Jump to content

The cutest little tank destroyer ever


Churchill
 Share

Recommended Posts

When I win the lottery*, the first things I'll buy will be a Universal Carrier and a Boys anti-tank rifle. I shall cruise around my country estate** in the carrier, blank rounds loaded in the Boys, and terrorise any Axis-looking rabbits that cross my path. 

 

Until then, I'll have to settle for building a Boys equipped carrier in 1:72 for this GB. Here it is:

 

2019-03-16_09-29-13

 

The artist has copied the photo below for the box art. I love the way he's added explosions and a burning vehicle for dramatic effect, but hasn't changed the bored looking Ivan in the centre:

 

Boys carrier

 

Now as far as I'm concerned, when you take the bren gun out of the front of a bren gun carrier and replace it with an anti-tank rifle, what you've done is to create a little tank destroyer. Tracks - check. Armour - check. Open top - check. Limited traverse gun designed for AP - check. Sounds like a tank destroyer to me. The Boys in the form fitted in the carriers was really of no use for anything except engaging light tanks. It fired a .55in armour piercing round that would penetrate Panzer I's and II's, the Japanese Ha-Go, T26's and the like at ranges of 100m or so. But it had only fixed iron sights (or two position iron sights with a redundant near/far lever to switch positions) so it couldn't be aimed with any accuracy at targets much beyond its effective range against armour. Against infantry and soft skinned vehicles you'd be better off using a bren for volume of fire, or an SMLE for accuracy. And while the bren gun carrier was not considered a fighting vehicle as the intention was that it would only transport the bren team, who would dismount with the bren gun before engaging the enemy, the Boys equipped universal carrier was considered a fighting vehicle and the Boys was to be used while still fitted in the front weapon slot (although dismounting it was an option). 

 

Now I know what some of you are thinking. Despite the points above, you're thinking Mr Trickyrich has been a bit lax in letting this one through, that it's not a proper tank buster. Well I've got news for you: the Boys and radio equipped carrier was officially designated the Scout Carrier and was issued to scout platoons for the purpose of reconnaissance, ha! 

 

@trickyrich has noted that you wouldn't want to come across a Tiger in one of these, and that observation prompted the SYWWTGTWI GB chat which you're very welcome to join. But while it's a terrible idea to take on a Tiger with an AT rifle, that doesn't mean people didn't try. Take a look at the vision slots on this Tiger cupola! 

AT rifle hits on Tiger.

Next post will involve building some stuff. 

 

KBO, 

 

Churchill. 

 

* admittedly improbable, and all the more so given that I never buy tickets. 

** third on the shopping list. 

  • Like 13
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Obligatory sprues shot:

 

2019-03-16_09-27-02

 

The kit comes with decals for several versions, including German, Canadian, and Russian. I'll go with the Red Army version on the box art. 

 

2019-03-16_09-27-51

 

Trickyrich pointed me at an online review of the kit, which included some ideas for enhancing detail. The reviewer thinned down the sides, back, and front armour which is unavoidably moulded at over scale thickness. But I want to see if I can replace the topside armour with 0.12mm brass sheet (about 9mm to scale). 

 

I measured from the kit parts for the sides and back, and cut these as one piece from the brass sheet, to be folded to shape. Rivets are made by gentle pressure on the reverse with a pin or the point of scalpel blade. 

 

2019-03-16_10-43-17

 

On the back plate there are some fittings that may be fairly hidden, but were added from plastic sheet and stretched styrene rod just in case. 

 

2019-03-16_09-32-11

 

The front armour is a little more complex. So rather than measuring it I made a template using a post-it note. 

 

2019-03-16_09-32-52

 

Which was then used to mark up the brass. 

 

2019-03-16_09-33-40

 

The brass cuts easily with scissors, but there are some holes and vision slits to come out of this piece, which may be tricky. I'll tackle those tomorrow. 

 

  • Like 12
Link to comment
Share on other sites

welcome along, I was wondering when you'd bring this teeniest wee thing along.

 

She is certainly an interesting choice and one most would not have thought of.......ever. But I'm always happy to see the odd and unusual in a GB rather that the same old same old we often get, so well done! :thumbsup:

 

I didn't notice poor old Ivan there, he really does look bored or wishing he was one of the guys in the distance in a T-34!

 

Good luck with the build, hopefully your eyes won't give out assembling those wee tracks, look forward to seeing he in the gallery.

  • Thanks 1
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Colin W said:

Love the idea but I did think you'd started the SYWNWTGTW Group build without the rest of us. 

 

Colin 

Not committing, but I had in mind a duplex drive Sherman for the SYWWTGTWI GB

 

Have I signed you up for that build by the way? 

Edited by Churchill
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yesterday I sawed the tops off the side armour/track cover pieces. A bit committing, that. If the homebrewed brass replacements don't work, the kit is a write-off. 

 

2019-03-18_09-33-14

 

However, early indications are good. A little fettling will be needed, mainly to bulk out parts that don't quite meet the brass because it's thinner, and that's as expected. This is just dropped in place:

 

2019-03-18_09-32-11

 

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As an anti-tank weapon that really is a case of ambition getting the better of ability but as a model project you're off to a great start :thumbsup:

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Been a bit busy with work this week, didn't get a chance to do any modelling until yesterday. But I have some time off next week and hopefully will get most of the carrier done before the Patton GB starts. 

 

The topsides are now fitted. Some fettling and filling was needed. 

 

2019-03-24_12-26-33

 

It's a real challenge to make replacement parts that have a good level of detail and precision, sharp accurate angles, etc. In some respects the kit parts do look better. But overall I'm happy that I replaced the kit parts. The thickness of the originals just looks really wrong. It's all learning. 

 

The main issue is that there is a slight twist in the front armour, which takes the vertical angles out of square. This is most evident when looking straight on, and I intend to address the problem by not taking any photos from that angle. 

 

KBO

 

Churchill. 

  • Like 3
  • Haha 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The kit detail may have been lost but you've got a great scale thickness, and archer rivets , and  or, foil tape will make up the lost ground, a coat of paint and, Bob may be your uncle for all I know, 

Looking good churchill

Glynn 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 3/17/2019 at 11:17 PM, Churchill said:

Not committing, but I had in mind a duplex drive Sherman for the SYWWTGTWI GB

 

Have I signed you up for that build by the way? 

There was a deep-wading version of the Universal Carrier, maybe, SY Really WWTGTWI ?

 

I think box-art Ivan is just sick of the killing, when will the horror end and mankind learn to love one another?

 

This brasswork is interesting, I'll be paying attention.

  • Thanks 1
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

28 minutes ago, Peter Lloyd said:

There was a deep-wading version of the Universal Carrier, maybe, SY Really WWTGTWI ?

 

Oh yes, might make an interesting conversion. Here it is in the Osprey book:

 

2019-03-24_10-25-00

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

the paper thin brass "armour" does look the part and I think it's been worth the effort. 

 

You know "bored man" in the picture, it was probably his job to hold it all in place! The wading gear seems a bit over the top, she probably floated in that sort of water anyway.

 

On an aside I seem to remember my brother was looking at one of these on some a farmers property in central NZ in the early 70's, we went look at it. For one mad moment her was actually going to buy it! It hadn't moved or run since it was parked there in the 40's.  Would have cost a fortune to fix......not muched has changed in 50 years, still buy's heaps of :poop:and spends a fortune on them! :doh:

  • Haha 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This looks more like something from Dad's Army. 

2019-03-24_10-25-00

I can imagine Jones driving while Manoring directs.

 

Ps I am signed up for the SYWNWTGTWIGB.

I'm not sure what with as I wouldn't want to go to war in most of the stash. 

Colin 

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A Boys!
I know someone who had one many moons ago. The muzzle blast is really good for removing fence panels on a pistol range apparently, but it doesnt go down very well.

 

Nice and interesting choice. I have a soft spot for oddball, weird calibre rifles along with Bren Gun carrier derivatives, and of course the Bren. I do miss mine.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok, we're overdue for an update. I haven't done quite as much as I'd hoped this week, but there is progress. 

 

I've fitted the rear axle and differential, the exhausts, and the two panels that pretty much hide all that. I've also fitted the external stowage. There's plenty of internal stowage boxes, but I thought I'd leave them till the rest is painted. 

 

The steering wheel had a scale thickness of almost three inches, rather than try to make a new one I carefully sanded it down. The gear lever was just as bad, I replaced it with bit of brass wire with a blob of superglue for the knob. 

 

There are a pair of towing eyes on the glacis. I photographed these at Bovington this week:

 

2019-03-29_01-05-08

 

Unfortunately on the kit there is a little void where one is supposed to be (blue arrow) and the one that is still attached to the sprue is 'orrible (it's the part just below) 

 

2019-03-29_01-11-19

 

So back to the brass sheet, drilled a couple of holes, cut them out, and sanded the ends round:

 

2019-03-29_01-12-19

 

Then put a bend in and CA them in place. I'm quite pleased with the result

 

2019-03-29_01-13-53

 

The inside of the weapon bay on the real thing is quite busy:

 

2019-03-29_02-22-06

 

I wanted to replicate the feel of that, so added the fire extinguishers from copper wire, and made up the internal shutters for the vision slits from heavy gauge aluminium foil (the sort used for containers for ready meals etc). This is about the same thickness as the brass, very easy to work, but not as rigid as the brass so no good for the side armour. 
 

2019-03-29_02-03-12

 

Next I'll get some primer on, then look at the running gear and those link and length tracks. 

 

Thanks for reading, 

 

Churchill. 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

....I really keep forgetting just how small she is!!! Superb work with such fine and tiny detailing.

 

My carpet monster would have eaten most of this model by now if I attempted it!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...