Monday, October 31, 2016

Here's my Tamiya M-26 Dragon Wagon in 1/35 scale. The M-26 tank transporter is made of a M-25 cab and a M-15 trailer. This is my favorite model of all time. Even now, several years later, I still get a charge out of looking at it. I placed it in its own case, so it is as fresh today as the day I bought it at a model show in 2001, complete with an aftermarket photoetch set. I finished it in 2010. I got my inspiration to finish this kit after I attended a AMPS Regional show in Indiana where I saw both some outstanding models and an actual M-26 recovery vehicle. It really inspired me to try new things and to finish this beast.

I used burnt umber Model Master enamel paint for the paint chips and used a Scotchbrite pad, toothpicks, and a small paintbrush to apply it. Tamiya supplied real rubber tires with the kit. I spent several hours sanding the tires down to make them more worn. I left the spare tire in "like new" condition.

Here's a bit of trivia: the cab of this truck may seem familiar. I believe the modelers who worked on the second Star Wars movie "The Empire Strikes Back" used the cab design of this truck as the basis for the Imperial Walker...not the big one, but the little one with only two legs that has several scenes in the movie.
Image result for at-st
Imperial AT-ST for comparison

Tamiya provided chromed headlights. I think they really work well, but I have yet to see any other armor kit have this feature. Too bad.
The cargo is a Sturmtiger...I forgot which mfg. made the kit. I did add zimmerit by using a hot screwdriver blade. Over time, the barrel broke, ruining the model...or so I thought. I fixed that problem by adding a tarp over the barrel and tying it off with a piece of rope. The funny thing is, this transporter probable couldn't carry this vehicle. The capacity was 40 tons max but the Sturmtiger was well over that. And get this...the M-26 had a 240 hp engine...about what you can get in a Honda Civic today.

I first tried panel fading, rust marks, and streaking grime on this kit. I went just a little too far with the chipping but I was having so much fun I didn't stop.
I don't participate in model contests. I added an M-16 rifle in the cab just to irritate people who might look that closely into the interior.
I hope you like this model!

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Iraqi T-72

This was built from an old DML kit. I had not done any Iraqi armor, but it was suggested by someone who had been buying my models on E-Bay. Once I did some research and found out about a few modifications, I was interested in trying.

Some of the special Guard tanks mounted US M113 commanders cupolas around the Russian machine gun.
I found many photos where the front tow cables eyes and hooks were painted red. This added a little color to a monochrome yellow tan subject..
I also learned that what I thought were thin steel side skirts were only thick black rubber mud flaps and in many cases weren't even painted.

I found someone on E-Bay who made specialized decals and had a sheet with various scales of Iraqi and Iranian flags for armor markings.

When I finished it on Friday, I offered it to the guy who suggested it, sent him these photos, and he bought it, so I wont be able to bring it to a meeting or enter it in any contests.

Vince B  Oct 22

Monday, October 17, 2016