Wrecked German Truck

I have built some Plastic Soldier Company German trucks recently, which are now labouring in the work in progress queue to be finished. The kits come three in a box with Opel Blitz, Mercedes or Maultier options. This leaves you with various spare cabs and other bits. Not quite enough to make a full extra truck but plenty of scraps to make some more wrecks to scatter around the place or use as wrecks when things actually do get blown up. I like the idea of having enough wrecked vehicle models to replace working ones with their destroyed counterparts. Anyway this is my Frankenstein’s truck made up from various bits and pieces and mounted onto a rubble strewn base of MDF. I used some sponge for chipping effects and lots of dirt and dust. I think some smokey effects with black cotton wool might also add to the flavour.

S and S Models German Halftrack in 1/72 Scale

I had bought this small half track from S and S models to bulk up a purchase and make the postage from UK to Australia more palatable. Usually I try and stick to plastic model kits but will make exceptions in some circumstances! This was only a few parts with a resin hull and metal tracks and wheels to super glue on. So the whole construction did not take long. The paint job was fun. Dark yellow undercoat and some green camo stripes. The interior was bare so I added some spare crew men I had half painted. A couple of Plastic Soldier Company men and an Esci dude carrying one of those range finder thingies or he just a bought a poster from Amazon and it showed up in a tube. I also added some extra camo green foliage to brighten the whole place up. Lots of dusty powder and some basing tufties finished it off. It was fun to get to the painting part quickly as construction was so quick. S and S Models have a good range of stuff and also lots of more obscure things. I have a Bofors gun on the back of a Bedford truck which is in the lineup.

MAC Kits Steyr 1500 Heavy Car in 1/72 Scale

This was the first kit I have made from MAC Kits. I am pretty sure it is also the last. This was a horrible experience from start to finish. The plastic was weird kind of waxy and did not like my glue. The fit was awful and lots of the bits did not have obvious location points. The detail is also poor on much of it. Even on the box art you do not get all the bits you see. Like the metal steps on the door are not actually in the kit so I ended up making my own. I think MAC must make 1/35 kits too and perhaps the box photo is from a larger scale version. I am pretty sure the instructions were also poor. So yes I will not buying any more MAC kits…….

What did I do, well i pushed through, I kept on swimming and finished the job. Rather than put the canvas cover on the back I made my own frame from wire and decided to fill the back up with my recently painted seated dudes. The truck received some green camo random stripes and plenty of dirt and dust. Oh and on a positive note the decals were good and I did use them. They also supply a tiny bit of clear plastic sheet to make a windshield. I think I did try to use the PE supplied but was mainly over the whole thing by then and tossed them out in a finger sticking super glued moment of despair.

Once Mr Steyr was painted and based, and my German troops in their camo smocks had been thrown in the back I felt much happier. Oh the driver is an AB figures man as usual. The addition of the driver and the passengers make all the difference to what is a poor kit and not one i suggest bothering with.

Caesar Miniatures 1/72 Scale German Tank riders in camo smocks

I have been continuing to try and perfect my camouflage painting skills, to begin with on these seated soldiers to ride on tanks, or in my case to fill the back of trucks. This box of plastic men from Caesar are really nice and come in a box of 32 in 8 different poses. They are one brand that really match up with better metal manufacturers (AB and CP Models) but if you are just filling trucks with men it keeps the expenses down, being a whole a lot cheaper per figure. I have collected some excellent reference material on German camo schemes and find these a great help in trying to get my effects right. At this scale its definitely only an effect i am after. This scheme is a spring flavoured oak leaf or plane tree pattern. If you get the colours correct it really seems to look after itself. I use a flat earth light brown type base and then a bright green and very dark green on top. Random patterns in patches and then filling the dark patches with light and doing lots of small dots over each colour. Anyway I keep practicing and it seems to be getting better. Next post will be these guys in the back of a Steyr heavy car which was a total dog of a kit and nearly got thrown out for scrap……

Another Puma Armoured Car from Italeri in 1/72 scale

Happy New Year everyone!!! What can i say!?? I like armoured cars and I keep building them. This is a another Italeri Puma for my German forces and this is third and final one i will be making. It’s a super easy kit and takes minutes to build. i spent more time on the dark green camo and the paint job. The decals are really nice in this kit and it comes with a couple of options. I think I found this kit on eBay for a bargain which is why I bought another Puma‚Ķ.. that’s my excuse anyway!!! Not much else to tell you on this one. My only complaint would be the lack of opening hatches which means you cannot add a commander figure unless you are brave enough to surgically remove hatches. For this reason I still like the Hasegawa Puma kit a little better. Oh I did add an aerial to this guy plus a an aerial holding place too.

Attack Kits Marder III in 1/72 Scale

This is the third Marder kit I have made after the Unimodel and Plastic Soldier Company ones. This one was a work in progress for a while so I am stretching my memory a bit on the building process. All i can really remember was that I really did not enjoy this kit at all. It comes in a weird kind of plastic that is almost has a resin feel to it. I found it very hard to glue with normal polystyrene cement. Also the instructions are vague and in many places the fixing points for parts were either not clear or non existent. It made for a frustrating time of trial and error. Oh and probably some swearing. I would avoid this kit and rather buy simple but excellent kits from Plastic Soldier Company or more complex but also great ones from Unimodel. So this one was lying around unpainted for a while as I overcame the bitter memories.

Painting was fun though with a dark yellow base and some dark green camouflage stripes. The decals were added from my spares, not sure if it came with any decent ones. Plenty of photos to follow including one with all three Marders together. Oh and there is not much room for crew but I did manage to squeeze in a plastic crew man clutching a shell and also an AB man relaxing!

The Plastic Soldier Company Marder in 1/72 Scale

This little tank is dedicated to my friend John at Just Needs Varnish in the North Of England who very kindly sent me a Marder sprue from The Plastic Soldier Company a while ago and it has been sitting in my WIP pile for a number of months waiting for some love. So finally I made an effort before Christmas. Plastic Soldier Company kits are minimal parts, with good chunky details and very easy to put together. So I find them excellent additions for smaller models in 1/72 scale as there are no really fiddly bits. This Marder comes with one piece running gear and tracks which always speeds things up, no numerous wheels or tiny links to bother me. So an easy build and very hard to get wrong. I gave him a matt black primer, then a dark yellow basecoat. I painted dark green camouflage splashes and then resprayed from my tamiya spray can more dark yellow to blend the camo patches in. Tracks were painted black, then grey and then weathered using track rust powder and an 2B pencil for the metal bits. Decals I found in my spares pile and just added some random ones, I was keen to use the white 65, just because. I painted three Plastic Soldier Company crew men (you get a few crew with the kit – one who is unusable as he has comedic long arms) with fancy camo pattern pants and then added three infantry with greatcoats hitching a ride. These figures are plastic from Caesar Miniatures and are great for adding tank riders to a model. All I have left to do is some dirt and dusty powder and then some flock and tufts on the base. Hey Presto another groovy little tank buster for my German forces. Thanks John!!

Zvezda British Soldiers in 1/72 scale

I think these guys are from two smaller packets of Zvezda British Infantry but I dont quite remember. I have had them hanging around for ages and since they were the last plastic figures I had based I thought they should be painted. They are more 1940 early Brits but who cares maybe they just kept their old equipment heading into Normandy. I cant say I really like painting plastic figures as the detail is always a bit muddy compared to metal ones. Anyway i was happy i managed to finish them in between building three Dragon Tigers which have been keeping me busy!!!

Vespid Models A34 Comet in 1/72 Scale

Vespid is a new brand for me so it could be a new brand altogether. They seem to make only a couple of kits so far and this Comet caught my eye. It was not a cheap kit but it was worth every penny from wherever I found it. The comet was a design based I think on the Cromwell but with a more powerful gun. It certainly looks very like the predecessor to the Centurion – the turret especially. The kit was awesome to build and I really cannot fault anything about it. They supply it with a metal gun barrel, a resin gun mantle cover (which I did not use) and a few PE parts. I managed all the PE parts except the small aerial which ended up as ball of superglued mess and in the bin. Lots of fun. They also supply a large range of decals for various tanks. All I added was my own aerial due to the above PE debacle and the compulsory AB figures commander. Vespid also make a Panther which I am very tempted to buy now!!!

Dragon Models Sd.Kfz.251.C & 3.7cm PaK 35/36

I finished a German halftrack this week. Another excellent Dragon Models hanomag type towing a small anti tank gun. Dragon make super little kits. Maybe more expensive but well worth it for what you get. Great detail, great moulding and everything fits together perfectly. All it was missing was a driver. So I added one, and you can barely see him anyway once he is seated in the drivers seat. Interior detail of this kit was especially nice, there are rifles stored behind the seats, and the rear door mechanism is pretty cool. The anti tank gun is verging on the over fiddly and was a little frustrating to build. Do not attempt this if you live in a carpeted establishment. Your tiny bits may go AWOL. The MGs on the half track are particularly nice, but delicate. The tracks are one piece rubbery stuff which glue very easily. I think link and length is too fiddly for a small tracked vehicle like this so Dragon made a good choice. I definitely needed to base this guy due to the number of delicate parts (aerials, lights, MGs etc) and the AT gun especially needs extra strength. I painted him in a yellow with dark green camo stripes, a little chipping with a sponge and then plenty of dirt and dust.