ICM 1/24 Benz-Motorwagen

I wrote a review of the kit for Armorama; I will just put some photos of the model here. All-in-all, it is a great model of a very unique subject. It is a small model, only a couple of pieces, and also comes with PE for the spokes. ICM has also provided a copy of the patent itself as a separate page, which I promptly framed and put on my wall.

The model is well-designed, and can be built relatively fast- it took me about two evenings, plus a couple of more evenings of painting.

Due to the nature of the model the painting and building had to progress side-by-side; the engine, etc were painted separately and installed only once the main frame was finished.

The hardest part to paint was the wooden foot-holder… with a Citadel paint brown base I used burned umber, umber and Indian yellow to simulate the wood colors. (Paint applied then readjusted with a dry brush to show off the underlying colors repeated several times.)

Once dry, the surface got some gloss varnish. Basically, that’s it. It was an easy and fun build; I can only recommend this model to anyone. It certainly provides an unique addition to the usual subjects on my shelf…

Tiger Model 1/35 AML-90 Part 2. final assembly and painting

Part 1.

The model comes with a very well designed instruction booklet, and a colored page showing the camouflage patterns as a painting guide. The parts are well-moulded, the detail is crisp and fine, and I found no flash anywhere – it is a very high tech plastic model. There are valves, tiny nuts and all sorts of small details present on the model that you actually need a magnifying glass for. All-in-all, it is just a great little model, with just enough parts not to make it an enormous undertaking to build. You get 7 sprues with a total of 266 parts, one of which has transparent parts, 5 vinyl tires, 2 small PE with a total of 19 parts, aluminium and a brass turned barrel for the main gun and the coaxial machine gun, four metal springs and a small decal sheet.

There is a minimal PE but not exactly overdone; the fit is good, and when I dry fitted the hull to see how it holds up, it actually stayed together without glue. The detail both inside and out is good – when you open the hatches, there will be a lot of detail to see.

There is a great option of using either vinyl tires or plastic ones – as someone who does not like vinyl, I really, applaud the inclusion of hard plastic. There is also a metal barrel included for both the main gun and the coaxial machine gun, which is also very much welcome. The suspension has metal springs -they do not work, but they do look realistic. Everything is safely bagged, in color-coded bags for the springs to make the job of the builder simpler – the whole package is just geared for a pleasant building experience. (You can find photos of the sprues in this review: https://www.themodellingnews.com/2019/07/in-boxed-135th-panhard-aml-90-light.html?m=1)

The painting was done with silly putty: I left the Vallejo dark grey primer as black, and applied NATO green and brown in successive steps.

Amusing Hobby 1/35 Ferdinand with interior part 1.

 

I have seen the Tiger exhibition in Bovingdon, and there is an article on armorama worth reading.

I never really liked the way the Ferdinand looked- the Jagdpanther had a much sleeker outline. However, it was a very intruiging vehicle due to Ferdinand Porche’s unique solution for powering this monster.

There are only a few illustrations available of the interior of the tank:

There is, however, a book available if you fancy buying one (and understand German -although the photos alone would be enough I suspect).

Until now there was only one option for interior: Jaguar’s set, which only consisted of the fighting and the driving compartments -not the interesting (for me) parts.

It is well-worth watching the Tank Museum’s Tank Chat of this tank destroyer -although regrettably they did not climb into it.

Here are some photos I took of this vehicle.

Anyhow. I decided to start this model out of the stash. The model, in general, looks simple and easy to build, despite of the complex interior – a great news indeed after the previous tribulations. The part number is suprisingly low for a kit like this, which, after the RFM Panther, is definitely welcome news.. There are some annoying ejector pin marks, however. (See photos below.)

Things to keep in mind: painting and building are very interconnected. The instructions will not take into consideration the fact that several parts will be needed to be painted together, or just the opposite, need to be painted separately… I already made a couple of mistakes of gluing parts into place without thinking about how to paint them later on. This is a normal thing with all the complex models; it is up to the modeller to modify the sequence as they see fit.

The decals leave something to desire: there are no decals for the interior or the ammunition. I suspect I will just use Verlinden’s interior set, and the leftovers from the RFM/Takom Panthers for the ammunition -whomever can read the stencils can complain they are not correct for 88mm.

The engines do not have V-belts; they can be added with very little effort. If you want to do so, here is a good page for reference.

I really like that Amusing Hobby offered an alternative for tracks: either individual track links, or if you can’t be bothered with the tedium of assembly, a flexible rubber-band-like option. There is a jig provided for assembly but it is not that easy to make the tracks workable. The point of contact between the track links is really tiny, and it is very easy to get glue where it should not be,

Interior overall has a good fit, and it is well designed; so far I am really happy with the model. The fit is so good some parts are held in place firmly without glue. A lot of the parts on the photos are only dry-fit, not glued -except for those two cylinders behind the driving compartment, which I unfortunately glued in. They will need to be painted with a brush in situ.

Exciting news from Amusing Hobby – T-72M1 full interior kit

Perhaps I should have written the headline as: “If you want to know the next exciting news from Amusing Hobby, Click here.”

Or better yet: “Model makers are annoyed by this one trick of a single mother.”

But I am a more traditional headline-writer and I hate clickbait. So I am really happy to report that my Grail is being announced: a T-72 with full interior. I always wanted a model of the T-72 and T-64 because I am intruiged by their autoloader… and now we will have one.

Amazing.

Seriously, just look at it…

Just damn…

Now I really need to finish up that Ferdinand and the rest

How to Paint White

This has always been a headache for me: white colored paints have coverage issues. Most paint brands need to be diluted: with white it is very, very, VERY essential to get the dilution just right. If it is too dilute, it will be runny, if it is too thick it will splutter in the airbrush. (The reason for this post is the Amusing Hobby Ferdinand: ran out of Tamiya Flat White.)

Small areas can be done using a grey base (easier to paint), and then painting it over with Vallejo’s white primer, diluted somewhat, but not too much using a brush. It is much more forgiving than most other white paints as it looks extremely dense in pigments.

I have not managed to paint large white surfaces with hairy sticks (it is doable), yet, so it will be only airbrush here.

Larger areas- such as you can see on warhammer miniatures or tank interiors- however are a pain to paint. You are supposed to fog layers upon layers of white mist on the surface, with infinite patience, but let’s get real. I need something fast.

The best method, so far has been using Tamiya’s flat white. Normally I use a dark primer (pre-shading), and it is hell to cover with white. Not so if you use Tamiya. The method is simple: dilute it just a bit, so it stays thick but not too thick, add some retarder, crank up the pressure on the airbrush, and just have a go at it. You still have to be careful not to swamp the model with paint, so use lighter coats, but you can go back and forth without having to wait for the paint to dry. It works like poweder coating -the paint immediately dries as it hits the surface, so it will not have time to pool.

There is some experimentation needed, because if it is too thick it will splutter, but the method is a flexible, if a somewhat brutal approach to painting. With this you can cover larger areas effectively in one go. If you need off-white or ivory you then just mist it over with the appropriate color – much easier to create effective covering. (The same could work, I suspect, with flat white primer sprays, but I never had luck with those, either – the coverage was terrible, so it had to be applied in many layers, which caused paint buildup, and was not very easy to control the paint coming from a big spray can.)

That is it, basically. Thick Tamiya Flat White at high pressure – instant white surface.

Tiger Model 1/35 AML-90 Part 1.

A nice summary of the roles of the EBR, AML and the AMX-13 -since I have been building models of all three lately. If you want to buy an actual one for reference, then you can do that, too. There was also someone who scratch-built the interior– something definitely to be admired, but not for me.

The model comes in a box that resembles the 1:48 Tamiya kits -and this is a huge compliment. The packaging is great- parts are well protected, and even color coded with different bags to make identification easy. The detail is really good, without the excess part numbers some kits tend to come with.

The building phase -so far- was a joy; my only headache is the usual problem: how to display the gorgeous interior? Are the doors big enough to give an unobstructed view of the car, or should I start cutting parts away?

The age-old question; we will see what happens once I have some time to think about it properly. Any suggestions in the comment section are welcome!

Loken and Abaddon

I painted this set about seven years ago, but only now did I get it out of its box… This is a renderition of the final battle between Abaddon and Loken– two members of HorusMournival. An epic, tragic battle which ended with the (supposed) death of Loken, marking the end of a heroic Astrates who stood up against the corruption of everything he believed in, by the hand of his former battle brother. A great scene fitting to a Greek tragedy- until Black Library decided to void the whole thing, and “resurrect” Loken for no good reason whatsoever.

Pity.

Anyhow, the mini is produced by Forgeworld. I made a “small” change: since on the original Abaddon held the sword in a way that ensured that he missed Loken completely, I simply added a second power claw. This way he is reaching out for him, ready to crush his chainsword/face. It also makes simple tasks, like operating switches or rubbing one’s nose impossible, but WH40K was never about practicalities.

Here is an awesome paintjob on the original setup. OK, I am very far from this level.

In the original, if you take a look at it, the swing is already on its downward phase, which will end up with Abaddon being completely defenceless by the time they clash together with Loken. And when I mean clash, I do mean running into each other. The pose would work well if you use the miniature on its own: it looks like if he was using his sword to signal an attack, but with Loken present it looks a bit disjointed in my opinion. I also left out Loken’s cape as I completely agree with Edna.

Hobby Boss 1/35 EBR-10 Part 3. -Muddying things up

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The mud was created using Tamiya’s concerete textured paint as a base with lots of earth colored pigments and some static grass and sand added. The first batch was prepared using washable dust by Ammo, though – this represents the dried mud under all the subsequent layers. The next batch was created by adding different (and subsequently darkening) earth colored pigments; after application, as usual, I used a wet brush to adjust the effect, to remove some mud from some places, to move clumps around, and to subtly mix the different layers together. Once the lower hull and the wheels were dirtied up, I glued the wheels on.

The products for the mud I used were the following: Tamiya basing paste (concrete), Vallejo splashed mud, different earth colored pigments and sand with static grass.

(I know it is a lot… I accumulated them over the years, and never really gave them a proper tryout. It is the perfect opportunity I guess.)

If there is one fault of the kit is the tiny connection point between the axes and the wheels. It was really annoying to constantly re-gluing the whells, because the pin holding them was tiny and did not create a strong enough hold.

The last step was adding a couple of mud splashes using the above mixtures diluted with water, and a stiff old brush.

The top of the hull and the turret got some dust (washable dust by Ammo Mig, rainmarks by Vallejo), and pretty much it was it. While I do appreciate the Vallejo weathering products, as they are not solvent-based, they are more difficult to apply properly. The high surface tension of the water in them means they do not spread so easily, and they form tide marks very readily when applied to a dry surface directly. The best way I found to use them was to wet the surface, dilute the products somewhat, and keep feathering the edges of the patches so that the very marked tide-marks do not form. The key is to build up the effect in light layers. Using directly from the bottle will not yield good results.

The middle wheels were painted using AK’s True Metal paint to resemble the worn metallic surface. The same paint was used with dry brushing over some of the surfaces. The model got an overall flat coat (especially the canvas cover on the turret), and the edges were lined with silver pencil.

I did add a lot of petrol spill around the caps, but since the model was over-done, anyway, I really wanted to go the whole nine yards. Always wanted to do one of those over-weathered models… While they are certainly not realistic, they do look good. Mine looks like that the only reason why it does not fall apart due to the extensive rusting, or bursts into flames due to the gallons of spilled gasoline is the incredible amount of mud that holds the whole thing together…

I am not entirely satisfied with the results, but overall I quite like how it turned out.

By the way, the freaking wheels keep breaking off due to the tiny connecting pins snapping every time I handle the model. I gave up and used green stuff to fix them in place.

Hobby Boss 1/35 EBR-10 Part 2. Rust -and a proper tryout of Liquid Pigments by Lifecolor

A nice summary of the roles of the EBR, AML and the AMX-13 -since I have been building models of all three lately.

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Back to the model – building is done, proceeding to painting.

First stages…

I primed the model with Vallejo’s dark grey primer, and sprayed some rust brown over it – it will form the basis of chipping. I am going for the “World of Tanks look” – unrealistically worn armor that looks great and realistic in-game. (Figure that.)

I used the hairspray method for the larger chips – with AK’s Heavy Chipping fluid. I sprayed the fluid over the model, waited until it dried, and went over with PolyScale’s green (the label is too faded, I have no idea what green it is). I deliberately went for a light green, as it would become darker with further weathering. (I am experimenting here, so we are all very anxious of the results.)

After the paint dried I spent an exciting half an hour with some water and a stiff brush to remove some of the paint.

This is the result. It’s a bit rough on the edges, but the look is refined further in subsequent steps. (And do something about the canvas cover on the turret, I promise.)

Next up: Lifecolor’s liquid pigments -rust.

I have played around with this product, but this time I decided to give it a proper tryout. They were very useful to add rusty patches and discolorations to the model; although a lot of the effects were hidden by the subsequently added mud and dust…

As with most products it is difficult to judge the final look while it is wet; the good thing is that you can always adjust it later. If you add the different colors while the previous layers are still wet, they will mix readily; if you want to have a contrast, wait until everything dry before commencing with the next layer.

The best method was the usual one: apply, wait a bit, adjust/remove. The previous layers were very easy to remove if I was not careful; use a brush that is only a little bit wet, and do not wait until the layer you wish to adjust dries completely. (Or you can just seal everything with varnish if you choose to.)

On the top edge of the turret I tried to do some rust streaks – I have to say the liquid pigments worked just great. Once it was dry-ish, I could use a wet brush to feather the streaking a bit, just like with an enamel-based product. All-in-all I quite like these liquid pigments.

Next step -mud

 

Scale model building – amateur style