UNIFIL Frenchbatt VAB T20/13

The VAB T20/13 is deployed in south Lebanon by the French Army for UNIFIL peacekeeping missions since 2006. This project represents a VAB T20/13 Valorisé (uparmored version) used in southern Lebanon and being part of a patrol mission along with a Leclerc S2 (a project already published here) and two VBLs (a project already published here)

Kit and aftermarket products used until now for this project:

Heller 81130 VAB 4x4
Blast Models BL35006K VAB VALORISE conversion set
Blast Models BL35016K VAB T20-13 conversion set
Blast Models BL35221K VAB 4x4 WHEELS UNIROYAL
Eduard 35535 VAB 4x4 exterior detail set

Sources and documents which helped me building this project are:

Samer Kassis photo archives

My own photo archives of the VAB (available trough Flickr)


It looks promising. I’ll follow your build with interest.


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I wish a modern kit of this would come out.

I have this kit without the extra’s, will be interesting to watch this build1

Heller VAB is pretty basic. The dimensions are correct but the details are poor in many areas. You can throw in the bin the tools, the cable, the .50 cal MG and one of the exhaust shields.
There are a lot of sinkmarks on the roof. The rubber tires can be changed by one of the many replacement sets.
Depending on which time frame you want to depict your model in you can add more extras.


I really wish too, there are so much variants to do with a VAB. I don’t understand why the manufacturers haven’t done anything about this subject yet, perhaps a license issue?

It’s simple you have to strip the Heller kit from most of it’s components. You end up only with the hull and part of the underbelly pieces :grin:

Beginning with the “white room”…

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Finalizing the interior…

Getting the crews ready to ready to embark on the vehicle…

Adding the Eduard grills…


Nice, for number of years I have been thinking about purchasing this old heller kit and it’s fairly reasonable price on eBay. But I keep hoping Trumpeter or Meng or someone will come out with a new kit.

May I ask, what is your opinion on blast resin sets for this vehicle? I am correct to think that they are the only company do detail set for this?


Blast Models is a respectful company regarding resin conversions to me. Their products are full details reflecting a high standard of subject research. I have the chance to know them very well and I used to visit their shop in Paris quite often when they were still based there.

I really enjoy working on their resin conversion especially when it comes to French vehicles and I personally recommend their products.

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Talking about Blast details, I was very happy to discover a part included in the BL35006K VAB VALORISE conversion set that had nothing to do here if you wanted to build a standard uparmored version of the VAB. The assembly sheet just mentions not to use it. It has a role to play in fact if you do an uparmored VAB T20/13, did Blast had in project to do a full conversion of this vehicle?

Nonetheless It helped a lot to conceive my project :slightly_smiling_face:

The extra part that makes it all…

The part once fixed on the main body…

The project ready for a basic layer of paint…


@ChadRach, thanks for your input on blast models resin sets. I have seen several of their items on eBay but never pulled the trigger. I will sure to add few items of theirs into my inventory soon.

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Starting by a NATO Green base coat

Next step, a white coat…


Hi, nice! What kind of white paint are you using I also want to make a UN model, but find the Tamiya XF2 really bright white, almost fluorescend…

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I usually use a first coat of Tamiya XF-2 alone, then a second coat of Tamiya XF-2 mixed with Tamiya X-2. Once done, I break the brightness by using Abteilung 502 Faded UN White.

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Great work with lots of detail parts.
Looking forward to see the weathered vehicle.
Keep up the good work!

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Creating and applying painting templates

and its consequences…

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Applying an initial filter with Abteilung 502 Faded UN White and doing a dry run on Blast Models Uniroyal wheels…


The project is almost done…