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  1. There are 4 model kits on my table, 3x Dragon/Testors and one from Tamiya in 1:48 scale. There is a lot of literature as a source, but be careful, who copied from whom, who copied from whom - it is impossible to find out. The fact is, only one drawing is correct and also matches the very good model from Tamiya. This new construction item will take longer, there are many things to discuss and show in order to conjure up a true-to-original model. So - patience, things are moving forward. A single Dragon component is the benchmark for this construction report. Since I can't throw old models in the trash, it's better to figure out how to fix the Dragon models. I have decided to build all four He-162 kits and give them unusual liveries and markings - without resorting to "what if". I can recommend the following titles as useful sources: Engl./Czech, with many picture (SW/ Color)
  2. Starting with a new one - this time it is Panzer III by Dragon. The kit I'm using is artillery observer tank Panzerbeobachtungswagen III but I'll build it into a regular Panzer III Ausf.G, as all the bits are supposedly in there. The turret shell is the only exception, but it'll be not too hard to convert. I have Voyager PE set and fenders to add as well as Aber barrels for the main gun an for MG's and a set of MasterClub metal tracks. I like Dragon's Pz.III based kits for their accuracy and crisp details and this one is up to that too. It's going together really fast at this stage and no hardships to report thus far. Cheers! Kristjan
  3. Having recently finished building RFM’s Pz.IV Ausf J and currently still having lots of fun with their Pz.IV Ausf J interior kit, I really fancied tackling another of their 1/35 armour kits. This year I’ve not started another softskin, which is what I mainly build, as these kits have just been such a pleasurable experience. The engineering is so good, and the plastic such a similar colour match, that I keep thinking I’m building a Tamya kit😉 As the end of last year was all about Pz.IV. J’s for me, this year I’m maxing out on StuG’s. Over the last few months, I’ve almost finished Dragon’s lovely StuG III Ausf F8 kit which will be based on an Italian campaign vehicle. I have a few decent period images which capture some nice features. I also ‘blitzed’ through Takom’s StuG III Ausf G (Early). This was built straight out of the box with no intention of losing any sleep over it's many inaccuracies. So, as I’m slowly getting to know my way around a Pz.III chassis and some of the later StuG variants, I figured why not check out one of RFM’s StuG's. This is their Ausf G late kit and it’s a belter. I’ve read there are a few issues with some small features (what kit doesn’t) but they are minimal and nothing that cannot be easily remedied. According to those in the know on ML, it is the perfect base kit that requires very little extra work to portray a decent Alkett built last production Ausf G. This kit is the non interior 2022 released kit 5086 and you can build a StuG III or a StuH42. RFM 5086 info It includes both Alkett and MIAG track guards as it incorporates sprues from their Pz.III as well as from previous StuG kits. The tracks are RFM’s own individual links which incorporates a jig to complete small runs, speeding up construction. There is no turned metal barrel, but the one-piece slide moulded one is easy to clean up. There are two frets of photoetch. The largest covers the Schurzen plates. The wheels incorporate poly caps which I personally like and fit nice and snug just like on many a Tamiya kit. The lower hull is of flatpack design and fits together perfectly. The torsion bars can be made workable or you can simply glue the ends onto the lower hull. There is even an option to build adjustable shock absorbers (dampers). Your choice. When it comes to the bow armour the StuG went through quite a few production design changes in this area. Unlike another certain Chinese manufacturer I could mention, the correct parts are called out, even though there are several other variant parts available on the sprues. The running gear lines up really nicely as does all the features on the rear plate. The interlocking bow plate portion which would be partly visible just forward of each sprocket plate on each lower hull side plate stranglely isn't moulded on. I chiselled out the feature and added the welding marks. The transmission plate is just dry fitted in the image below. One of the oddities in the kit is RFM’s choice of tracks. The open guide horn type was seen on StuG’s III's, just not many have been photographed on these late production vehicles. A period image that captured my attention had the more common type seen on these variants and as I had a 3D set of T-Rex links, I figured these were the ones to go for. That decision wasn’t one of my best! Unlike three previous sets which I had a blast with, these were a right PITA. They definitely were not from the same batch as my previous sets as the material was far more brittle. I even had some links break which hasn't happened before! On top of that the pins did not appear to exhibit any taper and a large percentage were already damaged in their small bags! TBH I though of contacting the seller but figured I should as least see if I can build up two complete runs first. I did, but only just and the pins were falling out as quick as I popped them back in🤬 In the end after a few choice words and a few strong shandies, I brush painted over the pin ends on the links with Vallejo grey primer. This seemed to solve the issue but I then found the links were a tight fit over the sprocket and I don't trust them to take much more handling! After all this track building agro I have decided to give the kit tracks a go. Also, as RFM only offer the earlier style round tow cable clamps, I ordered the correct square aftermarket Alkett factory produced ones from Panzerwerk Design Alkett late tow cable brackets. Whilst postage is way in excess of their cost, I also plumped for some of their Type 6B tracks Pz.III & IV type 6B links at the same time. Their tracks look good and have favourable reviews, so I will build them up when they come and choose whether they trump the kit tracks later in the build. As it would give the option to display the vehicle on uneven ground I opted to utilise the kit's adjustable torsion bar set up which will work with the optional moveable damper units. Due to the kit's engineering in this area the adjusable torsion bars naturaly allow the wheels to lift over obstacles, and the moveable damper units equally compress, but they do not naturally rebound. This effect is visible in the first image below. The first and last front bogie wheels are slightly effected by the track tension and are pulled a little higher than they would normally sit on level ground. If positioned on uneven ground they can always be fixed, so it’s nice to have this option. The T-Rex tracks do look the business but this set was far from perfect. The track tension on the other side is a touch loser on the image below so all the bogie wheels sit nice and level. One construction fix which was pointed out to me by a fellow modeller is to do with two strengthening ribs (parts D13 & D14) which you are instructed to add to the undersides of the gun box in step 13. What they do in essence is create a channel which allows the gun box to align squarely onto both of the thin lower hull side plates. The problem is, that they only need the fixing to be off a fraction and the channel will become too narrow and will interfere with what should be a simple slot down on to the lower hull sides. To remedy this potential fit issue, you just need attach the parts directly to the lower hull instead. There are slots in the lower hull side plates too, so it’s a really simple fix. The lower hull interior includes a fighting compartment floor to which the gun cradle fixing mount is attached. Only the inner two of the four spars that fit between the lower hull back plate to the extension over the exhausts featured on these late production vehicles. It is not an issue to fit them as instructed as they are not visible (unless you are an IPMS/USA judge) 🫣 and the extension rear plate you fit has the correct bolt head detail for just the two inner ones that remained. In step 15 you get to choose your gun type and unlike any previous manufacturer's releases, each gets its own breech and cradle parts and construction steps. It is worth mentioning that in step 19 it is not at all clear in which order you attach your breech sub-assembly, gun box, lower hull and mantlet all together! I’m sure there are a few ways that folks have managed to do this successfully, but it is not at all obvious and quite a conundrum to figure out. Breech assembly with added weld detail on the recuperator and an aftermarket barrel. I incorporated the kit's spring so I can leave it adjustable to ensure I end up with the correct length of visible barrel outside of the mantlet. The full breech sub-assembly with the mantlet and muzzle brake dry fitted. I’m currently building up the engine deck which comes as a separate moulding but I’m not going to attach all the parts permanently until I pick some aftermarket stowage. Can anybody confirm whether aftermarket resin StuG engine deck stowage parts fix over the armoured hatches or directly to an unpopulated deck? Engine deck, armoured engine hatches and gun box roof still dry fitted. Progress so far The loaders front armour plate provided in the kit is of the earlier production design which incorporated two (50 & 30mm) plates. Late Ausf G had a single 80mm plate. It would be quite easy to hide the join if it were not for the fact that the kit’s outer 30mm plate part does not feature the extra portion that curves down to match the contours of the inner plate. I shaped a similar thickness piece of grey styrene to mimic the outer plate then scribed torch marks over both to hide the join. I understand the correct single 80mm plate can be found spare on the sprues of many a Dragon StuG kit.
  4. I bought this kit of the Porsche suspensioned JagdTiger (Hunting Tiger) in 2009. The model is a version of the JagdTiger that was an attempt to make a simpler and cheaper version of this huge tank killing machine (78 tons) that was armed with a 12.8cm PaK 44 gun. This suspension system used eight pivoting rocking arm suspension units attached to the sides of the hull, much like the system utilised on the Ferdinand/Elephant tank hunters. There were problems with the system handling the weight off road and, during tight turning manoeuvres the suspension units were liable to break off. In the end, the tank hunter variant was made using the same internal, torsion bar suspension system as the King Tiger, this version was popularly known as the Henschel variant. The number of JagdTigers built with the Porsche suspension system was quite low, depending on the reference material, different numbers are given, the book that I have (Ryton Publications) cites only 4 were built using the Porsche system (Wikipedia cites 11) and 77 with the Henschel suspension system. Most of these Porsche type JagdTigers were built when zimmerit anti-magnetic mine coating was being applied so I obtained a set of Atak zimmerit to add to my kit, most photos only show this version in training units painted in overall grey, however, there is one photo showing a camouflaged, non-zimmerit covered JagdTiger so that's how I will build my kit. The kit contents are still bagged up, the 6 sprues of tracks would be hard work to clean up and assemble so I have got a set of T-Rex 3D printed tracks to replace them with. There is a small fret of p/e for tool clamps and an aluminium turned barrel. I've assembled a short length of track to ensure it fits the drive sprockets. Having 5 parts to each paired link it's a slow, fiddley assembly but it looks a lot better than the kit parts. Everything is all ready for the start of the STGB, roll on the 30th of March. Any questions or comments are always welcome.
  5. I've had this Dragon kit for quite a few years in the stash. The box art and description label it as an Ardennes 1944 KT with new pattern tracks, These new pattern tracks did not get fitted to any KT's before 1945 and I cannot see any photos of the Ardennes offensive KT's with them or the 18 tooth sprockets that they required. The kit tracks require removing from sprues and each link has 3 ejector pin marks that need filling, they are rather clunky in appearance compared to photos of the real track links so I have obtained a set of T-Rex 3D printed tracks to replace them and my build will have some of the other features of these late production tanks that left the assembly plant in March 1945. First the kit, originally released in 2006 with some new parts, single link tracks and some Ardennes Panzer Grenadier figures and weapons. As can be seen, the kit parts are still all bagged up, retaining that 2006 freshness. Although the kit features a turned aluminium barrel the muzzle brake has to be cut off the plastic barrel halves and attached so I have replaced it with a RB one with turned brass muzzle brake. Other bits and pieces to improve the kit are some p/e by ET Models and Voyager, and some 3D printed tools and clamps by Eduard. The tracks were a major part of this build so I ordered a set from T-Rex, they are beautifully printed and easy to assemble with two resin pins attaching each link to the other. T-Rex also make 18 tooth sprockets and a rear idlers, both 3D printed for this version along with a late turret cupola but the cost was above what I could afford as well as buying the set of tracks, so on their arrival I checked they fitted the kit parts by assembling a couple of track lengths, thankfully they they fit very well and they can wrap around the kit sprocket, I've had kit supplied tracks that do not fit as well as these do. I'll show the other bits as the build progresses. All is ready now for the STGB to start at the end of the month. Any questions or comments are welcome.
  6. I had one Dragon JagdTiger kit remaining, it's a shame to leave it in the stash, it's been there since 2005. This boxing was released in the 39-45 series and along with the standard kit plastic it contained an aluminium barrel, some p/e for the engine grill mesh covers and tool holders but the best addition back then was the addition of individual 'magic track' links. Not workable but the next best thing, each link is a friction fit with the next one, so assemble to shape and then run some thin glue into the joints and then they can be painted. I will be building it as this end of war JagdTiger with all the last updates that these machines received, ribbed front mudguards, extra track hooks and hoist 'pilze' welded centrally to to each edge of the roof.
  7. This was a kit I finished last year for a GB. I have been learning how to paint figures so I decided to add a base, some extra stowage and a couple of men. The figures were from a Miniart set, which although not well moulded, they have decent enough poses and paint reasonably well. The base is from Reality In Scale and is well made. Very porous so needs a lot of primer. It would have been better if I had followed their instructions and given it a good coating of PVA. I also got a new camera phone so have been playing around with that. Apologies for some blurring etc.👍 Thanks for viewing and all the best.
  8. "End Of The Road". I finally finished off this beast. A more ambitious project and also a fun one with a lot of learning new things, zimmerit, base and a figure for starters. I added the FoG base and a Wolf figure, with other bits and pieces, to make more of a vignette out of it. Cheers for viewing and for any that followed along with the WIP. Have a great rest of your weekend.👍
  9. I bought this a few months ago on a whim, (basically the price was really good), so I thought I'd crack on with it, because it is a big, complex kit. Due to a lack of photographic evidence I can play around with it without getting too concerned about overall accuracy and just have fun with it, colouring, detailing and weathering wise. It comes in a big box with some great cover art. This is the version Night Shift did and his videos on it are great. Full of great ideas and top tips. I won't do the obligatory sprue shot, but needless to say there are plenty of them. It's a lot of kit. But everything is in there so I won't need any aftermarket. Plus I have some spare stuff from my Sturmtiger builds just in case. I bought some decals ages ago. I think F05 will be my choice. Cheers all.👍
  10. Hi! Got over the finish line with this one. Build log is here: https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235131913-kettenkrad/ Here are the photos: Cheers! Kristjan
  11. This is my last Hasegawa model. The kit includes a set of the most awful tracks I have ever seen. Here they are in all their glory............. The "guide teeth" are an almost continuous ridge along the centre line. The destructions look like standard Hasegawa, not bad and reasonably easy to follow. There's a paragraph at the foot of the paint scheme that points out that, as an early Jagdpanzer IV this should have Zimmerit. I've seen after market zimmerit for this kit but I'm not minded to spend any more on it. I'm going to attempt a mod to a later version, post September 1944 when Zimmerit was stopped. JP IVs continued in production until November 1944 when somebody dropped a lot of HE onto the Vomag factory where JP IVs were being built so this will be representing a JP IV from almost the end of production of the L/48 version. On examination of the parts there appears to be a bit of an issue with the rear panel. The cylinders on the back panel behind the idlers on both sides do not line up with the rear of the idler axles, they're offset above them. I don't want to sabotage the strength of the running gear, particularly as the tracks might prove to be a bit tight, so I think this will be left as it is. The early versions had two ports for an MG42, one each side of the main gun. The left hand MG was difficult to use. (Probably gave the driver a headache.) So it was deleted in later models. So I've filled the left hand port and will sand it smooth when dry. Thanks for looking in.
  12. All hello! I will build the British heavy tank.
  13. This is the new old one on my bench - Dragon 6128 Kettenkrad. I started the thing actually more than 10 years ago and it seemed a great kit at the time. It found its way to shelf of doom though because I found out Dragon got the sprocket totally wrong and I hadn't any means to fix the issue then. Well, T-Rex Studio released a correct sprocket lately, so I decided to get it going again. Tamiya of course has released a much better Kettenkrad a few years back, but oh well, as I've already put some effort in this one, I'll be a gentleman and get it to the decent end. Much of the work has been done with the engine and the transmission so far. Also the handrails has been replaced. To add to the kit I also have the Eduard PE set and the T-Rex Studio 3D-printed front fork, and some decals too by Passion Models. Here's the little bugger: Cheers! Kristjan
  14. I read on twitter a few days ago that its a tradition to start a new model build on New Years Day, which brings good luck for the year. Who am I to argue? Just received this past week, Dragon's new M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, known as HIMARS. The HIMARS has become quite famous over the past year and a half, with the US donating several to Ukraine after russias illegal invasion. Operating in the summer of '22, their precision strikes have been successful at taking out key targets. Ukraine has continued to receive more units, with a total of 39 HIMARS delivered/pledged as of now. Dragon's kit looks to be a bit basic, but detailed. Windows are molded in, so theres no interior. Makes it easier for me. Axles are brass, which is nice. Parts are now getting washed, with building to start this evening.
  15. Dragon Models is working on a new tool 1/48th Messerschmitt Bf.109E kit - ref. DR5550 Sources: http://platz-media.com/blog/2019/09/22/2019-ahs-dragon/ http://www.platz-hobby.com/products/9386.html V.P.
  16. Here's my latest completion, the Dragon 1/32 Bf110D-3 (or D-0 as listed in the gruppe paperwork), it is marked as one of the aircraft used by Erprobungsgruppe 210 in the summer of 1940. ... and a whitewall tyred tailwheel. I'm not sure if it was prototypical, there aren't many pictures of the original aircraft but it does look like there might be one and it was reasonably common: I used the same aftermarket as for my recent Bf110c-6 (apart from the AIMS conversion set obviously). Paints were Colourcoats ACLW12 - RLM Grau (RLM 02) for the interiors, ACLW03 - Hellblau (RLM 65) for the undersides and the top surface camo was ACLW11 - Dunkelgrun (RLM71) and ACLW12 - RLM Grau (RLM 02) - again it's hard to be sure from photographs but the D-0's of Epr.Gr.210 look to have quite a soft demarcation so may have been repainted at unit level. The blue on the prop spinners was a mix of Citadel acrylic blues mixed as close as I could to the blue on the aircraft code letter. Markings were a mixture of decals from the Revell re-pop of the kit and the squadron markings were from the Kagero Battle of Britain decal set kindly donated by our late forum-buddy Silver Fox. Thanks for dropping by Cheers, Stew
  17. This is the dragon kit in the markings of green 3 + -- flown by obfw. Josof Keil. Who was the only ta 152 ace. Dragon kit ( lower wing rescribed for ta 152 h-0 panels, and also below cockpit starboard side panel) Fine moulds brass pitot tube. Brass tube for mg 151 gun barrels. Fusion propeller and radiator. Aires cockpit, Barracuda studios wheels. Eagle cals 48134. Thank you for looking.
  18. I have always been a sucker for WWII halftracks and soft skins ever since I returned to the hobby, with Axis vehicles being a particular favourite. Over the last couple of years I have built a fair few Sd.Kfz.7 8 ton variants. Dragon (D) and Trumpeter (T) are the only manufacturers to offer the vehicle in 1/35 scale and currently offer eleven different versions between them. At last count both manufacturers offer twenty-six kits with both producing early and late towing vehicles as well as Flak variants. Both offer the same models with the odd variant being produced by just one. Dragon also offers combo packs including artillery pieces. Gun crew vehicles are available in initial (D), early (D & T) and late (D & T) Wooden bodied (Holzpritsche) versions are offered by D & T Self-propelled Flak versions carried four main weapons. The early and later armoured cab model 7/1 version Flakvierling 38, (D & T), and the three 7/2 versions; early and late Flak 37 (D & T), early Flak 41 (T), and late Flak 43 (D & T) Two kits that only one manufacturer offer is Trumpeter‘s 7/3 Feuerleitpanzer version which was used specifically at Rocket sites and Dragon offer the specific 1943 HL m11 version of the gun crew vehicle. Cyber Hobby released an early Flakvierling 38 variant in 2011 but I have no idea if that differs from the Dragon boxed kit #6525 of the same name that was released in 2009. An early gun crew Sd.Kfz 7 in North Africa As regards to builders, both the main ones were Borgward (designated HL) and Krauss Maffei (designated KM). The radiator housings received their emblems on earlier vehicles. An early model Sd.Kfz 7/1 version Flakvierling 38 One variant that is missing from range in offer is the earliest incarnation of the wooden cargo bodied (Holzpritsche) These were first attached to the 1943 Typ HL m11 which retained the old-style metal driver’s compartment. The Holzpritche bodied vehicles were a solution to save on limited and dwindling Nazi supplies of raw materials. The first Holzpritsche vehicles built of the final m11 design were installed by the manufacturer Saurer as early as November 1943 and this is the vehicle I am planning to build at the end of this build log. Early Holzpritsche fitted to the Typ HL m11 With both Trumpeter and Dragon only offering the final versions of the Holzpritsche which included the revised and larger wooden cab I will likely have to combine elements of different kits. It would be made far simpler if just one manufacturer got things right, but alas, both do suffer from their own inaccuracies and issues. To this end I am going to first begin by building both the final Holzpritche versions to see what will work best. Once completed I will attempt to create the early version with the best of what both manufacturers can offer. First up is Trumpeters 2009 released kit # 01507 which they simply brand as a KM m11 ‘late version. Having built this kit quite a long time ago not long after I returned to the hobby, I recall a few concerns that made it a less than pleasurable build in places, so let’s do a quick recap before I start the build. The main spoiler concerns the sprockets. First up, they look a little odd. That is because they have bevelled groves on the main face which were never present. Trumpeter don’t even show them in their own painting guide or box art, so something was at odds! The biggest problem however is that building them up as per the instructions means the tracks will not fit over the sprocket without leaving a nasty gap. The kit’s engineering lacks the important drive sprocket teeth offset (seen on many German running gear designs) which prevents the track from sitting evenly around the sprocket. In addition, the part containing the outer roller detail once fitted is hidden on the reverse side! Trumpeter never designed the teeth offset of the rollers against each track pad as per the real thing, so the track links do not sit flush against each track pad. Each sprocket is also ‘handed’ so any surgery will require removing the same part from each sprocket then a test fitment of a small track run will then determine how you re-assemble each sprocket. The recommended surgery is not complex and TBH re-fitting the small tabs that require removal for the modification to work are not completely necessary. The sprocket modification explanation with pics can be found here: https://www.perthmilitarymodelling.com/reviews/vehicles/trumpeter/tr01523d04.htm If you want the sprocket to resemble the real thing aesthetically the groves will still need to be filled in, which will not be an easy task. Even then the track pad inner fitting plates and bolts are missing so for the ultimate authenticity an aftermarket photo etch set will still be required. Even better still, try and locate a 3D printed pair. The second biggest kit failing is the omission of the wooden equipment rack in the load area. Although the equipment rack was designed to be removeable to easily convert into a flatbed the rack is an important element of this variant so why it is missing is a mystery. Trumpeter do offer some additional internal planking, but it is totally inaccurate. They do however offer a nice tarp for both the cab and load area, so there is a ‘cover up’ alternative. Another distinct anomaly is the inclusion of a Flak variant cab bench. The bench did not have an angled cut out on the passenger side and the driver’s seat cushions were much deeper with a cut out in the horizontal framework to accommodate. The Panzer Tracts book quite clearly illustrates the correct layout which also shows a battery box instead of the two exposed batteries that the kit offers. Comparing the kit dimensionally with the Panzer Tracts book 22-4, the overall length is a smidgen long compared to the drawings and the profile of the front fenders is slightly out. Neither warrants the amount of work which would be required to correct IMO. So, with the major fitment issue, the missing part exposed and a dodgy cab seating arrangement, what else can we expect? The kit offers these licence plate decals Even if accuracy is not a major concern, then some ‘interesting’ engineering and odd step sequencing is still worth highlighting. The chassis engineering is overly complex so rather than a nice strong one piece moulding that all the Dragon 8t kits offer, a multipiece affair will need to be cleaned up and carefully aligned together. Personally, I believe this is the main issue with all the Trumpeter 8t kits. Too many parts when one or two would have been perfectly fine. I guess Trumpeter never embraced slide moulding technology like Dragon did! To complicate matters, the instructions have you add some of the smallest and most fragile parts in the very first steps! Considering the amount of handling still required this is a recipe for disaster. These are kit’s where the builder needs to plan ahead. Kit content and sprue shots. To save myself a whole bunch of work they are all conveniently available to view here: http://www.trumpeter-china.com/index.php?g=home&m=product&a=show&id=1250&l=en Compared to the Dragon versions the detail is a little ‘chunky’ in places and although there was no flash present there are a few pin holes, many of which will remain visible. There is also a fair bit of mould offset on many parts so seam clean-up will obliterate some detail. Along with the main problems already mentioned I will try and point out any further issues as I go along. The multi-part affair for the chassis is the same across all the Trumpeter kits with only minor differences across the variants. Whilst far more detailed than the Dragon equivalent it is a bit fiddly to assemble. Dragon kits sacrificed detail in this area but much of it is unseen once assembled and it is a much stronger sub assembly and saves at least a couple of hours of work. Following the instructions, we commence in step 1 with the gearbox. This is instructed to be fitted between the chassis legs. It is a heavy part and dangles between just one contact point on each side and does not actually provide any real structural rigidity. To make life easier it us far easier to construct the chassis components in step 2 with it left off. The flex in the chassis legs will accommodate it once the chassis frame is built up so let the assembly fully cure first. It is also recommended NOT to add the photo etch and plastic cab levers (parts D13, D38 and D54) until it is ready to receive the cab floor as they are easily damaged. The front leaf spring assembly connect the two chassis legs at the front and the flat rear tray (part WA15) connects them together at the rear. Part A41 shown in step 3 can be used in-between to aid alignment. The gearbox fits in-between, and it must sit perpendicular to the frame. It’s connection points to both chassis’ legs rely on just the tiny and imprecise ends of part A7. The weight of the gearbox tends to make it droop rearwards making both chassis legs in the middle bend inwards at the top! Not the best engineering as the gearbox needs to align in one direction to accept both winch and engine shaft in later steps! The only reference for lining up the gearbox straight is to sight it up using the two holes in the legs behind the sprocket housings. TBH the upper middle parts of both legs have way too much flex and don’t get any rigidity until the fuel tank in step 7 is attached. There’s plenty of manhandling beforehand so handle with care! Step 3 connects the myriad of parts that connects the suspension pick up points. Plenty of clean-up is needed especially on parts D23 and D24 so dry fitting everything before committing placement is recommended. There are also two small pieces of photoetch to add in this step and they need to be assembled correctly as the holes in them accept the winch housing. Progress to step 3 so far.
  19. As I am near to finishing my detour build of a 'wingy thing' here if you're interested. At the end of the T23 Frigate build, I asked a 'What should I build next?', so here I am. I'll build both T42 batch 2 & 3 destroyers using the appropriate Dragon kits in 1/700. The T42 Batch 2. Unfortunately this boxing doesn't come with any PE, so... I had to acquire WEM PE from Atlantic Models. T42 Batch 3 boxing with PE. Stuart
  20. So yesterday it was a Ta154 (https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/235128710-focke-wulf-ta-154/#comment-4742016) - and today it's time for a Ta152.. I can't see myself building any more of these, as I'm literally running out of viable schemes - and there weren't that many to start with. Anyway, this is 'black 3' of Stabschwarm III./JG 301, one of the aircraft identified in Axel Urbanke's recent research into Ta152 operations. No pics of black 3 are known to exist, so we're just guessing here. I've basically drawn from features of the other known pics of Ta152s and combined them into one. In previous builds I've painted the gear legs RLM02, or 66, so this time they are in red primer (I told you I was running out of ideas). Markings all painted/masked on - apart from the random WNr. Painting the yellow bar was fun..
  21. This next project will continue with a theme of creating a display to include a piece of space memorabilia and a model or models that are directly related to it. The piece of memorabilia is a commemorative patch that celebrates NASA’s 60th Anniversary. The patch spent approximately a year aboard the ISS. It was flown up to the ISS aboard an Antares-Cygnus flight (NG10) & returned to earth aboard a Dragon Capsule (CRS-19). The vehicles used to transport the patch to the ISS & back will be modelled using the following Antares Launch vehicle will be a 1-144th Scale resin kit from New Ware (NW120). Dragon capsule will be a 1-48th Scale Resin 3D print, I have “designed” and drawn using Fusion 360, and it will be produced by a 3D print service. Preparations for this project have been ongoing on & off since 2018 when the seller of the patches announced his plans and started taking orders. As the Falcon 9 project is nearing completion they have been kicked off again in earnest so that all of the "hardware" will be ready to go as soon as the F9 gets completed. The base kit for the Antares The kit as supplied The new ware kit was first produced in 2013 and was modelled on the vehicle as it was then. The NG-10 flight was in the November of 2018. Between these dates there were some changes to the launch vehicle and spacecraft 1. First stage In 2015 the first stage (100 series) was retired due to the unreliability and age of the AJ26 engines, the final nail in the coffin was the loss of the Orb 3 flight in 2014. These engines were 15 year old Russian NK33 engines (that had been purchased by Aerojet, refurbished, and renamed AJ26) The first stage was replaced with the 200 series, which in essence was a beefed up version of the 100 series, powered by a more modern Russian Engine, the RD181. 2. Cygnus Cargo spacecraft & Second stage Castor Engine The original standard Cygnus version was last flown on the ill-fated Orb 3 flight in November 2014 and replaced with the Cygnus Enhanced version. Over the intervening years the second stage Castor solid fuel engine was upgraded 3. Northrop Grumman acquiring Orbital ATK In June of 2018 Northrop bought out Orbital in a 9 billion dollar deal. The NG10 flight in November of that year marked the first flight of the vehicle by its new owner/operator To accurately reflect these changes the model will be modified as below 1. First stage The AJ-26 engine bells were heavily insulated with a pink coloured insulation. The current RD181 does not have this present. The only correction needed will be to remove some material from the engine bells that represents the insulation. 2. Cygnus Cargo spacecraft & Second stage Castor Engine The enhanced Cygnus is 2.5m longer than the standard version. The Second stage Castor solid rocket engine was also upgraded. Although the later engine is physically larger, and the Cygnus was lengthened by 2.5m both of these upgrades were accommodated by lengthening the payload fairing by 2.3m At 1-144th scale a 16mm long extension will need to be inserted in the payload fairing. Fortunately, whilst I was looking into these changes I was in close contact with Martin, the owner of Martins models. He very kindly cast me a resin part of the correct dimensions 3. Northrop Grumman acquiring Orbital ATK This change meant a relatively minor change in the vehicles livery, the Orbital logo being replaced by Northrop Grumman’s corporate logo. Again, I was fortunate with the timing of this as I was having a sheet of assorted decals printed for a model, I was working on at the time so a batch of various sized logos were added. I think I have got the main changes covered and looking at the three points laid out they look fairly insignificant, but it took a fair few hours of internet searches, head scratching, calculations and educated guesswork to get there. A screengrab of where the proposed cut line (the red one) will be for inserting the extension Two shots showing the changes to the livery The second element of the model is the Dragon Capsule. I had previously looked around for a capsule on the open market and had made an approach to Oli Braun of Buzz media labs who produces a range of Space X rocket kits. Nothing came to fruition, and I left the looking on the backburner. A couple of years down the line and armed with a bit of Fusion 360 knowhow coupled with google & you tube I decided to have a bash at drawing one up and having it printed. If I rewind time back to the early eighties when I was just about to leave school and I was messing about with my newly acquired ZX80 the younger me would have not imagined that the older me would have access to, the tools, and the knowledge to create 3d parametric models. Then with a couple of presses of a button, send (for that time an unimaginably huge) file to someone who could then turn that information into a physical object using a 3d printer. In this COVID era it appears that to travel you are required to print an extraordinary amount of paperwork to carry around, that is then totally ignored by the people that request it. So, whilst in quarantine the paper, and the enforced idle time were put to constructive use The capsule was drawn up as two separate elements When it was finished, I had a play around with it, and the different visual effects available in Fusion A couple of shots in a wireframe environment, and one of a very quick render with some colours added This part of the build should be relatively straightforward. Glue A to B and apply paint he said. I have gone for a 1-48th scale, and that measures up at approx. 81mm diameter at the base and around about 70mm tall, a nice healthy size. The paint application is where I will force myself to leave the comfort zone and for the first time attempt some creative weathering. Here is a shot of the recovered capsule and the look I would like to recreate, any pointers as to how I could do this would be gratefully accepted
  22. Hobby 2000 from Poland (link) is to rebox the 1/72nd Heinkel He.219 Uhu kit from Dragon Models. - ref. 72067 - Heinkel He.219 A-0 Uhu https://ksmodel.pl/sklep/szczegoly/hobby-2000-72067-heinkel-he-219-a-0-limited-edition-1-72-27462/ - ref. 72068 - Heinkel He.219 A-2 Uhu https://ksmodel.pl/sklep/szczegoly/hobby-2000-72068-heinkel-he-219-a-2-limited-edition-1-72-27463/ V.P.
  23. Hi All, My fourth completed build, this was a side project to my double carrier project which ive done a bit on here and there. The kit it self went together easily enough, it has a few issues, the prop blades are too thick and its missing a few detail on the hull but nothing really major. I painted it in colours I think roughly matching a museum ship of the class in Germany. Used Humbrol 164 for the lower hull and Sovereign hobbies Dunklegrau 51 for the uppers. Gave her an overall wash with dark grey enamels and dirty white spirit and then pin washed her with very dark gray/black to pick our the 'openings'. Im not convinced on overall washes, albeit it with oils may be better but were she not a sub I'd of kept her clean. I have very odd views on what should and shouldn't be weather I think, subs yes, surface ships, no. I replaced some of the antenna etc with sections from a master barrels yard arm set and made a grill from spare etch to replace the plastic part which was solid. I left the tube doors open one side and closed the other, the closed option doesn't actually fit quite right so in hindsight would have left them as open, All in all I'm happy with her but a little disappointed with the brush marks of the matt coat which was Windsor and Newton galleria. I think I applied it too thickly tbf so next time I'll airbrush it I think, if found that as soon its started to dry you can do nothing about it, try washing it off and it ruins it, try reworking it with a little more on the brush and likewise causes issues, idk maybe user error. I think they're great looking little subs over all and at some point id be tempted by a larger kit of one but for now im happy with this little lass, Thanks for looking, Sam Edit - couple more pics with her cousin the Type VII C, Just to prove perspective is everything, the Tpe XXI is a bit larger Cheers, Sam
  24. Hello folks I had the last time very little time for the hobby, but in small steps it goes back to the workbench. Unfortunately I could not finish the Halftruck GB, so here in the WIP for all interested at first a small summary of the work on the M3 so far. My idea to convert it into an ambulance has given me a bigger task and as so often the work took no end. If you decide for an OOB build, the kit makes no problems, but if PE parts are used (eg Voyager), a lot of surgery is required. Once again, I find that a halftruck is much more work than a tank or truck. Here you have a mixture of both, which increases the amount of detail. If you then want to show the interior and engine, it does not get easier. As far as the painting is concerned, you have to see exactly when, where and how you paint or glue together. Otherwise you will have more work later. I hope you like the model so far. MD The object of desire 😁 Ready to go! The engine is not well detailed and important parts are missing. Wheels can not be shown turned in, I have changed that. Cast on springs... ...better 😁 Work for the saw... The PE parts were not usable, so I use the kit parts. The fighting room must be rebuilt. Seats out, stretchers in. The new base. Since the ambulances were troop conversions, there are very few pictures of the interior-plus each vehicle varies in its design. Checker plates for the floor. The previously removed seats are reused. The new interior with seats, boxes and supports for 3 stretchers. The next step is the engine. A distributor is needed... Generator, starter, fuel pump, ignition coil, etc. are rebuilt. The splashboard of the engine compartment is not correct. done To simplify the subsequent painting, I have changed the model and created individual assemblies. To do this, you have to work very carefully and check everything again and again by test fits. The cooler also fits 😅 Some parts had to be rebuilt to reproduce the engine halfway reasonably There is also an alternative engine kit from Plus Models, but I preferred to rely on my references and also saved money. Everything fits together well and can also be disassembled again. The shifters were rebuilt with wire-the geometry from the kit was not correct. The fins of the radiator armor was newly created from plastic card. New, more stable axles were installed. Missing strengthening ribs and holes were added. New tailgate latch, taillights drilled out and reinserted, and a storage rack for luggage. Trial fit of the engine hood. The engine gets its base color. And again a trial fit, lamps are also installed. The complete engine is painted and weathered. The painting would otherwise not be possible later without the removable front. The result after 40 hours of work... My template for comparison See you!
  25. Finally made a start. 😄 Cockpit painted and ready to assemble to fuselage.
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