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US Special Forces "War Pig"

M-1078 LMTV

Welcome to

the kmk academi

I decided to aim for quality, not for speed, and if that would result in not having it finished before Scale World, so be it. All accessories were put aside and I started with the vehicle.

Painting the War Pig

Although the model was already cleaned, I sprayed a thin layer of Methanol onto the surface of the model to get rid of any leftover fingerprints or other greasy spots. If you want to try this method, be sure to wear the right personal protection and always use it outside or in a well ventilated room! For airbrushing I like to use Tamiya and Gunze Sangyo acrylic paints (both can also be mixed without any problems), thinned down with Tamiya’s genuine lacquer thinner (bottle with the yellow cap) at a ratio of 25% paint / 75% thinner. For general airbrushing I prefer my Harder&Steenbeck Infinity airbrush (compressor set at 1bar), for finer airbrushing I’ll grab my Iwata CM

(spraying at 1.3-1.5bar). Adding some 25% Clear (X-22) to my paint mix will result in an even smoother satin finish, which is the ideal base for the upcoming filters, and thus avoiding that often seen rough surfaces. I prefer to spray my models first with a light coat of Semi-gloss Black (X-18) which will not only serve as a base coat to prevent shine trough of the different colors of the plastic, resin and PE on the model, but also as a last check for any irregularities in the surfaces. If so, this is the moment to make some last corrections with putty before airbrushing of the actual layers starts. I started with the cabin interior, mixing Field Green (Gunze H340) and Sandy Yellow (Gunze H79) until it matched the green in the pictures. The Sandy Yellow will also avoid too much contrast between the green interior and the sandy exterior once the model is finished. I sprayed several thin layers ensuring the black will still shine through a little bit in all edges and corners, acting as a pre-shade. I lightened up the green using more Sandy Yellow and sprayed some blotches as a first weathering, and for highlighting those areas which receive more direct light from above. For the gauges and placards I used the fantastic decal sheets from Mike Grant Decals. Although intended for aircrafts, they can also be very useful on vehicles. Gauges were punched out separately and applied to the dashboard.

Glasses were simulated with a drop of satin varnish. All details were painted using Vallejo. Some fine scratches, wear and tear were added too. The panel lines and details were picked out using pin washes of Vandyke Brown oil paint, the dust on the floor and into the crevices were created using several thin washes of Humbrol Brown Yellow (94), Mid Stone (84) and Khaki Drill (72). I prefer paints for creating dust instead of pigments because the latter ones will make your model look too dull and dead.

The communication equipments were painted with Vallejo, trying to create as much as possible contrast to enhance all those fine details. This is a technique I also like to use on my aircrafts and I got my inspiration from Villalba, one of my favorite aircraft modelers. A quick search on the net resulted in some nice screen maps, which were printed, cut to size, glued to the monitor screens and painted with a layer of matt varnish, giving it a realistic finish. Finally the radios and other equipment were glued in place and the cabin interior was masked off using paper tissues and Tamiya tape.

The exterior received several layers of Sandy Yellow, each pass adding more white to the Sandy Yellow to create the highlighted surfaces which receive more light from above. The lower side of the cargo bay was kept almost black acting as a shadow. Not completely satisfied about the yellow I added an orange filter to the whole model, using Humbrol Orange (82) thinned down with odorless White Spirit at a ratio of 5% paint / 95% thinner. Using a flat moistened brush (not soaked otherwise it will act like a wash) this colored thinner was applied to the model. 

The next day pin washes were added around all details using Vandyke Brown (403) Rembrandt oil paint to give the model more depth and to accentuate all details. Paint was thinned down approx. 20% paint / 80% thinner and applied with a 000 brush from the Winsor & Newton Series 7. Don’t forget to wet the surface with some thinner before the pin wash is added, otherwise the wash will not flow around the details but it will spread all over the surface, this way darkening the model which has to be avoided on such a light colored model. The chassis and suspension were treated with washes and filters, this time using Burnt Sienna (411) for a warmer look. As I didn’t wanted to cover my model with dust I only added some dust to strategic places on the lower chassis using the same sandy colors as described above. Weathering of the complete model would be a waste of time because of all the stowage and cargo that would be added at the final stage, and as I was dealing with a deadline. The previously taken pictures would help to determine which parts of the model would still be visible once all accessories where in place. Lots of scratches, scuff marks and chippings were added using different mixes of VanDyke Brown (403), Permanent Madder Brown (324), Nickel Titan Yellow Light (279) and Titanium White (644) oil paints. The main reason I opted for oil paints for the weathering stage is the long drying time because this will give me plenty of time for making any corrections. Several thin washes (filters) of VanDyke Brown with a very small amount of Permanent Madder Brown will help to create shadow and filthy areas, while panels can be lightened up using filters of Nickel Titan Yellow Light and Titanium White. Some final chipping were added using my favorite Vallejo color SS Camouflage Black Brown (822). Sparely rust streaks were created using Burnt Sienna. Try to add the chipping and scratches (light and heavy) as random as possible and be aware to add them to logical places. Details were picked out using thinned white. All these techniques are very easy to apply and the result will be a nice model with lots of tonal variation to look at. The rubber tires were hand painted with Vallejo Black Grey and “dusted” with a wash made of Humbrol Mid Stone. I declared the LMTV ready at this stage, and any necessary changes or enhancements to the color or weathering would be made once all accessories where in place.

Painting the accessories

I was fully aware the biggest challenge of this project would be the “complete look” of the model with its diversity of colors of all accessories and vehicle, and they would have to blend in completely. To achieve this I decided to add a small amount of Sandy Yellow to each color.

I started with the PSP planking, which were airbrushed with Alclad Duraluminium (ALC-102), toned down with thin washes of Brown Bess and Mid Stone. The netting were hand painted with several earth and sand colors. When dry I attached them, together with the PSP planking, jack, stretcher and towing bar, to the sides using ropes and straps made of Tamiya tape. The jerry cans and ammunition boxes were airbrushed separately using various green and sand colored mixes to create the first differentiation. A few Mean Jerry Can decals from Echelon were added to the jerry cans to break up the colors. When dry these items were glued together with White Glue (again the previously taken pictures came in handy). To save time only the visible sides of these items were weathered as described above. Drums, canisters, gas bottles, heavy duty cases and all other equipment were airbrushed using different shades of Red, orange, Yellow, Black, Dark Grey, Blue etc., each color toned down with some Sandy Yellow. Weathering was added before gluing each item in place. Several slings and straps were made using Tamiya tape and Pro Art’s PE clamps, and hand painted after attaching them to the model.

At this time I received the first backpacks from Dirk. After cleaning and priming, these little gems were hand painted with Vallejo. It turned out to be a lot more work due to all the fine details on these backpacks, but at the end I’m very happy with the result. The set also includes a sports bag. Painted pale red and with the white Nike logo on, it’s a perfect eye catcher on the model. The .50 MG was airbrushed Black and received a dark brown glaze using Vallejo SS Camouflage Black Brown (822). 

When dry some graphite was added to the details using my finger tip. This will result in a smooth metallic sheen and I personally find this technique much more convincing than using Gun Metal. Some spent shells were liberally spread on the cargo floor. Other small items were hand painted and added to the stowage and cabin, and finally some blue water bottles completed the model. I must confess it was a lot of work, not only to paint and weather the model, but especially the huge amount of stowage, each time keeping in mind all parts had to blend into the whole picture. It was a big surprise to me that, although the huge amount of work, all painting and weathering took me about 4 weeks, and therefore still 2 weeks to go until the deadline! That would give me the opportunity to add a figure and to work on the presentation of the model.

For more and high diffenition pictures, look in our gallery

Hugo Luyten

~ Member of KMK since 2003~

Sd.Kfz. 251/21 Ausf.D “Drilling”

Welcome to

the kmk academi

Both Dragon and AFV Club presented this particular vehicle, but I prefer the AFV Club because of their quality of plastic which is a bit harder and therefore easier to clean up.

Construction begins

The kit consists of 250+ parts in their usually olive drab plastic, including soft vinyl tracks, soft vinyl ammo belts, a small PE fret and metal barrels for the triple MG151/20mm guns. The standard of moulding is excellent with almost no pin marks to be seen. The thin hull sides have details on both sides and nice bolt heads on the hull and fenders. The forward hull and engine compartment have been provided with realistic rendered weld seems. The hull interior is also nicely detailed, including the excellent tread plate pattern on the interior floor panels.

The fit is very good with only some minor flash on some parts, although some attention is needed with the assembly of the side walls and back wall: I had a gap of about 1mm width on top of the back wall. But this isn’t that difficult to correct. The soft vinyl tracks from the kit will be replaced with Friul tracks (set nr. ATL-07). A nicely detailed Notek light from MIG productions was used, as well as Aber tool clamps to replace the plastic ones. I did find some brass width indicators in my spare box. Voyager has a nice PE update set and most of the items were used on the model. Nevertheless I also used some pieces of the Lion Roar exterior set. Some details were made using Evergreen. As I didn’t liked the flash suppressors on the MG151 in the kit I decided to make new ones out of brass tube. Pay attention to the angled position of the two outer suppressors when gluing them to the guns. When construction was finished, I noticed on my reference pictures that the crew removed the armored plate in the middle of their tight fighting compartment. When you place the figures into the compartment you know why. So I removed the PE plate and added some bolts to the mounting holes. The flash on the soft vinyl ammo belts were very hard to remove, but when you freeze them for 24h it is a lot easier to remove the flash with a fresh sharp blade.

Painting the Drilling

Painting and weathering of the interior was done before assembly of the hull for better access during painting. The gun mount, tracks and wheels were also kept apart. The interior was airbrushed and weathered as described further down below. Accessories were added to the interior and when done the upper and lower hull were glued together. The seam between side walls and back wall was filled with plastic strip and superglue. When dry this seam was sanded smooth and the top of the interior masked off with Tamiya tape.

To remove any fingerprints and greasy spots I first sprayed a thin layer of Methanol onto the surface of the model. Be sure to wear the right personal protection and always use it outside or in a well ventilated room! For airbrushing I like to use Tamiya acrylic paints, thinned down with their genuine lacquer thinner (the bottle with the yellow cap) at a ratio of 25% paint / 75% thinner. This, and adding some 25% Clear (X-22) to my paint mix, will result in a smooth satin finish and thus avoiding that often seen rough surfaces of Dark Yellow. I prefer to start with a light coat of Semi-gloss Black (X-18) which will not only act as a base coat, but also as a first step of the color shades I like to work with while airbrushing. Starting with a thin layer of Yellow, made out of Dark Yellow (XF-60) and Deck Tan (XF-55) at a ratio of approx. 60%/30%, I sprayed the whole model being careful that the black will still shine through a little bit on the edges of the panels, acting as a pre-shading. This will serve as a first step of weathering/discoloring which will give the model more depth. For the second layer more Deck Tan was added to the base color and each panel was airbrushed separately starting at the centre and working towards the outside, again paying attention not to completely cover the previous layer of Yellow. White was added to the mix and the third layer was sprayed, again reducing the area of each panel to be airbrushed. The green cammo patches were airbrushed with a mixture of Flat Green (XF-5) and Dark Yellow (XF-60) at a ratio of 80%/20%. The centre of the patches were lightened by adding more Dark Yellow to the base color. The brown patches were airbrushed with a mixture of Red Brown (XF-64) and Dark Yellow (XF-60) at again a ratio of 80%/20%. And as with the green, the centre of the patches were lightened again by adding more Dark Yellow to the brown mix. I also used the lightened yellow highlight mix to add some rain marks in a random manor to break up the panels even more. The harsh contrast of these stripes will disappear with the upcoming filters. The next day I wasn’t really satisfied with the result: The yellow was way too light and the cammo pattern too harsh. So I decided to spray a few thin filters on the complete model, not only to darken the yellow but also to pull the cammo colors together. This filter was made out of 5% Tamiya Dark Yellow and 95% thinner. Before applying the decals I sprayed a layer of Clear (X-22). I used the kit decals as they are of high quality and very thin. Micro Set and Sol were used to adapt them to the surface, and after a drying time of two hours I again applied several thin layer of Clear, this time only on top of the decals. After drying I sprayed the whole model with the brand new satin varnish X-35 from Tamiya. It can be sprayed in very thin layers and dries immediately and gives just enough bite for the next filters and washes. As a first step of the weathering process I applied several filters to the whole model to give it a worn look. I prefer Humbrol enamel paint thinned down with odorless White Spirit at a ratio of 5% paint and 95% thinner. Using a flat moistened brush these filters were applied to the model, with 3 hours drying time between the filters. Some very nice colors to use as a filter on Dark Yellow are Humbrol Brick Red (70) and Khaki drill (72). After a few days I started with the second stage of weathering. Pin washes were added around all details using Vandyke Brown (403) and Sepia (416) oil paints to give the model more depth and to accentuate the little details. I prefer the oil paints of the Rembrandt Series, produced by Talens, because of their very fine pigments. Paint was thinned down approx. 20% paint / 80% thinner and applied with a high quality 000 brush from the Winsor & Newton Series 7. After allowing the model to dry for a few days (because of the oil paints) I added more dirt to the lower parts of the panels using local filters made of thinned down Van Dyck Brown, Burnt Sienna (411) and Permanent Madder Brown (324) oil paint, the latter one only very sparingly and well thinned down. Rain marks were added also using the same colors. Lots of scratches, scuff marks and chippings were added using different mixes of VanDyke Brown (403), Permanent Madder Brown (324), Nickel Titan Yellow Light (279) and Titanium White (644) oil paints. Several filters of VanDyke Brown with a very small amount of Permanent Madder Brown will help to create shadow and filthy areas, filters of Nickel Titan Yellow Light and Titanium White can be used to lighten up the panels if necessary. Sparely rust streaks were created using Burnt Sienna. Some final chipping were added using Vallejo’s SS Camouflage Black Brown (822), my favorite color. Try to add the chipping as random as possible and vary in size and density. Tools were hand painted using Vallejo Model Color paints. Some dusting was applied only to a few places to give the viewer the impression of a dusty looking vehicle, Humbrol Khaki Drill (72) was used for this. People ask me in which order I perform my weathering. When it comes to weathering there is no fixed sequel. As long as you use oil pants you can always go back and forward between the previous steps, and if you’re not satisfied with the result one can easily wipe off the oil paint with a moistened brush and try again. Varying in the methods above will result in a nice and interesting model with lots of tonal variation to look at. As a final step I added a small amount of pigments only to the lower part of the hull and running gear. I made a dry mix of MIG pigment powders (Dry Mud, Europe Dust, Beach Sand and Concrete) and applied this mix with a dry round brush. MIG pigment fixer was added carefully with a round brush to fix the powders to the surface. Hold the soaked brush against the edge of the panel, let the fluid flow all over the treated surface and leave to dry. The metal tracks received a grey primer and airbrushed with a dark mix of Tamiya’s Black (XF-1) and Brown (XF-64). The same mix of pigments as described above was dissolved using White Spirit and applied to the tracks with a flat brush. After drying, most of the pigment powders were brushed off again using a flat stiffened (old) brush. Afterwards some graphite powder was applied to the surfaces. The MG151/20mm guns were airbrushed Matt Black. When dry a dark brown glaze using Vallejo SS Camouflage Black Brown (822) was added to the surface for a smooth nice metallic sheen. Finally they were rubbed with graphite powder using my fingertip. The spare tracks, steel rope and metal can were painted and weathered separately and attached to the vehicle. Thin wire (ø0.1mm) was added to the sides to break these large surfaces.

The figures

I like to add a few figures to my models for scale references, and for this I used 2 figures from Dragon’s “Achtung JaBo!” figure set. After cleaning up using a scalpel and some very fine sandpaper I replaced the heads with those beautiful characteristic Hornet heads. The Hornet hands are also much better so I decided to replace them too. After priming, both figures were painted completely with Vallejo.

The groundwork

A small base was made to give the model a nice presentation. A piece of isolation foam was cut to the appropriate size and glued onto a wooden base plate. Evergreen sheet was used to cover the four sides. The foam was then covered with a thin layer of Polyfilla, and some roots from my garden and small stones were pushed into the Polyfilla. The road was sprinkled with fine sand and crushed cat litter. Pieces of Wildgras from Heki were used along the sides. 

The vegetation was made from different kinds of static grass and roots. Track markings were made before the Polyfilla was completely dry by gently pushing the original vinyl tracks into the still wet Polyfilla. Then the base was set aside for curing. I airbrushed the surface with the appropriate earth colours, and the grass was sprayed in different tones of green using Tamiya acrylics and MIG pigment powders. The rocks were hand painted with Humbrol earth colours. I painted the sides of the base in Satin Black and a printed nameplate was made as a finishing touch.

Word of thank

This is my second halftrack and I enjoyed it a lot. Using simple old school techniques, and presented on a small and simple base, one can create an attractive model to look at. I would like to thank my fellow modellers from my club (KMK) for their ideas, advices, remarks and the good times we have together, and especially my modelling buddies Rudi Meir, Staf Snyers, Ron Soeren and Pascal Tognon for the interesting discussions about weathering techniques.

References

• 215 Sd.Kfz.251 (Wydawnictwo Militaria)
• 346 Sd.Kfz.251 (Wydawnictwo Militaria) Model specifications
• AF35082 Sd.Kfz. 251/21 “Drilling” (AFV club)
• ATL-07 Single link tracks for Sd.Kfz.251 (Friulmodellismo)
• PE35088 PE update for Sd.Kfz.251/21 Drilling (Voyager Model)
• LE35040 PE update Sd.Kfz.251 Ausf.D Exterior (Lion Roar)
• 35A03 German 1.4m antenna (JB Products)
• 35A05 German hand grenades (JB Products)
• 35A20 Movable Clamps and Clasps for German WWII vehicles (Aber)
• 35130 German NOTEK light (MIG Productions)
• 247 German tank fire Extinguisher WWII (Royal Model)
• AR35266 German WWII fire extinguisher placards (Archer Fine Transfers)
• TCM00 Towing cable 0.4mm (Karaya)
• A-11 MG34 set (Tank)
• SA60207 Metal Chain (Seil Models)
• 106 Oil tins (Plus Model)
• 132 Suitcase set (Plus Model)
• 152 Metal buckets and cans (Plus Model)
• 117 Ammunition and medical aid containers (Plus Model)
• 6191 Achtung JaBo! Figure set (Dragon)
• 35279 Hollow German Helmets WWII (Warriors)
• 35A69 German helmets chinstraps (Aber)
• 217 German Headphones (Royal Model)

For more and high diffenition pictures, look in our gallery

Hugo Luyten

~ Member of KMK since 2003~

US HMMWV with ASK and HArD kit

Welcome to

the kmk academi

Before I start painting, I always clean my models giving them a bath with some dish soap to remove dust, release agent and possible fingerprints from the surfaces. Then the model was put aside for a two night dry.

Painting

With my compressor set at 0.8 bar, I started with a thin layer of Tamiya Neutral Grey (XF53), thinned at a ratio of 30% paint / 70% thinner. This will serve not only as a primer for the Valleyo paint, but also to avoid any differences in colour that will shine through due to the different materials used in the model. For this kind of complex models, it’s really advisable to plan your painting sequence. I decided to start with the complete 3-tone camouflage, followed by painting the additional armour, then detail painting and weathering of the interior and accessories, and to end up with the final weathering of the complete vehicle. 

I choose Tamiya NATO colours Green (XF67), Brown (XF68), Black (XF69) and diluted them with their genuine Lacquer Thinner. As a preparation for the upcoming filters and washes, I always add some Tamiya Clear (25%) to the paint. This will result in a smooth satin surface of the paint, which is ideal for applying filters and washes. Spraying 4 to 5 thin layers will give a much better result than 1 heavy layer, and the details will stay sharp. The Iwata Custom Micron is a perfect airbrush for this which allows you to spray very thin coats of paint without any overspray. Thinning down the paint at 20% paint / 80% thinner and working with 1.4 bar (this works best for me when using the Iwata) you will be able to spray very thin layers. Make sure you ventilate the room well because that thinner smells awful! The armour plates were masked off and sprayed with a layer of Valleyo Sand (075). The Valleyo Model Air paint is acrylic based and comes in small plastic bottles. Although it is not really necessary, I prefer to dilute the paint with about 25% of their genuine thinner. Be sure you shake the bottle well before use. The adhesion of Valleyo paint to plastic and resin is not that good, so my advice is always to use a primer first. Another point of attention when airbrushing Valleyo paint is to check every couple of minutes the needlepoint and nozzle for any remainder of drying paint, which will definitely cause paint splatters onto your model or even obstruct your airbrush. Just take a small brush moistened with Airbrush Cleaner and give the nozzle a quick cleanup. Adding about 10% White to the Sand, the centre of panels and doors were painted. Start in the middle and work towards the outside, making sure that you don't spray the whole panel. Work in very thin layers and each successive layer covering a smaller area of the centre of the panels. These steps will act as the first part of the weathering phase. The canvas roof was painted with Tamiya Olive Green, each layer adding more Flesh. After cleaning my airbrush I added more depth to the cammo by gently drybrushing only the centres of each pattern, using Humbrol Flesh for the Green and Brown, and a dark mixed Green-Black colour for the NATO Black. Be careful not to overdo this. A thin coat of Games Workshop's Purity Seal varnish straight from the tin can will protect the base layers during the next weathering step. All warning labels were added to the interior, using Micro Set and Sol to assure that they would fit the surface nicely. After this I painted all the details, seats, safety belts, radios and screens, cables, fire extinguisher, etc. using my reference pictures as a guide. The screens for the laptop and Blue Force Tracker were downloaded from the internet, resized to fit, printed and simply glued in place. When dry these were covered with a thin coat of satin varnish. I added several pinwashes to all the details and seams, made of different oil paint mixes of Black and Vandyke Brown. I prefer to use a wash which consists of about 20% paint diluted with 80% thinner, applied to a surface which is already been wetted with some pure thinner. This way the pinwash will easily flow around the details without leaving any drying marks. Final weathering of the interior was done with a light treatment of Humbrol filters and dustwashes, as described in the exterior section, to create all the dust on the floor and into corners. All accessories were painted using Valleyo Model Color acrylics and glued in place before attaching the roof in its final position. A nice addition is the interior cooling fan the driver has installed in front of the dashboard, in preparation to hotter circumstances? As I wasn't satisfied about the desert coloured panels, I added several thin filters using Humbrol Orange (82). This resulted in a more warm and realistic colour. Two filters of Orange (82) en Dark Grey (67) were used on the 3-tone cammo to give it a more filthy winter appearance. For those who aren't familiar with the use of filters: here is a brief explanation of the use and how to apply them to your model. As with pinwashes and drybrushes, filters are just another form of technique, which can be used to create certain effects onto your model. A filter will slightly differ the base colour, just like a coloured lense on a camera. Therefore it is necessary to dilute your paint at a rate of maximum 5% paint to 95% thinner. Take a wide brush moistened (not soaked otherwise it will act as a wash) with this coloured thinner and apply it to your model in a quick way. It's not necessary to do this precisely, just treat your whole model in less than a minute, always working downwards so that any remaining stripes will act as rain marks. It's possible that you won't see any difference, it that case apply another filter to the model. You will have to wait for at least 3 hours before applying the next filter, otherwise the filter will dissolve the previous one. Filters are also ideal for weathering, e.g. you can give several panels a slightly other appearance by using different colours. After painting all the details on the outside of the vehicle, again using Valleyo, I started applying several filters to the 3-tone cammo of the model, using Humbrol 84 (Midstone), 187 (Darkstone) and 170 (Brown Bess) as a first step in the weathering process. I prefer Humbrol paints to create dust layers above pigments, thus way preventing a dull looking surface. Another advantage of this technique is that you can remove the paint easily if you are not satisfied with the result. The desert coloured parts where treated with glazes, scratches and pinwashes using oils paints. My favourite ones are Vandyke Brown, Black, Nickel Titan Yellow Light and Permanent Madder Brown, all from the Talens Rembrandt range because of their very fine pigments. Now it was time to put the model aside for several days to make sure the Humbrol and oils paints will be completely dry. I made a mix of Humbrol paint, which was slightly lighter than each base colour, and started adding some streaks and very light chipping. Check your references for this part of weathering. Masks were cut out of Tamiya tape using the dimensions of the windshield wipers, the windshield received a quick blast of heavily thinned down Deck Tan, and was glued it into position. The mirrors were made of self-adhesive folio. 

Accessories

All accessories in the back, the barbed wire and towing lines (made of Tamiya tape) were added, so they can be partially blended in with the final weathering. One can also use colours to create or accentuate an atmosphere; the reason I painted the sling on the engine hood in a medium blue colour is to accentuate the cold weather appearance. More sand coloured filters were added to the sidewalls above and around the wheel bays until I was satisfied with the overall look. As a final step I made an earth coloured mix of MIG pigments and added this to the underside of the vehicle. Using an old toothbrush and my airbrush I splattered a very thin and light coat of mud on the front side of the vehicle. 
The snow chains were first painted with Valleyo German Cammo Black (822) and treated with Graphite using my finger to create a slight bare metal shine. The wheels received several earth coloured washes and were also treated with splashes of mud. Snowcoat was mixed with some thinned down White Glue and applied to the contact surface of the tires. 

Figure

I always like to put a figure beside the vehicle, not only to give more life and atmosphere, but it’s also ideal for scale reference. I did choose a white metal figure from InfinityShape which has an attractive pose. I only had to replace his weapon as the one in the set was completely damaged. No problem: I received a plastic one from a friend at my club. The complete figure was painted using Valleyo, as I feel most comfortable with this paint. If you’re planning to give it a try with Valleyo then it is really advisable to read their manual with tips and tricks which can be found on their leaflets with colour charts.

Base

To give the model a nice presentation, I decided to make a small base. A piece of isolation foam was cut to the appropriate size and glued on a wooden base plate. The foam was then covered with a thin layer of Polyfilla, and some roots from my garden and small stones were pushed into the Polyfilla. The road was covered with fine sand and cat litter. Along the sides pieces of wildgras from Heki were used. When done the base was put aside to cure. The next day I airbrushed the surface with the appropriate earth colours and drybrushed the small rocks with Humbrol earth colours. 

The grass was sprayed in different tones of green. After this I sprayed on thinned down White Glue and the base was partially covered with dried birch seeds. The snow was created using Snow-Coat, which is available from The Small Shop. When dry I sprayed another layer of thinned down White Glue and sprinkled the snow powder onto the surface. I didn’t cover the whole surface so one could still see parts of the stones and brown leafs. The tire markings in the snow were then discoloured with a filthy thin wash as a nice transition to the vehicle. I painted the sides of the base in Satin Black and printed a nameplate as the finishing touch.

For more and high diffenition pictures, look in our gallery

Hugo Luyten

~ Member of KMK since 2003~

"Dumvee in the snow"

HMMWV “Ground Mobility Vehicle” US Special Forces Iraq 2003

Welcome to

the kmk academi

As the Humvee is not an armoured vehicle, it has proven very vulnerable to light infantry weapons and roadside bombs. As a result of this the crews often improvised extra armour layers to improve the safety of their Humvees.

History

During the early stages of the war in Afghanistan in 2001 against the Taliban and the Al Qaida organisation, the SOCOM (US Special Operations Command) soon experienced the need of a reliable and durable highly mobile vehicle, which had enough cargo bay and load capacity to carry out the tasks of their units. To immediately satisfy the need for this type of vehicle, they adapted some Toyota Pickup trucks in the first place, but these vehicles proved to be too vulnerable for this type of rough terrain. In the meantime SOCOM decided to use the HMMWV (High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle), also known as Humvee, because of its 

mobility and reliability. Also the huge load capacity suited these vehicles to be adapted for the use by the Special Forces. The powerful water cooled turbocharged 8-cilinder 6,5 Liter Detroit Diesel engine, combined with the robust steel chassis, guaranteed high mobility, even on very rough terrain The required specifications contained that the operational teams, mostly consisted out of 4 GMV’s with each 3 soldiers, could carry as much as equipment needed to operate adequate behind enemy lines for more than 10 days. The HMMWV’s, developed by AM General (Indiana), were adapted by the Letterkenny Army Depot, receiving the majority of parts from Military Systems Group Inc. (Nashville). Adaptations consisted of providing storage for ammo and equipment, several gun mounts, a 360° turning gun station on the roof and a diversity of communication systems consisting of SINCGARS and satellite radios, GPS and TACTER. As the Humvee is not an armoured vehicle, it has proven very vulnerable to light infantry weapons and roadside bombs. As a result of this the crews often improvised extra armour layers to improve the safety of their Humvees.

The Kit

The Belgian company Pro Art Models released in 2005 the US Special Forces Dumvee conversion set. The set consists of the interior, roof mounted ring, M249, new side walls for the cargo bay, smoke grenade launchers, winch, roll bar, SINCGARS and antenna mounts, rear bumper with platform, side ammo can bins, wheels and spare wheel, etc. All resin parts are cleanly cast and although some parts contain very few small air bubbles, they can easily be filled up with some putty. The set comes along with a small but clear manual in A5-format. As a base kit you will need the Tamiya M1025 Humvee, which is an excellent kit. 

The moulding is first class as we might expect from Tamiya with almost no cleanup needed and pin ejector marks are kept to an absolute minimum. This kit also contains the Mk.19 40mm grenade launcher, which will build into one of the best Mk.19’s. As I like to add details to my models, I also used several parts of the Eduard Photo etched set for the M1025.

Construction

Before I started building it was necessary to carefully study the different instruction sheets and to determine which parts of the kit would have to be adapted or replaced with the relative parts from the two other sets, and to plan in which order I would build the model to avoid any possible damage during handling, due to all those fragile etched metal and resin parts. It is also recommended to study any available pictures and info of the real vehicle. I don’t want to write a step-by-step building article, but just point out to a few things you will have to pay attention to during construction.

Construction started with the one piece moulded chassis and the complete suspension. The interior was built up almost completely out of resin and PE. I replaced the radio mounting box with a new one made of pewter sheet. I didn’t glue both front seats, which would make painting a lot easier. Before you can start on the rear cargo bay, it is necessary to divide the roof from the rear sidewalls. Be careful with this and check your reference pictures. Instead of using the resin roll bar, I’ve made my own out of messing bar, and bended it using the resin roll bar as a guide. I found this one more stabile then the resin one. Before you can glue the roll bar into its position, it is really necessary to dry fit and check the exact angle of it in combination with the roof and the new resin sidewalls, and make sure the space around the rear side doors is correct! You can glue the roll bar and the sidewalls into their correct position, but leave the roof separate. Small details were added to the interior and inner side of the roof, using my reference pictures. Next I concentrated on the exterior, which gave no problems. The weapons were assembled and kept apart for easily painting. I added some small details like the mounting bars for the cammo nets on both sides of the roof, changed the “truck-style” rear mirror, added lots of bolt heads, rivets and cables, and I made the four safety belts using PE and some Evergreen plastic. I didn’t install the windshield until after the painting session. I was just about finishing the construction part when Dirk from Pro Art Models told me he was planning to release the Super Swamper wheels, which I had seen on many pictures of Dumvees in Iraq, and he was so kind to send me a pre-released set, containing 4 wheels and a spare wheel, which are very nice rendered.

Painting 

If you are planning to build a Special Forces Dumvee depicted somewhere In Afghanistan or Iraq, you don’t have much choice in the colour of the vehicle: just a light sand colour. With the pictures of the Dumvees as a reference, and after discussing it with my friends at our modelling club, I decided to start with Sand from the very nice Valleyo Model Air range as the base colour. Before I start painting, I always clean my models giving them a bath with some dish soap to remove dust, release agent and possible fingerprints from the surfaces. Then the model was put aside for a two night dry.

As I like to use filters and washes I always add some Clear varnish (25%) to the paint. This will result in a smooth satin surface of the paint, which is ideal for applying filters and washes. With my compressor set at 0.5 Bar, I always spray very thin layers of paint. Spraying 4 to 5 thin layers will give a much better result than 1 heavy layer, and the details will stay sharp. The Valleyo Model Air paint is acrylic based and comes in small plastic bottles. Although it is not really necessary, I prefer to dilute the paint with about 25% of their thinner. Be sure you shake the bottle well before use. I found out that the adhesion of Valleyo paint to plastic and resin is not that good, so my advice is to use a primer first. Another point of attention when using Valleyo in your airbrush is that you check every couple of minutes the needlepoint and nozzle for any remainder of drying paint, which will definitely cause paint splatters onto your model or even obstruct your airbrush. To avoid this: just take a small brush moistened with Valleyo Airbrush Cleaner and give the nozzle a quick cleanup. I started with a thin layer of Tamiya Neutral Grey (XF53), thinned at a ratio of 30% paint / 70% thinner. This will serve not only as a primer for the Valleyo paint, but also to avoid any differences in colour that will shine through due to the different materials used in the model. Next came several thin layers of Valleyo Sand (075) covering the entire model making sure the Grey doesn’t shine through anymore. Adding about 10% White to the Sand, the centre of panels, doors and roof were painted. Start in the middle and work towards the outside, making sure that you don’t spray the whole panel. Work in very thin layers and each layer covering a smaller area of the centre of the panels. You can also start to draw some vertical lines to the sides of the vehicle, representing rain marks. These steps will act as the first part of the weathering phase. Add some more White to this mix and give all the horizontal surfaces a quick blast to represent the reflection of the light coming from above. Don’t be afraid to give it some contrast, the upcoming filters and washes will smooth the demarcation lines in between these colour shades. Now is the time to clean up your airbrush. Don’t wait for more than five minutes, because the Valleyo paint will otherwise be hard to remove from your expensive tool! My advice is to use their airbrush cleaner which will do the job nicely and at the same time it lubricates the interior of the airbrush without damaging any plastic parts. The nice thing with Valleyo paint is that you don’t have to wait with the next painting step, it dries immediately! As I wasn’t completely satisfied about the colour, I started with a very thin filter using Humbrol Orange (82). This resulted in the colour I was looking for. For those who aren’t familiar with the use of filters: here is a brief explanation of the use and how to apply them to your model. As with pinwashes and drybrushes, filters are just another form of technique, which can be used to gain certain effects onto your model. A filter will slightly differ the base colour, just like a coloured lense on a camera. Therefore it is necessary to dilute your paint at a rate of maximum 5% paint to 95% thinner. Take a wide brush moistened (not soaked otherwise it will act as a wash) with this coloured thinner and apply it to your model in a quick way. It’s not necessary to do this precisely, just treat your whole model in less then a minute, always working downwards so that any remaining stripes will act as rainmarks. It’s possible that you won’t see any difference, it that case apply another filter to the model. You will have to wait for 3 hours before you can apply the next filter, otherwise the new filter will dissolve the previous one. Filters are also ideal for weathering, e.g. you can give several panels a slightly other appearance by using different colours. As a first step in the weathering process I applied several filters to the model, using Humbrol Mid Stone (84) and Khaki Drill (72). Then I put the model aside for one night. I had to paint the interior first before I could glue the roof in its final place. I started with the decals for all the warning labels, using Micro Set and Sol to assure that they would fit the surface nicely. After this I painted all the details, seats, safety belts, radios, cables, fire extinguisher, etc. using my reference pictures as a guide. For this I mainly used the paint from the Valleyo Model Colour range. I added several pinwashes to all the details and seams, made of different mixes of Black (33) and Brown Bess (170). I prefer to use about 20% paint diluted with 80% thinner, applied to a surface, which is already been wetted with some pure thinner, so that the pinwash will easily flow around the details without leaving any dry marks. Final weathering of the interior was done with some MIG pigments to create all the dust on the floor and corners. After a final check the next day, I glued the roof into its final position.

Weathering 

Now it was time to start with the weathering of the exterior, but…. How? Looking at my reference pictures it seams that these vehicles depicted in the desert were all dull and boring due to the missing of heavy weathering. The upper structure of the Dumvee is made of Aluminium which is covered with a solid layer of paint, so no paint chipping or rust streaks possible. It would be hard to give my model some life without these techniques. Relieve came when a friend of mine, Jan Goos, sent me some pictures of Dumvees somewhere in Northern Iraq (some call it Kurdistan).

 These fully loaded sand coloured vehicles were standing on a rough terrain, which was covered with melting snow, with only a small amount of fresh mud in and around the wheel bays and on the sides of the tyres, with the contact surfaces still black and shiny wet due to the melting snow. That gave me the potential of weathering I was looking for! I started adding some light pinwashes, varying from dark brown to almost black, to all the details and seams of the exterior. The roof-mounted ring received some heavy chipping, as also the ammo can bins and stiffening profiles on both sides of the vehicle. The bull bar at the front and the rear bumper with platform also show places of wear and tear. I made a mix of Humbrol paint, which was slightly lighter than the base colour, and started adding some streaks and very light chipping to logical places. Check your references for this part of weathering. I also used this mix for some very subtle drybrushing, adding more white to the mix with each drybrush session. I made some masks out of Tamiya tape using the dimensions of the windshield wipers, gave the windshield a quick blast of heavily thinned down Deck Tan, and glued it into position. The guns were painted Matt Black and after drying they received a drybrush with Humbrol Polished Steel. It’s best to take some paint from the bottom of the jar and leave it to dry for a couple of hours on a plastic sheet. Now take an old brush and simply brush over the blob of dried paint. The small amount of graphite in the paint is just ideal for drybrushing. After this was done I outlined some details on the guns with a Silver Karisma pencil. Before I could start with the mud on the vehicle, I first had to paint all the gear and put it on the appropriate places. The load consists of Pro Art Models’ US Modern Equipment Set #1, backpacks from Hobby Fan, plastic drum from MIG, helmet and ammo pouch from Think One Eighty Studios, and the laptop and Tacter, which will be part of a future release from Pro Art Models. All this gear was painted using Valleyo and mounted on the Dumvee using straps made of Tamiya tape. As in real life, the AT-4’s were mounted on the roof. Now it was time for the last step of weathering. I mixed a nice brown colour of different kinds of MIG pigments, using my pictures as a reference guide. To this mix I added a small amount of Valleyo Satin varnish to give the mud a fresh look. Using an old brush I added this mix to the lower part of the vehicle and to the wheel bays, again following my references. The tyres received a thin wash of Tamiya Earth, and after drying the sides of the tyres got their splashes of mud using an old toothbrush. Finally the windshield wipers were installed, even as the American flag, which was made from thin aluminium foil and an Archer decal.

Figure 

I always like to put a figure beside the vehicle, not only to give more life, but it’s also ideal for scale reference. Just in time a company called InfinityShape released their US Special Forces Set. It contains two very nice sculpted and highly detailed figures. As this is a winter setting, I added a Spear polar jacket to the figure using Magic Sculp. Head and hands were painted with Humbrol, while Valleyo was used for the rest of the figure.

Base 

To give the model a nice presentation, I decided to make a small base. I cut a piece of foam to the appropriate size and glued it on a wooden base plate. To give it the right atmosphere, I made some rocks using the rubber Rock Molds from Woodland Scenics. The foam was covered with a thin layer of polyfilla, and the rocks were pushed into the Polyfilla. The rest of the area was covered with fine sand, small pieces of rock and cat litter to create the rough terrain. Using the old wheels of the Humvee I created the tire markings. When done the base was put aside to cure. The next day I airbrushed the surface with the appropriate earth colours and drybrushed the rocks. The snow was created using Snow-Coat, which is available from The Small Shop. Just mix some powder with thinned down white glue and attach it to the groundwork using an old brush. I didn’t cover the whole surface to create the effect of melting snow. The tire markings were then covered with a thin layer of the previous mix of pigments. I painted the sides of the base in Satin Black and printed a nice nameplate as the finishing touch.

Word of thanks 

I would like to thank Dirk Vangeel from Pro Art Models for providing me the different sets, Pascal Tognon for the plastic drum, Jan Goos and Rudi Meir for helping me with the reference material, and of course all the other guys at the KMK-club for the great time we have together enjoying our hobby.

References 

M998 HMMWV in detail (Wings & Wheels Publications) ISBN 80-86416-14-3
Raids Hors-Serie Nr.7: Les Forces Speciales en Afghanistan
www.waronline.org
www.militaryphotos.net
www.milsysgroup.com

Model specifications 

Tamiya M1025 Humvee Armament Carrier Kit nr. 35263
Pro Art Models US Special Forces Dumvee Conversion Set Art.nr. PAU-35022
Pro Art Models US Modern Equipment Set #1 Art.nr. PAU-35023
Pro Art Models Super Swamper Wheels Art.nr. PAU-35019
Eduard photo Etch Set for M1025 Humvee Art.nr. 35629
MIG Productions Modern Checkpoint Set Art.nr. MP 35-104
Hobby Fan Modern US Military Equipment & Weapons Set Art.nr. HF-048
InfinityShape US Special Forces Set Art.nr. ISWU-023
Think One Eighty Studios Modern US Infantryman’s Gear Art.nr. 35A02
Archer Fine Transfers US Flag Art.nr.AR35178
The Small Shop SnowCoat KMK Modelling Club 6-11-2008

For more and high diffenition pictures, look in our gallery

Hugo Luyten

~ Member of KMK since 2003~

"Hotel Kaboul"

MRAP MATV (Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected) - Oshkosh

Welcome to

the kmk academi

After more than 14 years of solely designing and building, I once again had the desire to finish a model as it should be. A while back I have made one of the most difficult models I have encountered to date, the MRAP MATV from Panda expanded with update sets and etchings of the discontinued company "Pro Art Models". Difficult but when done one of the most beautiful of them all.

"THE KIT" MRAP MATV - Oshkosh

This kit is the first of a series from Panda that came on the market, same time as Kinetic. But the choice soon felt on the Panda version as it was much nicer in detail compared to the Kinetic version. As one can expect from a first version, you obviously have some factory faults, but not in a publication ready for the market! With my first kit of this brand I have encountered some mistakes that I could not solve by myself. The mistakes that were in my kit were e.g. 2 left mirror holders (these are in PE) and so you cannot adjust this problem. 

A friend of mine had also bought this kit at the same time and so I could verify! Weird, but it was not the case with him? So I solved this problem by buying 2 of these kits and took the missing or bad pieces from that 2nd kit.

The chassis (photos 4552 to 4565)

The chassis of the MATV is pretty good and was glued with only some minor adjustments. The cabling and suspension were made of copper wire, 0.6mm and 0.8mm for the suspension. Only the reinforced frame at the back of the cargo needed an adjustment. The details of the kit here are a bit basic and were therefore sanded away and replaced with plastic sheet. Details were made with the Punch&Die set.

The cabin

Here we used the interior set that Pro Art Models put on the market: PAU-35053. This is really incredibly good, this includes everything missing in the kit and what is needed to make the interior. (photos 4566 to 4576) is an example of the chairs of the pro art set. Another example is the underside of the roof which is super detailed (photos 4996 and 4997). And when everything is put together it is really a feast for the eyes. But this does indicate that this is not a kit for beginners! That’s why I would assign these to already advanced - and master model builders, it is also one of the most difficult models that I have built. 

(Photo 5014 - 5015 - 5016) shows that the chairs also hang here in the belts (like the real vehicle)! If the vehicle would run over a mine during missions, a shockwave occurs through the vehicle that can cause severe back injuries to the crew, which is why Oshkosh has worked out the idea of ​​not locking the crew's chairs to the bottom plate (as in the past) they are secured to the ceiling and bottom plate via belts. As a result, the serious back injuries are avoided as much as possible because the shock is absorbed by the belts.

Sub-assemblies

Many of the parts were made in sub-assemblies because of easy access during painting, and it is much easier to fit them in after being painted instead of gluing everything together and paint it afterwards. Next pictures shows the different subassemblies (photo 4528 - 4529 - 4542 - 4543 - 4544 - 4545 - 4546 - 4547 - 4549 - 4548) Photo 4528 is the spare wheel suspension system with pulley. The pulley is required to handle the heavy spare wheel that hangs up on it. Photo 4529-32-34 shows the turret ready to be airbrushed. 

Note the green tinted glass (armoured glass) that was included in the Pro Art Models update kits. The great thing about this is you do not have to look for the right colour of the glass yourself, it is perfect as it should be. Photo 4542 - 43 is the exhaust treated with aluminium powder to simulate a rusted surface. Aluminium powder is a very fine powder that can be applied by sprinkling the powder over a still dampened surface , sprayed with varnish. Photo 4544 - 45 are the antennas around the vehicle. Note the metal pins hidden in the resin: I drill all the resin parts with a hand drill and then insert a metal pin to reinforce the resin parts to avoid them from breaking down. The antennas itself are Albion metal tubes which fit perfectly together when necessary. Foto4546 is the roof above the turret with the accompanying glass. Photo 4547 is the three-point drawbar again equipped with the metal pins to break off. These also serve here as hinge points. Photo 4548 is the extra armour at the rear of the cab that protects a SatCom transmitter or something similar. Photo 4549 is the armour at the bottom of the vehicle with chains that carries the step-up system, these chains are designed for scale wooden ships. Photos exterior here you see the cabin with all its accessories. Nuts and bolts on all visible parts where replaced with nuts and bolts made with the Punch&Die set.

The Story

The story takes place in ... of course Afghanistan, more specifically in a hotel called "Hotel Kabul". This idea came about between pot and pint after one of the meetings organised by our club every Friday evening. It is truly a beautiful example of a group of friends with an incredible imagination! But after visiting the internet I found a video of a group of US soldiers who are having a BBQ while being shot by the Taliban (http://www.funker530.com/taliban-fail-to-ruin-us-cookout-in-afghanistan/) so it is not just out of the blue. 

They are a group of soldiers who organizing a bbq somewhere at an abandoned hotel, but a person must remain alert not to be surprised by the Taliban. The sitting figure is completely sculpted and all materials such as beach chair, table and chairs, cactus, fence, swimming pool, tiles and others are all made by myself. What I am also very happy about are the plants and flowers at the back of the vehicle. These are made of copper wire and powder that I have glued on.

Painting

The vehicle then: as a base colour I started to spray the vehicle in Tamiya Black. A big advantage of this brand is that this paint has a good adhesion on plastic, resin and PE of which all these parts are made of. Then I took a risk (calculated though) to spray with Life Color ... why? I found in these colours the warmth I was looking for to make a desert version, these colours are incredibly compatible with each other. I used these three colours (it is a German coloured desert set of Life Color UA249- UA250 – UA251) for the colour modulation to begin with, so you get a first shadow zone on your vehicle followed by a layer of half matt varnish from Tamiya. Furthermore, the vehicle is finished with all kinds of oil paintings, starting with lines with VDB + WS, and oil paint sometimes diluted and sometimes not, depending on what result you want to achieve. You should especially not be afraid to experiment with other shades of oil paints because working this way gives you a lot of possibilities. Finally, I used some weathering such as mud and dust. The mud was made with the 2 component product (diorama texture paint Light sand & dark sand, soil and grit effect. The dust is simply oil paint embedded on the final layer, followed by re-alignment with VDB + WS, painting the details and finished.

The diorama

So much details can be seen, all from scratch. A summary; the lighting (small lights) at the top itself was casted in epoxy resin and coloured in during the process of casting. The flowers made of copper wire, MS and powder. The fence made of plastic strip and copper wire. The piles were made of plastic tubing and a glass ball glued to it. The cactuses were made of MS and the blonde hair of my wife. The tiles were made in plastic sheet, cast piece by piece and laid one by one with a combination of Faller grass and the blonde hair of my wife, the colour "blond" gave the landscape a withered impression. The BBQ made of an oil barrel, hollowed out and made a grill, the meat is MS. The roses in the flower boxes made in MS and poured, the leaves are made of baking paper. The table and chairs are made of knots of jackets and trousers and copper wire. The USA bra is made of MS and lead foil. Etc... On picture c180331 in photo series 1 of Claus you see the salamander on the wall behind the figures .. Voila this is a concise description of how I came to this result. Hopefully this clarified my techniques and I will see one of your piece of art appear in one of the following magazines.

References 

Model specifications 

For more and high diffenition pictures, look in our gallery

Dirk vangeel

~ Member of KMK since 2000~