Saturday, January 24, 2015

Achtung, Panzer!

Onto happier things.
Like building models.
Not having a layout these days is evolving into a dangerous thing. I'm building plastic armour models again. I built a few in my teens, back when Tamiya was king. My how things have changed. There's lots of kit makers out there who can actually make Tamiya look bad.
Dragon Models of Hong Kong for one. Dragon includes etched brass parts and really nice individual link tracks in their kits. Far cry from the old "rubber band" tracks we used to sweat with.
Over the last couple of weeks I built this lovely PzKpw IV Ausf J.

Simply put it was a lot of fun and a nice departure from my usual activities. Painting and weathering armour is whole different thought process from freight cars. You have to plan your moves as you build. Weathering the hull behind the road wheels can be tricky if the road wheels are mounted. Tracks need to assembled, painted and weathered before being mounted. Tools require special treatment as well. It's good for the brain to tackle different problems.
I said this might be dangerous, well I have a JagdPanther to finish. A F6f , M4A3 and a M2a1 as well to build. And there's the 1/72 scale model of the LC(I)L my grandfather commanded for the Normandy invasion to finish as well.
So many models, so little time.

1 comment:

Trevor said...

I look forward to "BattleOfTheBulge-Mo"...

Seriously, though - very nicely done. I'm intrigued by your comment about painting and weathering armour involving a whole different thought process than freight cars. It's true that freight cars are rarely subject to the effects of battle, but - like armour - they would be subject to the effects of weather, time, and environment (coal dust and so on).

So are they really different? Or is it that the typical layout owner counts rolling stock by the dozens, scores, or even hundreds - and needs to build the other elements of the layout as well - and therefore a quicker, simpler technique is required?

Armour modellers can end up with dozens of pieces - I know one fellow who recently told me that in the past year, he finished 40 models (to a very high degree, as his photos attested). That's on par with my own speed for building models. I imagine the builder of a smaller layout could learn a lot from the military modellers and create a roster of a couple-dozen pieces all painted and weathered to a higher standard...

Just some thoughts. Thanks for inspiring them!

- Trevor (Port Rowan in 1:64)