Tuesday, November 10, 2015
Dragon Panther G Early Version
Today I completed the Dragon Panther G (Early Version) kit that wahj passed me. He had bought the kit many years ago but it remained unbuilt inside his cache of models until he rediscovered it recently. At the same time I had been thinking of building a Panther myself, but had held off based on my plan to keep my collection small - wahj had already built and painted a Panther, and since I don't see us fielding two Panthers in a game of Chain of Command, I didn't think it was justified. So all in all this was a happy coincidence.
The kit is of high quality and features a die-cast metal hull which fit together perfectly. It wasn't an easy build from the painting point of view though. Some parts had to be left off the main model while it was being painted, so some advance planning had to be done. The instructions for the side-skirts seemed to be wrong, and I had to look at photos of actual Panther tanks to figure out which way to glue them on. The accurate but fine anti-aircraft MG snapped towards the end of the build, and I cheated with the tracks as they were under tension and I simply taped them together, reinforced the joints with staples, and hid them behind the side-skirts. I also found it difficult to paint the tyres on the road wheels "inside the lines", and so cheated by smearing "mud" over them.
I did less weathering on the model than with the ISU-152, because the tank looked so good it didn't feel right to make it look too shabby. The decals are from the kit. I left off the decal for the rear turret numbers because I couldn't find a way to make them sit on the contours. Finally, I added some dried plants as foliage camouflage.
I can't wait to kill some Shermans or T34s with this big cat.