Monday 31 August 2015

Next On The Bench, Meng M3A3 Bradley Busk III

Here's the next model on the bench, Meng's superb M3A3 Bradley with Busk III. This has been on my to do list for some time as I like all the extras added to the standard Bradley. Really makes it look like it's on steroids! Anyway as you would expect the box is jammed with sprues and the details look excellent. The model has working suspension and click together tracks.

I started this last night and progress has been very swift indeed. The hull is now done with the side armour loose to help with painting later. I'm very impressed with the tracks which clicked together nicely and articulate really well.

Sunday 30 August 2015

Belgian M41 Bulldog Complete

After a monster session at the bench yesterday the base and project is now complete. I finished off the base by adding loads of tiny laser cut leaves which I then painted using various green and brown tones. The barrier was sprayed up then weathered using sponge chipping, filters and pigments then fixed to the base. the whole thing was then given a dusting of pigments to tie all the elements together. Finally the model was added and a belgian flag pin added to the base.

So there you have it a vehicle from B squadron, 2nd reconnaissance regiment Jager te Paard

This project was really fun to do and very easy as well with only a few things changed or enhanced. I must say thanks to Marc Mercier for his help on all things Belgian & armour, his advice and info was a great help. 

I'm looking forwards to taking this to Belgium next month for the IPMS Belgian plastic & steel show. I'm sure it will go down a treat with the hosts. 

Saturday 29 August 2015

Bulldog Base, Trees & Grass

Here's some progress on the base and I've now got the trees how I want them. I used spray mount on the sea foam then sprinkled a crushed mix of fine herbs from the kitchen for the foliage. once it was all dry various tones of green were sprayed carefully over the trees. The trunks were painted with straight white then dark brown tones went on to simulate birch bark. 

I'm very pleased with the results considering this is my first ever attempt at making trees with foliage. I can do bare trees easily but this takes a bit of work to try and get a realistic effect. THe base received a dark earth colour then static grass, grass tufts and weeds carved from stretched sprue went onto the bank areas. This was sprayed a nice spring green tone. I now need to paint up the barrier, add some fallen leaves and maybe some more weeds and give the base another spray of earth tones to blend it all in.

Thursday 27 August 2015

Belgian Bulldog Base work Begins!

The base has now had some plaster added which I mixed from ordinary all purpose filler with white glue and some dark pigments added. Fine sand and fine gravel went on next then a bit of patting with a finger I added contours to the base. After some time curing I used some old wheels and tracks to add marks in the plaster. A piece of cling film was then used as a barrier and the model pressed into the base to get it sitting properly.

The scene is meant to depict Germany with the tank moving through some woods. Brian S suggested adding a barrier as seen in many woods and forests so I knocked one up from plastic. I also still have a sign to add and I'm not sure if the barrier will be used on this base. maybe it will be too much in such a small area.

The trees are seafoam and will get some foliage added and painted up to look like silver birch. So far the base is working out well but there's still a fair bit still to do.

Wednesday 26 August 2015

Matilda In Caunter

Over the last few days I've been getting the paint down on the Matilda. I started out using lifecolor paints but had some issues spraying them. Possibly due to the weather, anyway I just was not happy with the tones so went to my notes and changed the colours using some mixes for tamiya colours that Mike Starmer had published a while back. I also used a layout for the scheme I found in the January 2015 issue of model military international magazine, again written by Mike.

Much happier with the tones and ease of application of tamiya versus lifecolor. Lots of careful and not so careful masking was called for but eventually she was done. Some areas still need painting/ tidying up and for that some hand painting will do.


I've also done a little bit on the bulldog base, again it's an ikea photo frame with foam board edging and base followed by some polystyrene to fill the void. After some sculpting of the styrene I can then get the plaster work on.

To help me on the base I've invested in a small hot glue gun which I must say has worked really well. The glue sets really quick and afterwards the pieces are rock solid. Much better than my usual method of five minute epoxy glue and less messy too!

Monday 24 August 2015

Belgian Bulldog Pigments

Yesterday saw the model get a dose of final weathering in the form of a mixture of pigments which I mixed for a nice earthy tone. As I want to depict a vehicle that is on the way to the firing range or just off on a test run I concentrated my efforts on the lower hull areas and only used tiny amounts on the upper surfaces. 

Finally the tracks and wheels were fitted along with the antennas and the crew. So that's the model finished and very nice it looks too I think. A suitable base is currently being prepared so watch out for updates on that soon.

Sunday 23 August 2015

Belgian Bulldog Matt Coat

The model has now been treated to a Matt coat and all the periscopes and lights have been sorted. Some graphite powder was rubbed onto the .50 cal and around a few selected areas such as the commander's hatch to suggest wear. I've also given the lower hull a spray of thinned tamiya flat earth to kick start the pigments which will be going on next.

I'm not going for a really dirty look on this but more a light dusting of mud & dust mostly on the lower portions of the model. The crew are only test fitted at this stage so I can finalise positions.