Storage Shelf Archaeological Dig

Hopefully this might be amusing for others to see. Otherwise please ignore if you have severe dust allergies:)

Realized part of reorganizing the hobby room for the new paint booth means addressing two book cases of elderly model tanks.

This poor T-34 accidentally got left out in the cold and sat for ten years in the garage.

Into the tomb we have two book cases covered with saran wrap.

The wrap will come off after 12 years its time for it to be replaced. Will also round up a can of compressed air to blast the dust bunnies:)

Note to moderation team if this is the wrong place please feel free to move. Probably two third of the content will be Axis armor.


I lifted it one level to plain Armorama (even if there is a ship in there …) :smile:


The amazing that the T34 doesn’t really look too bad considering.

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Remember you can’t remove any of the archaeological artefacts until you have recorded the context, taken pictures, made drawings and taken dust samples for further testing… :wink:


My oldest is an archeologist so she would get a kick out of this.


Well it was a death defying slog into the Heart of Darkness. Indiana Jones asked me to send you guys & gals on the forum his regards. I’m sure without Dr Jones along this dig wouldn’t have gotten past the first layer of cobwebs.

We rediscovered a lot of lost junk from the 1970’s on the bottom shelf plus a couple of newer models.

The oldest surviving model of all of them, a Tamiya JagdPanther built in 1975. The purchase was inspired by the old Avalon Hill games PanzerBlitz & Panzer Leader because the outline on the die cut cardboard counter made me (11 years old) want to know what a JagdPanther looked like in 3D. No reference material but I did have some Humbol paint left over from painting battleships :slight_smile: Specifically the HMS Hood. My eleven year old brain reasoned if the paint was good enough for the HMS Hood, it was more than good enough for Nazi armor. The Old JagdPanther was repaired and repainted several times over years. Spent a decade in a storage building, two decades in the attic and another decade on the bottom shelf.

From around the same time period. A remote control motorized TAMIYA Panther A with a similar story.

Naturally Avalon Hill’s follow up game on the Middle East “Arab Israeli Wars” inspired much interest in mid 60’s & 70’s Cold War armor. I think I was of the few eleven year olds reading Jane’s, Soldier of Fortune etc - anyway I developed the view at the time that the United Kingdom’s Centurion was one of the coolest most awesome tanks of all time. Born of WW2, proven in Korea, kicking @$$ in the Middle East and ready to show the Warsaw Pact, they’d better stay of their side of the iron curtain or else. Roughly 1975 or 1976.

While my pre-teen skill level couldn’t do the model justice, the old girl survived multiple collection culls.


Boy do those bring back memories. I too played PanzerBlitz(among many others). Modeling and wanting know more about those counters led me to become a military historian, now retired.


That’s awesome DV :slight_smile:

We had a lot of fun with those games back in the day. Figuring out how to play PL & PB from reading the instructions, improved my reading skills dramatically. The game rule logic ultimately paved the way to for a mathematic degeee and being a math teacher for a while.


I actually wasn’t introduced to war games until my freshman year in college. My roommate had them and we made Friday night game night(Saturday was party night :grin: :grin:). I also subscribed to Strategy and Tactics until they went belly up. Finally got rid of all my games after I got married. Must have had around 200 or so.

Yeah, I still have Panzer Leader and my best friend of 40 years still has Panzer Blitz. Those we the days. Many others played along the way - Squad Leader, Cross of Iron, Platoon…

That Panther reminds me of the Tamiya Chieftain I had - same ‘remote’ module.

Enjoy the trowel and dust brush archaeological experience Wade.


@Armorsmith YES!!! S&T!! That was an incredible magazine and ray of light! While I don’t have the games anymore there are a couple of copies of S&T still in the bookshelf.

@petbat Peter OH YES! Cross of Iron & Squad Leader well definitely favorites. Good times!

That Tamiya remote control was something else with its short wires - one also had to chase the tank around. You had an awesome Chieftain with the remote for sure!

My dad probably screamed at me more to put that stupid game away (I was obsessed with it) and go to bed than he ever fussed at me about anything ever. LOL

Excellent plan for Friday & Saturday! Best of both worlds!

Same shelf, shifting to the early 1990’s. Here are a few old models built for fun before I had a clue about good basic construction. A menagerie of seams, mold seams and punch marks await.

That early view of British Steel remained well into adulthood. Learning about Choham armor, composites etc and the awesome 120mm cannon inspired this Tamiya Chieftain. Also a survivor of culling the herd. Early attemp at shadow painting and post shading. BTW - another very heavy hitter from Arab-Israeli Wars you didn’t want to tangle with. Around 1992 -1993

Keeping with the same theme a Challenger from roughly the same time period in the early 90’s IIRC.

Fond memories of the Chieftain & Challenger ended up fueling the purchase of a new Takom Chieftain and a Tamiya Desertised Challenger 2.


The 2 S&T games I think I played the most were Sixth Fleet and Panzer Gruppe Guderian. Ahh to be young dumb and without a care in the world again. :grin: :grin:

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Wargames - so many memories. I used to have, well, a lot of them. Finally sold them all on ebay. Kept Blitzkrieg (and the SPI’s Blitzkrieg Module System), Panzer Blitz, Patton’s Best, and Ambush!. Also a British game called Seastrike. I kept buying games even though the rules grew too complex for me.

Now it’s just model kits and books!

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I remember both of those! We played 6th Fleet some but FoxBat & Phantom was the favorite SPI game in our group. Literally worn out the aircraft sheets.

Cobra was a popular S&T game in the group until one day an Allied player rolled bad weather or overcast for every turn. It was the German players dream come true. That plus a couple of errors and the Allied player got his bridgehead crushed and nearly pushed off the map. No one wanted to play it after that lol.

@Gary_Kato you are exactly right about they grew so complex and big. Even to the point of unfun. I passed on playing SPI’s War in the East with a friend after reading the rules.

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I was really I in Squad Leader but they kept coming out with addenda for the rules. Nobody could really figure out if we were playing right and we finally gave up. And yes Cobra and then there was the BoB boxed game.

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Oh man SL rules became real mess for sure… Our Squad Leader games quickly turned into mostly Cross of Iron ad hoc tank battles.

Or arguments.

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More grade school junk from the 1970’s :slight_smile:

I traded something equally worthless to a friend for his built Sherman kit. It was unpainted. I painted it several times :slight_smile: First attempt at dry brushing. First gloss coat for applying decals. First flat coat.

War Pig

This was a pretty good kit back in 1978. It was an expensive purchase wiping out all my cash at the time. In fact I was $5 short of $23 or whatever to buy it. My mother gave me $5 based on my promise not to buy anymore model tank stuff with my allowance or money from mowing lawns. I had absolutely no intention of keeping that promise but made it anyway to get this cool kit

I promptly buggered it up worst than just about anything before it. I discovered Pactra paint and had no clue how to paint with it. It was cheap and in those horrible little plastic bottles.

The terrible result combined with high price soured me on armor modeling and indeed it was the last armor model until nearly a decade later.


1977 - this is very long story and picture at bottom :slight_smile: you may want to skip.

Ships had become a,favorite modeling subject thanks to reading about WW2 naval history. Two ships were absolutely captivating to me.
One was an American aircraft carrier with an extraordinary combat record in the Pacific - the USS Enterprise CV6. I couldn’t find a kit of the ship no matter how hard I looked.

The other one…was the elegant aesthetically pleasing commerce raiding Nazi battlecrusier Scharnhorst. The ship just had the right look plus an interesting history. I found a mediocre Revell 1/570 kit or whatever and built it. However in Sea Classics or similar magazine I found a mail order add for:

1/400 scale Heller KM Scharnhorst

Of course my parents Absolutely Refused to buy it for me despite my persistent nagging. It’s a mail order rip-off. “They take and cash the check and you never get toy. We’re not wasting money on this kid.” I finally scrapped up enough lawn money to pay for it. Same argument. Finally my mother goes, “Well you’re just going to have to learn your lesson the hard way. When it doesn’t show up, you’re not getting your money back - understand that?”

I gave her the $27 or what ever it was. She wrote the check. Being young and naive- I didn’t realize even if the kit showed up I wasn’t getting it. I needed to be taught a hard life lesson about peeing hard earned money away on stupid irrelevant junk.

My mom worked from home and would be able to intercept the UPS package while I,was at school. UPS regularly made delivery to our house related to her business around 1 pm.

Six weeks, then ten went by - NO Package. I’d come home from school ask it the model arrived and get a No and I told you so.

I’d just got home from school one day when the UPS truck running late pulled up in the driveway. The Heller Scharnhorst arrived!!!

My mother wasn’t at all happy.

This was the very best ship kit I had ever seen. Light years beyond the Revell, Aurora & Monogram junk I normally built. It had railings! It had all the little AA guns. It was detailed beyond anything I or my friends had ever seen.

If a modeler can fall in love with a model - I did.

I decided to drill out all the port holes. This was the first time I’d tried to modify something to make it better. I broke 4 of my 5 Xacto blades doing it. I was so proud of that accomplishment.

This was first ship kit with a two piece hull I’d ever scene that fit together correctly :heart_eyes:. Amazingly even the deck fit as it should. I just knew the Scharnhorst was going to be the best model I’d built.

Now the 43 year old model looks like the HMS Duke of York got a hold of her. All the parts are there and one day I’ll patch,the old Heller kit up.

There one other chapter to share about this model…Why I Quit Model Building Forever At Age 15


There one other chapter to share about this model…Why I Quit Model Building Forever At Age 15

Being a 15 year old naive modeler I cant wait to hear this one… :laughing:

Seriously though Im really enjoying reading through all this.