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Cyber Hobby Gruppe Fehrmann Tiger I
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Bill Plunk



Joined: 17 Sep 2006
Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Thu Dec 31, 2015 1:54 pm    Post subject: Cyber Hobby Gruppe Fehrmann Tiger I Reply with quote

Build log for Cyber Hobby (Dragon) kit #6335 with Atak Zimmerit and Model Kasten workable tracks.

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Bill Plunk



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PostPosted: Thu Dec 31, 2015 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reference Pics Reply with quote

F13 is a kind of one-off oddball tank that was thrown together with other vehicles into a makeshift unit, Gruppe Fehrmann, in April 1945. Not much is available in terms of photo references as a result but these three photos of it knocked out in the Ruhr area will help pull it all together. Wink






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Bill Plunk



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Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Sat Jan 02, 2016 4:01 pm    Post subject: WIP 01-02-16 Reply with quote

Every build has to start somewhere and usually with a German tank that usually involves the road wheels. Since I'm replacing the one-piece DS tracks with the workable MK tracks, I built up a short section of 10 links on the MK tracks to use as a fit gauge to make sure everything would play nice in this department. The MK set includes a jig that holds 5 links at a time and the guide horns are separate parts, so it's important to get things to line up properly to avoid problems down the road.



Then the 32 road wheel parts were removed from the sprues, cleaned up, and their mold seams removed with a sanding stick. The middle wheel halves were assembled together while the inner and outer wheels were left separate for obvious reasons for now. Two different styles of wheels are provided in the kit, I went with the G2-G6 combo because I had to pick one so it was a coin flip decision. Smile The sprockets and idlers were also cleaned up and assembled to round out the day's efforts.



Next up will be adding the suspension bars into the lower hull.
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Bill Plunk



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2016 4:07 pm    Post subject: WIP 01-07-15 Reply with quote

Finished off the remaining work on the first 3 steps in the instructions that deal with the suspension. First order of business was installing all of the torsion bars and their locking parts. That involved another 32 pieces but produces a nicely working suspension in the process so it's worth it. I used a pair of smooth copper clamps to ensure the final drive housings sat flush. Dragon designed the hull to flex inward at the top to help with the fit with the top hull and that will need a sprue spreader to correct but I'll deal with that later when I'm ready to construct that part.



I applied some careful amounts of liquid glue to the ends of the torsion bars that go into the locking parts inside the hull and dry fit the road wheels to make sure everything would set level.



That sets things up beautifully for the NFL playoffs as those kinds of games make for a great opportunity to build tracks in my experience while the game is on in the background. Smile
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Bill Plunk



Joined: 17 Sep 2006
Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 6:38 pm    Post subject: WIP 01-11-15 Reply with quote

Wild Card weekend was as good a time as any to begin the time-consuming job of tackling the tracks. Between the 4 games I managed to get the first track built. The MK set calls for 95 links per side but I found that only 94 did the trick nicely for the first one. Test fits with the sprocket and idler held in place with some blue-tack shows the sag produced using the large idler wheel option on the suspension.



Building the tracks is a pretty straightforward exercise. The MK set includes a jig that holds 5 links at a time and the pins are provided on handles that are designed to work with the jig to create the sections. Individual pins are provided to connect them together into the long run but occasionally you need to use some of the pins on the 4-pin groups as there aren't quite enough single pins to do the job. The 2 guide horns are separate parts that are installed per link to complete the job. The first track run consisted of 94 links or 470 total parts including the pins and took roughly 6 hours to get together.



One down, one to go! Smile Since the fenders weren't fitted to the Fehrmann, the tracks are going to be an important visual detail on this baby given their exposed nature.
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Bill Plunk



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Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Sun Jan 17, 2016 7:04 pm    Post subject: WIP 01-17-16 Reply with quote

Another round of playoff games this weekend meant more time working on the tracks! 2nd verse, same as the first! Wink



Both tracks are now done with 94 links per side and 940 parts in total. That leaves 10 extras in the set that are enough to populate the turret racks but not the front hull run. That will have to involve the kit-supplied individual links but won't be a big deal in the end.
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Bill Plunk



Joined: 17 Sep 2006
Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 4:54 pm    Post subject: WIP 01-25-16 Reply with quote

Haven't had a ton of time to work on things but still managed to make enough progress to be update-worthy. I started work on the hull proper by adding in the rear plate as called for in Step 4 but held off adding all of its details just yet. The hull side panels are called out in Step 7 and those were added at the same time to make sure they lined up with the rear plate correctly. Some small copper smooth-jaw clamps helped as the inner sides of the hull kept wanting to bow out slightly.



Next up I needed to address the slight hull warp that exists at the glacis area. Dragon deliberately designed the hull this way with the intent of helping ensure a tight fit but it just makes life harder, not easier, so a short length of sprue was cut to length and used as a spreader. After getting the right tension, I used some liquid glue at the ends to help lock it in place.



A quick test-fit with the hull roof, the front plate, and the glacis shows that things are working okay together if not quite perfectly. There's a small gap present with the hull roof and sides but that can be closed up when the hull roof is attached later using some rubber bands, finger pressure, and patience.



Once the spreader is set, I can go about getting the rest of the hull components together before starting in adding the zim panels.
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Bill Plunk



Joined: 17 Sep 2006
Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2016 5:25 pm    Post subject: WIP 01-28-15 Reply with quote

One of the inevitable conditions of a 'thrown-together' kit like these Cyberhobby combinations vs. a 'purpose designed' kit is that while all of the necessary elements are there, they weren't all designed to work together as a whole kit. This introduces some little discrepancies along the way but nothing that isn't insurmountable...but you do have to watch out for them. A couple of them popped up today while I was working on getting the hull together. More on that below.

First order of business was getting the glacis and front plate ready to go. The instructions would have you install the glacis plate first and then add the hull top with the front plate already attached to it in Step 13. That not only produces an inaccurate layout, it's impossible to do as the glacis rests on top of a shelf at the base of the front plate and not the other way around. Smile After looking at the reference pics, I decided to remove the left side front fender but left the right one in place since I can't be sure if it was or wasn't attached. I also added the Atak zim panels using a combination of Gator Grip Thin Blend glue and liquid glue run around the edges after the panels were in place to lock everything down. Squadron white putty helped fill in some small gaps and I removed a small section on the front plate with some curved scissors to simulate some chipping damage to the zim. F13 is pretty beat-up in the photos and while I won't be showing it as a knocked out vehicle, some of the wear and tear it's sporting will be included. The PE parts for the ball MG cover are mislabelled as M4 when they are actually M40 on the fret.



While that set, I added the engine bay details for the hull interior. The radiator tops and hoses can't be installed without interfering with the hull top, so they were left off. I will also be posing the rear deck hatches closed so I didn't bother with the PE details there either. There just needs to be something there through the grating as once the PE screens are added and it's all painted, visibility into the interior is near zero.



The hull nose plates received their zim panels as well and the glacis and front plate were installed permanently into position. I didn't apply glue to the sides of the front plate where they mate up with the hull sides just yet as they needed to be able to flex a bit to match up with the hull roof.



Speaking of that, the roof was added next. I started at the front and worked my way back to the rear. Liquid glue was run into the seams and a combination of finger pressure and light use of compression clamps got it together. I had to be careful at the front as too much pressure from the clamps would cause the roof to bulge upward, not a good thing!



One the roof was set, the clamps came off and I had to fix a couple of spots on either side with some Squadron White putty. The alignment of the cleaning rod holders on the roof plate doesn't match up with the notches on the hull because these come from two different kits.



That will get a chance to set solid overnight and tomorrow I'll work on the rear hull plate and possibly also the side panels if time permits.
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Bill Plunk



Joined: 17 Sep 2006
Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2016 6:01 pm    Post subject: WIP 01-29-15 Reply with quote

More fun with the zim panels today, this time around I focused on the side panels first. The reference pics for F13 show it pretty beat up but also clearly heavily battle damaged as a result of the action it was involved in. As a result, I decided to have some damage to the left side panel but not of the catastrophic variety. The turret is also going to get a lot of its zim removed/chipped up too, so some restraint is called for to avoid it overpowering the final look. Working from the photo, I used some small curved scissors and the fender mount points as landmarks to create the damaged areas. The zim panels are thin and a little fragile, so the small scissors did the job beautifully. I added some more small knicks and variations with a sharp #11 knife point.



One thing that Dragon/CH overlooked with the front plate is that it's missing the final fender mount hub...it's present on the unused other part that is correct for the standard Late Tiger but not on the part F20 that is used on this Tiger...so I had to scrounge up some replacements. I found the perfect solution on the TE sprue...there are 4 padlock bodies there that aren't going to be used since they are designed for the turret stowage bin and F13 didn't have a bin. Some careful sanding/trimming had them down to the right size and glued in place. The right side zim panel was added fully intact to counter the damaged left side.



The last of the hull zim was added to the rear plate to get it ready for the details that install there.



Following the diagrams in Steps 5 and 6, I added the rear plate details. There's a weird error...the cold weather starter (Y10 or Y7) is first shown installed, correctly, on the support posts between the exhausts and then in the next diagram it's shown with arrows installing into the already covered crank starter port! I suppose you could do that if you wanted to for a dio or similar...but definitely not appropriate for the F13 build. Wink I filled in the holes in the zim panel that were intended to take a C towing hook since that's not correct for this Tiger. I also left off the tool box and shelf that the instructions call for in Step 6 as it's clear in the reference photo that this also wasn't present on F13.

While the instructions indicate that the heat shields, parts C8 and C9, are an optional feature, I left them off as those are also clearly missing from F13 in the photo. The jack and small tool that goes under the exhausts will get added in later after the hull has been painted.



All in all a good day's progress! Next up will be getting the rest of the engine deck stuff squared away.
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Bill Plunk



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Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Sat Jan 30, 2016 5:03 pm    Post subject: WIP 01-30-15 Reply with quote

Made some progress today with the engine deck details as called out in Steps 8 and 10. It's important to note that while the rear access hatches are designed with pins to make them positionable, Dragon neglected to take into account that they also have notch tabs that align with the main deck plate that make it impossible to fit them from underneath as they would have you do it. The solution is simple, just remove the pins and install them at the position desired. In my case, fully closed! Smile

The middle access panel has 4 mount holes that are meant to take the brackets for a set of Feifel air cleaner hoses but never tells you to fill them in. In fact, they continue in the diagram drawings showing them open right to the end of the instructions. Easily resolved with some putty, but best done before you fit the round J13 cover...ask me how I know that. Wink

Last but not least, I added the pre-formed brass screens for the deck grilles. Be careful not to install the J19 latches on the rear hatches until after the screens are in place or the screens can't fit over them otherwise.

As a small added touch, I had a scrap of resin zim left over that I added to the front corner of the left hull side to add a little more variety in that spot.





As you can see, there's a lot of open holes all over the front half of the hull roof meant to take various tools and other bits of gear. I'll have to evaluate those next and see what will stay or go depending on their location.
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Bill Plunk



Joined: 17 Sep 2006
Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 6:29 pm    Post subject: WIP 02-01-16 Reply with quote

I spent some time today working on the main deck tool arrangements. These are dealt with mostly under Step 10 but also Step 12...and in a weird omission, the instructions have no Step 11. I think that sets a new standard of strangeness when it comes to Dragon kit instructions. Smile

I filled in the mount holes for the S-mine launchers and added the kit-supplied PE mount plates as called out in Step 12. I also opted to use some generic Griffon PE clamps for the various tools as they are only 2-part vs. the kit-supplied PE clamps that are 3-part. I tested out each individual tool's placement and filled in a couple of open mount holes that weren't needed with Squadron White putty in different spots.

It may not look like much, but it's an important hurdle to clear. I still need to add the driver's and gunner's hatches along with the Bosch lights to round out this area.

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Bill Plunk



Joined: 17 Sep 2006
Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2016 3:44 pm    Post subject: WIP 02-02-16 Reply with quote

Managed to sneak in a little bit of time today on the Tiger and knocked off the rest of the main hull details. I decided to add the tool clamps for the glacis-mounted large shovel but won't be installing the shovel itself. For that, I used a combination of the kit-provided PE and the Griffon clamps as well as some scale diagrams in Achtung Panzer to help with their placement as the instructions are a little off in their suggested arrangement. All of the tools are removable from the clamps and are just dry-fit for now to show how tight it all is.

The hull hatches were added and installed in the closed position. I used some small blobs of blue tack to mask the periscope front faces and painted some Testors Non-buffing Metalizer Steel to their backsides to create a slightly reflective surface that will show through after they are fully painted/detailed and the masking removed.

In doing my features & dates research, I came across an interesting detail that indicated the right side Bosch light was deleted in August 1943 but the conduit and rosette 'plug' into the hull were left in place. I thought that would add some character and it also fit in with the later zimmed hull features timeframe that the F13 reference photos suggest, so I left the right side light off entirely. I used the kit-supplied pre-bent steel wire for the right side and would've done the same for the left except it pinged into oblivion while I was working with it. Out came some 0.5mm solder so I could scratch a reasonably similar replacement. To install the light itself, you have to remove the four molded-on bolts on the mount plate (the instructions neglect to mention this), easily done with the trusty old #11 blade.





Next up will be moving on to the turret!
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Bill Plunk



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2016 5:39 pm    Post subject: WIP 02-04-15 Reply with quote

Started in on the turret and main gun today now that the main hull had all of its goodies completed. The Atak resin set includes two different zim options for the turret, one that's a wider pattern than the hull and one that matches it. I chose to go with the wider pattern as you see that a lot with the Tiger turrets and it has the added bonus of emphasizing another subtle difference with the hybrid hull.

After removing the pour plug from the Atak resin mantlet, I added an RB Models MG34 brass MG in place of the kit part. It's just the end of the muzzle and not the whole gun, but it fits perfectly in the opening with the right length protruding as well, so a two-for-one!



Step 14 pulls the main gun and mantlet together and the kit includes the option of a solid aluminum barrel or multi-part styrene parts. I opted for the aluminum barrel and used the spring that's in the kit to keep it in the proper length alignment. While it's not very clear in the instructions, part A9 serves as a retaining ring that fits over the end of the barrel inside the breech. That means you've got to think through the assembly steps carefully before committing to glue. The spring actually helps with this as you can push the barrel in further than needed, attach the retaining part, then install the recoil mechanism halves around it to get it all snug. Even though I'm not going to have any of the hatches open, I went ahead and added the recoil guards and basket called out in Step 15 to add some weight to counter the barrel.

The muzzle brake is a three part assembly and has a d-shaped opening at the base that is meant to match up with the styrene barrel parts. The metal barrel has a full round mount pin though, so the opening was modified with a round needle file until it would fit correctly. The instructions note this as well so it's not a surprise, just a necessary evil that goes along with the metal barrel option. I added the recoil sleeve to the mantlet as well but the brake has to be left off until after everything is ready to go together, otherwise it can't fit through of course from the back as I deliberately put it together to do. Why, you might ask? I found it easier to do that way to ensure that everything lined up correctly and it gave some added flexibility in ensuring the muzzle brake went on straight. Smile





Step 16 pulls the turret halves together and the fit here was decent, I ended up using a small amount of putty at the front join. The mantlet has a tight friction fit into the swivel points and I think that created the slight gap. Not a big deal. I added the interior insert for the escape hatch and had to do some slight sanding and trimming for the Atak hatch part to fit correctly with it, nothing major. Turret roof went on next and the view port was added to the left side only as the right side will get a resin zimmed version later. The pistol port was also left off temporarily as I need to cut an opening for it in the Atak zim panel first.



Since F13 didn't have a turret bin, I needed to fill in the spots on the turret rear that were meant to take it. I used some sheet styrene to fill the large rectangular hole combined with some putty and light sanding. While the Atak zim panels are designed to fully cover this area, it's clear in the photos that F13 didn't have zim where the bin attached, so I'll have more trimming to do there too as the next step.



Things are moving along on schedule, always a good thing! Smile
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Bill Plunk



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2016 8:09 pm    Post subject: WIP 02-05-16 Reply with quote

Today's mission was all about getting the rest of the turret done and ready to go. Building on the previous effort, I used a mechanical pencil and traced the outline of the pistol port so I could see it through the semi-transparent resin panel. This would help with determining what areas needed to be sanded/trimmed down later on. I also used the kit-supplied storage bin and outlined its edges to serve as a guide for where I needed to cut out the zim panels to show that bare area.



I started on the right side of the turret first since that panel was going to be left fully intact. Unlike the flat hull panels, the curves here plus the section I cut out for the exposed area at the rear made it more challenging to get it glued down. For these, I used a combination of CA gel and liquid glue along with clamps in different spots to get it to all snug down.



Once the glue had set, I added the Atak resin viewport in place of the kit's non-zimmed part.



Now for the left side. This one was trickier as I would be removing a lot of the panel in multiple spots. Before taking it apart, I took advantage of the fact that it has the slots already marked out for the spare track holders. This is something missing from the kit-provided turret because on the Late Tiger kit, there are molded-in depressions that take them, but that turret isn't used in this kit due to the hybrid combo. Mechanical pencil outlined the openings for the two holders that wouldn't have zim around them to create placeholder marks. The rear bin section was removed as well and some damaged area created at the top edge of the turret side.

After gluing the main chunk down with CA gel and liquid glue, I used the port opening in the turret side to cut out a matching opening in the zim panel so the port could install. The pencil outline created earlier let me know where to sand down the raised zim with a round needle file so the port would sit flush without having to cut a circular opening to match it. It's worth noting here that the kit instructions don't tell you about adding the port's plug, part A3, to the port itself (assuming you want to show the port closed like I do). I used some of the left-over zim to apply a pattern to the port itself after cutting out openings for its mount bolts and then installed the whole port into the opening with liquid glue. Worked like a charm!



Now that I was done with all the clamping and handling involved with the zim application, I added the remaining turret details called out in Steps 17-18 dealing with the hatches and ventilator. The commander's cupola is conveniently provided as a one-piece deal as a new part but it didn't quite match up to the opening in the turret roof. I had to trim down the 'legs' around its base so it would sit flush. I didn't bother with adding the clear glass or other interior bits since it would be closed up. I also added the bottom portions of the spare track holders, the top parts will get added later when the links are ready to be installed. The instructions can't make up their minds as to what these parts should be numbered as (first they are R4s, then one becomes G28, then they all switch back to R4s) in three different designations in the same step...I went with them all as R4s, so hopefully that won't cause an issue...it will be minor if it does. Smile Last but not least, I used some scrap zim to create a small chunk on the forward turret area that more or less matches up with what shows on the reference photo as a little added detail.





And a quick little test to make sure everything is playing nice, I dry-fitted the turret to the hull.





Next up will be starting the painting process!
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Bill Plunk



Joined: 17 Sep 2006
Posts: 1770

PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2016 4:24 pm    Post subject: WIP 02-12-15 Reply with quote

Got the first round of paint work done today on this beast. First up is the ubiquitous 'wheels-on-a-stick' phase that is a requirement for any German WW2 tank project. Smile Toothpicks + blobs of blue-tack poster putty and a block of foam sure makes life a lot easier. I used Model Master enamel Italian Dark Brown as my primer coat.



The turret and hull received the same primer coat treatment. Once that had touch dried, I used some small pieces of blue painter's tape to provide general masking and airbrushed a custom mix of enamel red oxide. The mix is one I keep on hand for needs just like this and is essentially a combination of Insignia Red and Flat Black at a roughly 90/10 ratio if I recall correctly...it's been around for a while! Smile



This will get a chance to cure as I will have to do a lot more masking to preserve these areas with the follow-on coats of dark yellow and camo pattern colors. Definitely a start, though!
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