
  7. The in-service TACR 1 used bigger tyres than a standard Landrover if I recall correctly (?) In the second post I've included a couple of images of how I solved the brushguard construction (for an RAF Landrover Ambulance).
  8. Personally - as a Tamiya paint user - I'd take a punt on XF68 NATO Brown, XF69 NATO Black and XF73 JGSDF Dark Green (or XF65 Field Grey) - not so sure about the lighter green but I'd probably play around with adding XF4 Yellow Green to a base of XF58 Olive Green. It's tough to be sure as the vehicle looks like it's positioned in a building atrium and would therefore be lit by both natural light (from above and/or large windows) and artificial light (look at the upwards shadows cast by some of the bolts).
  9. That image of Sgt Nelson and his crew appears to show an M3A3 Stuart. By the time of the NW Europe campaign, each British armoured regiment had a Recce Troop attached to regimental HQ - usually operating 6-8 light tanks (Stuarts - depending on the individual unit, these could be M3A1, M3A3 or more rarely the M5A1).
  10. ARVN crews used the same style of CVC helmets as US crews of that period. The Korean figures in the Academy set are wearing a later (post-SE Asia war) style of US helmet. From images I've seen, M1 infantry helmets were not uncommon (over headphones) for the turret crews. The ARVN also tended to wear berets quite a lot (French influence).
  11. Really Pete Robin? That's a pretty sweeping condemnation of the hundreds of books covering the British experience in NW Europe, many of them personal memoirs or histories of particular regiments. The Sherwood Rangers happened to contain an unusually active group of writers so the regiment is better-served than many others by personal memoirs (all the books I listed in my previous post fall into that category). I have several shelves of books covering D-Day and the NWE Campaign - ranging from major campaign histories by historians to formal histories and personal memoirs of many of the armoured regiments that took part. Just from where I'm sitting, I'll pick out a random selection of what I can see on those shelves: 'Burning Steel' by Peter Hart (just published this month) - 2nd Fife and Forfar Yeomanry 'Armoured Guardsmen' by Robert Boscawen (served with 1st Bn Coldstream Guards - Guards Armd Div) 'Forrard' by Paul Mace (East Riding Yeomanry) 'Achtung Minen' by Ian Hammerton (served with 22nd Dragoons - Sherman Crabs) 'Assault Division' by Norman Scarfe (3rd British Inf Div - the author was a Gunner with the Division) 'Sutherland's War' by Douglas Sutherland (covers his service with 152 Regt RAC operating Churchill CDLs as well as his later service in ordinary Churchills) 'Flamethrower' by Andrew Wilson (covers his service with 141 Regt RAC) 'Troop Leader' by Bill Bellamy (served with 8th Kings Royal Irish Hussars) 'Juno Beach' by Mark Zuehlke - one of several good books he has written covering the Canadian perspective. Ken Tout has written a series of thinly disguised accounts of his time in 1st Bn Northants Yeomanry. I know I've read a book covering 2nd Bn Northants Yeo - operating Cromwells as the Recce Regt of 11th Armd Div - but can't remember the title or author. I'm also fairly sure I've read a personal memoir from a 3 RTR veteran, but again, can't remember the title or author. This only scratches the surface of what's available in the form of commercially and privately published works - you just need to be willing to hunt them down. Regards, John
  12. The most significant factor in answering that question is 'when' during the campaign in NW Europe would you want to portray the vehicle? Initially (June/July 1944), any Fireflies in Normandy would have been just the Sherman Vc, but as the campaign progressed through 1944-45, increasing numbers of Sherman Ic would have become available and been issued to the regiment as attrition replacements. Holland's book is really good (about 3/4 of the way through it at the moment) but there are several others worth reading that he draws a lot of personal info from. These are the ones I've read and own - all excellent in different ways. An Englishman at War (Edited by Holland) - Stanley Christopherson's personal diary The Man Who Worked on Sundays by Leslie Skinner By Tank into Normandy by Stuart Hills A Tank Soldier's Story by Arthur Reddish Tank Action by David Render (with David Tootal)
  13. Really nice group of photos. The Black Eagles are good hosts. They did a similar thing at Waddington in 2012 which I had the privilege of attending. You had better weather than us John
  14. The M2 was a standard issue item in the Yugoslav National Army (JNA) as they had received significant arms shipments from the USA in the 1950s and 60s (inc M18 Hellcats. M47 Pattons, M36 tank destroyers and well as small arms). Not sure where the Cypriot National Guard got their M2s from, but the T-34/85s they used commonly carried them.
  15. I've built a couple of the Tamiya 1/48 T-34s. I did modify both kits to represent post-war examples (one is Croatian and the other is Cypriot) but even straight out of the box, it will build very nicely.
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