With packing activity progressing I've been hurrying to get up to date with my modelling so I can get things varnished and then all my modelling stuff packed away. Don't get me wrong - packing takes precedence. But there is only so much you can do in a day! I think Amy understands that what I'm working on just now is my way of transitioning through the move - I feel like being able to pick up right where I've left off will help make things a lot easier for me.
This weekend I have been working on getting the three M3A1's, two Crusader AA and single M10C up to a point that they can be varnished. I'd have loved to get all 4 M10C's painted, but without enough stowage they are going to have to wait. These are all Battlefront models.
I also touched up paint on the three Wasp's I had worked on previously. I hadn't put any stowage on them and there were a few other bits I wanted to fix.
As part of the painting process I sorted out the bases, getting the acrylic resin on them, trimming them down and then magnetising them.
Here's the whole lots with the bases on:
I have to say, the Crocs look bloody good with the bases on them (although I know they won't be everyone's cup of tea). For the fuel trailers I just glued them onto the bases at the correct angle for them to line up with the tanks. They are not attached, so can be freely removed.
Some closer shots of the other tanks - as per usual these are WiP and just have the main colours blocked in before they get a coat of Army Painter Dark Tone varnish applied. So there are no highlights or anything on these models.
The M3A1 was a development of the M3 Light Tank. Normally referred to the Stuart in British service (after the standard British naming convention - most Lend Lease American tanks were given the names of American Civil War generals (Grant, Lee, Stuart, Sherman)) the standard M3 was also known as 'Honey'. Apparently as crews described them as 'running like a real honey'.
The M3A1's official name in the British Army was the Stuart III. It varied from the Stuart I (Honey) by having a new turret with turret basket and no cupola. Gun vertical stabiliser were installed and the sponson machine guns were removed. The turret is more rounded and less angular than the one used in the M3 and the removal of the commanders cupola on the turret roof means that there is a different hatch layout than the earlier version.
|M3A1 of 144RAC somewhere in Normandy|
|A rather nice 1:72 Diorama of the picture above. From here - diorama by orionv|
Armed with a 37mm gun and three .30cal machine guns, it was pretty lightly armed and armoured for 1944. In fact, I think the Americans considered them to be obsolete.
Next up, the Crusader AA tanks.
These tanks are Crusader III, AA Mk II's. Armed with twin 20mm Oerlikon cannons. Prior to D-Day there was real concern about the Luftwaffe's response to the invasion and integral AA defence for units was seen as critical. The AA tanks came about from obsolete Crusader tanks being re-armed with the 20mm cannons. These were normally issued at a rate of 6 per Armoured regiment (normally to the HQ squadron). They saw little to no use in their intended role and there are various stories about how they were used in action - mainly being used as 'escort' tanks for unarmoured elements or as backup for the Regiments Light tanks. In June 1944 33 Armoured Brigade had 20 of these tanks on strength (6 per Regiment with 2 at Brigade HQ). By December 1944 there were none of these vehicles listed as being on strength of 33 Armoured Brigade, as they were removed from service and the crews used as replacements for losses in the Regiments.
There should be a tubular framework around the top of the turrets, but it's too fiddly for me even to try at this scale.
Lastly, my single M10C.
Not much stowage on this, as I was running out. The netting looks pretty good, but the plan is to try and add to this with some foliage. If I can get some that looks realistic!
This is an American M10 Tank Destroyer armed with the British 17 Pounder Anti Tank gun. Normally called an Achilles, during WW2 it was called a 17pdr M10 or 17pdr SP M10. Lightly armoured but with one of the best anti tank guns the western allies used, these vehicles are not truly tanks - although they look like them! These are strictly speaking self propelled anti tank guns and were used by Royal Artillery (and Royal Canadian Artillery) anti tank units. Mines will be from 6th Canadian Anti-Tank Regiment, RCA. These were the corps A/T regiment of 2nd Canadian Corps.
So with these guys based, I'm hoping to get them varnished tomorrow. This will give them a day or so to dry then everything can be packed away!
Thanks for reading!