Stalin’s Hammer, So.Cal. AMPS 12 Hour Build Chllenge

Yes, it’s that time of year again. No not some silly game of grown men chasing a ball up and down a wooden floor. But it’s time for the annual So Cal AMPS 12 Hour build challenge. Yes, build a model from start to finish in three monthly four hour sessions during online Zoom meetings. Last month we presented our three candidate kits for the participants to vote on. This kit is what my fellow members voted for me to build- a 1/35 Eastern Express kit of the Soviet B-4 203mm Howitzer. The tracked carriage really gives it a look all its’ own.

During today’s first four hour session, I was able to get most of the carriage base completed,

All of the breech and barrel assembly completed

And I was able to get a good portion of the gun cradle assembled

And of course, I had to test fit it all together

Next month we will have the next session and I should have most of the basic assembly completed…


Cool idea :disguised_face:

Yeah these 12 hour build challenges are fun. This is the third one that we’ve done.

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Not my first choice for a quick build kit. You’re doing well so far. Do your club members not like you? :joy:

What where your other two options?


You ain’t kidding about the choice. With all the parts clean up I did, between flash and sprue attachment points…. I can see why they voted for this one. :smirk: I hadn’t really examined the kit beforehand. That’s okay, I voted for their hard options too. We all play that way… :wink:

My other two choices were the re pop of the Monogram 1/32 Panzer IV, and the other was the Italeri 1/48 RAH-66 Comanche. First prize is a $50 gift certificate at Brookhurst Hobbies, so we do try to sandbag one another… :sweat_smile:


i have no chance of doing this, it takes me 12 hours to open the box lol


Many kudos to you Carlos for your amazing progress on this challenge. Friends don’t make friends build Eastern Express kits! I have this kit - it takes more than 4 hours just to fill all the ejector pin marks, and you lose half the rivets doing so. I hope time is on your side and you don’t run into any major problems. Good luck and I hope you win! Keep pushing on!


@Klaus-Adler, yes, I do hear you on taking plenty of time just to get a kit started. That’s my usual M.O.

@SSGToms, friends don’t let friends build Eastern Express… but competitors make them do it! :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: keeping my gingers crossed that I can pull this one off :crossed_fingers:t3:


Today was session 2 of the 12 hour challenge. I deviated a bit from the instructions and concentrated on the tracked bogie units for the carriage. Between clean up of flash and ejector pin marks and the high parts count of the two units, that area took about 1 hour longer than I had thought, but I was still able to get them completed. I also build the spade assembly for the trail.

Then of course I had to test fit all of the assemblies completed so far…

Next month I should be able to get assembly completed, then painted, and call this beast done…. Then it will be the most impressive looking artillery piece on my towed artillery shelf.


Wow Carlos, you are a quick worker! I would have spent 4 hours just on the bogie/tracks assembly. Great work! I hope all the ejector pin marks aren’t damaging you emotionally. :face_with_spiral_eyes:

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@SSGToms, thanks! I’m doing what I can with this within the allotted timespan. Several times yesterday I was really wondering if I could pull this off within 12 hours, but once the session was done, I can finally see that it will likely happen. :face_with_spiral_eyes:
No emotional damage from all the clean up… merely myself questioning my thought process at throwing this one into the ring as a build candidate… :face_with_raised_eyebrow:

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