Sunday 24 June 2018

Back To The Bench

I've just returned from our annual holiday to sunny Greece, or not so sunny as it turned out. We had quite a bit of rain and cloud which is unusual, however far too much lazing around doing sod all, drinking beer and eating like a pig ensured we had a nice relaxing time. It's always nice to come home and with the weather set to be hotter than Greece here in the UK for a while it's all good. 

I'm keen to get back to work on the bulldog and chieftain & have also been thinking of my next few projects whilst sunning myself on foreign shores. So watch out for more updates soon.

Monday 11 June 2018

Bulldog Washes, Matt & Tracks

Lots done over the weekend with washes and pin washes going on the model. I used a mix of burnt umber & black oils for this. I also tried out some VMS universal weathering carrier to thin the oils. This is like white spirit and odourless thinner but it evaporates a lot faster and actually blends the oils much better. I found no grainy particles when mixing the oils and thinner and it flowed nicely around the details too. I used the standard version which is ideal for use over acrylics.

I then went back over the model with a very small amount of chipping and picked out a few more bolts using metallic colours. Once happy I sprayed the matt varnish, VMS HD varnish again, and left to cure for a day in my hot conservatory. Next was all the glazing and lights, the glazing on the commanders station was a tight fit due to painting so a light scrape with a scalpel was needed to pop the windows in. All the lights were little cars lenses with the brake & indicators being pre coloured. Much easier than mucking about with the fiddly kit lights.

The headlight guards where a devil to bend without distorting the frames. Lots of careful tweezer work was called for. I would suggest that you form the guards during construction for a much better fit later but leave them off for painting. Some punched bolts finished them off once I fixed them in place. Finally the tracks and wheels went on, no problems here and they look pretty good. 

Saturday 9 June 2018

Bulldog Decals & Detail Painting

I'm flying along with this build, it's just so much fun that I can't stop working on it. Even with waiting for paint to dry etc, I've again got loads done. The decals such as they are were taken from the original takom 432 and the spares box. The bulldog decals all depict Scots guards vehicles so by nicking some from the other 432 I can do a generic vehicle instead.  

Detail painting is again not that time consuming with very little that needs to be picked out. The exhaust taking the most time. I picked out a fair few bolts in different metallic tones and spent some time masking and spraying the antennas. The rear door area and rear bins had some wear added referring to pictures along the way.

I'll spray another gloss coat over the model to seal it all in before starting on some oil dot fading to add some lighter tones to the model and then follow this up with a subtle pin wash.

Friday 8 June 2018

Bulldog In Gloss

That's the bulldog now gloss coated, I've also sorted the glazing giving it all a coat of alclad armoured glass first then spraying with the primer. A green road wheel adds a small splash of colour to the model. The primer is a spot on match I think so that has really saved me some time. Now it's time for decals and detail painting.

Tuesday 5 June 2018

Bulldog Primer On

The model has now had a coat of primer and here I used badger stynylrez neutral primer which is a kind of yellow. It's actually really close to the banana custard shade of yellow the British army used in Iraq at the time. It might be slightly darker but I will experiment and see if adding a touch of white primer to it and maybe a little bit of thinner will produce the shade I want. 

Slightly lighter in tone would work better as with weathering the colour will darken somewhat. If that works it will save me having to mix up any more paint. As usual the primer has gone down flawlessly and has really popped the details on the model.

Saturday 2 June 2018

Bulldog Base & Mud Slinging!

A double update today as I'm on a serious roll at the moment! The base for the bulldog has been sorted out and as usual I'm using an Ikea picture frame. My idea is the bulldog on over watch so I've also selected a very nice Reality in scale middle eastern shop front as a suitable backdrop. This is brilliant as you also get a couple of decals and an air conditioning unit. It's cast in resin and the detail is excellent.

A figure has been sorted as well & I've used one from the master box modern UK infantryman set with a replacement head from the spares box. He fits the gun station pretty well I think. A start has also been made on sourcing accessories for the base & I plan on adding a few refuse sacks against the wall with plenty of litter strewn about. The only thing left is to decide on a tarmac or dirt road for the base.

Now onto the mud slinging! No it's not a rant but a test on the base work for the chieftain. I will be using a long tamiya base and want to have the model going over a stubble field. So to this end I've done a test piece using VMS's "smart mud system". This consists of three parts being a texture, resin & activator. You can get various finishes from wet mud to dry earth easily just by varying the amount of texture and resin. It also comes in various colours and textures from fine to medium & course, here I'm using medium. For this test I used a 50/50 mix.

It's easy to use by just combining the resin & texture then adding drops of activator until the mix is very stiff to mix. you can then spread it out and add any texture, ruts, wheel marks or anything else you want. Once I spread it out I used a brush to stipple one section and smoothed out the other area with a pallet knife.

Left overnight to cure the effect is ultra convincing and the colour is very good too. There is really no need to paint it with the only possibility being some pigments added or a wash to give it some depth. It also dries to a nice matt finish with this ratio. You can even use it to add mud to a vehicle's running gear. Also due to it's stiffness I think it will be very easy to add cut bristles for stubble when I tackle the base and being resin based shouldn't crack. It will also stick like a limpet to any surface you apply it too.

As ever another interesting and innovative product from VMS, who by the way are my go to choice now for pigments, CA, airbrush cleaner and other really useful bits. I'm all for the easy life and their products certainly help me achieve that goal. I'll do a more in depth appraisal when I start work on the base for you. Below is a link explaining the product.


FV432 Bulldog Slat Work

The models now had the rear slat armour partially fitted, just the corner sections are glued on at the moment. Nothing to catch you out here with just the addition of a few bolts needed and some small amounts of mold lines to eliminate. I found tamiya extra thin quick drying cement was a real help when gluing the slats together as it gave an almost instant bond.  

With the slats done I then finished off the glazing, tow ropes, mirrors & antenna and hey presto she's all built. I must say for a complicated looking model it actually builds up very easily. As a bonus most of the extra armour can be left off until much later in the painting stages which makes getting to all those hard to reach areas a lot less stressful. 

After a good clean up of the bench I'm now working out the base to go with it as well as a figure.

Friday 1 June 2018

FV432 Bulldog Gun Mount

I was on a bit of a roll yesterday afternoon & evening so the commanders station is now also finished. Careful study of pictures helped me identify any missing details which I made up from rod, card & scrap. The ammo rack supplied in the kit has a ammo box cast with the framework. It also looks like a .50 cal box which is no good for a GPMG fitted station.

Very careful cutting separated the box from the two halves of the frame. I then made up a more accurate version with card etc. It's now time to tackle the rear slat armour & then the build will be very nearly done!