Work in Progress

Huibs T34 tank project

Posted by huib on 15 Nov 2021, 13:09

Thank you, Peter and MABO!

Vignet
Now that all my T34's until now received a base, I cannot leave behind with this one.

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The usual start: The rim of a yoghurt container, filled with a circle of plywood. The outline of the tank is roughly indicated with pencil, unspectacular in the middle of the base.

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As we are approaching Berlin in my T34 story, this SU-85 is involved in streetfighting. So I made some ruined walls from plywood.

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First the wall were 'painted' with plaster, which was partly crumbled of again. the bottom of the vignet was modelled using clay.

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Painted.

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Gloss varnish and some washes.

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And then I smashes a lot of junk on the base: red rubble from a broken flowerpot, white rubble from a remaing bit of plaster, wooden beams and planks from matches, coctail sticks and cedar wood for lighting cigars, piping from iron wire, a broken down chimney from a drinking straw, and a green door from plastic card..

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Then the SU-85 had to be treated accordingly with dust and rubble. That's what you get if you crash your tank through a wall. Your mudguards get dameaged too!

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From behind.

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Finished!

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Final pictures soon.
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by Peter on 15 Nov 2021, 13:56

Fantastic! That ruine looks almost real! :thumbup:
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Peter  Belgium

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Posted by steve_pickstock on 15 Nov 2021, 14:32

Chapeau, sir! Lovely terrain, and vehicle, very nice!
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steve_pickstock  England
 
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Posted by dykio on 15 Nov 2021, 16:01

Wow, i think this is your best one sofar Huib.Brilliant :drool:

laterrrrr

Dykio
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dykio  Netherlands
 
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Posted by MABO on 16 Nov 2021, 11:47

Wow, again!
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MABO  Europe
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Posted by huib on 17 Nov 2021, 22:58

Thank you guys, for your kind remarks!

Final pictures:

Fujimi 1/76 SU-85
Approaching Berlin, spring 1945

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Please look here for more pictures
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by huib on 20 Nov 2021, 19:09

T34-85
Well, now the time has come to build my last T34 in this project. Of course, I could endlessly continue to build more subvariants, but after almost a year of only building T34´s it´s time to do something else in the near future.

T43
But before I will speak about the T34-85, I have to set a step back in history. In the summer of 1942, when the worst crisis was over for the Soviet Union, the Soviet supreme command ordered the development of a new tank, combining the mobility of the T34 with the armour protection of the KV1, and equipped with the same succesful 76mm gun as its predecessors.

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T43 prototype

The new tank was baptised T43, after the year of its intended introduction. However, before the T43 was in production, the German Tiger tank appeared on the battlefield, and intelligence about the oncoming Panther tank was intercepted. The T43 offered no answer to this new generation of German tanks, because of the limited power of its 76mm gun. Production of the new tank was cancelled.

T34-85
It was clear the Soviets needed a tank gun that could deal with the Tiger and Panther tanks at reasonable combat distances of 1000m-2000m. The answer was found in the tried 85mm anti-aircraft gun, which had high velocity, a flat trajectory and a suitable calibre. The gun did'nt fit into any existing tank turret however. And developing a complete new tank would be too time consuming for the ongoing battle. What to do?

Two engineering companies were ordered to redesign the 85mm gun to make it fit into a tank turret. Therefore it was important to shorten the recoil, and make the gun more compact. In short time this led to usable gun called DT-5. As a starter this was built into the SU-122 self-propelled howitzer, leading to the potent tank destroyer SU-85. At least the Tigers and Panthers could be succesfully engaged now. Next a smart Soviet engineer proposed to combine the tried and reliable hull of the T34 with the much bigger turret design of the T43. This proved a golden combination. Using existing components a tank was now available that combined the mobility of the T34, with a firepower equal to the new German tanks. Only in armour protection the tank lagged a bit behind, but this was partly compensated by its good mobility.

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Early T34-85 model 1943 with DT-5 gun.

The first T34-85's were delivered in early 1944. They can can be recognised by the bolted on mantlet ring, a shorter gun (by appr. 1 feet), rounded of front mudguards and a commanders cupola in the middle left side of the turret. In the meantime the other engineering firm, called ZiS, succesfully developed an improved version of the 85mm gun. This was used to produce an improved version of the T34-85 later in 1944. This version had the longer gun, rounded off mantlet, squared off mudguards and the commanders cupola placed further behind to accomodate a radio in the turret. This second version was produced only with some very small changes in ten thousands of numbers until the end of the war.

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T34-85 model 1945

The T34-85 was a great succes: easy to produce, reliable, good mobility and good firepower. From Operation Bagration in June 1944 it formed the backbone of the Soviet armoured divisions. Until halfway the 1950's it remained the most important tank in the armies of the Soviet Union and it's allies. When replaced by the T54/55 in the frontline units, it remained in the reserve until 1967. Production was continued with only small innovations until 1969, and the T34-85 saw action in the Korean War, the Vietnam War and many conflicts in the Middle-East and Africa. The last known operational use was in the conflict in Yugoslavia in the early 1990's.

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T34-85 in North Vietnamese service.

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Disabled Serbian T34-85 in Croatia in 1991.
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by huib on 20 Nov 2021, 20:22

Fujimi 1/76 t34-85
To build the T34-85 I'll use this old Fujimi kit in 1/76 scale:

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Fujimi is only in small fond on the side of the box. In fact it looks like a cheap, somewhat changed edition of the kit. Anyway, the boxart is quite interesting, As it shows a Japanese tank in the background. This places the picture in a very restricted timeframe, namely the Soviet invasion in Machuria in August 1945.

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The contents of the box hurts the eyes. Gosh, what a colour of green!

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The second sprue, which states 'Science Treasury' instead of Fujimi. This is the same sprue as in the SU-85 kit. But the injection quality seems less.

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Two licorice-like tracks.

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And as a startling end-piece, a generic sheet of stickers, no decals, for vehicles of all nations! :shock: :-D Hm, this looks more like a toy than a serious model.

Hm, well, let's start anyway....
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by Wiking on 21 Nov 2021, 01:34

Of the (high end-pice) sticker sheet you can use the 88mm, u.s.a. serial number and blue red blue flag for the nation identification. And finally TX-40 is the turret number.
The blue stars are the "kills" for the gun tube.

If you do a German captured
(Beutepanzer) version you need the Japanese sticker with the WH number on the right and the left side of the tank. For the turret the blue flag with the two different red crosses.
Kill marks for the turret are the small blue block with the white and red stripes.

If you have any further questions do not hesitate to ask at any time.
You do not need to say thank you.

Modeller help always each other with highly qualified information.

:yeah:

Side note:
The level of information of these text is the same level as the water slide decal set as shown by this model.


:xd:


Good luck with the rubber band battle later on.
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Wiking  Germany
 
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Posted by Peter on 21 Nov 2021, 09:58

I'm having a nice cup of coffee, :coffee: , waiting for the next step! ;-)
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Peter  Belgium

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Posted by huib on 22 Nov 2021, 20:26

Wiking wrote:Modeller help always each other with highly qualified information.


Hm, it is clear again that German trolls try to disrupt my T34 production by spreading misinformation on the WWW. :winky:
But luckily the truth was already defined by Marx, Lenin and Stalin!

Peter wrote:I'm having a nice cup of coffee, :coffee: , waiting for the next step! ;-)

OK, here we go!
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by huib on 22 Nov 2021, 20:34

Building the hull
The first steps are made.

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First I had to remove some extractor pin marks on the lower hull sides. The top part has to be done, the lower part is treated already.

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Drilled a lot of holes to remove the radiator grilles.

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New front mudguards, handrails made from iron wire, supports for the external fuel drums from staples, bowmachinegun scratchbuilt, en some other things.

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A few more handrails, exhaust pipes renewed, and some fine mesh for the radiator grille.

In the meantime working on the turret too.
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by Peter on 22 Nov 2021, 22:41

Like it what you have done! :thumbup:

But I hope that you are very quickly on the painting part. That color hurts my eyes! 8)
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Peter  Belgium

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Posted by huib on 24 Nov 2021, 11:21

Peter wrote:That color hurts my eyes!

:mrgreen: Yes, indeed!

Turret assembly

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The main turret parts. The moulded on pistol ports, observation slits and handrails were removed.

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The turret after assembly and further detailing. The surface was roughened using liquid glue to simulate cast steel. A thick welding seam was added were the cast turret parts were welded together. Vision slits were melted using a hot screwdriver. Lifting hooks aded. Pistol ports and antennamounting made from plastic. Handrails made from wire.

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More melted slits in the ventilation domes.

Ready for paint.
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by Peter on 25 Nov 2021, 23:17

Finally paint! Then I can put my sunglasses of for the next post? Yes? 8)
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Peter  Belgium

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Posted by huib on 26 Nov 2021, 16:35

Yes Peter, you can do without the sunglasses from now. (Me too!)
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by huib on 26 Nov 2021, 16:44

Paintjob
The paint is on!

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First the primer. After my experience with the very light grey primer from Vallejo, I bought me a bottle of black primer.

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Then a few layers of Vallejo camouflage green.

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Next the details were painted. Most conspicious are the white (air) recognition stripes, typical for Sovjet tanks in the final phase of the war, when the Russians had almost full air superiority. I painted them by hand on purpose, the paint drips included, as in reality they were roughly painted on the tanks using whitewash.

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Look how sloppy it could look on real tanks.

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Painting was finished with a layer of gloss and decals: two turretnumbers.
A rolled tarp was added to the turret rear.

Now for weathering.
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huib  Netherlands
 
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Posted by Peter on 26 Nov 2021, 19:12

Learned something again about that white recognitian! Looks good so far and I love the drips of paint! It's a small detail but it makes this model more realistic! ;-) :thumbup:
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