Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Vickers's Medium Mk.II 1/56 scale tank

This is the Vickers’s Medium Mk.II tank built around 1925 to 1930 it served in the British army till WW2 were it saw limited action in North Africa.
This 1/56 scale model was made bye Copplestone Castings, there was 3 things wrong with the casting.

1. The mud guard was bent up at the front and rear of the tank this can be put down to the casting and can be corrected bye pouring hot water over them and gently bend them straight then dip in cold water this should hold them in place, but one must be careful not to scald one self .
As I was waiting for the kettle to boil I accidentally broke a rear mudguard piece off, rather then just glue it on I thought why not make two new mudguards bent as I have seen them in pictures, so I did this with brass plate then soldiered a small bit of brass rod on, this was to hold the brass in place, after drilling a hold in the tank body.

2. The tracks had no gap between the links, this may be acceptable on smaller scale armour but not 1/56 scale, I dear say there will be a reason for this most lightly down to how they are made in the mould, but it can be corrected I took my scalpel cut a gap at the edge of the track, there is a line on the track to follow plus pictures of the internet will help, but one must be careful the risen here is thin and may break.

3. The two tracks are universal and can be used on ether side, but this has caused a problem the sprue on the tracks for casting is at the end of the track on the links, this means there no detail on the end of the tracks due to the sprue being cut of, would have been more appropriate to put the sprue on top or the underside of the track were no one can see were it was.

You can see the mudguards I made in these two pictures.

My thought on painting this tank up.
This tank was painted up for the war game AVBCW.
Up to 1938 all paint on armour vehicles was ether gloss or semi-gloss, after May 1938 it was matt, A Very British Civil War started in and around 1938 so this meant I could chose ether gloss or matt as both would have been around in 1938.
I went with Deep Bronze Green Gloss as was the colour then, being painted in gloss meant it took longer for the paint to fade, so no fading on the model.
I would not think there would be much chipping of paint apart from around the hatches doors and mudguards, so I kept this to a minimal
Rust to me is some thing that you would mainly have on hatch hinges and door hinges; this is because of the consent movement in the hinge this making fine metal particle to rust.
Bare metal starts to rust as orange colour turning darker over time till it’s similar to a black brown, you more likely to have rust running when it’s that orange colour, when it get past that stage it will stop running as rust, this is why I have no rust running from the chips and only the hinge’s.
I don’t believe in heavy rusting on tank tracks unless the tank is not being used for a long time, any rust that does form in between the links will be tinted with dirt and road dust
And the only bare metal will be the track bit running on a hard service.
The name and number decals are 28mm, the tactical marking are 15mm I tried the 28mm tactical marking but these were to large, this tank may be 1/55 scale, but there was a few small tanks prior to WWII hence me using the 15mm.
I painted the exhaust dark brown with touches of light rust colour reason being, if you look at the exhaust you can see a dentations at the side door, this mint any tank crew interring and leaving the tank would stand on it, if this was the case then that exhaust pipe would have been made out of heavy gauge tin, so I would not think the heat would effect it as much.
I saw a picture with the Mk.II turret covered in dust with little circles of dust around the reverts, so this how I visualise the tank painted up I am more then happy with the effect I got.
I also put some dry dirt on the track protection plates to give the visual effect of it having been through some form of earth.

The Paint Job.
First thing was the primer coat I used Vallejo Acrylic-Urethane Grey primer, first time I have used this primer time will till how it works out.
Base Coat
For this I used Xtracrylix XA1814 British Deep Bronze Green, this I airbrushed on, the dust effect was done using Mig modelling oil color, then for rust on the hinges joints I used VA 301 Light Rust, rust on the exhaust was done using first VA 302 Dark Rust then 301 light rust, the tracks was first painted using VA 304 Track Primer then dry brushed with VA 863 Gun Metal Grey then the edges of the tracks were done in Foundry Spear point 35C, for the dried dirt on the track skirting I used VA Matte varnish 059 mixed with VA Diluyente Thinner and sprinkled on Mig Europe Dust P028.
Decals I used for the tank name SID and the number B2 was made by Company B and bought from War Games Command Post, the tank number and the tactical markings were made by Dom’s Decals and were bought from Maelstrom Games.