Tamiya 1/35 Churchill Mk VII

i picked up this kit today and i was wondering if it was used by the Canadians during the D-Day landings?
if it wasn’t used in it’s standard configuration could i alter it into one of the specialist tanks used during the invasion, did the Canadians use those the same way the British did?

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I know the Tamiya Churchill Mk VII has some accuracy issues, but I cannot remember what the issues are. It was my understanding that the Mk VII was a late addition to the frontline. that said Crocodile alterations appears the most common set up late in the war.

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No Canadian units were equipped with Churchills (standard or specialist variants) during the campaign in NW Europe.

When any British/Canadian units needed support from specialist armour, teams from 79th Armoured Division were taken ‘under command’ for the duration of the requirement and then sent back to 79 AD.

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in a word “Bugger” oh well i guess i will have to do it as a British version at Normandy

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Ain’t nothing wrong with that David; read this for a bit of inspiration:

or this one by the same author (really cracking reads and will want you to make Churchills!)

The cover, confusingly shows an AVRE, but ignore that.

Good luck with whatever you decide.

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Those covers on those books reminds me of the old Commando comic books i used to read as a kid.

anyway here i am on the construction phase, pretty much built, i prefer the look of the ARVE turret, i need to see if i can get one that does cost three times more than i paid for the kit!

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i managed to score a Legends ARVE Turret, which is coming from Poland and cost the same price as the kit including air mail delivery!

Has Legends gone out of business as it seems almost impossible to get hold of their products, even their list of international distribution companies has little to no stock

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The VII was, as far as I know, used in NW Europe from early '45 on.
That means southern Netherlands, western Germany and on.

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Looking forward to seeing how it goes.
I’ve got two of Tamiya’s Crocs to build (one will be built as Korean War version minus it’s trailer.). It’s typical I think of old Tamiya. Not 100% accurate but builds well and quickly. As what you’ve got done so far shows.
By comparison the AFV Club Churchill’s I have scare the s#*@ out of me!

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Wartime AVREs were based on the Churchill Mk III and Mk IV only. You’ll need to replace the hull MG ball mount and the circular hull hatches (with rectangular hatches) to backdate the Tamiya Mk VII kit. Also, the hull gunner’s hatch was modified to a sliding panel that allowed the Petard mortar to be reloaded whilst the crewman remined inside the vehicle.

To be really pedantic, the Mk VII hull was slightly wider than the earlier marks, but it’s not enough to be visually obvious in 1/35 scale.

A Mk VII AVRE was developed in the late 1950s to replace the wartime vehicles but used a 6.5 inch gun rather than the Petard Mortar and only served for a short period before being replaced by the Centurion AVRE.

The earlier Churchill marks also used a different style of track with heavier links.

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@JohnTapsell do have any pictures/images of the differences that you have mentioned as my searches haven’t produced any useful results.

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yes i agree, i built their gulf war Scimitar and it took me over two years to finish it as it ended up on the shelf of doom.

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It’s all the individually sprung suspension that terrifies me the most! I’m sure it will all fit, but there’s a lot of it.
Thinking about it, I do have their AVRE. If it’ll help, I can get some photos of the instructions for you. Might help work out what else needs changing.

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The differences between a Churchill Mk VII (or Mk VIII) and the earlier marks are widely documented. Fundamentally, if it has rectangular side hatches it’s an earlier Mark. If it has circular side hatches (like the Tamiya kit), it’s a Mk VII.

This is a standard Mk III with a welded turret (Mk IV was similar but had a cast turret). It has the rectangular side hatches and a different hull MG mounting beside the driver. Also, the Mk VII driver’s vision port is circular whereas these earlier marks have a square vision port.

AVREs were based on both the Mk IV (most common) or the Mk III.

Standard Mk IV
A better view of the driver’s/hull mg front plate showing how it differs from the Tamiya part

The Mk VII turret is alsi different in design from the Mk III and Mk IV turrets.

AVRE (Petard Hatch)


The Legends AVRE turret you have ordered is based on the Mk IV turret.

Tracks
Heavy Track (compare these with the Tamiya kit tracks)
afv35183d05

For completeness - a post-war Churchill Mk VII AVRE with 6.5inch demolition gun and dozer blade.


kaih0OO

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It’s also worth pointing out that the Churchill AVREs used in Italy were something of a hybrid. The AVRE components were sent out in kit form and existing Churchills in theatre were converted. However, it’s rare to see any of the engineer attachments fitted - generally just the Petard mortar.

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Well this has given me a lot to think about, this was supposed to be a simple project with a few minor alterations.
I had an idea of a churchill and a universal carrier passing a german bunker on one of the Normandy beaches. it’s still possible i guess but not as an ARVE Churchill.

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I don’t think any (non-specialist) Churchills landed on D-Day or for 2-3 weeks after that. I’d have to check when the Churchill-equipped Brigades arrived in France (end of June 1944 sticks in my mind but I could be wrong).

However, having one driving off the beach past a bunker would still work if you place your ‘event’ in a post-D-Day time frame. Universal Carriers were used within armoured regiments as runabouts and mobile battery chargers for the tanks, so you could link both models to the same unit.

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I’d have to do some research to actually find the truth but from my recollection there were Canadian crewed Churchill tanks but I’m not sure what variants they were, take that for what it’s worth. The Canadian tanks were everywhere but not during the initial landings at Normandy, at least not the Churchills. Other tanks like the Ram mk II were there but any exact details are likely lost unless you can get into the Archives and do so serious digging. It’s too bad that there are no more Surviving Vets of WW2, it would ne incredible to pick their brains for information. I myself had two Family members who served in Canadian forces in WW2 my grand father and his Brother, my Great Uncle. But they were not in the Normandy Landings. My Grand Father was in the RCAF in N.B. and my Great Uncle served in the Italy Campaign in the 3rd Bat. PPCLI and landed on the beaches of Cicily, a far cry from the Normandy Landings. And those two died long ago when I was a kid. Perhaps you can search online archives of Videos interviewing Canadian vets who served in Normandy perhaps there is videos with the info you seek. sorry I couldn’t be of much help.

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so am i right in thinking that if i want to do a Churchill ARVE at Normandy then i need to choose one of tbese kits?

and if i continue with the Tamiya kit then i need to build it as a standard Churchill…i now need to fix the turret as the top deck moved after i glued it.

so much for this being an easy build over the bank holiday lol

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You can still build the Churchill as a standard OOTB-build. Just not for D-day.

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