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TristanR

Meng Leopard 2A4

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Hello, I have a couple of meng tanks to build, starting with this one.  

 

Fairly straight forward build, I like the polycaps. The torsion bar suspension was interesting. I'm really not a fan of the slightly rough finish they put on these models, I suppose it's to help the paint grip. Anyway I'm going to sand it off.  I also bought a set of tow cables for it.

 

I'm leaving the side skirts off and painting the underside first, them I'll pop the wheels on, glue on the side skirts, and then paint the rest of it.  There isn't much of a glue surface so I want a clean bond so they don't fall off once painted.

 

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I'm Starting out with Mr surfacer Black, straight from a can.

 

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For a base coat I mix tamiya hull red with flat black about 5050, looks darker than it is in this picture.

 

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I bought the Echelon decal sets, I'm quite fond of the Norwegian version, which calls for Olive drab, even though it look more khaki...  I'll see how olive drab goes. 

 

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I start with a base coat of Olive drab, goes on pretty dark. but I plan to apply a few light coats as I go.

 

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The tracks are fairly painless to put together, the links come in two halves and push fit around a bar link that let's the articulate,  It's well thought out, but some of the links pop apart.  I hope I don't have to glue them all together.

Once assembled I hit them with the falt black and hull red mix.

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Using the lifecolor rust diorama set I wash the tracks going from light to dark.  (yep, I'm following those tank art books!)

 

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I left off this sight window thing, I popped a bit of foil on the back surface to try ans simulate the optics, not super accurate but it adds a nice contrast.

 

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I have a range of Olive drabs, including the lifecolor set.  unfortunately they are slightly satin, and I'm not that keen on satin finishes.

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So I opted just to mix some white in with the tamiya olive drab. Here's the first layer, to subtle to really come through in the image.

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So after the top coat of whitened olive-drab I went at it with some sandpaper, very gently sanding through to the base olive coat, and on some edges, go through to the hull red.  The links mounted on the front were hand painted in lifecolor dark rust mxied with one of their tire blacks.  I think in a few places I went too far with the sanding, especially on the side of the turret.  So I think I'll go over them again with the olive drab.  

 

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Cheers!

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Very, very nice. I had this on my list too. Went for the A7 for one of my next projects in the end. Your approach looks fantastic. The last picture is from which tank museum?

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Posted (edited)

Thanks, Soeren, I very nearly went for the A7 too, but the slabby charm of this one won me over.  I will look out for your build if you go with it for your next project.

 

I don't like using gloss coats, and  don't like decals much either.  So I'm going to not gloss the model and see if I can apply some decals.My 

 

My plan was to sand the surface smooth to reduce silvering before application, and then hit the area around decal with a matt coat afterwards with dullcoat to mask the glossy decal.

 

It wasn't very successful. the dullcoat and it frosted the smoke launchers.  There is slight silvering so I slashed the the decal and soaked some micro sol in there.  That helped a bit, but it's also still slightly glossy through the matt varnish.  The carrier film is thick and pretty noticeable.  I could try and sand it down, but I don't have a lot of experience with that.  It's not too bad, I learned my lesson.

 

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I found these useful PE lights from Voyager, I'm not going to use the headlights or the tail lights I think i prefer the depth in the kit ones, but I'll use the reflectors.

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Edited by TristanR

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I did a quick enamel wash along the sides, and then moved onto some oils.  Trying to layer up some weathering without going too heavy.

 

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Hey Tristan. It is a bit sad with the silvering of the decals. Your colors and watering look really coll though. I got the voyager lenses too. Will see how they look on the way. I am going to start the 2a7 as soon as the kit arrives. Should be around early of may. Still following your build in the meantime.

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Hi Tristan your Leopard looks great how did you paint the spare track links on the front of the tank they look so real.

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The more I look at this paintjob, I have to say, it is a very effective and different approach. Might be very usefull to try that as well.

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Hi Ulsterman, I mixed a dark grey and a rust brown together to get an iron color, added a bit of black to darken it a bit,  then brush painted the links (I'm using lifecolor paints) .  I then gave the links a wash in just the rust brown.  Finally I touched the edges with some of metal pigment, that's what really sells it.

 

Thanks Soeren, the approach is working out so far, apart from the decal slip up.  Not sure it'd work with a multicolor camo scheme.  

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Hi Tristan, this looks amazing. I like the painting and weathering very much. This kit is in my stash and waits for starting and after looking at your paiting approach - yeah, I must give a try to do such job. Beautiful and realistic to my eyes.

 

Keep on this nice job!

 

Tamas

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Some really nice weathering effects you've achieved 

(It's not just U-boats)

 

Rob

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Looks good, nice wash effects.

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Pigment time.  Made a batch of light, middle, dark. dirt.  I'm going to perhaps do it in a few layers, again trying to keep it subtle.

 

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Bit more oil work, trying to blend in some of the rough patches that were hard to sand with some olive drab olis, Looks darker here that in real life. 

 

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Posted (edited)

That is reverse fading ? ;)

Looks really, really good.

I tell you, when you finish this one and take a picture outside with a good angle to blend it into the background,  one will have a hard time telling this is only a scale model of a Leopard. 

Edited by Soeren

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When the oild paint in the above post actually dried properly, it was identical to the underlying color and essentially disappeared, even though I dried it with a hairdryer, but then oild paint cures rather than dries, so a lesson learnt there.

In the meantime I did some pigment work.

 

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Hi TristanR,

 

the more I look to the photos, the more jelaous I a, on your paint technique and weathering. Awsome job! Pls post lots of close shots with humanoid angle of view after finished, I do like the hyper-realistic appearance! That is my goal in every build and I have already learnt a lot from you.

 

Tamas

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