Wednesday 31 October 2018

PLA Transporter & Pumpkin Carving

I've now made a start on the transporter, mostly at this stage cleaning up seam lines and filling, sanding and generally trying to eliminate lots and lots of ejector pin knock out marks. Good job they are all quite accessible, the engine has also been built up in it's very weird orange plastic. I've also deepened the door recesses on the cab as they were very shallow. This will be a slow build but I'm enjoying it so far.

I've also been at the pumpkin carving again today on this all hallows eve, something I've not done for a few years so I found it very enjoyable. There's nothing like decapitating and gouging the guts out of an innocent pumpkin! 

Happy halloween! 👹

Monday 29 October 2018

PLA SPH & Winter Project

The howitzer is now almost ready with just the tow ropes & a bit of mr surfacer around the various handles to add to blend them in. As you can see the models all buttoned up with no stowage or commanders machine gun in place. That's because I've decided it will make a suitable load for trumpeters Chinese 50 ton tank transporter. I picked this up for £15 at a show a couple of years ago so thought it would make for an interesting display and a winter project as well.

I've never seen one built up at a show so why not? It will be built pretty much out of the box as I can find almost bugger all about the real thing on the net. Lucky the kit is very comprehensive and what etch is included is just the right amount.

Saturday 27 October 2018

PLA SPH Lower Hull & lynx Stripped

I've now finished up the lower hull of the howitzer, some enhancements were added here and there and I'll add some padlocks & tow ropes later on. You can certainly see the soviet influence to this design and the details once cleaned up are pretty good. 

The lynx has now been stripped back to bare plastic using VMS clean slate. This stuff is amazing and I've also discovered on this model that it will remove mr surfacer. Something to remember if you use this on a model you have previously added texture to using mr surfacer. Anyway I can now prime again and have another bash at the paintwork!

Friday 26 October 2018

Trumpeter PLA 83A SPH Making A Start

Work has gone well on the kit and the hull, wheels and track are now all sorted. The lower hull is from trumpeter's older kits based on this chassis and as such are showing their age with quite a bit of flash to remove and other areas needing some clean up. However the turret and gun are all new and look much better. 

My tracks where quite distorted but after a day or so on the model they have regained their original shape. They will be perfectly adequate for this build as well once painted and weathered. 

Wednesday 24 October 2018

Next Project & A Delay On The ERC

I've been twiddling my thumbs at the bench for the last few days, mostly due to the fact I have decided to strip the ERC and re-spray. This is all down to my fabulous new task light which has shown up about a ton of dust particles in the paintwork I've sprayed plus a few other flaws I missed before paint! No problem really I'm just waiting for some more VMS clean slate to arrive before that task is complete and I can have another go at it.

So a new project is in order and I've chosen trumpeter's PLA 83A SPH. This may become part of a bigger project, one of my planned winter ones later on. The kit is pretty simple but the detail is excellent so hopefully it's another stress free build. 

Sunday 21 October 2018

Lynx Painting & A New Light

The model has now been primed and the two main colours have also been sprayed on. I'm using Mr hobby H79 sandy yellow & H303 green. I now need to mask off the green areas and re-spray the yellow to finish the pattern off.

I have also finally replaced my broken task light with a new led jobby from lightcraft via amazon. It's absolutely brilliant quite literally and has a much bigger head compared to my old one. It should really help now the nights and my old eyesight are drawing in!

Sunday 14 October 2018

Lynx Construction Complete!

Well yet again I've built this kit in about five days, more speed building. I'm liking this retirement lark! The kit has been great fun to build with only a few areas that need improvement and the fit has been excellent too. That's probably why it's been built so quick. So the model will be off for a careful wash before primer, what's next on the bench I wonder?

Saturday 13 October 2018

ERC Lynx Fast Progress

The lynx is building up really quickly and I'm really enjoying the build so far. The two rear deck trunking assemblies have now been sorted and fitted and the two hull halves glued together. I've also started adding all the detail parts to the hull. I have found that the plastic doesn't like CA glue unless you rough up the surface where the parts should go. I think this is down to mould release oil on the sprues so I should have washed the parts prior to building. 

Friday 12 October 2018

ERC Lynx Getting Stuck In

Work on the lynx has been going well all be it with a couple of minor niggles. The first of these concerns the road wheels & hubs attached to the hull. No problems with the front ones as they locate via a notch onto the hull for the correct fit. I glued and fixed the wheel hubs in place as well here. The middle & rear wheel stations however don't have any positive locator's which means the mounts can move freely which will put the ride height out of whack. 

You can ignore the middle station as the wheel height is movable thanks to two poly caps. Some time was spent making sure that the rear hub was in the correct position and that the suspension spring assembly was mounted properly. Once all glued and cured the model sits perfectly on it's wheels. Also I found that the hubs, parts numbered B25, B26, B27, B28 needed the holes for the wheel mounting pins drilled out fully. By doing this the wheels all line up correctly and a more positive joint can be made later.  

The final niggle is with parts K3, K20, K17, K6, K7 & K4. These all make up some sort of trunking on the rear deck. On the real vehicle the trunking is just one piece, in the kit it's multiple parts that really don't fit well. I've used some plastic sheet and filler to get them smooth before I start sanding them into shape. A lot of work for a small part that would have been better made as one piece I think.  

Wednesday 10 October 2018

Mexican Lynx Making A Start

I've now started the build and followed the instructions to a fashion beginning with the turret. A few improvements have been made as well as adding a some missing weld beads using stretched sprue. With the barrel & that massive muzzle the turret looks awesome.

On the lower hull you get a choice of suspension units, you can use the normal all in one units or use some nice metal springs. I've used the springs as there is less clean up and the detail looks much better. The units are not movable so the springs are just an enhancement. I've also looked at the plastic tyres, they assemble well but have a different tread pattern compared to the rubber tyres. The tread pattern on the rubber ones matches my references so that's what I'll use on this one.

Tuesday 9 October 2018

Tiger Models Panhard ERC-90 F1 Lynx

Here's my next victim, the very smart tiger models ERC Lynx. This kit is the export version so you get markings for one Argentinian vehicle & four Mexican ones. I'm building this for the new group build over on Modellers' Haven Online forum as well. 

I've had a good look and slight drool over the contents of the box today so here are my thoughts on it. First the parts are very crisply molded and have almost no flash or knock out marks that I can see. 
My only gripe is the colour guide, you get a full colour all sides view for the Argentinian version and that's the only one in a single colour! All the Mexican vehicles only get a one sided view. Very annoying as you will have to either guess the front, rear and other side camo pattern or try and find a colour profile or picture on the net.  

Why Tiger do this I don't know but I wish they wouldn't! 😡 However things get better with some super decals, a small etched set and really nice clear parts. There seems to be lots of periscopes so perhaps the French army version is not too far away. There are also two sets of optional springs for the suspension so maybe it can be made workable, I'll have to check during the build. 

A nice inclusion from tiger is a set of stickers for your sprues to help you identify them easier. Perfect if you use a sprue rack or similar or just struggle to find the right sprue all the time.

You also get a choice of rubber or plastic wheels which is great as I always prefer the plastic versions. Both have side wall details and makers names.

The hull, turret and the rest of the parts are really well done & the barrel lurking on sprue C is a single piece only needing a seam line to be sanded off.

I'm very impressed with this kit and will be starting the build tonight, I'm going for a Mexican version by the way. The shape of the vehicle is so out there it just has to be a French design!