That self propelled gun is looking great! I like those Dragon kits.
A bit more work done on the A1E1. It got some more sanding then a coat of primer. The new exhaust tips looked OK and I didn’t see anything else that needed correction so it was time for some tank color.
Where are we going with this A1E1? It was the only one ever built and it survives today in a museum in the UK. It had a long period of development and a number of modifications that affected its appearance. It was delivered in late 1926 and retired in 1935. It was briefly back in service in 1940 as a crossroad guardian should the Germans have actually invaded England.
The kit is of the earlier version with the side ladders which were later removed. The version that appeals to me is the first one, devoid of any markings and with an odd lack of paint on the 3 lb gun and other places. I do not know what the color was but it was probably not the WW2 British Green the vehicle is currently finished in. I chose a lighter olive out of a Tamiya rattle can. I like the sheen that paint has that closely matches the pictures. So - here is what I’m shootin’ for:
That green looks good to me! But is “tank color” sold on the same shelf as tartan paint?
It wasn’t the only old dinosaur put back into action at the start of WW2 - there was a MkIV Heavy stored on Whale Island in the Solent that got a new lease of life in base defence, at least until too many runs into Old Portsmouth ended with some embarrassing property damage! The “official” story says it broke down too often, but the rather more believable story is that they used it for occasional booze runs and bumped a wall… (Memorials and Monuments in Portsmouth - HMS Ecellent - Tank Mark IV (Male) number 2324)
The million pound question. The vehicle was originally painted in “Service Colour” - just what that was is anyone’s guess. Most believe it was a light khaki or greenish brown colour. Deep Bronze Green No 24 came into use around 1925, so if it was repainted, that would be the colour. I think you have made a good choice.
It does look right to my eyes. taylorrl in his wonderful build of the Vargas Vickers No. 1 “Onion Dome” tank used AK Real Colors RC023 Khaki Green No. 3. I bought a bottle of it to see what it looked like and found it pretty close to what I used here. In the absence of solid information, if it looks right, it probably is right.
BTW, it is hard to find much out about this A1E1. In addition to the 5 turrets, it was advanced in other areas. The best page I have seen on it is:
A bit more done on the A1E1 over the weekend. The primary painting is done and its just had some touchups since the pics were taken. Its now waiting for everything to get completely dry. Painting the tracks & wheels was quite a job, one my eyes would only allow some a time before they made me stop.
I do not think I ever tried the DS tracks. They are rubber band types as I recall? I got very fond of the Fruel metal tracks that drape over the wheels so realistically. I did try the Magic Tracks once and with the right slow drying cement found they worked pretty well.
A bit more done on the A1E1. The painting of the tracks & bogies is done and they got a coat of track wash. Some parts of the chassis got some pigments then the two track assemblies were glued to the hull with CA gel type glue. Both sides were slightly bowed out at the ends and so a set of clamps were employed to make them conform to the hull.
DS Tracks are a kind of plastic, but they changed the original formula so they now after a while they ooze oil, dry then crack apart - often in the plastic sleeve still in the unbuilt kit! The oil dissolves normal styrene, so a lot of guys now have flat bottom road wheels on their finished builds.
What a disaster! I have quite a few of the Dragon kits squirled away for some years. Mebbee I had better start unpacking them and having a look. I would hate for the dissolving tracks to wreck the kits.
That would be right Brian. It is why modellers now say ‘DS tracks’ stand for ‘Dragon’s Sh… tracks’.
I had a friend in my club that hated Magic tracks and wanted to swap for DS ones. I swapped a lot with him. Not so long ago I asked if they were still okay. He said no, but did not hold it against me! Well he initiated the swap after all.
I finished the Vickers A1E1 by SSModels out of China. I really like this kit even if it still suffers in places from those raster marks. Overall, it is well detailed, assembles easily and looks like the photos. A lot of time was spent trying to sand those ridges smooth and I was only partially successful getting rid of them. The other major area of work was in firing the two track assemblies. They didn’t fit and needed careful work.
Overall, I’m really pleased with the result. I have wanted to model the A1E1 ever since I first learned about it years ago.
I was shooting to reproduce the A1E1 as it was presented to the press in late 1926. I posted those photos earlier in this thread.
I made a few assumptions in ignorance of the actual details. First, Vickers would have tested the vehicle on their own ground and gotten it dirty with local soil. Second, it was shipped to the ARMY someplace who would have tested it on their ground and gotten another layer of dirt on it. Third, it would likely have been washed for its big day in front of the cameras. That would have gotten some of the dirt off in obvious places but left it as it was elsewhere. The last assumption is that the paint would have been too new to have much wear or fading. It still has a sheen to it which I tried to replicate. Lastly, the mechanics & crew would have crawled all over this new experimental tank which would have lead to high spot wear in well trafficked places.
So here the model is lined up with the photos I worked from: