I had not built an Airfix kit in some time, they are not that common to find on a store shelf. I think I can add Airfix to list of companies we need to see more of in the U.S.
These two kits are well worth the sub $10 prices. Great detail and decent fitting parts for the small scale. The smaller the scale the more a good mold is needed, those tiny details need to be sharp. The Tiger 1 kit had a little more flash than the Sherman but nothing to complain about.
Each model has 2 choices of decals reflecting the placement of Sherman either in Normandy June/July 1944 with options for U.S. or British markings. After doing some research I found that the Sherman kit is not totally scaled correctly as far as the decals. I don’t claim to know a lot about armor so weigh in if my research sounds bogus but U.S. tanks should have a number starting with 3, not T2. The group marking triangle on the front I found on later M4A3. Few other odd differences in front of tank and gun barrel when compared to images I found. I found some other reference to these things in some of the scale model forums. The British version seems to have the same issues with its decals. I found less information on the Tiger 1.
One of the things I love about building any model is the prep I put into research and the things I learn as I do. Each thing becomes a history, science and social education. I started this one with finding images of each tank, trying to place the camouflage and paint to the where and the when. I watched tourist videos of Normandy countryside, looked at pictures. Watched a few old war movies with their incredible inaccurate depictions of history. It is like learning from correcting mistakes.
There were something like 50,000 Shermans M4XX Versions made between 42 and 45 with many sold or “Lend-Lease” to the British, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, China, USSR, Poland, and France. A substantial amount did not make it through the D-Day landing. Some had blades equipped to the front to deal with obstacles on the beach. Flamethrowers and other changes in gun size, side floats and one that engineers built bridges with.
With all this in mind, I decided to build a “Somewhere in Normandy June/July 1944 as the Allies pushed east.
I still have the Tiger to finish and only a bit of weather left to do on the Sherman. On the Sherman, I added aluminum tubing for a more realistic gun barrel and made a few sandbags, logs, rope, and wood boxes for the rear. I found some smaller scale Tulle Lace that worked out for the webbing. See my previous post about Tulle Lace Here. When the model is only 3″ long it can be a bit of a challenge to make accessories let alone hold on to them, see them or glue them.
On the diorama, I still am waiting for trees to dry to add, as well as more landscape the details are added in layers. My eventual plan is to find some 1:76 or 1:72(I think it would look close enough) German soldiers and U.S. Paratroopers to add in.
That’s all for now…