Saturday, December 29, 2012

Happy Holidays!

It's currently snowing outside, and it's been a long time since I posted anything.  So I hope everyone has had a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Ramadan, winter solstice or whatever you happen to celebrate, and wish you have a better 2013 than 2012.  I at least hope I have a better model completion rate in 2013 than I did in 2012, with blog updates to match.  I only managed to finish one kit (and bought many more than that).  Which brings me to the last update on my 1/72 scale M4A1 "Derby".  I took it to my local IPMS show, MarauderCon, and managed to take Best Armored vehicle.  I can still compete with it at other IPMS or AMPS shows, but this brings Derby to a close on my blog.....unless I pursue my original idea of putting it on a diorama base with a Panzer IV Ausf. J.

Next up is a shelf queen that I've been struggling with for years.  Fujimi's 1/72 scale A-4C.  While I love the kit, it has fought me all the way, and frequently gets put back on the shelf of doom.  I'm close to finishing it, but have manage to break off almost every delicate small part on the kit.  Hopefully it will be one of my early finishes for 2013.

Last up for this posting is my Hobby Boss 1/48 scale KV-1 Ekranami.  The last time I posted anything I had  finished painting and was starting the weathering.  The only problem was that I didn't like the results, so off it went to a Windex bath, and time to start painting again.  I'm going to try AK Interactive's 4BO Green color modulation set, and see how that turns out.

While stripping the paint off I manage to loose one of the photo-etch fender supports.  It seems like I'm always managing to loose some kit part or another, and I've gotten quite good at making a replacement.  Well the fender support was no exception.  The brass Hobby Boss uses is quite thin, and for a while I was stumped on what to do.  Fortunately the Hobby Boss photo-etch fret provides more than enough extra brass to make a new one.  All it takes is some cutters, drill bits, files, sand paper, and about 2 hours!  Ugh...I hope I don't loose another one.  Is it perfect?  No, but more than good enough to put between the two tool boxes on the right fender, and no one will ever know.

While the models was stripped I took the opportunity to make some corrections to the kit based on information available on Neil Stokes' excellent site 4BO Green.  Neil wrote what many consider the KV bible: KV - Technical History & Variants.  It's a great book and an invaluable reference, but Neil also maintains the 4BO Green website with great supplemental material: book addendum's, model reviews, etc..  Among the information are very helpful lists of corrections needed to kits to make accurate versions of respective KV's.  For a late maufactures Ekranami that involves removing the circular weld marks on the sides of the turret roof, filling the hole in the engine hatch, and omitting the saw from the fender (it was moved to inside the toolbox by the time late Ekranami's were produced).