Tamiya M41 Walker Bulldog 1/35
I originally wanted to make this kit after my first armor kit the shop I go to couldn’t get it until February. I got itchy to build something and I built the Chieftain. This kit came in and I started work. The kit had very few parts and took less than an afternoon to throw together. There are some errors with the kit that are apparent without even having intimate knowledge of the tank, namely the missing lifting hooks at the front of the hull and the bush guard on the turret. The tracks are also less than stellar as they completely lack detail on one side. I also replaced the machine gun with one with an extra from the M48A3, my first kit.
Painting was quick and easy so the model should have been scheduled to be finished at least a week ago. The only issue was that the weathering was a fiasco. After I painted the model, I made simulated chips on corners and edges by dry brushing Vallejo’s gunmetal grey and then went over it with highly diluted Tamiya’s Sasebo Arsenal Gray. This worked well. Everything was sealed with a clear coat, decals were put on, then sealed again. Everything was fine until about here. I first ran diluted Vallejo brown wash to take down the whiteness of the decals. Even though this was 50/50 water to wash, it was still much darker than I expected. I had used the wash before and it never seemed that dark, possibly because I was never going over bright white surfaces. I wiped most of it off, but there were dark parts that I couldn’t wipe off and I was afraid of putting a little more muscle into thinking that I might dig into the clear coat.
After this I saw that my “chips” were larger than I wanted so I decided to put a little pigmented rust on the edge. The specific pigment was new rust which was definitely a little too bright. I mixed it the pigment with a little of the brown wash to darken it. This worked well, or at least the first batch did. Seeing that the first little corner came out with a nice dark brown rust color I made more. I made more and threw it on with the intention of wiping it off and then letting it dry so that there would be some rust in the crevices. This time the rust dried bright orange which was very disturbing.
Instead of a getting a brush and trying to brush out the rust with water, I figured I would just throw a lot of dirt on which will cover the rust. As the only dirt pigments I had were European Earth and Light Sienna, I threw on Light Sienna. I again mixed it with the brown wash and everything looked fine except that it dried light again. It looked as if someone had dumped a bunch of sand on it. I tried wetting paper towels and using them to either blot or pull away the pigment. I got it to a point where there was reasonable amount dirt, but all of the dirt was one color and it didn’t match the colors of the decals.
Eventually I make it out to my hobby shop and but the AK Wet Mud. I blot that on, pull some more of the Light Sienna off and everything is somewhat remedied. It looks like there was a heavy rain storm, the tank crew went out in the mud and did some maneuvers or just a walk around and maintenance check. All in all, it’s definitely a lot dirtier than the last tank I built.
11 additional images. Click to enlarge.