While it may seem like I have been building nothing but Sherman tanks recently, that is far from the case. Here are four T5 halftracks that I converted from Roco Dodge trucks and Roco and Paul Heiser halftracks and lots of little bits. The US Army built 24 of them only a few years before World War Two started. They were used to tow the 75mm pack howitzer, seen here in the left center of the photo. The pack howitzers are Lyzards Grin metal kits from about 1980 with new upgraded wheels. I still have more detail painting to do on both the halftracks and cannons. All eight of these models were pulled from the scrap heap of broken, melted, and damaged models and turned into something useful. Yes, melted, one of the Roco halftracks had melted undercarriage and tracks. I have no idea how that happened. Also you can see I am painting more civilians for the crowd scenes as the Shermans roll past on parade.
These are most of the parts that I use for a basic Paul Heiser Models plastic Sherman tank. Add the bow machine gun and the tool rack and you have 15 pieces. I got a full battalion of these, yes 53 tank models, a while back from Fidelis Models and I have finally gotten around to building them. They will be identical with the same stowage for late war US Army tanks fresh from the factory. Once I get them done, and before they are primered or painted, I may add some more fiddly bits. One of my three battalions for my WWII US Army Armored Division.
I keep a couple of them close by so I can accurately position the loaders oval hatch on the roof and the tool rack on the right rear sponson. It's as important to be uniform as it is to be accurate. I use Plastruct Plastic Weld glue because regular model glue does not hold the parts together as strongly.
The Sherman tank parts sprue for the little pieces common to all Sherman versions. I start with the bow machine gun and the tool rack. I anticipate that many of these parts will be used up before my Armored Division is finished. Some like the .50 caliber and .30 caliber machine guns often end up in other places. I am also working on T19 105mm howitzer halftracks and they got Paul Heiser .50 caliber machine guns on a pintle mount at the right rear.
The Paul Heiser Sherman tank instructions are pretty detailed. For those making a diorama or a display model these have a lot of good ideas on how to improve the model by using many of those little pieces on the parts sprue.
My Sherman tank parts box. These contain parts from Roco, Heiser and a few other versions of Sherman and other American tanks. There are turrets for the Canal Defense Light and those will get used eventually. I have a few junk Roco Shermans that will get some of these tracks. And many other of these parts will find their way into service over the next few months. I get boxes like this from places like Hobby Lobby, often for as little as a couple dollars. Look around the store because there are many similar boxes and I find for model purposes the least expensive are as good and the most expensive.
Most of the tanks in this particular photo have either been built in the last couple months, primer painted or painted olive drab. Recently it's been too hot and too humid to paint so that it will be a while before I catch up on painting. A few of these tanks are Roco Minitanks Shermans that have had their upper hull replaced, those tanks are likely over 50 years old. Many of the other tanks here are over 20 years old. Buy a few at a time, and before you know it, you have an Armored Division.
Thanks for reading.
Bunker Talk blog
Leave a comment on Facebook here:
Or on MeWe:
Mike Bunkermeister Creek