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So my next armour build is up and running with this very old classic kit from Tamiya. When I started the build I really wasn't sure if this was a wise choice but as things have progressed I'm happy with the way the build is shaping up. Date stamped 1974 the kit does show its age and I'm sure there are far more detailed kits available nowadays but I have a soft spot for these kits and will do my best with what's available in the box. The tracks supplied with the kit were brittle and actually broke up when I tried to use them so I've ordered some replacement tracks from Miniart though I'm not sure they are the correct ones but they'll do for me 🙂. Also the decals are shot so not sure whether i can get replacements or not but I'll worry about that later. So first up the lower hull and running gear which has been primed and received it's first dark coat of OD.

 

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Next the main hull and turret 

 

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And both with primer applied 

 

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Finally a pic of the three main assemblies together 

 

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I've dry fitted the parts and other than a small gap near the front panel everything looks pretty good to me. More to come tomorrow thanks for looking back soon 🙂👍

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Good start Andy, I think those old Tamiya kits are great fun to build!

 

Keith

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Just now, keefr22 said:

Good start Andy, I think those old Tamiya kits are great fun to build!

 

Keith

Thanks Keith they are basic I suppose but can still look half decent when finished 🙂👍

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The poor old Tamiya Lee is a little confused.  If it is anything it is an M3A5 diesel: it certainly has most of the diesel rear end but IIRC the access doors in the top deck are missing.  The only operational use of diesel Lees I can find by US forces was the Battle of Makin Island.  Brazil had some and some may have gone to Commonwealth forces in the Far East.  Does the kit still have tracks with the end connectors on the ends of the links rather than between them?

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Still living up to your middle name I see.

Progress looking good. Are the road wheels and return rollers rubber tyred or is that your customary really effective paintwork? 👏

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Nice start Andy. I'll look in again at the weekend, when you should have it finished.:giggle:

 

John.

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Nice start to this old moulding but still ends up looking like a Lee being built.

Looks great so far looking forward to more of the same.

 

  Stay safe            Roger

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15 hours ago, Das Abteilung said:

The poor old Tamiya Lee is a little confused.  If it is anything it is an M3A5 diesel: it certainly has most of the diesel rear end but IIRC the access doors in the top deck are missing.  The only operational use of diesel Lees I can find by US forces was the Battle of Makin Island.  Brazil had some and some may have gone to Commonwealth forces in the Far East.  Does the kit still have tracks with the end connectors on the ends of the links rather than between them?

Yes the kit tracks do have the end connectors on the ends of the links however the supplied tracks are scrap due to them breaking apart on handling. I've ordered some tracks but I think they are the wrong ones as they are for a mk1 Grant 🤔

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1 hour ago, echen said:

Still living up to your middle name I see.

Progress looking good. Are the road wheels and return rollers rubber tyred or is that your customary really effective paintwork? 👏

Hi Echen the road wheels and rollers were primed in black Mr Surfacer then sprayed Tamiya XF85 rubber black and then I used a circle stencil to pick out the centres in OD. Hope this helps 🙂👍

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1 hour ago, Bullbasket said:

Nice start Andy. I'll look in again at the weekend, when you should have it finished.:giggle:

 

John.

Thanks John but having no decals or tracks atm may well slow me down a little. I'm considering hand painting the decals as I can't seem to find any replacements atm 😕 As for the tracks well I've ordered some but they are for the mk1 Grant so don't know whether to use them or not 🤔

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13 minutes ago, Hamden said:

 

Nice start to this old moulding but still ends up looking like a Lee being built.

Looks great so far looking forward to more of the same.

 

  Stay safe            Roger

Thanks Roger this kit may well not be historically correct but I'm going to build it regardless because as I've said before I build for the fun and enjoyment nothing much else really matters to me 🙂👍

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22 minutes ago, Andy J said:

I've ordered some tracks but I think they are the wrong ones as they are for a mk1 Grant

If you mean the WE 210 type then those were never fitted to Lees, even to those supplied to the UK.  T41/51 plain rubber block would be appropriate.  Cheapest and most available will be Miniart, followed by Bronco if you can get them.

 

IIRC the Makin Island tanks were fitted with deep wading gear if you wanted something different, but I'm not sure there are any photos.  But bearing in mind that the early Sherman wading sets were largely improvised using oil drums for the uptakes one might assume that those used on the Lees might have been similar to those later used on USMC diesel M4A2s.

15 hours ago, Das Abteilung said:

it certainly has most of the diesel rear end but IIRC the access doors in the top deck are missing.

And here I was wrong.  The whole top deck is completely wrong for a diesel.  There should of course be grilled doors roughly in the centre and no grille at the top.  If you were of a mind to do a Makin tank with wading gear you could disguise those shortcomings.

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43 minutes ago, Andy J said:

Hi Echen the road wheels and rollers were primed in black Mr Surfacer then sprayed Tamiya XF85 rubber black and then I used a circle stencil to pick out the centres in OD.

As I suspected. I didn't recall any rubber on the Tamiya Lee I built donkeys years ago. Terrific painting!

Puts my wobbly hairy stick wheels very much in the shade.

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11 minutes ago, Das Abteilung said:

If you mean the WE 210 type then those were never fitted to Lees, even to those supplied to the UK.  T41/51 plain rubber block would be appropriate.  Cheapest and most available will be Miniart, followed by Bronco if you can get them.

 

IIRC the Makin Island tanks were fitted with deep wading gear if you wanted something different, but I'm not sure there are any photos.  But bearing in mind that the early Sherman wading sets were largely improvised using oil drums for the uptakes one might assume that those used on the Lees might have been similar to those later used on USMC diesel M4A2s.

And here I was wrong.  The whole top deck is completely wrong for a diesel.  There should of course be grilled doors roughly in the centre and no grille at the top.  If you were of a mind to do a Makin tank with wading gear you could disguise those shortcomings.

Thanks for the information and I do have the correct tracks on the way T41 so I'm happy with that. As for the rest of the detail issues well I can live with them like I said earlier i build for fun not perfection but I do appreciate your interest and knowledge thanks 🙂👍

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4 minutes ago, echen said:

As I suspected. I didn't recall any rubber on the Tamiya Lee I built donkeys years ago. Terrific painting!

Puts my wobbly hairy stick wheels very much in the shade.

Thanks Echen I do use the hairy stick quite often infact I'm using one now to weather the exhausts on this kit before I fix the main hull in place 🙂👍

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23 minutes ago, Pig of the Week said:

Looks good to me...Those old Tamiya kits would still build into a very respectable model, like most things it's all down to what you do with it !...

Absolutely agree 100% my friend and rest assured I'll be doing my best to breathe life into this old classic kit 🙂👍

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So today's update and the various shades of OD have been applied and I'm very happy with how this old classic kit is coming along. The three main parts fitted together with no real drama's and I think all things considered this could turn out quite nice when finished. The replacement tracks are on there way but I can't find replacement decals anywhere so if anyone can point me in the right direction regarding the decals I would be very grateful. Here's a few pic's of today's progress 

 

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So gloss coat and weathering next though I need to leave the build alone for now and let the paint dry properly overnight. Thanks for looking back soon 🙂👍

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Great job you did there, Andy.
Really great work and incredible speed. The biggest impression is that speed does not reduce quality. Everything looks really good, a first-class job. 👍


If war happens, you should be appointed the head of the tank factory - the manufactured tanks will not fit on the battlefield, there will not even be space for enemies there! :rofl:

 

Vytautas

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30 minutes ago, keefr22 said:

Cracking paint again Andy - excellent work!

 

Keith

Thanks Keith I'm thoroughly enjoying myself.....again 🙂👍

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An old kit that turn to life! Nice. Great paint.

Ciao

Filippo

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1 minute ago, Phil1960 said:

An old kit that turn to life! Nice. Great paint.

Ciao

Filippo

Thanks Filippo I appreciate your comment 👍 

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So definitely the final update for today I thought I'd have a play with some weathering pencils 🙂. The idea was to try and make the sharp steel edges of the tank stand out a little and also to bring some life to the two boxes on the rear hull. Not a huge difference but I like what I see 

 

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That's all folks back tomorrow 🙂👍

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8 minutes ago, Andy J said:

weathering pencils

They're working well. Like the effect.

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