Thursday, 19 January 2017

1/76th Panzerkampfwagen IV - Pt 2 (of 4) - fixing

Part 1. The Fujimi turret. Looking at the invaluable Osprey Modelling Guide no 38, Modelling the Late Panzerkampfwagen IV there wasn't too much difference between a H and a J turret. I simply removed the machine gun from the Fujimi model as both the H and J models detailed in the book didn't have one The H model should have zimmerit on the turret schurtzen but I can live without this, especially when you see how many wargamers have used non-zimmerit models for years.

Part 2. The Cromwell Pz IVH hull. This was a lovely detailed piece, with nice zimmerit and stowage moulded on. The only problem was the lack of side schurtzen. My initial thought was to use the ones off the Fujimi kit. However. these were supposed to represent the wire mesh ones that Pz IVJs had and were wrong for an H. Going through the spares box I found a set of metal schurtzen that came from an SHQ Sturmpanzer IV. Although slightly too small they had the correct number of plates (5) and would do the job. I bent some florist wire round the top of each schurtzen to shape it and then stuck it on the inside to represent the fixing rail. Fixing them was another matter but this would wait until the finishing stage.

Schurtzen  - before
Schurtzen - with rails added
The only other work needed on the Cromwell body was to drill a small hole and add an MG34 barrel from the spares box.

While I was doing all this I started to think about what I could do with the Cromwell turret and Fujimi body. I then decided that I'd repair the Fujimi body and paint it in the same scheme as the Cromwell body/Fujimi turret hybrid. That way I'd have a PZ IVJ to use if I ever wanted to. So I now increased my work load.

Part 3. The Fujimi Pz IVJ hull. When I removed the schurtzen I  pulled a couple of the track return rollers off one side and they pinged across the room never to be seen again. As I was going to model this without the side-skirts I needed to do some repair work. The surviving rollers were each made of two identical pieces glued back to back. By separating these it gave me the correct number of parts for a bodge/repair. For three of the rollers I removed the roller sections completely. I then attached a suitable size metal pin. Over this I slipped a small piece of plastic rod. Finally I added the correct roller. If you look closely and at a particular angle you'll see the rear roller is a little small but in normal use you'd never see it. I then straightened out and re-glued the tracks. 
Fujimi body with track rollers removed
Fujimi body with new rollers added
To finish the body I removed the flimsy exhausts, drilled holes and then slightly countersunk them to make them sturdier. Finally I added a new hull machine gun as above.

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