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rowmk9

U-321, Type VIIC/41

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My entry for this group build is Revell's nice 1/144 scale Type VIIC/41

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The hull halves don't have much room in this box, so you get an idea of the length of this thing as the cutting mat is about a foot long. It's big! Even in 1/144.

I'm not sure exactly what boat I will depict but I'll look at the kit options, U.Boat.net and a U-boat reference book I have and then decide. Needless to say, finding a TypeVIIC/41 with a long and successful career is very hard. By the time this mark of U-boat was deployed to the Atlantic, the Allies truly had the upper hand in the battle. Many boats of this type went down with all hands on only their first or second patrol.

Reason for edit: Changed the name of the thread.

Edited by rowmk9

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U-300 was the most successful VIIC/41, sunk on her third patrol on 22nd Feb 1945 with 24,200 tons to her credit.

U-1172 sank an impressive 20,400 tons on her first patrol, including the escort carrier HMS Thane, but was sunk in the Irish Sea on 27 Jan 1945 before returning to base.

Those statistics show how one-sided the anti-submarine battle had become by late 1944.

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Ok so I've made a start on this kit now. Look, here's the pic that proves it and everything...

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I want to build my sub as U-321 but I have no photographic references of this particular sub (identifiable U-boat pics seem hard to come by). Would that be ok Mods? I like the history behind that particular sub as it typifies the fate of many late-war U-boats.

In this instance, U-321 went to sea just two times and didn't sink a single allied vessel. It's second patrol ended prematurely when it was attacked and sunk by a Polish-crewed Wellington on 2 April, 1945, with the loss of all hands. A sad tale of the futility of U-boat operations in 1945 and the cruel reality of war.

any objections?

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nice one Deacon! I think i'll have little to no chance of reproducing that in 1/144th, but its nice to see it.

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I think i'll have little to no chance of reproducing that in 1/144th, but its nice to see it.

I must admit, I can't even make out what it is! :confused:

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I must admit, I can't even make out what it is! :confused:

haha nor me!

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Construction of U-321 at the shipyard in Lübeck by Flender Werke AG, continues...

Please, this thread and any other U-Boat thread should only be read whilst listening to this music -

The conning tower superstructure is coming together and the boat has its forward diving planes. The next stage is painting really, the other parts such as the defensive weaponry and railings can co on once the first coat of paint is on.

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I'm going to go the cheap option and mix paints in my collection for the U-boat colours. One thing I have read about U-boats' appearance is that they were often all sorts of greys. Sure they had standardised paints and they did recieve some repainting at various stages of their service life, but the paint often faded, was resprayed in patches, covered in bits of sea life and all sorts. So the shades could vary by a large degree. This will be a bit of fun to experiement with different techniques :)

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The base colours paint have been applied in drydock. The entire vessel was undercoated in white spray and then some preshading was done. As you can see I wasn't too careful, just wanting some patchy areas of shadow/discolouration. I tend to blast so much paint onto my models that the preshading gets all but annihilated anyway...

The lower hull is a mix of 3 tamiya colours, XF-63 German Grey, XF-11 J.N. Grean and XF-23 Light Blue. in a rough ratio of 75:20:5

Upper hull is Xtracrylix Gunship Grey and the decking is Xtracrylix RLM66.

I hope people like the colour choices, despite their non-nautical origin.

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There are a few patches from drops of water that got on the paint whilst drying, oops! I'll do something about them, possibly working them into the weathering.

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Making brilliant progress on this - very fast work (and neat pre-shading!!)

Iain

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Thanks Iain!

Today I've varnished the whole boat and I'm trying something new for me, we'll see how it goes. I'm going to use salt weathering to hopefully get a nice patchy look to the paint colours.

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After the salt has fully dried, I'll be painting the boat again and hopefully it'll look ok!

Edited by rowmk9

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I've built this kit for a GB, and it's a good build.

Your painting looks really neat.

Dan

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Ok, I'll admit it, I've been neglecting my poor U Boat by focussing on wingy things for other builds, but no more! I have also realised that I've not been keeping a good photographic record of my build and for that I deserve to stand in the naughty corner.

:dunce:

With that done I'll show you what the boat looked like about mid-week.

After spraying the second colour on the salt-covered hull, it was then washed off. I proceeded to give it another coat of varnish and then do things like the vents and holes. Also at this point the 20mm's were replaced with barrels from a 1/72 fighter kit (because I broke the orginals - no other reason!)

Here's the pic

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I've been doing more to the U-321 today and she should be finished by tomorrow. Really all thats left is the rigging, so we'll see how well that goes and maybe I can wrap it up with some nice pics :)

One question for the U-boat gurus. Was the vertical wooden planking on the inside of the conning tower natural wood colour or was it painted on late-war boats? I've seen it done as natural wood on an early Type VII and now I don't know what would be correct.

Edited by rowmk9

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I was wondering how your U-Boat was coming along and it just looks excellent, puts mine to shame, it really does! :)

According to this excellent set of articles, those Wooden Slats were painted with the same wood preservative that was on the deck, so basically the same colour as the wooden deck ( see page 38 of the file ).

http://amp.rokket.biz/docs/the_wolf_pack_compr.pdf

Keep up the good work, you've some excellent painting and weathering going on there. How have you felt about the kit, it all goes together well, doesn't it? Apart from the bloody gun, I was immediately reminded that it's 1:144 scale, lots of fiddly bits! :)

J.

Edited by Jasonb13

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Cheers Jason,

I'll take a look at the article when I fix my adobe reader, its gone all fubar cause I didn't update it :P Should only be a minor inconvenience. Same colour you say? well that works out fairly easy for me then, luckily!

My thoughts on the kit? It's really quite nice and it goes together very easily although the guns certainly are fiddly, I found that too. Bad points would be the railings, they are overscale (as are the guns) but in fairness to Revell I think it's more to do with the limitation of the moulding tech. Some aftermarket ones would be nice, but I don't think they exist for the 1/144 kit.

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Well, I'd hate to see them at proper scale then! :) I'm used to 1:72 and so far with this model it's all been fairly big pieces of plastic. Then I get to the main gun and suddenly, bang, everything's gone very small! 9 pieces for that gun, it took me ages to figure out in my head that two of them were seats, I was just thinking in the wrong scale completely. Whether through accident or design though I managed to build it all together and the gun still tilts up and down.

Griffon Models do have a 1:144 PE set, but it's for the Type VIIC, not the /41 kit. You can see a review here :

http://www.armorama.com/modules.php?op=mod...ent&id=4407

Even if it was for the /41 kit, I dont't think I make my first attempt at using PE with a 1:144 U-Boat kit!

Anyhow, I'm coming up to the weathering part myself & I just hope I don't ruin it all!

J.

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You did better than me then, my large-calibre anti-aircraft cannon is very much static!

That aftermarket looks lovely but as you say, is for the earlier u-boats, a shame. It does look like quite a comprehensive set and probably not one for P.E. 'beginners' but with patience it wouldn't be impossible....probably. :P

Ah weathering, the black arts! Good luck mate, I'm sure you can pull something off. At the end of the day if you like it, It matters not what others think :)

While I'm here....

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This is the u-boat FuMO-30 radar (or so I understand). I modded it by removing the middle two horizontal bars and put in some wire ones at diagonals. It does look a bit closer to real thing, from the source photo I have. Though looking at this photo I have a tiny bit of cleaning up to do on it!

Edited by rowmk9

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Good idea with that radar thing! Now I'll have to look at mine! :) I find looking at Revel's /41 1:72 kit instructions ( http://www.revell.de/manual/05045.PDF ) is a handy way of maybe seeing a little more detail for some parts, or comparing different painting schemes etc...

J.

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The progress of late last night and early this morning:

The railings are in place (found them tricky little things) as well as a few little touches, like the life buoy thingy (not up on my nautical terminology!). The boat has also been flat coated with two stages, Lifecolor's flat base and xtracrylix flat varnish, in that order. The lifecolor turned some parts whitish (same happened on my Lancaster build) so I used the Xtracrylix to try and work some of the white patches out, and the major offending areas were given touch ups with watered-down base colours. In places it looks good though, giving a variation in tone and a salty look to some bits :).

Other things to note - The guns aren't finished yet and the flag pole has been replaced with wire, for the simple reason that the plastic one was poorly moulded with lots of thick flash.

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I'm fairly satisfied with the weathering on the hull so far. I forgot to say that before the flat coats went on, certain weld lines were picked out in either RLM02 or with thinned down Tamiya X-19 Smoke. When I get some daytime pictures without flash the effects will hopefully be more visible. I've since added some rust that hopefully isn't overdone!

I've nearly nearly finished her now, I've only got to paint the floats on the rigging and take pictures. Update to follow before teatime, unless the rugby stops play :P

Edited by rowmk9

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Looks great Rowan, it really does! Looking forward to more pics and seeing the finished article!

I've slowed down a bit on mine, but hoping to get most of the Tower done this weekend...

J.

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Good luck with your build Jason, the conning tower is the focal point of a submarine so I hope you have smooth sailing and flash-free railings :P

Here's a final 'in progress' shot

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This is to illustrate my rigging method. Human hair kindly donated by my niece (she has longer hair than me!) has been used for the cables. The stays are small blobs of Kristal Klear although I'm sure any white glue would work equally well. Just blob them on and let them harden, then paint. However the connecting middle piece is a small bit of plastic, that the three individual hairs have been superglued onto.

I've made a bit of a mistake here, in that the three cables should join about two scale metres back toward the tower, so I'll change that WHEN I break the rigging, sometime in the coming weeks or months... :P

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Human hair, how's that for detail! :) My standard black thread isn't gonna look like much now! Love the glue blobs too, a good way of showing the insulators.

I see what you mean about the guns being overscale, the two sections of the winter garden get very cramped on the model compared to the pictures of real u-boats I've seen.

Will hopefully have a couple more pictures of U-260 on my thread in the next day or two...

J.

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Finished!

To wrap up the building aspect, the final details have been added such as the rust on the hull. I used Citadel Chestnut Ink for this, putting a small dab on the hull and dragging down with my thumb to create a fading stain. I'm also happy with the base, painted gloss black and varnished. The silver decals were great if a little tricky to align. Two options are given with either English or German text and I used the German ones to make it feel a bit more authentic.

So here it is, U-321

*Kit:Revell

*Scale:1/144

*Paints Used: Xtracrylix mainly, with Tamiya and Citadel acrylics

*Extras Used: No aftermarket. Human hair for the rigging possibly may count!

*History: U-321 was a Type VIIC/41 that was built by Flender Werke AG at Lübeck during 1943 and commissioned on 20th Jan 1944. She only had two patrols, the first in January 1944 whilst part of 4. Flottille which was a training flottille. U-321 had to wait over a year to see its first combat patrol with 11. Flottille, setting sail from Bergen Norway on March 1st 1945. Her career came to an abrupt end on 2nd April 1945 when she was depth charged and sunk by a Polish Wellington South West of Ireland, all hands were lost. U-321 sank no allied ships and her experience of the Battle of the Atlantic was typical for a late-war U-boat.

Pictures

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Edited by rowmk9

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Rowan that's fantastic - really quite chilling to look at (particularly knowing the history).

Cliff

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