Wednesday, 8 July 2015

The Winter Tiger.

I am more of an aircraft builder, but sometimes an armour subject comes along that really fires my imagination.

Having seen a build of a German Tiger I tank in winter camouflage I decided that I wanted    to explore armour building and have some fun trying new weathering techniques.
I started out with Tamiya's 1/35 Tiger I kit and and some Mini-Art German tank crew figures.

The build process was a joy, the kit went together effortlessly. The next part was the painting. I chose Tamiya acrylics Flat White and German Grey and sprayed the camo pattern using blue tac masks to achieve a soft edge to the camouflage.  The model then had a wash of medium brown and white. Once dry, this was varnished in clear gloss and then weathering with oil paints was lightly applied with a fine tip brush.

The figures were assembled and primed before being painted with enamels and oils. They were completed quickly due to the nature of their uniforms!

The display base was a wood plinth base with foam layered on top. This was then coated in PVA and scenic snow and when nearly dry the model to placed onto the display base and some more scenic snow was applied to the tanks tracks and weathered. In all, a very enjoyable project.



"The Tiger was the main tank spearhead for the Germans at Kursk. Here it did not do well. Many tanks had left their factories before rigorous mechanical checks. As a result, many suffered major mechanical malfunctions during the battle. In the famous tank battle at Kursk of July 12th, the Tiger could hit a T34 from 1500 metres but when the two got to close-quarter fighting, the T34 proved to be superior.

It was in the retreat from Russia that the Tiger proved its defensive qualities that were to hinder both the Russians on the eastern Front and the Allies on the Western Front. On October 18th, 1943, one Tiger led by Sepp Rannel, destroyed 18 Russian tanks. Michael Wittman, another Tiger commander, had kills of 119 tanks, including great success in Normandy after D-Day. In Normandy, Wittman’s Tigers destroyed 25 British tanks, 14 half-tracks, 14 Bren-gun carriers in a short and bloody battle around the village of Villers Bocage. However, Wittman lost 6 Tigers which were very difficult to replace – as were his experienced crew."