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Carro Veloce CV35 1/16 scratchbuild


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Hi folks…! I’ve been distracting myself with a series of kits – interwar stuff, 1/72, and even an hairyplane so it’s now high time for another armour scratchbuild.

I’ve decided on something a bit different (although it’s still covered in rivets) and have plumped for a WW2 tankette. I saw Bovington's one recently and was charmed by it. The wealth of funky paint schemes is also a great incentive. It’s tiny, so I’ve made my mind up to jump to 1/16 scale for a fresh set of challenges.

 

52976832038_6a3771bb6a_b.jpg

 

Unusually for my projects, there’s quite a lot of reference stuff online, including plenty of drawings, so I loaded one into CAD and modelled up the main panels.

52976524549_5a17ddc466_c.jpg

 

I then flattened these into 2D and added some details, ready for printing out and cutting the parts from 0.75mm plastic card.

52976750110_379057cc6a_z.jpg

Despite working in CAD for over thirty years, I continue to resist the lure of 3D printing, so it’ll be a build of plastic card and nail caviar as usual. That said, I’ve no real idea how to tackle the tracks as yet – maybe I might dip my toe in the printing world after all…. I’d also like to do a figure for this but I’m not sure that an internet search for “1/16 Italian tankette driver” will pull up many results, so he might end up being another scratchbuilt element of the project.

 

Wish me luck!

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A great 'little' project, I have a soft spot for these early war tankettes so keen to see how you get on.

 

The one at Bovington is the flame thrower version isnt it? I remember thinking Id struggle to fit in it.

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3 minutes ago, sardaukar said:

A great 'little' project, I have a soft spot for these early war tankettes so keen to see how you get on.

 

The one at Bovington is the flame thrower version isnt it? I remember thinking Id struggle to fit in it.

Yes, the Bovington one is a fearsome weedkiller. There are quite a few versions - twin MGs, 20mm anti-tank, command version, flamethrower.... at the moment, I'm planning to go with the vanilla twin machine gun version, but there's plenty of time for a change of heart.

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21 hours ago, PeteH1969 said:

This will be interesting to follow.

 

Will you be using the Bronco 35th kit as a reference guide?

 

Pete

Partially - inevitably, image searches (particularly for the interior)pull up WIP pics and they’re useful. It looks like a nice kit, and I have a set of sprue photos downloaded, so I’m sure I’ll make use of the as visual reference if nothing else.
 

Having a decent kit to refer to is a bit of a double edged sword; it’s useful info, but sets the bar at a sometimes high level. That’s one reason I’ve done pretty obscure builds so far - more wiggle-room in how to figure out the details!

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Some minor progress…. I’d run out of spray mount, so had to take a trip out to get some. The main templates are now glued onto a piece of A3 0.75mm plastic card and while it dries, I had a go at making the first component – the drive sprockets.

 

I laid the template over a scrap of card and punched the points dot-to-dot fashion through onto the plastic.

52989382533_35dc9f9b1c_k.jpg

 

Join the dots with a fresh 10A scalpel and add the hub detail – a couple of bits of plastic tube, some spare sprue, melted a little to dome the end and some lengths of plastic rod with screw heads cut into the tops and we have the first part made!

52988925271_4dc568dacb_k.jpg

 

With the spray mount dry, I should be able to get on with the main body panels fairly quickly now.

 

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Great to see another one of your scratchbuild projects underway.

 

With regards to how to make the tracks (and with apologies for such blatant self-promotion) I would suggest having another look at my PZH 2000 build. The ‘steaming plastic strip and bending it around a balsa former’ that I finally came up with proved to be a really practical method. More complex tracks could be represented by scribing or cutting details into the flat sheet (prior to steaming). If I ever make another tracked vehicle this will be my ‘go-to’ method.

 

3d printing would give an even better result but I prefer to do things the old fashioned way. 

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On 21/06/2023 at 05:24, Muchmirth said:

Genius with already with the melted sprue dome! Great idea. 

Paul

Agreed! I think I might steal this one day when I need to make cowl ventilators for ship models. A semi-spherical blob like this cemented onto an upright length of sprue might do nicely. 👍

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Thanks Steve; yes, I was impressed with your track technique for your PZH 2000 and tried something similar on my Mk1 gun carrier. It didn't really work out for me though and I ended up making link and length resin track pads. They were simple though - just flat plates with a handful of rivets and a raised lip, whereas these little Italian tracks are really complex - they even have the manufacturer's name cast in them in some examples. I'm putting the whole track thing on the back burner for now till inspiration strikes.

 

So as a distraction....

 

Wheels can be a real pain. I thought the drive sprockets would be the most difficult, so I tackled them first, but they’ve turned out to be the easiest. So now the road wheels. There are two types – 6 large and 1 small per side and they’re too big for any of the plastic tube I’ve got so I laminated a set of five 0.75mm circles together. I tend to use a needle in a pin vice to scribe using a circle template to cut out circles like these. It works pretty well, but doesn’t give a centre mark, so I used my centre-finder tool and drilled a hole through the lot.

53009937767_648a21deee_k.jpg

 

I’ll drill the centre holes a bit bigger, smooth off the tyre face using some milliput probably, add the hub detail from slices of tube and circles of thin card and then probably set them aside, ready for resin moulding. I really don’t fancy making the whole lot from scratch.

 

Next up is the idler. It looks fairly straightforward, but is actually a major challenge. My first effort was simply cut using the circle template and a scalpel on the printed part, but the result was pretty poor. It’s really difficult to cut accurately.

53010527166_8ed8cfd89a_k.jpg

 

Not great. So I tried another approach. Using a set of dividers, I scored the outer circle and inner rings to set the concentric edges of each hole. This means there’s a much better chance they actually are concentric compared to using the circle template. I then cut out the paper template and laid it over the cut-out part and stuck a pin mark in each of the “window” corners. With a fresh blade, I’m hoping that joining the dots will be a bit more successful than the previous effort. What doesn’t help is the relatively thick plastic. It takes a number of passes with both the pin and the scalpel to cut through, and each pass can tend to wobble or vary. 0.2mm or even 0.5mm would be much, much easier.

53009937752_79e34ad1b3_k.jpg

 

After that (if I can get something useable), I need to create the inner faces of the idler – it has smaller holes and the inner and outer wheels have a flared, conical transition between them. It’s not going to be easy and I can see a few attempts being needed. 3D modelling and printing it all would be a relative doddle, and I know is the way to go really, but I love the challenge of coming up with a way to do it manually.

 

Away from the wheels and all the aggro they cause me, I’ve got all the major parts rivet-drilled and cut out. I’ll swipe them with a bit of white spirit to get the paper off and I can get to sticking them together to relieve the tedium and frustration of the roundy-roundy parts.

53011015023_c5718c5e77_k.jpg

 

Back in the comfort zone!

 

Up till now, I've been careful to select scratchbuild subjects that avoid complex tracks and wheels, but thought it was time to tackle something more challenging - this certainly seems to be living up to that aim!

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Moving along nicely.

 

It is hard to imagine riding into battle in one of these wee tin boxes - noisy, confined, and rather claustrophobic.  Not for me.

 

Cutting circles.  I have tried many different ways and I have several commercial circle cutters. All work to a point and have their place but by far the best circle cutter for small bits of styrene model making is a bow compass ( i.e. Staedtler https://www.staedtler.com/intl/en/products/technical-drawing-instruments/compasses/ ) which use a 2mm diameter lead.  I replace the lead ( useful for drawing circles but not cutting ;) ) with a cutter blade like those used in the Cricut and similar cutters.  They are 2mm in diameter and fit these compasses very nicely. I can make quite small circles and quite large ones and of course leave a nice pin gentleman's parts in the center. In the picture you will see an elastic band wrapped around the compass. This pre-loads the adjusting wheel/screw thread and keeps the adjustment from changing while in use. Search Amazon or eBay for the blades; you can get quite a few for not very much AND (bonus) these 2mm blades can be used nicely in a mechanical drafting pencil which also co-incidentally use 2mm leads and makes for a nice very small and sharp knife for some tiny detail work. 

 

To use, simply scribe your circle or circles. Make a few radial cuts and snap away the excess.  I will never go back to scribing with a pin again.

 

p?i=e836415cf4ee530ab40acd713ce8faec

 

Looking forward to your next update and patiently waiting to see how you manage with the tracks.

 

cheers, Graham

 

 

 

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13 hours ago, ColonelKrypton said:

Moving along nicely.

 

It is hard to imagine riding into battle in one of these wee tin boxes - noisy, confined, and rather claustrophobic.  Not for me.

 

Cutting circles.  I have tried many different ways and I have several commercial circle cutters. All work to a point and have their place but by far the best circle cutter for small bits of styrene model making is a bow compass ( i.e. Staedtler https://www.staedtler.com/intl/en/products/technical-drawing-instruments/compasses/ ) which use a 2mm diameter lead.  I replace the lead ( useful for drawing circles but not cutting ;) ) with a cutter blade like those used in the Cricut and similar cutters.  They are 2mm in diameter and fit these compasses very nicely. I can make quite small circles and quite large ones and of course leave a nice pin gentleman's parts in the center. In the picture you will see an elastic band wrapped around the compass. This pre-loads the adjusting wheel/screw thread and keeps the adjustment from changing while in use. Search Amazon or eBay for the blades; you can get quite a few for not very much AND (bonus) these 2mm blades can be used nicely in a mechanical drafting pencil which also co-incidentally use 2mm leads and makes for a nice very small and sharp knife for some tiny detail work. 

 

To use, simply scribe your circle or circles. Make a few radial cuts and snap away the excess.  I will never go back to scribing with a pin again.

 

p?i=e836415cf4ee530ab40acd713ce8faec

 

Looking forward to your next update and patiently waiting to see how you manage with the tracks.

 

cheers, Graham

 

 

 

Thanks Graham, my ancient dividers are pretty sharp and work in much the same manner, but I like the sound of these little cutting blades - I’ll have to invest in some. 

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21 hours ago, Model Mate said:

Thanks Steve; yes, I was impressed with your track technique for your PZH 2000 and tried something similar on my Mk1 gun carrier. It didn't really work out for me though and I ended up making link and length resin track pads. They were simple though - just flat plates with a handful of rivets and a raised lip, whereas these little Italian tracks are really complex - they even have the manufacturer's name cast in them in some examples. I'm putting the whole track thing on the back burner for now till inspiration strikes.

 

So as a distraction....

 

Wheels can be a real pain. I thought the drive sprockets would be the most difficult, so I tackled them first, but they’ve turned out to be the easiest. So now the road wheels. There are two types – 6 large and 1 small per side and they’re too big for any of the plastic tube I’ve got so I laminated a set of five 0.75mm circles together. I tend to use a needle in a pin vice to scribe using a circle template to cut out circles like these. It works pretty well, but doesn’t give a centre mark, so I used my centre-finder tool and drilled a hole through the lot.

53009937767_648a21deee_k.jpg

 

I’ll drill the centre holes a bit bigger, smooth off the tyre face using some milliput probably, add the hub detail from slices of tube and circles of thin card and then probably set them aside, ready for resin moulding. I really don’t fancy making the whole lot from scratch.

 

Next up is the idler. It looks fairly straightforward, but is actually a major challenge. My first effort was simply cut using the circle template and a scalpel on the printed part, but the result was pretty poor. It’s really difficult to cut accurately.

53010527166_8ed8cfd89a_k.jpg

 

Not great. So I tried another approach. Using a set of dividers, I scored the outer circle and inner rings to set the concentric edges of each hole. This means there’s a much better chance they actually are concentric compared to using the circle template. I then cut out the paper template and laid it over the cut-out part and stuck a pin mark in each of the “window” corners. With a fresh blade, I’m hoping that joining the dots will be a bit more successful than the previous effort. What doesn’t help is the relatively thick plastic. It takes a number of passes with both the pin and the scalpel to cut through, and each pass can tend to wobble or vary. 0.2mm or even 0.5mm would be much, much easier.

53009937752_79e34ad1b3_k.jpg

 

After that (if I can get something useable), I need to create the inner faces of the idler – it has smaller holes and the inner and outer wheels have a flared, conical transition between them. It’s not going to be easy and I can see a few attempts being needed. 3D modelling and printing it all would be a relative doddle, and I know is the way to go really, but I love the challenge of coming up with a way to do it manually.

 

Away from the wheels and all the aggro they cause me, I’ve got all the major parts rivet-drilled and cut out. I’ll swipe them with a bit of white spirit to get the paper off and I can get to sticking them together to relieve the tedium and frustration of the roundy-roundy parts.

53011015023_c5718c5e77_k.jpg

 

Back in the comfort zone!

 

Up till now, I've been careful to select scratchbuild subjects that avoid complex tracks and wheels, but thought it was time to tackle something more challenging - this certainly seems to be living up to that aim!

 

Crazy guy 😁

MD

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I’d mentioned that 0.5mm and 0.2mm card are considerably easier to cut than the 0.75mm, so I tried again with the idler wheels using 0.5mm card and it went much better

53019548123_e680a94e77_k.jpg

 

To get them the right thickness, I then laminated a disc of 0.2mm card and cut out the “windows”

53018482352_fc65704375_k.jpg

 

I did the same for the inner half of the idler wheel and assembled the hub parts - a couple of concentric rings and a thin tube for the axle.

53019548073_28b6a6f14e_k.jpg

 

The “blades” were glued in place and then trimmed to allow the wider ring to sit flush.

53018482312_0d7c2250d0_k.jpg

 

All glued together, and finally a smidge of green stuff to smooth out the conical centre hub and a thin slice of tube added to the face.

53019229529_9bcd234a32_k.jpg

 

The road wheels got a smear of milliput around the tyre using lots of water, and this will be sanded back. I’ll soon have a set of wheels!

53019064686_4feeb0acb8_k.jpg

 

The suspension setup needs some other, fairly chunky cast parts, including these arms/brackets. I made them up using 0.5mm plastic card.

53019229514_558d9b5ca9_k.jpg

 

And the triangular plates that join the wheels got a rim of 0.2mm card and a bit of face detail.

53019229579_d9e6acfde5_k.jpg

 

To provide a bit of “big stuff” relief, I started gluing the main bodywork together. It’s really fitting nicely, and it all pre-drilled for rivets.

53019064706_e1b37d19f8_k.jpg

 

 

 

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I’m having a good run on this at the moment and getting some real progress.

 

 The rearmost compartment of the hull houses a circular radiator, so I made one up from card and rod. I will probably have one of the engine compartment doors open to show off the engine and part of this radiator arrangement will be visible behind the engine and part of it may also be visible through the louvres that cover it. I haven’t detailed everything though – only the parts that might be seen.

53024238279_0e84d52b4c_k.jpg

 

Here it is with the top plate roughly in place.

53024549463_c0a80e53b1_k.jpg

 

The wheels got some face detail. I decided to make two of each of these types – I only need two small ones, so there’s not much point casting a single copy when it’s just as easy to make one, and for the larger wheels, I’ll need quite a few (6 per side plus two spares) so having two in a mould halves the number of castings I’ll need to do.

53024063171_fac74d5794_k.jpg

 

On to the bit I’ve been dreading – the tracks. This model might be 1/16, but it’s so small that the tracks are a similar size to a 1/35 “regular” tank. And they’re complicated. The Bronco kit’s tracks are pretty poor to be honest – very simplified and look nothing like the real thing. Here’s what the real tracks look like….

53024549438_4db30e21b4_c.jpg

 

I’ll obviously need lots of links, so some sort of resin casting is in order, but the parts will be so small and delicate that I don’t think two-part moulds will work. I therefore need to break down the parts so that each can be open-moulded (one sided) which stands a better chance I think.

 

First thing to do is see if I can scratch even just a single link to look remotely like the real thing. I figured that I’d try the top section as a plate, and the guide teeth and pins as a separate element, to be joined after casting.

53024549448_e1822ea104_k.jpg

 

Hmm – well it does look (very) remotely like the real thing I suppose, but it’s really not good enough and still poses considerable challenges in terms of moulding. I’ll have to try again….

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2 hours ago, Model Mate said:

First thing to do is see if I can scratch even just a single link to look remotely like the real thing.

Wow! You've set yourself a complex task there!

But having seen your work so far I'm sure it won't be long before you crack this.

Edited by echen
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  • 2 weeks later...

Ok – I had another go at the track links. After a bit of head scratching I realised that the tracks are a bit thicker than the 0.5mm sheet I’ve been trying to use. In fact, they can probably go up to 1.0mm. There’s going to need to be raised detail on both the upper surfaces and the lower ones, so if I want to stick to “open” moulds (which I do) then I’ll have to come up with a multi-part solution.

 

Here’s the plan…. Create a top and bottom part for each link, open-mould them and then glue the flat faces together to make each separate link.

It’s ambitious to say the least, but I started by making the “masters” and I’m not too disappointed so far. I think it’s safe to say that if these do succeed, whilst they’ll be far from perfect, they’ll a big improvement over the Bronco 1/35 effort.

 

The outside surfaces are on the left in this picture, and the inner surfaces are on the right, complete with guide horns. Once cast, they’ll be glued together, flat face to flat face.

53043045439_9a7c3c326b_k.jpg

 

Progress was held up a bit while I had a family trip to the Netherlands where I,

a)       caught covid (yes, it’s still around)

b)      got a bit of figure painting practice in!

53043253830_2a0f6a38fb_k.jpg

 

Back to the desk, and I carried on with the suspension parts. Firstly, there’s a small road wheel supported by a simple cast bracket. It looks like a bit of a design after-thought to be honest. In many of the photos I have, its clear that the wheel isn’t in permanent contact with the track and this wheel appears to just prevent the track going slack at the rear of the vehicle. I cut the “arms” of the bracket and sandwiched a bunch of 0.75mm card between them to match the wheel thickness. These were all whittled and sanded to rough shape before I did the same for the extensions at the mid and top of the brackets that connect back to the hull. These still need shaping obviously.

53043355598_49d7b4782f_k.jpg

 

I also framed a few more of the suspension plates with 1mm wide strips of 0.2mm card. I have though about copying these in resin, but they’re easy enough to make so I’ll do them all this way I think. Leaf springs next, and again, they’re really quite simple to make from 0.5mm card.

53042868746_b535d3a0aa_k.jpg

 

 

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