As one would expect from a 40-year old molds – this kit does not fit perfectly, so here’s a list of recommendations.
– Dry fit the cockpit. The instrument panel does interfere with the pilot’s legs. Unless you are doing some detailing inside – the figure is your best option to distract viewers from the spartan interior.
– There are gaps between the upper wing halves and the fuselage, and at the rear of the lower wing/fuselage join.
– You are in for a re-scribing session once the propeller and the engine cooling fan are in place. There are two locating pins that do help, but some sanding is still required.
This build is special for me. The kit was purchased, started and completed in just one month, which is a first for the past 20 years or so. I wanted to postpone the clash with it, but I could not resist.
The first thing you should know is that you need to forget most of the modelling stuff you’ve learned over the years. Since the model is a fast build/snap kit:
– DO NOT DRY FIT PARTS, or keep it to a minimum. Fit’s so tight on some parts you won’t be able to disassemble what you put together.
This kit is fantastic to the point that I am not afraid of building 1/35 anymore. It’s very detailed, yet builds together nicely, fitting pretty well, and looks accurate to boot.
Despite the serious part count building up of the main components/subassemblies is something a modeler can achieve within 8-10 hours. Clean molding means that filling and sanding will be done to a minimum. I’ve only used putty in a couple of spots, which can’t be said for most kits I’ve worked on in other scales (bar Eduard’s MiG-21 MF built last year).
If you’ve previously worked on the Mk. IV kit – this one can be a quick and pleasant OOB build – few parts and the fit is rather good (no filler on this one).
A few letdowns, though:
– no parts for the deep-wading equipped Canadian Churchills for operation Jubilee;
– no corrections made for the errors in the instructions;
– thicker sprue gates.
As you can see from the images the results of the last problem are quire evident on the tracks and that’s partially my fault – had I selected the proper run placement these would have faced INSIDE instead of outside.
The last pic in the previous post shows I forgot to add the PE plate between the upper hull and add-on armor, so I had to add it and paint it separately. Hatches and and some small details were added next. I then proceeded to spray the brown spots using diluted Revell brown under very low pressure. MM Burnt Metal was used to detail paint the S-hooks, tank jack, etc.
The decals were fixed using Mr. Mark Softer.
The wheels were added next, then the right side track run was superglued on. To my horror it turned too short, so I had to stretch it with most of it already stuck on the model. It ain’t a particularly pretty sight.
After completing the camo pattern I found the colors were way too contrasting. The yellow was way too bright compared to the two saturated dark colors, so I sprayed a sandy acrylic mix, diluted with satin varnish. More layers were sprayed over the lower half of the vehicle to simulate the road dust.
As LSSAH was being reformed and reequipped from early April I kept weathering to a minimum apart from the bent front fenders, the dust, a few scratches and a slight bend on the side skirts.
Since I needed decals in order to complete the model I had to raid the kit collection and source some. The victims were an Italeri M113 and a Revell (Matchbox) M40 SPG. I also used the lettering from their sheets to make up a code for a 5-16th Artillery machine (but sans the yellow weight class sign). Mr. Decal Softer helped the markings get grip and conform to the model surfaces.
The decals were sealed, and I used minimal amount of pigments to add to the dusty appearance. Diluted H2Oils (Burnt Umber and Paynes Grey) were used to simulate the leaks. Mixed with some dry pigments they helped create the mud buildup on the front upper sheet.
Decals as per DML’s instructions. I used the 4 in the red circle and it’s a good think the Dragon boys and gals had included a spare. Decals were tamed using my favorite Mr. Mark Softer from Gunze, then covered with Vallejo matt varnish.
Since the tank has been painted with about 7 variations of green I used a bit less pigment powders (Agama Sand, Dust and a bit of white) than usual to weather it. A bit of black behind the exhausts, around machine guns and gun muzzle and again a coat of Vallejo flat.
I painted the entire composition with Revell enamels – 79 being the main color and 57 as well as mixes of the two used to vary the shades in different places. I also added the white rectangles on both the Horch and trailer fenders, but these almost disappeared under the dust I applied later.
Seats were brushed with Revell 381 and given a thin acrylic wash to accentuate the molded-on uneven surface (again a nice touch by Dragon). Tires were sprayed Revell 78 to simulate a bleached/dusty effect, and then added to the vehicle body and the trailer. The exhaust pipes and muffler were basecoated with Revell 37 to simulate rust and glued on the vehicle. I then proceeded to add some metal chips by drybrushing Tamiya’s X11.