The entire production run of the King Tiger only lasted a total of 14 months with the Serienturm versions only entering service in June 1944. This means that even a veteran vehicle surviving to the end of hostilities would perhaps be nine or ten months old and for the majority their combat life would be a matter of a few months at the most. When modelling the Maybach HL 230 P30 engine for my Trumpeter 1:16 scale King Tiger this was at the forefront of my vision for the look of my engine. Tempting as it is to model a chipped and corroded engine with leaking oil running down the sides and big greasy stains I just dont think this would be realistic for a relatively new high performance German engine. A leaky engine would be replaced and indeed the vehicle that I decided to model is shown in a series of photos having an engine changed within weeks of being delivered to Pz.Abt.505.
Masking fluids such as those produced by popular paint manufacturers Humbrol, Winsor & Newton and Daler-Rowney for example have been around for a longtime and are basically liquid latex that dries in contact with air. Some dry to a transparent finish, while others, such as the Humbrol Maskol dry with a purple tint, which makes them easier to see when it is being used for masking clear glazing on aircraft canopies for example. For our use this is irrelevant other than the fact is does stand out in the photo a little better. Applying the masking fluid with the help of a piece of sponge or Scotch-Brite is a great way of creating controlled chipping effects on specific areas of a model and works very well when combined with hand painting tiny chips and scratches with a fine-tipped artist's paintbrush. To remove the masking fluid once the top layer of paint has dried is best done using a cotton bud that has been dipped in masking fluid and allowed to dry. It is then simply a case of rubbing the cotton bud over the paint's surface and it will quickly peal the off masking fluid to reveal a nice random chipping effect.
Dust generally isn't a weathering technique associated with aircraft, but with so many of the recent conflicts taking place in hot and dry countries, such as Iraq and Afghanistan it is inevitable that all the military equipment deployed in these areas will get covered in dust, and that includes the aircraft! Having experienced these conditions first hand, I have been waiting for an opportunity to add these extreme dust effects to an aircraft of some kind and I felt a Special Forces helicopter would be the ideal canvas. So for this article I have chosen an Academy 1/48th MH-60L from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) of the United States Army, known as the 'Night Stalkers'. These were guys featured in the Black Hawk Down movie! In this article, we will be using acrylic paints and enamel washes to create a well used aircraft operating in very dusty conditions.
In our first article we want to show how to create a number of rust effects that would not only be seen on a tank or armoured vehicle, but would also be seen on huge variety of vehicles, machines, and equipment made from iron or steel. To demonstrate these techniques we will be using a vk 4502 (p), pan-zerkampfwagen "tiger" p2, which was never actually put into production and is commonly known as a 'paper panzer". For us this is perfect because we can be creative with both the camouflage and weathering as this vehicle never actually existed! Our idea is to depict the vehicle after test and evaluation and the vehicle now sits abandoned and neglected in the backyard of the Porsche factory. In very little time, the condition of the paintwork would start to deteriorate and rusting would soon take place. Here we offer a comprehensive guide to creating these effects.
Cutting through misty-eyed nostalgia though the original was a pretty old kit, and Airfix have once again shrewdly chosen it for re-release as a completely new tooling. Having enjoyed their new Swordfish tremendously I was really looking forward to this new kit and that comes from someone who is always happier sticking together two pairs of wings. Before I even discuss the model it's worth noting Adam Tooby's superb artwork which for me puts Airfix's packaging up with some of the best in the field. Adam's work really does hark back to the glorious days of Roy Cross and in him, Airfix have tapped into a real talent. Long may the association continue! Inside the box there are two compact sprues of grey parts, a clear canopy sprue and a very crisply printed decal sheet. Whilst the panel lines still aren't quite as refined as some of Airfix's competitors, they're pretty good and will not be too much of a distraction once the model is completed.
The German Neubaufahrzeug series of tank prototypes were a first attempt to create a heavy tank for the Wehrmacht after Adolf Hitler had come to power. Multi-turreted, heavy and slow, they did not fit in with the Blitzkrieg tactics and therefore only five were made. These were primarily used for propaganda purposes, though three took part in the Battle of Norway in 1940. During the 1920s and 1930s, a number of countries experimented with very large, multi-turreted tanks. The British built a single example of the Vickers A1E1 Independent in 1926. This inspired the Soviet T-35, which was built in limited numbers from 1933. Development of the Neubaufahrzeug (German for 'new construction vehicle') started in 1933 when the then Reichswehr gave a contract for the development of a Grosstraktor (heavy tractor) to both Rheinmetall and Krupp. Grosstractor was a codename for the development of a heavy tank, Germany being still forbidden to develop tanks under the terms of the Treaty of Versailles.
Sometimes a kit comes along that just screams "build me!" When I first heard that a new pick-up was being released and in plastic to boot, I for one was excited by the idea, my imagination taking me in all sorts of directions, not least of which was the idea that I could now perhaps build a game-themed diorama. Seeing the kit on various websites only served to heighten my desire to build it and so when I finally came across one earlier this year, out came the wallet so that I could see whether or not, the excitement was justified. Meng are a new company who have entered the modelling world with two new kits of what at first appears to be a generic pick-up truck, the like of which can be seen in many of the globe s military hot-spots. Further investigation though proves that the kit is a little more specific, replicating well, a late Nineties Toyota Hilux with four-man cab. So far, so good!
Kit Form Services are a resin kit manufacturer that specialise in mail order kits that replicate in the main civilian trucks and accessories. Over the last few years they have branched out to create full kits of British Army vehicles, the Alvis Saladin seen here being one of the latest to appear. As before, the kit is cast in resin and white metal and is then further detailed with photo-etched parts that all combine with each other to create a highly detailed replica, inside and out. The majority of the parts are flawlessly cast in cream resin, with the remainder of them cast in white metal or supplied on that large photo-etched brass fret. Decals are included for three vehicles including one in all-white United Nations colours. The kit also includes a full set of detailed instructions and though I would not recommend this kit to the absolute beginner, such is the quality of the cast parts, a modeller with a little experience should find little here to trouble their growing skill base. Let's get started then!