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Brews

Italeri 1:72 M4A1

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I'm thinking of using plastic card and putty to make "cast-in-place" thickenings.

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Actually, the hull is already done now. I still have the turret cheek armour to do, but I"ll do that when I get the turret together, I think. This was very easy to do. I just marked out the places on the hull with pencil, cut some 0.040" thick plastic card (I used some left over from a vac-form kit) to a strip 8mm wide. Rectangles were cut to match the lengths of the appliqué armour on the hull, glued on with Tamiya extra thin cement, filed down, and faired-in with Tamiya putty.

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Job done! I suppose I could have splashed out on some resin ...

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Just realized, of course, that 40thou card = 72 scale mm in 1:72 I was thinking that 1mm = 1". Doh!

I'll sand the bumps down later :)

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I remember now - it's 1.5" of armour, so 20thou card would be perfect.

I started assembling the Italeri turret (fiddly rotor assembly) but I like the look of the Dragon rotor and mantlet, which I garnered from the spares box (ex M4A4). The rotor seems to me to have better shape, and the assembly sits better. Compare and contrast (gun barrel and mantlet stuck on with blu-tac only!):

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Thank you, lady and gentleman. I neglected to mention the pain of filling an ejector pin mark on the lower side of the gun barrel that must have been about 1mm deep, and sanding off the mould parting lines of the barrel. It might have been easier to stretch some sprue, which I once did for an Airfix Sherman (which has a too-thin barrel). The part of the Italeri mantlet that I do like is the thinness of the flanges either side of the barrel. I would replace them, except that I suspect that I may be making a mountain out of a molehill, and it would be better to leave well enough alone.

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This is how Italeri would have you assembling the nose:

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Now, I'm not saying that this is wrong, but it's upside-down to all other pictures that I've seen, except for the instructions in this kit, and the box art.

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The turret is starting to take shape now. It's been a bit of a struggle to get it the way that I wanted, but we're almost there. I cut a piece of aluminium tube to fit in the Dragon "jaws" that allow the gun to elevate and depress. The tube had to be filed down to fit. Back-stepping, I first tried using a piece of plastic rod, but that broke because I had to drill a hole in it to fit a piece of wire rod (possibly a broken guitar string, but I think not) that I drilled to fit inside the gun barrel. With the aluminium rod fitted and drilled, I passed the brass rod through it and superglued it in place. It's still a bit too sloppy for my liking, but it works.

The pistol port is glued in. That was a great fit. No sarcasm there. Parts of this kit fit really, really well. Others don't. Not so that it's unbuildable, just that some parts need a bit of putty. Like the seam between the sponsons and the upper hull .. must have been over 1mm in places. Maybe that's because I installed the nose in "upside down", but I doubt it.

On the Sherman Site

there is a review of a turret and hull set for this model. The turret has the all-round vision cupola rather than the split hatch. As luck would have it, every Extratech/Eduard Sherman comes with both split hatches and all-round vision cupolas. I stole one from the Early M4.

Progress pics:

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I've finished working on this for tonight. I'm just relaxing in bed now. It doesn't look much different to the above pics, except I drilled out the lifting rings on the hull (two at the front, two at the back), filed the filler under the sponsons, attached a gubbin to the turret (spotlight?) and cemented the commander's hatch on. I did start cleaning up the commander figure, because he does look quite nice, but as luck would have it, he needs to lose some weight, or act like a snake, to fit though the new hatch. That's why I closed up the hatch. The driver's and radio operator's hatches are on, too. There isn't much actual building left in this, now (unless I add some spare PE), but I do have the entire running gear on one side to assemble, and the drive sprocket and idler on the other. I'll add the Link and Length tracks after everything's been painted, to minimize touch-ups. Depending on how I feel after I've finished this, I might tackle one of my other Shermi - Dragon M4A4, Extratech Sherman I, Sherman Ic, M4A376(w) and Eduard Profipack M4A3(105). The Extratech Sherman I has a scheme for Gold Beach that I like - with a graticule marked around the turret.

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Looking through the spares, I found Dragon Big Hatches and travel lock, so I replaced the corresponding Italeri items. Drop-in fit, more detailed - result!!

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Edited by Brews

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I've never built one of these before, so it's an experience for me.

The spare track links carrier, complete with two racks of spare track links (also with room for the two spare road wheels) comprises a total of 14 pieces (16 if you include the 2 road wheels). That is made up of 4 pieces for the carrier, and 5 for each rack of links. Painful clean-up and tricky assembly.

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And just when I thought I was all done with filling in ejector pin marks, I find this!

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I guess I should make some fish-tail exhausts, too.

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Thanks, Stebos and Mish. I think it wil be ok in th eend. but I'm fast losing my enthusiasm for another Sherman build straight away. Maybe the LCVP.

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Brews.....I know just how you feel about Sherman overload.....Do you have the Revell 1/72 Cromwell in your stash? As you know I've knocked a few up recently and it is an absolutely wonderful little kit. :winkgrin:

Just a thought, all the best

Sgt.S

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Thank you very much, Andy and Daz. Andy, I'm sorry, but I didn't know you were building Cromwells, did I? I can't remember seeing them. I'll have to look harder! Yes, I do have one in my stash, actually, it's on my bench - probably less than 25% started, and I was thinking of adding the hedgerow cutters to the Sherman, but I don't know of the historical accuracy of that little piece of garnishing.

By the way, of the three options in the Italeri decal sheet, which one is most appropriate for Normandy? Do you know off-hand or will I have to ge the serial numbers? Anyone?

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Hey, you're doing wonderfully with this build. Don't let Sherman overload stop your fine work :thumbsup:

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