My Tiger tank regiment is expanding. I love making German armour, especially the big cats. I have made the Revell and Zvezda Tigers, but this time i tried out the Hasegawa kit. You can buy this kit for 810 yen direct from a Tokyo hobby shop which works out at around $10 Australian, so its a pretty good deal. They have the whole Hasegawa range all at between 810 – 1100 yen, so i am sure i will end up buying all the kits at some point. The Hasegawa Puma Armoured car is a particularly nice kit.
The kit comes in Hasegawa’s usual grey plastic which is really easy to work with. I had no issues with any of the kit and it was quite simple to put together. There are few holes to fill so you need some kind of modellers putty or something to fill and then a fine sand paper to finish them off. The shovel on the front of the tank is also meant to be removed but i really didn’t see the point. I had a bit of trouble lining up the two halves of the turret so be careful with that step as mine came out a little wonky. Hatches can be modelled open or closed which is always good news as you can choose to crew or not to crew. My previous Tigers had no commanders so i left my hatches open and added a couple of AB figures tank commander and henchman types.
I left the tank tracks off until after painting the main tank so i could paint and rust up the tracks before attaching them. The tracks are the rubber type so make sure you give them a careful stretch before attempting to fit them. I had to use superglue to get the tracks to stick, and putting the vehicle on a base also helps keep it all together. Also superglue the top track down near the sprocket wheel to give it an appearance of weight. Otherwise they float unrealistically. That’s one bit of the model that does not quite match the Revell and Zvezda kits is the solid sprocket wheel. The other kits have better detail.
My paint scheme was a three colour camo using red brown, bright green and the usual sandy yellow dunkelb. I gave it a wash with a dark brown and used weathering powders to create some dirt. Hasegawa kits always give you a good range of decals with loads of options. Here are my photos, plus some photos with the Revell and Zvezda Tigers. This kit is slightly smaller than the other models but it still fits in OK when they are cruising around together.
I had an idea to swap some things i will never use. I have a Loic Neveu house that is too small for my 1/72 scale houses, it just doesn’t fit in. Its a nicely sculpted resin building with a removal roof and first floor. Also i have a dingo armoured car and achilles tank destroyer both resin and metal from Britannia. Again they don’t fit with my existing stuff as they are a bit on the small side. They both come with crew and MGs. All brand new and unpainted. I thought if anyone has a 1/72 plastic kit or kits they don’t want, preferably German or British armour or vehicle, i will happily post these items to you and vice versa. Bear in mind i am in Australia so postage not the cheapest, but you will get free goodies from me in the post. Check it out and drop me a comment if you are interested.
I have been a busy bee trying to finish eight different things at once and ultimately failing to really finish anything. Also a ten day trip overseas for work also interrupted my building and painting production line. I have, however, managed to complete some Airfix halftracks. I found these kits for some bargain price on eBay, i think less than five pounds each and had them delivered to my mum’s address in the UK before a trip there. Any chance i get to avoid shipping to Australia i take it! I have a fondness for any Airfix kit I previously built in the early 1980’s and this was no exception.
I have always read many complaints about the accuracy of this kit. To be honest I don’t care. It’s a great little kit and I loved building it three times. It goes together very nicely with no problems. Only fitting the front bonnet was a bit tricky to make sure everything was square, but apart from that i had a great time making these. The interior is sparse, but again you can easily paint up some figures to put in the back. The driver is a horrible figure and this time I didn’t bother with one as you can’t really see him anyway. I may put a machine gunner in the turret to fire the 50 cal, but I may not.
It definitely helps to add some stowage. I used all sorts from Black Dog, SHQ and anything else i could find. The decals that come with the kit are excellent and are thin enough to mould to the surface detail. I added some more numbers and symbols from other decals i had. Nothing historically accurate but who cares. Plenty of weathering powders and muddy bits all finished it off. Here they are together and also with my White Scout and IBG Models Chevrolet Radio truck on some reconnaissance.
I built my Sarissa Chateau a few weeks ago and have been working on finishing off my garden and grounds to base it in. The Sarissa kit is excellent. It comes flat packed at a very reasonable price, and I am still so happy with their flat rate postage of two pounds fifty. When you live in Australia the cost of postage always becomes far more of a factor in purchasing decision making than anywhere else. Its a great kit, everything fitted well together, and the detail is good. Most of it is thin MDF with the window detail and shutters being card.
I made some improvements. The roof I added cardboard roof tiles to create more depth and detail. Worth doing as the MDF roof looked very flat. I also gave the walls a layer of plaster, before I added the window detail, and carved some brickwork on the ground floor. The texture certainly is an improvement over the plain MDF. After painting I added a window box, some plant pots out of modelling clay and some ivy crawling up the side of the building. I think little details such as these add to the realism of the whole thing. You can remove the top of the roof, the actual roof and the first floor in order to put squads inside the building which is also a bonus. Not essential but nice all the same.
Inspired by Pat Smith at Silver Whistle and his magnificent Chateau in 28mm, I wanted to create some fancy gardens in keeping with such a wealthy residence. MDF board and walls from Hovels in the UK created the base. Then i used fine sand for the roads and static grass and flock for the grass. The trees in the back were home made from twigs and horsehair. The box hedges are scouring pads cut into lengths and flocked. The mansion is not glued down so can be used independently of his base if required. The whole scene came out quite nicely and i am excited to get some fierce fighting happening around the place. A sneaky Puma armoured car can be seen guarding the chateau as well as some German officers going out for dinner in their Kubelwagen with backup.
I was lucky enough to order a copy of Pat Smith’s awesome book “Setting The Scene” before Christmas and it turned up on my doorstep recently. What a happy way to start the New Year!
Now I have always been a big fan of Pat’s amazing 28mm modelling on his Wargaming With A Silver Whistle blog and this new production just continues on Pat’s excellent work. I am not a 28mm modeller and was not planning to do any Winter games or scenes right now, but none of that matters. There are so many good ideas and tips and inspirational photos this book is not to be missed if you are a keen wargamer and modeller who likes to build stuff. This is relevant to whatever scale or period you are interested in, but I guess even more so if you are cemented in World War Two like me.
Pat covers many aspects of terrain building from creating a mat, making trees, rivers, bridges and also tips on painting vehicles and figures. So much eye candy and amazing photos of his stunning results I cannot help but keep flicking through the pages. If you are looking for some inspiration and a standard of terrain to aspire to then I suggest you sign up for the reprint which I am guessing will get a run. Drop Pat a note on his blog and get your copy!
After building my Loic Neveu terrain bits and pieces I found I still had some of his low country walls. So striking with my hot iron I quickly glued them all down to a piece of 3mm MDF to make a rough two field kind of configuration. Then a layer of PVA and fine sand, plus some rougher sand nearer the ends of the walls.
I wanted some random scrubland so used a few different types of grass, flock and tufts to cover the field areas. The walls were undercoated black and then highlighted. In retrospect I should have used more browns for the stonework as it came out a bit too black and white. I may change it. These are quite small walls and I realise I should have put a 20mm soldier in here to give you an idea of scale. But these will definitely get some usage in my next games.
I finished up another squad of AB Figures British Infantry this week. I am slowly replacing all my plastic figures with metal ones. The AB ranges are just the best. Not much else to say! There are enough different packs to make up plenty of squads without repeating the same guy twice. The detail is so clear on these figures it makes them a real pleasure to paint. I find that just blocking in the colours and then doing some highlighting is good enough. I did buy a proper set of British Army Uniform colours, shadow, base and highlight, which has helped a lot. Trying to mix a British khaki is really tricky so i stopped trying to do it!
These guys are all based on Australian 10 cent coins which are not only useless for anything else but perfect size for individual bases. If you don’t own any AB Figures in your collection you really need to change that. I pick up all mine from Eureka Miniatures in Melbourne, they have such a great range of World War Two figures, its tempting to keep loading up. Next up i need to paint three PIAT teams to try and finish my British company. Check out my pictures below, i am still struggling to take half decent photos with my phone. Lighting seems to be difficult with small figures.