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Panzer IV Ausf H, Ukraine 1943. Zvezda 1:72


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Well, that was my first ever attempt at airbrushing and I thought it went quite well. I believe I could learn to do this. 

One of the things I could learn, is not to splash airbrush cleaner on freshly sprayed acrylic. Doh. 

 

Primer on

 

The following pics are for the benefit of anyone who wants an idea of the level of detail on the Zvezda kit. Please ignore the hamfistedness of my airbrushing attempts. 

 

Rear deck - there is a solid ridge in the centre which I noticed from Mr @badger's WIP is supposed to be a grab handle, I'll cut it off and replace with wire:

Rear deck.

 

Front deck/glacis - the tools on the right are separate mouldings:

Front deck.


Turret side - note the bars securing the storage locker. These are left as moulded, but I see that in some builds they're replaced with PE.

Turret side.

 

And here you can see the lifting hooks, which are there but aren't hooks. On Mr Badger's wonderfully detailed build these are two-part PE, I've no idea how he managed that. 

Lifting hooks

 

Edited by Churchill
Wrong pic link
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That's a nice looking build and a bit more detailed kit than the Revell one.

 

I'll try and do a guide as to how I manage tiny bits of etch, although luck plays a major part 🤞

 

All the best

Ben

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looking very good in this small scale... Macro kills on the brackets for the schurtzen....

 

With regards to the lifting hooks on the turret, try some cupper wire, 0.5-0.6mm diameter, squeeze one end flat, file the flattened end triangular, make the bend and cut to length:

 

for a view of the original:

https://www.net-maquettes.com/pictures/panzer-iv-ausf-h-walk/

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Just a few bits done today. Put in that wire handle on the rear deck, and cleaned a few seam lines etc that the primer showed up. 

 

Spent a few hours at the cabinet war rooms, well worth a visit if you're in London:

 

CWR

 

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Got the dunkelgelb on. Winter camo will go on top of this. 

Dunkelgelb

 

Didn't go on as easily as the primer. The primer was Mig one-shot, which is ready thinned for airbrushing. The dunkelgelb is Mig Ammo too. It seemed fairly thin, despite pulling the dropper spout off the bottle so that I could give it a good stir. So I started spraying it undiluted at about 20psi. That was ok to begin with, but about halfway through it became kind of speckly, and then it was hard to control the volume - it was full on or off. 

 

Investigating showed that the paint was drying on the needle and around the nozzle. I cleaned the brush (using Vallejo cleaner) and had another go, this time diluting the paint with a little water. I had to turn the pressure down to 15psi to stop the spider webbing. This was only moderately successful. The brush still kept clogging, making it very difficult to spray small amounts. 

 

There's a thread or two addressing this problem in the equipment section of the forum. Having read up on it, I got myself round to my local shop (Sussex Model Centre in Worthing) and got some Mig acrylic thinners. I also picked up some Tamiya white acrylic and Tamiya thinners. So I can try both. I'd like to stick with Mig as I prefer the dropper bottles but I'll go with whatever works best. 

 

With paint on, the zimmerit on a couple of the sideskirt panels looks a bit crude and gloopy compared with the finer finish I got on the hull and the turret schurzen (visible in the pic above). I might re-do it, but I might just leave the panel off, which would show a bit more of the running gear. I'll decide when there's a bit more paint and weathering done. 

 

KBO, 

Churchill. 

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I'm at the stage where I'm having to resist the temptation to put off working on the model because I'm worried about doing something to ruin the work already done. This is mostly because I'm using some unfamiliar materials and techniques.

 

The answer is to do some experimenting off the model, or on the bottom surface where damage won't show. I've discovered that the solvents in hairspray rapidly disolve acrylic paints, especially when applied by brush. I've also been investigating the solvent resilience of various protective layers, including: Citadel rattle can varnish (robust); cheap floor polish from The Range (surprisingly good); and Mig Ammo matt varnish (non-existent). 

 

I wanted to do some shading/staining of the dunkelgelb before adding the winter camo, partly as a kind of pre-shade under the camo, and partly to get some colour into the bits that I mean the winter camo to miss, but which will be difficult to get at and weather without potentially spoiling the white. I started with a thin wash of a dark chocolate brown, but diluted it turned out to have a reddish tinge which looked quite wrong. Vallejo sepia wash however seems a natural shade for dunkelgelb, and mixed with some black it makes a good general griming wash. 

Grotty

 

That was covered with Citadel varnish, before a quick blast with my daughter's hairspray. It's only supermarket own brand stuff but it does have added pro-vitamin B5, which as I'm sure you know is essential for authentic chipping on Axis vehicles. 

 

Then came a rather nervous spray coat of Tamiya white, thinned about 50:50 with Tamiya thinners. Odd that some acrylics have organic solvents and others are water-based. I probably should have given it a little longer to cure before chipping it, but I was pretty happy with the results in most areas. 

Winter camo

 

For the schurzen the white was applied only from above at a narrow angle, giving an effect as though thick whitewash had been dragged down the panels with a coarse brush leaving the recesses unpainted in places. The opposite effect, using a wash of thin paint to fill the recesses more strongly than the high points might be more authentic, but I can't tell from contemporary photos. 

 

Here and there I was over cautious in applying the white, and elsewhere took a bit more off than I intended, but once I've resealed it I can remedy both with Mig Ammo 'washable white camo'. Having experimented a little with this (you can see some on the turret in the first pic), I think it must be the sort of white acrylic ink that Mr @Badder has described in his impressive Nashorn build: once dried, you have a limited window in which you can gradually rub it back with a wet brush. I'll also use the washable white for a streaky finish on the inside faces of the panels. 

 

Thanks for reading, 

 

Churchill. 

 

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Looking really good!

 

Always been put off a whitewash finish myself for fear of stuffing it completely and ruining a kit.

 

However I might have to give it a go having seen your results.

 

Top tip on the weathering wash as well as I'm hoping to do mine later tonight.

 

All the best

Ben

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I know just what you mean about 'for fear of stuffing it', @badger, I was very tentative with the white paint.

 

I'm also a little worried about the number of layers that'll be on there. So far we have:

 

Primer

Dunkelgelb

Washes

Sealer

Hairspray

White

Sealer

 

Most of the detail is still pretty crisp, but in a few spots it's been detrimental. The hinges and inscribed panel lines on the transmission access panels on the glacis have definitely suffered. 

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Hi Churchill. Great work with the painting and whitewash! It looks to be coming together beautifully! :thumbsup:

Kind regards,

Stix

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I was a bit optimistic in the last post about the detail still being fairly crisp despite all the layers. Looking more closely, the detail has been softened quite significantly. Worse, one of the layers, either the hairspray or the varnish, has collected in the various recesses, internal angles, and small gaps and has formed webs and bridges across them. The worst of these can be scraped away with the point of a craft knife. The axe on the right hand fender, which is a separate piece on this kit, looks like it's moulded on. Panel lines don't hold a wash the way I'd like. But this is a learning experience, and I can see how I'd do things differently next time. 

 

I've never used an enamel wash, but made one up from Humbrol black, earth brown, and thinners and carefully applied it only to the panel lines and other places I specifically wanted it to go. At first I was horrified at the way it diffused across the varnished surface. But then I discovered how easily it can be taken back, feathered, or removed altogether with a brush just damped with thinner. I will definitely work with enamel washes on a sealed surface again. 

 

Apart from that, I've added a canvas wrap to the muzzle brake with tissue paper soaked in dilute PVA and the finest wire I could find, and added white streaks to the inside of the schurzen using Mig washable white. 

 

The turret schurzen isn't fixed, just dry fitted for the pic:

 

Camo'd up

 

Camo'd 2

 

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20 hours ago, Hewy said:

Now that's an impressive paint job, really well done

Totally agree! That is looking excellent Churchill! The muzzle canvas works very well too! :thumbsup:

Kind regards,

Stix

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Lots of 'bitty' stuff happening, like painting the tools and making latches for the insides of the turret schurzen doors etc. But the turret is now complete, schurzen permanently fixed, and 1251 now has her numbers hand-painted on, just like the original. The muzzle canvas looks a bit glossy, there's some matt varnish on there now. 

 

Left turret

 

Right turret

 

Top turret

 

Rear of turret

 

Well, I say finished - but then I look at the macros and see a few bits that can be improved... 

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More bits and pieces done, exhaust painted and rusted with weathering powders dusted into Citadel Lahman Medium - which I think is mainly intended for making washes, but dries to a good matt finish and holds the powders well. First layer of mud applied. I made the mud to a recipe from the PLASMO channel on Youtube: sawdust, gypsum (I used cheap DIY all purpose filler), PVA, pigment powder, and water. 

 

Mud exhaust

 

Muddy Left

 

I've also done a little chipping, oil paint streaking, and weathering powder washes here and there. All new techniques to me. 

 

TFL & KBO, 

 

Churchill. 

 

 

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9 minutes ago, Churchill said:

I've just seen your munitions schlepper in the gallery, so I'll consider that high praise coming from you. 

Ah yes but, 35th scale is a lot easier  to do than 72nd where you operate, I  admit that, my eye balls are hurting, 

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36 minutes ago, Deon said:

Superb work Rob, great to see such detailed attention. Would like to see it in the flesh at the lancing show? 

 

Hi @Deon, you can see it in the flesh before then, just drop by some time. I've never been to the Lancing show, but I don't see why not. I found their website, it looks fun. I think I'd want to base it if it were going on show, but I'm hoping to do that before the group build ends. 

 

KBO, 

 

R. 

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16 hours ago, Churchill said:

I've also done a little chipping, oil paint streaking, and weathering powder washes here and there. All new techniques to me. 

But done superbly , sorry but I'm going to have to use that mud mix recipe on mine,  that  really does look great so far, it's really coming to life

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 If you don't mind churchill , How  are your nuts and bolts are highlighted on the bogeys under the mud? Before, painted silver then mud or after, with  tiny brush work? 

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