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John Tapsell

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About John Tapsell

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  1. You need to be wary of AoS markings. Whilst there were commonly used numbering sequences, you'll also find that completely different sequences (and colours) were used in different theatres. The first stage would be to identify the unit you want to model, the theatre of operations you want to place it in and the period of the war. Also, if a regiment moved from one brigade to another for example, it is likely the AoS would change. A unit did not necessarily retain the same number and coloured backing square for it's entire existence. For virtually every 'rule' about the use of AoS you will probably find at least one exception where somebody did it differently. John
  2. John Tapsell

    Which paints?

    Modern US armoured vehicles generally have 'Sea Foam Green' interiors (their tanks generally have white interiors) but their softskins tend to have NATO Green interiors from memory - even those operating in desert environments. Different paint companies claim to offer 'accurate' colour matches but since the precise shade of that 'accurate' colour varies from manufacturer to manufacturer it is clear that a lot of them have different interpretations of the same shade. On a real vehicle, paint will start to wear and fade as soon as it is exposed to the real world, so the difference between a factory-fresh paint and one that has seen a couple of years of real-world use can be significant. I would recommend that you find a range of paints that you like and stick with them. Learn how they behave and develop your techniques around those characteristics. I use almost exclusively Tamiya paints, not because they are any better than other brands but simply because I've been using them for so long that I'm entirely comfortable with how they behave and my ability to manipulate them to get the results I want. Pick the colours and techniques that work for you, rather than trying to follow a rigid style or fashion, just because someone says you should. There is no better reference than studying lots of photos of real vehicles (HEMMTs in your case) and understanding how those vehicles weather and fade over time, rather than trying to impose an artistic style that may be inappropriate for the subject. Also, don't rely on what the paint manufacturer calls the paint shade. It may seem to have no relevance to your project but will be perfect for your needs. Good matches for Sea Foam Green for example are Tamiya's XF-21 (Sky), or XF-71 (IJN Cockpit Green), both of which are aircraft colours. If you are set on 'chipping' then remember that the materials used on many modern vehicles include composites rather than just metal so the underlying material may not look like bare metal. Different metals behave in different ways when exposed to air so they won't all be 'shiny', Again. you need to understand the vehicle you are building and the materials used to build it. Paint technology (even as far back as WWII) means that it is rare for paint to 'lift' unless poorly applied in the first place. It might wear away on high-use areas, or fade over time, but rarely 'chips'. Despite that, it is an artistic style that is popular with armour modellers. Regards, John
  3. To go off on a tangent somewhat... It's not helped when some gun calibres are assigned deliberately incorrect sizes - usually to reinforce the fact that one ammunition type shouldn't be used with another gun despite them being identical barrel sizes. The 17 pounder and the '77.6mm' gun on the Comet springs to mind - as does the American 106mm Recoiless Rifle (which was the actually 105mm but used a different ammunition to the previous 105mm RR). John
  4. If we were talking about NW Europe then yes I would argue that it was highly unlikely for an 'A' vehicle to be seen in SCC2. However, we are talking Italian campaign and that arena operated to a different beat. The NA75s were old vehicles by this time and unless the vehicle had been run through a major rebuild programme I would suggest it is unlikely that the tank would have been fully repainted. Add a generous layer of mud and dust plus a couple of years of exposure to the Italian climate and it would be very difficult to determine what the colour of the vehicle really is. Personally - I think a worn and weathered SCC2 is a reasonable supposition. Regards, John
  5. You can download the official True Type Font (TTF) from the Internet and load it into your computer's font library. Then you can create any registration you want. 'Mandatory' is the font name - it is used for both civilian and military plates in the UK - search for Mandatory TTF. You'll need a printer and some inkjet-friendly decal paper (plus some spray varnish). Create the numberplates in MS Word or some other similar software and then print the results onto the decal paper. Leave the ink to dry for a brief period and then spray the decal paper with the varnish to fix the ink in place. Inkjet printers don't print white (it will be clear on the decal) so you need to make a choice. You either use white decal paper and cut the decals right up tot he edge of the black registration plate - or if you use clear decal paper you place a strip of white decal on the model first and then place the numberplate decal over the top of it so that the white shows through where the numbers and letters are. Regards, John
  6. This sort of colour - unless you are doing a pristine parade version, the tracks will reflect whatever colour the local terrain is (in this case, Castlemartin Ranges in Wales) John
  7. There's no Arm of Service marking present and the red/white/red AFV recognition marking wouldn't be placed on the mudguard - generally central on the nose of the vehicle if indeed it was even carried (very rare in NW Europe). As Steve says, the unit badge appears to be 11th Armoured Div. Can't see a bridging weight circle either. The census numbers were often carried front and rear rather than on the turret but either location is feasible. So yes - the artwork appears to be 'fantasy'. If you do a Google image search on something like 'Humber Mk IV' it will return loads of images of period and restored examples and show the wide variation in markings. Regards, John
  8. I'd say a possible but very unlikely combination. You're looking at two different generations of kit. The T-54 would have typically been fitted with the earlier PT-55 rollers (which no-one does in plastic or resin as far as I know), although you could make a decent justification for using the later KMT-5 assembly. That said, the T-54 survived in service for years in many armies, so an older hull with a newer KMT-7 mine roller might be feasible. Ultimately it's a case of finding a photo and using that as your reference. John
  9. John Tapsell

    Desert Churchill

    The 'Airwaves' conversions for the Tamiya Churchill were sold under the KK Castings label - I know they did an AVRE conversion but can't remember any backdate conversions (although my memory isn't perfect). Both Airwaves and KK Castings were manufactured and distributed by the long-closed and much missed E D Models in Birmingham. The Airwaves range and brand name was ultimately sold to Hannants when ED Models closed, but KK Castings died a death. Regards, John
  10. 13/18 Hussars used the M4A4 (Sherman V) DD tank. Only A and B Squadrons were equipped with DD tanks, with C Squadron operating standard Shermans equipped with deep wading stacks. Other regiments also operated with just two Sqns of DDs but it varied from Regt to Regt as to which Sqn was the 'wading' Sqn. The British also used the M4A1 (Sherman II) DD - I believe that both 4/7 Dragoon Guards and the Sherwood Rangers operated them on D-Day. I must admit to being curious about how a set can be for either the Sherman V or the Sherman II - the hulls were different lengths. Grahame is a great producer so I can only assume he included optional parts to reflect the different hull lengths? Regards, John
  11. A and C Sqns of 11 RTR were all LVT 4 vehicles by this point in the war as far as I can see. The ferry rosters for the Elbe crossing on 29th April 1945 list all the individual cargoes carried on each trip and you can't get them into an LVT 2 (Jeeps, dozers, staff cars, Carriers etc). I don't know what the other units operated at his time, but I suspect the same by and large. Even the initial infantry assault waves were LVT 4s because the same LVTs are listed as carrying vehicles later in the day. Regards, John
  12. John Tapsell

    M113 APC

    I should also say that the camouflage also depends very much on the era you are portraying. Canadian vehicles were initially finished in plain olive green. Then they moved to a unique Canadian three-color pattern using green, khaki and black. More recently, they have tended to use the standard NATO three-colour (green/brown/black). They are also regular participant in UN peacekeeping deployments so a white M113 would also be an option. The vehicles that took part in the UNPROFOR mission in Bosnia in the ealrly 1990s are a case in point. John
  13. John Tapsell

    M113 APC

    Legends productions do a Canadian conversion for the Academy M113 kit (pretty much interchangable with the Tamiya kit). http://www-legend.co.kr/portfolio/lf1318-m113-cdn-conversion-set-for-aca-m113a3ta-m113a2/?ckattempt=1 Regards, John
  14. My first question would be how many polycaps are actually provided in the box? From memory, Tamiya generally provide a standard sprue of around 20 polycaps in many of their models, not all of which get used. John
  15. Archer Fine Transfers do a wide range of decals for 1/35 armour (I assume that's what you need, but you didn't specify a scale) Excellent products. https://www.archertransfers.com/index.html Regards, John
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