Sunday, March 17, 2013

T-34's Ready For Action...

PSC T-34 with 76mm turret
The first "easy assembly" kits I ever built were Armourfast T-34's.  I thought they were pretty nice at the time, but these Plastic Soldier Company 1/72 T-34's blow them away.  Furthermore, when I bought the old Armourfast kits(which aren't nearly as detailed), I had to buy different boxes for the T-34/76 and T-34/85 tanks...even though they provided identical chassis(just a different turret sprues).   PSC has been considerate enough to include both variant turrets in a single box!
PSC T-34 with 85mm turret

All of the PSC kits that I have built so far are well-designed but these were some of the easiest to assemble(especially as the tracks are one piece).  I didn't modify the kits at all except for a few stowage pieces from my bits box(German jerry cans from the Panzer IV kit, a twig, other random bits).  I am especially pleased with the look of the twig, used to model a traction/mud log, because I attached it...primed it...painted it...and it ended up looking exactly like the original wood piece did!
As far as painting, as with my previous Soviet armor, I went with a little bit of a lighter green rather than the darker hue that true Soviet armor would have sported.  I actually used the recipe from the Battlegroup Kursk rulebook tutorial(with exception of using  Dark Green Vallejo Primer).  I basecoated with Russian Green and then highlighted with Interior Green(both Vallejo Model Air).  The hit the raised outlines of the tank with some Hemp(Vallejo Model Air) that I drybrushed and line in.

After that I gave the whole thing a glosscoat of Vallejo Gloss Medium airbrushed on.  I followed this with a oil wash use Winsor & Newton Umber oil paint from a tube mixed with Turpenoid.  Next time I will use Mineral Spirits because the Turpenoid was extremely glossy and slow to dry. In fact, it took me several coats of Testor's Dullcoat to knock down the shine after it dried.  Before the wash I hand-painted all the slogans.  There are some nice decals for this...but I prefer to hand do them because I like the haphazard look of unevenly scribed mottos that the soldiers themselves would have painted on.
As a finishing touch I added some mud pigments to the wheels and lower hull of the tank(front and back).

Having not painted armor for many years there are many techniques I am re-learning and new ones that I am catching up with.  I am sure that with more practice I will refine these skills.

Finally, here is a shot of my next trio of Plastic Soldier Company tanks that is (clearly) a work in progress...I have merely begun work on these tanks and have a lot of work to do yet...
Well, that's it for now...thanks for viewing everyone!

Happy wargaming everybody...

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