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  1. This is the Academy models Sherman Calliope. You can find the buildlog here: It's not my best work but i wanted to finish the model and the base so i made the best of it. Comments are always welcome. Thanks for taking the time to have a look. On to the next one!
  2. Hi everyone. I’ve been lurking over in the figures section for a while, building up the where-with-all to get seriously stuck into my scratchbuilt Italian tank crew, but as a(nother) diversion I cracked on with a quick Tamiya old-school build. Sherman aficionado’s please look away – it’s OOB and uses the parts I liked the look of best from the selection provided rather than those that might be most correct. I drilled out the MG barrels, replaced a few handles with wire and filled up the rather obvious sponson voids, but other than that, it’s pretty much as Tamiya intended back in the 80’s/90’s. The destructions indicated that “Hurricane” should have sand shields fitted and be painted OD plus a rather dark red-brown. Looking at some images online though, convinced me that the shields should go and that the brown should be a lighter mid-earth tone, so that’s what I went with. In a flight of fancy, I imagined that the crew would have been commanded to add the brown in the field, and would have been unlikely to have spraying equipment, or a budding Michaelangelo among their number, so I replicated crude, brush applied brown paint using a scale 6 inch brush, badly applied. VERY tricky for a true artiste like myself to replicate of course, but sacrifices have to be made…. I supplemented the kit stowage with a couple of tissue paper/PVA tarps and a bit of embroidery thread. I decided to go a bit thicker than usual with the mud, so applied a mix of tile grout, finely crushed cat litter, tea leaves, “earth” pastel powder, a little static grass and diluted PVA. I then went round with my more usual pastel dust and white spirit thin mud on top. Another quick (although pretty glacial by Maddoxx standards) and thoroughly enjoyable old-school Tamiya build. Right… where’s the FIMO? I really must get on with those Italians…..
  3. M-4 (A3E8) Sherman 1:72 Hasegawa The M4 Sherman was without a doubt the most widely used and best known Allied tank of the Second World War. Almost fifty thousand examples were produced during the war, more than the entire wartime tank output of Great Britain and Germany put together. The Sherman was first blooded by the British 8th Army in North Africa, two months before the Americans deployed the tank in the same theatre. By the end of the war it had proved itself to me a robust, versatile and mobile tank, albeit with a dangerous tendency to catch fire if hit by enemy shells. The Sherman was produced in six basic variants featuring a variety of different chassis, turrets and power plant combinations. The basic chassis was developed from that used for the M3 medium tank and featured the same suspension setup. The Sherman was capable of 24mph and had an unrefueled range of just under 120 miles. The M4 A3E8 featured a welded hull and an improved high-velocity 76mm M-1 gun as standard. If you want to build a model of a Sherman then you have a huge range to choose from. They range from Tamiyas 1:16 scale monster down to 1:144 kits designed for war gaming. In 1:72 scale there is naturally a large choice, with the relatively recent Dragon kit probably being the pick of the bunch. Hasegawas version is one of their older AFV kits, but is still worth a look if you want to add a Sherman to your collection. Hasegawas M4A3 is one of the older armour kits in their range, although the moulds seem to be holding up pretty well. Detail is still clean and crisp and flash is restricted to one or two of the smaller parts. Construction of the model follows a fairly conventional pattern and begins with the lower hull. The sides of the hull have mounts for the bogies moulded in place and each bogey is moulded from a single piece of plastic. The wheels look pretty good but the tracks are of the rubber band type and lack detail on the inner faces. I personally do not like flexible tracks (with the exception of Dragons DS tracks) but you may feel differently. The upper hull is moulded as a single piece of plastic and the hatches and pioneer tools are all moulded in place, as are the various pioneer tools. There are some neat little details included though, such as a spare track links and a canvas roll. Some attempt has been made to create a rough texture on the turret, but it is only really present on the upper lower surfaces. The vertical surfaces of the turret are quite smooth by comparison. The turret hatches are all moulded in the open position, and two crew members are included should you wish to use them. I wish more kit producers would do this as sourcing decent figures in the smaller scales isnt particularly easy or cheap. The long barrel of the 76mm gun is moulded in two pieces. One accounts for the barrel itself and half of the muzzle brake, while the other part forms the other half of the muzzle brake. The marking and painting guide shows three examples. Two are Shermans of the US Army while the third belongs to the Japan Self Defence Force. No clues are provided as to which units the subjects belong to though. Conclusion Itd difficult not to like the Sherman, particularly so as it played such an important part in the Allied war effort. Hasegawas version is pretty decent, although it isnt the best available in this scale. This is mainly because it is slightly too wide and slightly too long for a true 1:72 replica. That said, it will look like a (slightly too large) Sherman once completed and it should build up nicely out of the box. Review sample courtesy of UK distributors for
  4. Howdy y'all! Happy holidays! After the Ukrainian "Fury" build I went to see the 2014 movie "Fury" on YouTube and was impressed by the final fight scene. So impressed that I decided to recreate this scene with my stashed kits. Andy's HHQ did a splendid job recreating the M4A3E8 Sherman. It's not an exact match (2014 movie used an M4A2E8, which is very unlikely historically speaking because it's diesel-powered and mostly lent-leased to the British and Soviets) but close enough. The last scene of the movie Fury, where the infantry battalion protected by the "Fury" crew goes past the knocked-out tank. Took me quite a while to get the exact track that "Fury" used. I scavenged a set of metal T84 tracks on eBay from Hooben, a brand that mainly manufactures RC tanks. Historically speaking this is impossible though, given that Goodyear started making these rubber-fused tracks on April 16th-17th, 1945, two weeks before Mr. Fuhrer did a favor to the entire world. The "Fury" crew put a body found at the abandoned Nazi medical station, dressed him as a US tank crew, doused him in gasoline, and lit fire to fake their death, allowing for a successful ambush of the German convoy. I was initially hunting for the perfect 1/16 resin figure until I saw the sprue figure provided by Andy's kit itself. The US tank crew figure's pose, which is supposed to be a tank commander sticking out of the cupola with one arm resting on the hatch, and another arm reaching out for the microphone, kind of resembles the prayers effect of a burnt human body. Therefore I used Tamiya's basic putty (which forms a thick paste once thinned with Tamiya's airbrush cleaner) to disfigure the body, painted it roughly and applied tons of pigment onto it. The empty 1/16 .50 cal shells are from Master, a Polish brand. The Thompson is also scavenged, from a set of very old ww2 US Army small arms resin toys, and of course, repainted. RIP Boyd "Bible" Swan. Super Italian Red for Ferraris and Tamiya clear red were the only red paints I had in stock, but the blood effect they created seems good enough to me. RIP Don "Wardaddy" Collier. The only slot available on my shelf for now. A bit of a weird combination indeed.
  5. Hi everyone As a new forum member please forgive me if I get anything wrong as I find me feet. After 35 years I’m returning to a hobby I loved as a teenager and I am after some help or pointers in the right direction. Second ask for forgiveness, I’m not a historian! I’m after help with two questions, one modelling related and one more about British military history. My late grandfather drove tank transporters in the British army in WW2. I have some mementos he passed down to me and I am keen to create a memory to him in the form of some models. The pictures attached are a picture of him loading a Sherman, my best guess somewhere in Holland.. The other is a picture of the order of service from the thanksgiving service held at the end of the campaign. First the easiest question. Is someone able to help me identify the variant of Sherman being loaded, and which 1/35 scale kit (+ detailing if necessary) would be best to replicate it please? I am not worried about interior detail. I know from other pics that drove the soft cab version of the M19 transporter. I have the applicable I love Kit model, although I am planning to relearn my skills on a few less complex kits before I take that one on! Second the history question. I don’t know what regiment he served with, but obviously it would have been one listed in the British second army order of service. When he was alive my grandad proudly told me his unit drove the first tank transporters over the bridge at Nimejan. Would tank transporter units have been their own regiment or would they have been attached within one of the tank or armoured formations? And would I be able to find out which tank transporter units came through Nimejan first? Any other useful info people can offer is gratefully received and thanks in advance if you can help. Finally, sorry again if I have got anything wrong or broken any protocols in this, my first post! here are the pics https://drive.google.com/file/d/102aOfkHFJYou2ynuAMTrwVthKmdGodqz/view?usp=drivesdk https://drive.google.com/file/d/1bBiK2sizGnfo2AiklTaWxMJ6h1MykkDc/view?usp=drivesdk
  6. Hi, This is a 1:35 model of the Sherman M4A1, an American medium tank. This is Italeri KIT no. 0225. I made it as a traditionally movable model, of course. The additional parts are - the Friulmodel tracks, couple of small accessories like towing cables, jerry cans, helmets, bags, supply and ammo boxes. The model wasn't very detailed but I tried to add some details by myself. I hope you see it and like it. Models finished in 2021/2022 - "Sturmgeschutz III ausf G (1:35 vintage Tamiya)", "Matilda MK II (1:35 vintage Tamiya)" I invite you to see the rest of works on my site "about me"
  7. Hey All, This is Asuka's Sherman III, built as a vehicle from A Sqn, East Riding Yeomanry as part of the 27th Armoured Brigade as seen during the Normandy Campaign. I used a Star Decals set to get the correct markings, and used Resicast's lower-half of the deep wading gear, to depict a vehicle that had dropped the gear but the lower halves still remained on the engine deck and over the exhausts. I also added a one piece set of smoke grenade dischargers which were 3D printed and found on eBay. I painted the model using Humbrol 155 Olive Drab, a somewhat controversial colourshade as it apparently doesn't replicate the original Olive Drab from the factory nor SCC 15, the British Shade. Despite this however I like the shade on my model and in my minds eye gives off the right feel for me. Ultimately it might not be to everyone's taste but I'm sure theres more going on in the world to worry about than Olive Drab shades. I painted what remained of the deep wading gear a deeper shade of green to accentuate that the gear was painted a deeper shade of green than the base colour of the vehicle. As well as this, I used unthinned black enamel paint brush-painted on to depict remnants of the sealant that was applied around certain fittings covered with canvas. The Stowage is all from various generic sets painted seperately, then built up on the model in layers to replicate the way in which the crew wouldve piled stuff on, I later strapped it all down with masking tape cut into thin strips and painted, though in hindsight I should've probably gone with a deeper shade of the colour I was using as it almost looks unpainted when on the model. The vehicle was weathered with oils and vallejo mud effects. I later ran over the metallic parts with a pencil to create more than just a matte black effect. Thanks for looking! Sam
  8. Hey all, This is what apparently appears to be my 6th Sherman this year if my calculations are correct. I need a hobby... The Tamiya Sherman needs no introduction, its probably one of those kits that most have built. I built mine with the addition of two plastic card inserts under the sponson areas overhanging the track, as Tamiya left them open on this release. I additionally took my dremel to the turret to beat it up a bit and create some casting textures. I used a set from Star Decals to depict a Sherman Tank from the 746th Tank Battalion, which at the time was attached to the 4th Infantry Divison and came ashore with the division shortly before midday on the 6th June. I painted the model with Mr. Colour Olive Drab (1), and then used a mix of oils, pigments, and AK Interactive Mud Textures to create a vehicle that had been weathered by a mix of churning up the chalky/sandy beachfront areas as well as the generally bad weather that blighted the early days of the campaign. In this way I tried to create the effect of an active vehicle in relatively grimey enivronments, whilst the wear and tear (such as the chipping) was subdued under this layer as a nod towards what wouldve been generated during exercises in England prior to the invasion. The stowage as always is from the spares box, I tend to keep a ready supply of stowage available, notably eBay can sometimes come up trumps with random items in resin that sellers will box up as a mix of random bits for you to sort through and do as you please. With the stowage on this occasion, I tried to keep the front glacis clear through more of personal choice, whereby I could show off the large star on the bow. This was mainly due to the blood, sweat and tears that went into trying to get it to settle over the 3-piece transmission cover as I didn't particularly want to put all that effort in just to cover it up! Thanks for looking! Sam
  9. Hey all, This is Tamiya's new(ish) M4A3E8 in its first iteration as the variant in use towards the end of the Second World War. The kit was built out of the box save for the decals and stowage, which came from Star Decals and the Spares Box respectively. The Model was painted with Mr. Colour Olive Drab (1), before being drybrushed, and then weathered with a mix of oil paints, Tamiya Acrylics and Vallejo Mud effect. The figure is included in the kit, and whilst its been seen almost everywhere now, I still think he's in a fantastic pose and Tamiya figures are some of the best in injection molding IMHO, especially with the new releases. I painted him using Tamiya Acrylics and Humbrol Enamels. Thanks for looking, Sam
  10. Kit - Meng Paint - Vallejo & Tamiya acrylics Decals - Star Decal & Kit Extras - .30cal from Academy set, stowage from spares box. M4A3E2 Sherman 'Jumbo' 69th Tank Battalion, 6th Armd Div. Luxembourg / German Border Winter '44/'45. Immediately after finishing the Skyraider build a couple of weeks ago, I brought this back to the bench from the 'Shelf of Forgetfulness' where it's been parked since Sept. 2021. It's the Meng Sherman 'Jumbo' and as a kit, an exercise in putting bits of related plastic together... it's utterly superb on every level. Simply the best AFV kit I have ever seen/built. Paint is a combination of Vallejo and Tamiya acrylics. The winter whitewash is four layers of off-white and white, applied, clear-coated and hairspray chipped until I was happy. The earth tones are mostly airbrushed then pigments added for texture. W&N oils for all the streaks, leaks and stains. Decals are combination of Star & kit for a machine of the 69th Tank Bat. somewhere around the Luxembourg / German border in winter '44/'45. Please feel free to make any comments, ask any questions or pass-on any criticisms. Cheers from NZ. Ian.
  11. Tamiya 1/48 M4A3E8 "Easy Eight". I use Tamiya, ICM, Mr.Hobby paints.
  12. My build of Asuka's M4A1(76)w Sherman with MasterClub tracks, DEF Model metal barrel, MJ Miniatures tool straps, Alpine figure, and a mix of Value Gear and 3D printed stowage. Comments and criticism welcomed as always!
  13. I made the Tamiya Sherman Tank. I decorated it with products from a small Vignette and an aftermarket. ^^ BR
  14. It`s an old Tamiya kit with Aber`s muzzle and Eduard`s PE set. Painted with Tamiya, Mr.Color, weathered with Mig`s stuff mostly. My first AFV model and I`m sure not the last - It`s been sooo much fun. I hope Sherman purists will spare me for all the mistakes I`ve made. The commander`s figure will be repainted - I`m not happy with the result. I`m also planning to make a base for it.
  15. I recently finished the Heller M4A2 as Sherman III 'Sheik' from the Royal Scots Greys, as it appeared in the vicinity of Naples in 1943. This was for the Sherman Group Build on the Braille Scale Discussion Group forum. I just loved the tank's spotted 'leopard' camouflage and luckily Star Decals has it on their 'British Shermans in Italy' sheet. Although there is some discussion about the colour of the spots, I decided to go for black since other tanks in the unit were camouflaged in mud and blue-black, so they would have had access to that paint in theatre. I hope you like it. Peter
  16. As you know, I'm working on the RFM Sherman M4A3 with full interior. The paint scheme suggests that the inside of the crew hatches in the hull and turret is white, but I read (can't recall where though) that they were painted green, the same as the outside as white would be a giveaway from the air. I've currently got mine in white primer, so a change of colour is easy at this stage. Can anyone help or advise me on this as I'd like to be reasonably accurate. Thanks in advance, Keith 😁
  17. Hi All, My second build for 2023 is Asuka's Sherman III with deep-wading trunks as supplied by Asuka. The decals are from Star Decals. The conversion set was very well made, with the only issues being from trying to make the rigging for the release mechanism to drop the trunks once no longer needed as there was a risk of the engine overheating if left on for an extended time. The Rigging was made from 1mm plastic rod supplied with the conversion set, and was glued to turnbuckles to create the articulation of the mechanism. The trunks themselves were folded photoech, with the covers over the exahust being supplied in resin. It was refereshing to use an otherwise drop-in conversion set with the only actual kit modification being the fact that i needed to drill a slight indentation into the extractor fan cover to accept the main wire for the trunks. Otherwise everything else was a drop-in or straight replacement. The only other modification was the rear deck bustle, made from brass rod. The vehicle was painted using Thinned Humbrol Enamel 155 Olive drab, which was then drybrushed and washed with oils. Following this the vehicle was weathered furhter with oils and enamels. The stowage is mainly from Tamiya and Blackdog Models. The Track is AFV Club rubber-band style, as i'd already commandeered the kit track for another project. The vehicle is finished in the markings for the Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry, which is the subject of a number of books such as James Holland's excellent 'Brothers in Arms', David Render's 'Tank Action' and Stuart Hill's 'By Tank into Normandy', which for all i couldn't recommend highly enough if you want inspiration for British Subjects in the 1944-45 NWE theatre. Thanks for looking, Sam
  18. So, here she is.... my take on the Sherman M4. A really fun build that i enjoyed putting together. It's mostly OOB apart from the figures and the tracks. The build itself was as expected from Tamiya, they go together pretty much by themselfs. No issues what so ever. With the paint i kept it simple. Just a baselayer of OD with highlights and shadows. After that i did some color modulation with oils, added rust, dust, stains and spots. All the chipping was kept very light. The figures are aftermarket from a certain chinese webshop. They were a real pleasure to paint. Tarps were made with Tamiya epoxy putty. Towingcable was scratch build. Anyway, my goal with this build was to keep it simple. Nothing over the top. Work on my paint and weathering skills and work on my patience ( i tend to overdo things ) I'm happy with how she turned out. A dusty, battlefield used Sherman. So here are the photo's. I hope you enjoy them. Feel free to comment. Tnx all for following my buildlog and for taking the time to read and write. On to the next one!!! Cheers! 👍👍👍
  19. After a fair bit longer than I thought it would take I finished the Saipan Sherman, I really enjoyed building this wee heller kit in 1/72. The background to this build is that during the invasion of Saipan in WW2 , three separate USMC shermans became stranded in the shallow lagoon surrounding Saipan, where they remain to this day. See below for the video that provided me with the basis for this diorama. My build is a bit of a composite of the three wrecks. I hope you like the results! Regards Mark
  20. WIP Saipan Sherman I came across a neat video of some rusty wrecked semi sunken Sherman Tanks in or should I say off Saipan. I really like the colours and contrast between say the tropical blue of the Lagoon and the rusty reds and oranges. I grabbed a few screenshots of the wrecks in the video that is worth a watch :- I started by buying a 18cmx 18cm photo frame , pulling out the retaining clips, epoxy and sealing in the glass with clear bathroom sealant so when I add the epoxy later it wont run out the bottom. When I have done similar dioramas in the past with perspex sides I have run into the issue where I ended up marking the perspex and it made getting in about the base awkward, so I decided this time to put spaces in until I got the base completed and the model mounted then I will take the spacers out and replace them with perspex sides of the same size, then do the resin pour. My next step I cut foam board and mounted it in the frame in order to raise the "seabed"up , I slotted in the spacers and then mixed tile grout with some Mig Ammo ochre, I then added quite a bit of water and smoothed out the grout to get rid of any scultping marks and make the seabed more natural in profile. I decided to be a little experimental and added some play sand to the wet grout to see if it will stick , if it doesnt I can simply add more with some PVA glue and it will give me the finish am looking for. Ive also started the Sherman, its the Heller kit, that might not be the exact model of Sherman, I believe the USMC used M4A2 and the heller kit is a French A4, I feel like the diffrence will be minimal as the end result will be a sherman shaped rusty reck so for me it was an acceptable trade off. I primed the sprues with Vallejo Rust Primer, I built the turret and the I test fitted the main upper and lower hull and the turret together, I decided to use a stipple effect to start building up layers of rust up on it. The next steps is getting the running gear built up and mounted on the Sherman. I also need to scratch build some of the rusty gun in the turret, I need to drill some holes in the turret top and then get the turret completed inside, I also need to scratch build the back end where the engine block was and figure out what bulkheads I need to put in and think how i can build a engine block, it doesn't need to be accurate as its going to be really rusty and clogged with barnacles and sand and stuff. Any thoughts or feedback, hints or tips is really welcome Mark
  21. Resin Tracks for Churchill and M4 Sherman Tanks 1:72 OKB Grigorov In this review we're looking at a couple of sets of OKB Grigorov's resin replacement tracks. As with the Panther turrets we reviewed a while ago, these don't appear to be intended for a particular base kit, so it'll be up to you to pick the appropriate model and address any fit and finish issues you find. The two sets we have here are both intended for tanks used by the Allies. The Churchill tracks represent the heavy cast steel variant, while the M4 Sherman tracks have added grousers (or cleats) for improved traction over rough surfaces. The tracks are well made, with sharp details and no flaws that I could see. Once removed from the pouring stubs, the tracks are fairly flexible but would probably still benefit from being warmed in hot water prior to fitting in order to improve flexibility. Tracks for M4 family, T51 with grousers Tracks for Churchill Tank, Heavy Cast Steel Conclusion I can't really fault either of these items from OKB Grigorov. The quality of production is very high indeed and they will provide additional options for modellers wanted to add detail to their small scale tanks. Recommended. Review sample courtesy of
  22. So, new day, new project. Since i'm still waiting on aftermarket parts for my Tiger project i decided i want to do something completly different. A Sherman.... I got this kit from Tamiya for a very good price and i thought i could give it a go. The M4 early type is a tank i know little about. After reading the build guide i decided to get me some information. So i downloaded a couple of usefull photo's on details. i know there are a lot of experts here that can provide me with additional tips on building this model. Also i want to state that this will be a ootb build, no PE or aftermarket parts. This means that there will be historical inacuracies regarding some bolts, hinges, thickness of certain parts etc. For me this is no problem. That beeing said, i want to do this iconic tank justice so i'll take it slow going over every step. No heavily damaged tank this time. I want to tone it down, focussing on a good and tidy build, work on my airbrush and paint skills and do some very light chipping and weathering. Can't blame a guy for trying 😁😉 The kit comes with figures and they look fairly descent so i might add them ( the KV2 project was a real eye opener regarding figures ) On to the build itself. Beeing a Tamiya kit i expect no major issues, however, the fit of the front hull plate seems a bit off Also, i need to close the gaps above the tracks because otherwise it will be a see trough model. Nothing that can't be solved with plasticard. the lower back plate is finnished and fitted, no issues there. I'm off to a good start. Enjoying myself wich is the most important part of modeling. I want to thank you guys in advancement for all the tips, tricks, technical details and words of encouragement. Feel free to tag along. I'll keep you guys posted. Cheers! 👍👍👍
  23. I'm really an aircraft guy, who dabbles in armor occasionally, so please don't be too harsh! This is Dragon's M4A1 (76) Sherman commanded by S/Sgt Lafayette Pool, who is widely recognized as the US tank ace of aces, credited with 12 confirmed tank kills and 258 total armored vehicle and self-propelled gun kills, over 1,000 German soldiers killed and 250 more taken as prisoners of war, accomplished in only 81 days of action from June 27 to September 19, 1944, using three different Shermans. Built more or less 'out of box' and painted with Tamiya acrylics. Thanks for looking, Colin
  24. I managed to pick up Resicast’s Sherman BARV conversion for Tasca’s sherman III. While i have the base kit needed in the stash, I dont want to sacrifice a great kit for this build if necessary due to minimal use of parts. A quesion for the shermanholics out there, can I use Tamiya’s M4 Sherman Early Production kit 35190 as a base donor kit? No engine hatches or the rear deck/hull will be exposed as seen in the images below. https://www.ultracast.ca/Resicast-351126-Sherman-BARV-Conversion-for-TASC-p/res35.1126.htm
  25. It's been five years since my last tank (Takom T-29E3) and I've been hankering to tackle another. That plus the very generous gift card from my wife for the excellent hobby shop near us (Hobby Sense) resulted in the acquisition of Meng's glorious 76mm armed Sherman. This is my first Meng kit and I don't think it'll be my last. Wow, I have never seen surface detail anything near what comes in this kit. The instruction booklet however, not so good. But man the kit itself is crazy cool. I picked it up a couple weeks ago and I've spent much of my free time since at the bench. I will admit that I'm not a Sherman expert. Far from it as this is only my third ever Sherman and my first in probably 25 years. So while I cant speak to the kits accuracy, it has blown my little mind at almost every step. I didn't intend to make a build log at first. I just wanted to build. But now that I'm a fair ways into the kit I figure why not. Though for now I'm keeping the blog process simple by only using my Samsung Galaxy phone for taking photos. I did pick up some foam board from the dollar store round the block from us so I could cobble together a simple photobooth for when I feel like putting in a little extra effort. 20220204_155548 First area I started with was building a short section of track. This kit is mostly track parts so I may as well get an idea for what I'm in for. 20220124_145417 20220124_175005 I'm going to build Lt Col. Abrams' Sherman "Thunderbolt VI" from the 37th Tank Battalion, 4th Armored Division as seen on the very lovely Meng boxart. I've read he had the habit of wearing out tanks so with that in mind it seemed appropriate to break out the dremel and weather the track pads. 20220124_145455 Trying to stay organized and not lose anything. 20220124_175001 Meng provides a handy little track assembly jig. 20220124_175136 20220124_175349 Each track pin gets a tiny dab of CA and then the excess material is trimmed away. 20220124_180324 And voila, a very short section of working track. It takes time but there's nothing particularly difficult about the process. Only patience is required. Oh and yes, there will be duckbills too. 20220124_181620 Next I thought I would start the bogeys. Again these are complex compared to the armour kits I've built in the past. But there's nothing hard about getting them together. Just take your time and you will be rewarded with fully functioning VVSS suspension and rolling wheels. The real volute springs are both fun and save you from having to sand any mold seams. 20220127_152424 20220127_155025 20220127_153234 One of the many small details I noticed. In any other tank I've built they would have the armoured filler caps. But never the caps underneath which this kit does provide. 20220129_102852 And even though it's almost invisible once the cover is in place, there is a photoetched grill for I think crew ventilation. 20220129_102857 20220129_103059 Moving to the turret I painted the back of the vision blocks a light gray/green then masked with a small rectangle of tape. 20220201_204903 I had considered purchasing an aftermarket aluminum barrel which had rifling. But I decided not too as shipping was a touch pricy. To my surprise, the kit barrel provides very nice rifling detail! That's not something I've seen in a plastic kit so I was quite happy to discover this feature! Good thing I didn't bother with the pricy aluminum barrel! 20220203_210341 Wasn't taking too many photos so we jump ahead a fair bit. Hull is complete and primed with major turret components assembled. The flat sections of armour have a beautifully subtle rolled steel texture to them. And the cast steel parts are also very nicely done. If you look along the lower hull dust guard mounts you can see hints of unbelievably tiny welds molded into the kit. 20220203_210150 There's a very nice gun breech in the turret. Though I will probably be including a commander figure in the turret which will completely obscure it. But we'll know it's there. 20220203_210254 I did cave and purchase the stunning brass antenna from Adlers Nest. I had no idea you could turn brass that small in diameter. The antenna base even has a piece of some kind of armature wire inside so if I bend it, the wire will hold that angle. Incredible! 20220128_180053 WWII Sherman antenna or miniature lightsaber kit? You be the judge. 20220128_180109 Each antenna section is of a slightly smaller diameter so they do assemble in a specific order. 20220128_180844 This will be so cool to add to the model later on. 20220128_180702 The .50 cal is a small kit unto itself. I used my new teeny tiny set of twist drills to hollow out the front sight. The barrel came already hollowed out at the front. 20220206_121540 The mount for the .50 cal comes in a left and right half. And I managed to lose the right half. Never was able to find it. Carpet monster won that round. Thankfully I keep my spare parts and the Takom T-29 I built a while back had an unused .50. cal MG. The mount was molded into the gun itself so I used my Dremel to grind away the unneeded plastic. A llittle plastic card was used to finish off my replacement. 20220206_121523 After looking over a fair few photos of Sherman turrets I learned that the surface of each one is quite unique. Not only the cast texture itself but also how each one is cut with a torch along the bottom. The molded in cast texture is very nice but it's too fine and uniform. I didn't have any Mr Surfacer 500 handy so I used some Tamiya White filler putty thinned down just a bit with a Tamiya lacquer thinner. A very mean looking bit in my Dremel was used to replicate the torch marks. Once the putty was dry I used a medium sanding stick to tone down the texture where needed. 20220206_172358 20220205_172334 20220206_172648 According what reference I've found the 2in smoke discharger in the turret should not be covered over for a WWII Sherman. So it was drilled out. And I'm not sure if it's some sort of turret aiming device or something else. But whatever that little L shaped bracket is in front of the commanders hatch, it should have several very small holes. This is understandably not possible with a plastic part. So I took out my very small twitst drills again and by hand, very slowly drilled out where appropriate. 20220206_120854 20220206_172352 The cast panel on the upper front hull and transmission cover also had their cast textures enhanced. 20220206_172747 More Vallejo gloss black primer went on to see how she's progressing. I don't think I'll be using Vallejo primer again. It does not dry into a very robust surface and is easily scratched. 20220207_185224 I think it looks pretty cool all in black. 20220207_185311 I've done more work since these last photos were taken. The commanders cupola is installed with vision blocks masked. The seam at the end of the main gun barrel has been filled and sanded. Retaining pins and associated chains added to the .50cal MG mount. It's good to be back and building again. See you all again soon. -Matt
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