Finished? Already?

Have surprised myself and finished my three Japanese Type 89 medium tanks!  And varnished them, and photographed them in real daylight!  I think I’m more surprised with the fact that the weather was good enough to let me do that over the weekend, than I am at actually getting them finished!

At the end of the last blog post, the three tanks were all sitting looking nice and clean with white markings.  And I was a bit apprehensive about putting on the shading/muckying wash, ’cause it’s one of those things that can go wrong!  I was a bit concerned about getting all of them looking the same, since I’d have to put the wash on them over two days, but my wife came to the rescue!  What a star!

2018_0215_11465500She’d kept some of the really small plastic tubs that Lush products come in, so I got one and mixed up a Humbrol enamel black/chocolate mix in one (yes, one of the Lush products really is called “Dirty” – I’ve no idea what she does with the stuff, but she doesn’t seem to weather model tanks with it, even though some of it looks ideally suited for that purpose to me)!  I thin the paint mix, paint the whole vehicle, then clean it off with a brush dipped in white spirit.  The trick is getting it dark enough to provide a bit of shading on the darker camouflage colours while not making it too dark that the lighter colours end up looking too grubby!  It’s not ideal, but it’s a quick way to shade/mucky multi-colour camouflage patterns.  I then made sure I cleaned a bit more off the lighter brown, the yellow bands and the markings, just to leave them looking a bit more obvious.  After that, I used a fine brush to shade in round any detail that needed it.

2018_0216_10483500I managed to get two tanks done in an evening, with the last one done the following day (the Lush tub did its job and stopped the mixed wash from drying up). After that, I dry-brushed dark earth over the tracks and suspension and then drybrushed a sand colour over the whole vehicle, to pick out edges and rivets – this maybe looks too bright over the darker camouflage colours, but any darker and it probably wouldn’t highlight the lighter brown areas properly.  Last stage was to varnish them in Railmatch matt varnish.

2018_0217_12352500Once they’d dried I got them straight onto some scenery for some photos.  I opted to have them cautiously advancing through a Chinese village with some infantry escorting them.

2018_0217_12345200Buildings are scratchbuilt from card and the infantry are ESCI and Waterloo 1815 plastic figures.

2018_0217_12371400I’m pleased with how these have turned out and, thanks to Azazel’s February painting challenge, I’ve finally got them ready for action!  Still have some more Japanese WW2 vehicles to do, but getting three multi-tone camouflaged vehicles finished is good progress.  Now need to work out what to try and finish next!  Hopefully something less colourful!


    • Thanks Mark, appreciate that! I’ve always liked Japanese tanks, probably because they look that little bit different with their asymmetric shape and machine guns sprouting out! My wife discovered Lush skincare products last year and she’s never looked back (good news for PayPal)! So I’m led to believe they make soap, skin cream and moisturiser etc. and are eco friendly. Some of the products come in plastic tubs of varying sizes with screw down lids and they look quite useful for storing stuff in – I’ve “acquired” one of the larger tubs to mix up some basing material I want to use for my Paraguayan War figures! So I buy wargames figures, my wife buys Lush stuff, keeps the peace!

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    • Thank you, I’m glad you like them! I’ve changed the colours I mix for the wash, and the way I apply it, and I’m a lot happier with the way it’s come out! I’ve always found three-tone cammo tricky to shade, highlight and mucky, but a wash and drybrush seem to produce half decent results fairly quickly! This is just as well, as at some point I need to tackle WW2 Hungarian and Finnish tanks, both of which carry three-tone schemes!

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