Category Archives: Uncategorized

Technical Difficulties

Well, this is definitely something modellers in general, and myself specifically are struggling with. I promise this, however: I am fully intent of finishing the Ferdinand in the next couple of weeks, and then proceed to the couple of 1/72 kits I have started to build, but I had a few Christmas-related things to take care of, and a set of shelves to install, an apartment to refurbish, a couple of Warhammer figures to paint (Magnus is only missing his coat now, as does the Emperor himself), and of course I had to start the MiniArt Werkstattkraftwagen Typ-03-30.

So keep tuned in.

Tiger Model 1/35 AML-90 Part 3. All is Dust

 

Part 1.

Part 2.

 

Magnus did nothing wrong, as we know. So dusting it up. I used AK Interactive’s Dust Effects as a base. The tutorial on the AK website is OK(ish) – the usual trick applies: you add the product, wait until it dries to the touch, and adjust it with a wet (using turpentine) brush.

The results are OK, but not good enough – the single tone and the texture alone does not work perfectly. However, as with all effects you need layers and different tones, so it is not exactly a surprise. I looked around my shelf, and took all the acrylic dust products I could find, and went working on the model.

Most of these products could be adjusted and re-adjusted with one prominent exception: once the Vallejo rain marks product hits the surface you have very little time to adjust the effect. (I had to mask the marks on the turret using pigments.)

I will do a short tutorial about the acrylic pencils; the trick is to swamp the surface with water, rub the pencils on, wait until the mess is dry, and then you can adjust with a wet brush, creating puddles, streaks and spots. Rinse and repeat. Or rather, do not rinse, just keep adjusting, maybe adding more pigments.

I am starting to feel quite good about dust; if I have a chance I would like to give Lifecolor’s liquid pigments a try, but these tools are perfectly sufficient to achieve good results.

I wrote a review of this model on Armorama as well… as you can see it has been published quite a long time ago, but the weekly publication schedule caused a considerable slip. (Hence the extra post this week. I want to get it out of the way… Still have ICM’s Leichttractor to do.)

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.

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!

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

 

Rye Fields Panther Ausf G – part 8. Finished Model

In-box comparison

Rye Fields build so far

Part 1.

Part 2.

Part 3.

Part 4.

Part 5.

Part 6.

Part 7.

Well, the model is finished -at least I decided to stop. The masks have come off – the results are OK, but not as good as I expected. Some weathering was done, but not much, beforehand, and I sprayed on a coat of flat varnish before touching the mask.

There will be another post with the Takom Panther, and a final one comparing them; and finally these kits are finished. With the RFM Panther I felt the model was actively fighting me several times; it is a very ambicious model, but it sure has its shortcomings. More on that in a final comparison post.

Rye Fields Panther Ausf G – part 7. -Finishing up the exterior

Chieftain’s article on the Panther in French service is very informative; this video sums it up pretty well, if you don’t have time to read it. (By the way, the Bovingdon Panther was one option I was considering, having seen it first-hand. I don’t see myself building yet another Panther -especially that I have a Takom Jagdpanther on my shelf waiting to be built- but if I do, it will be in this setup.)

I tried to find photos of Panthers in French service, but there are not many around. I suspect this light yellow color could be a light version of dunkelgelb (AK Interactive has one).

In-box comparison

Rye Fields build so far

Part 1.

Part 2.

Part 3.

Part 4.

Part 5.

Part 6.

I decided to use masking fluid on parts of the chassis and turret I wanted to keep transparent, and use the ivory interior color as a primer -this way I only have to paint one surface, making masking and painting simpler, although the interior would be gloss as a tradeoff.

What I did not count on was the upper plate on the front. This is a two-part affair; for some reason (techniqual I suspect) you have to glue a transparent plate over the transparent upper hull. For obvious reasons I was very careful with the amount of glue I used as I did not want the glue sweep between the plates -capillary forces are not very helpful as they would drag the glue over a large distance. Which they did in a couple of areas.

Well, they dragged the masking fluid as well as you can see (the white area in the front). Fortunately this is exactly where the large French ensign will go, but I would have preferred not to have to worry about it.

Once the masking fluid was dry, I proceeded to use AK’s Cremeweiss (which I reviewed) almost straight, with very little thinner. It went on better than I thought it would. (I was worried about the gloss surface and the fact that I spray white.) It really gripped the plastic well; I was very happy to see the results.

Next coat: AK Interactive dark yellow primer, followed by Mig’s Dunkelgelb.

The decals were custom-made. They went on once the paint dried, and now the model is ready for the running gear and weathering. I will keep the masking on until I am done with weathering and adding a flat varnish – I am quite tense about how this will turn out in the end.

I painted the roadwheels, finished and painted the tracks, and installed them. RFM does give you the option to leave the drive wheel off -the axle it goes onto is detailed, not just a peg sticking out. It is a shame to cover it up.

Added the spare track links (some of the PE brackets were lost during the handling of the model… damn), the tools and painted everything.

Overall it is getting there. Everything is attached -except for the AAA gun, which I suspect would not have been used by the French- and now it is “only” the weathering and the painting of the small details are left. The last step will be the removal of the mask… which is really a stressful thought.

Perhaps not that stressful.