Russian Tank Unditching Log

Hi folks!

I am working on the Meng T-90 and am wondering what people do to finish the unhitching log on the back of Russia tanks? All I can really seem to find in my very poor google lurches is to change out the plastic with a real piece of wood. Was wondering if anyone here has an alternative.

Here’s a shot of the log in question…

Thanks in advance!

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It looks like your log has grain on it? If so here is what I did for my Miniart T-54 log.

  1. prime in black (not crucial)
  2. spray light coats of a light wood color I used Tamiya buff
  3. dark brown oil wash focus on getting it in the grain
  4. light grey dry brush
  5. the ends on mine lacked any detail so what I did was paint them buff, then I painted over with burnt umber oil paint, let it dry for about an hour and then lightly pressed my finger print into it to make it look like growth rings


Yeah, the log has some texture and I enhanced it by running a razor saw over the log lengthwise.

Thanks for the step by step, this was exactly what I was looking for!

Looks fantastic!

Hi MIke,

I prepared but finally not used the log on my T-55 kit recently. Similar method to Mead’s:

  1. Light smoothing using some fine sandpaper (the Miniart log has a bit too grainy surface to my taste)
  2. Scratches using x-acto blade to increase the depth of the big grooves)
  3. Another, final smooth sanding to eliminate rough edges by the scratches
  4. Black primer
  5. Light covers using old wood colour
  6. Random very light, random covers of various oils raw amber, payne’s grey etc…) to provide “life-like” tone and look

No photo made from the final result but I do like it.

Should you want a real log photo, I visited the Armored Brigade in Tata, Hungary yesterday for work and made some photos of a T-72 tank un-ditching log as reference for future builds. And many other details of the same T-72, a Hungarian Leopard 2A4 and KMW’s Bergepanther built from Leopard1, too. It was a fantastic day there.


For my Sov stuff I use lengths of dowel, prepared by scoring the surface with a razor saw - as already mentioned - then lightly sanded; I finish with just a general purpose dark wash and that’s about it. Note however, that some were painted with the same green as the vehicle, so you can always ring the changes a bit.

All the photos I have seen of the T-90 show it painted like the rest of the vehicle (mostly green). I think you can just leave it plain green, with the same dirt you add to the rest of that area.

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The “same green painted” argument is true, however I always filter the log a little lightet than the tank because the wood could somehow change the paint shade against the metal would. Also doing so I can add a tiny bit of interesting detail to the model.
But this is simply my theory, and I might be wrong.

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Thanks guys! There are some great options here to try!


Well, I gave it a shot, and I am pretty happy with the outcome. I did decide to go with an unpainted log for a little variety and interest. What do you guys think?



I think that looks really good. Nice job.

I think it looks good too! The nice thing about wood is it comes in so many varieties of colors and grain type that as long as you use wood color and show grain you can do nice things as you have

I think you have represented the wood very well here, it looks grainy and the natural wood color gives a nice variation from the green.

Yeah, it looks like a piece of wood. Great job!