Tuesday, April 30, 2024

M26, M46, M47 Tanks

The M26 on the bottom in dark olive, and the M46 on top in light olive drab.  M46 is a little longer.
Side by side.
M47 with the white star and M46 without.
I got this M47 in a collection along with a couple others, someone had painted on the stars, I liked it well enough that I left them on rather than paint over them.
Three tanks together, the M47 is much taller, made by Roco Minitanks.

 Olive drab seems to come in many variations and often looks different when it fades, or when it is wet, or dusty.  So I used a couple different versions of paint for the color.  The center M46 tank is in Testors Olive Drab Spraypaint, the other two are in Rust-Oleum 2X 279175 Deep Forest Green

Monday, April 29, 2024

M46 and M26 Tanks

Back in the 1950s the M46 was a popular war toy.
I remember having at least two different ones, one about 1/48th scale and the other about 1/24th scale.
They fought many battles on carpets, sidewalks and lawns over the years.
Now I finally have one for the wargame table in HO scale resin and plastic.
Heiser Models HO scale M26 compared to the M46 tanks.
The turrets are almost identical, the front hull is very similar, the main gun and rear hulls are very different.

Sunday, April 28, 2024

M46 in Olive Drab

Heiser Models HO scale resin M46 tank with primer paint applied.
I think the M46 is an iconic tank and very cool looking.
Here it is before any detail painting in Testors Olive Drab spray paint, number 1265.  They recently changed the number from 1911 to 1265 but the color is identical.
 A great looking tank and one I have been trying to get for decades.
I remember when Paul Heiser came out with his M26 tank and I suggested he make this one at that time and here we are only 25 years later and already on the market!
Here you can see the small box at the rear, it's the first aid kit.
I did this one with the side skirts, tools in front, and the spare tracks on the side turret.  My plan is to get a company of 17 tanks, and put side skirts on five of them.

Saturday, April 27, 2024

M46 Patton Tank

The Heiser Models M46 tank, rear engine deck.  Note the intricate detail on all those engine covers.
This model is very easy to assemble, the hull is one piece, the tracks are similar to Minitanks with left and right side suspension units, and the turret is a large piece.  Note the separate travel lock on the rear deck and there is also a tiny box on the rear of the tank, it's a first aid kit.
The main gun and mantelet is one piece and has a wire inside the barrel to strengthen the long resin bit.  The commanders hatch is a separate piece and can be open or closed.
Other details include optional the spare track links on the side of the turret, the plastic bow machine gun, and the tools on the upper glacis.
The side skirts are optional, I plan on putting them on about 40% of my M46 tanks as many photos show them with them.
Heiser Models includes numerous pad eyes, lifting rings, headlights, machine guns, fuel cans and other detail bits that I have left off this particular model.  I build mine as wargame kits and much of that is easily broken off with handling but for a display piece this model has all the parts you need.
Another look at the hull, I have spray painted the bottom giving the hull a strange look around the edges in these last three photos.  I find the detailed engine deck to be amazing for an HO scale resin kit.

Friday, April 26, 2024

M46 Tank in HO Scale

Paul Heiser has released his first Post-WWII tank with the release of the M46 Patton.
Paul says this means all American medium tanks or main battle tanks that were fielded by the US Army between the Sherman in 1941 and the Abrams are now available in HO scale, by either him or by Minitanks.
The M46 was an improvement on the M26 of World War Two with the first production run of 100 tanks at the end of 1948.  Eventually the US produced 1,160 M46 tanks compared to 2,200 of the M26 tank.
The man differences between the M46 tank and the M26 tanks are a new engine and transmission, and a new main gun.  This resulted in a very different rear hull and a different looking main gun.
Both the US Army and USMC used hundreds of M46 tanks in the Korean War, replacing the M26 in Korea by the end of 1951.

 France, Italy used small numbers of the M46 and Belgium used eight of them.  All US M46 tanks were out of service by 1960 having been replaced by the M47 and later M48 tanks.

Thursday, April 25, 2024

Starship Troopers, Colonial Infantry and Buck Rogers

Some of my Starship Troopers lined up as I sort them and inspect them for damage after I found one that had come apart.
The only good bug is a dead bug, this bug is good.
The figure on the right has been repaired and his boots repainted.  They figure on the left has boots that are not painted all the way around the figure.  For some weird reason none of the figures had boot that were fully painted.  I suspect the figures were laying flat and machines spray painted the figure from the front but not the back.  So I have been working on touching up the boots.
I also want more figures so I am doing paint conversions of some other figures to make them into Aliens style Colonial Infantry.  They will function as a sort of National Guard, and local Militia to supplement the Mobile Infantry.  They are being painted in the same color palette but their stands will be a different shape to distinguish the three units apart.  The figures on the left are from the board game Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.  The figures on the right, in the back rows are those also, but the first three rows on the right are from some Matchbox vehicles I got 20 years ago.  The Matchbox have better equipment and so will be the Militia types.  The others are more lightly armed and equipped and so will be the National Guard; interstellar version.
Some close ups of one of the Buck Rogers poses.
When I am working on projects like this I record the paint schemes and the colors I use  on a card like this one.  Later when the project has been finalized the information goes into a notebook so I can touch up the figures or add more if I need to, I have done this for decades.  Sometimes it can be 10 years or more between working on the same project so having records can be very helpful.

Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Heiser's Models HO 1/87 Scale M4A3E8(76)W Sherman Late Production HVSS Track

Heiser's Models HO 1/87 Scale M4A3E8(76)W Sherman Late Production HVSS Track number 5035.
This is a very late World War Two Sherman tank model with all the ultimate features of those used by the US Army in WWII and post War.  The tank  model itself is all resin and there are detail parts made out of plastic.
The upper and lower hull is one single magnificent casting with almost no flash.
There is just a tiny mold line that needs to be trimmed all around the vehicle.  The mold is two parts and the join is perfect to leave the least amount of obvious marking on the vehicle.  A quick hit with 400 sanding stick is all it takes to clean it up.
Test fitting the tracks and the turret.  There is a giant pin on the bottom side of the turret that fits into a big hole in the top of the hull.  It allows for a smooth turning turret.
The plastic accessory sprue.  It has machine guns gas cans, tools, and many other parts.  This sprue comes with most Heiser  US Army tank models.
Additional parts out of resin.  It comes with headlight, and extra hatches so you can have the hull hatches in the open position, and spare roof hatches in case you lose or break one.  The oval loaders hatch is a bit thick so sand it down just a little so it will fit flush with the turret roof.
Spare track section, spare individual tracks, engine vents, cargo shelf, road wheels, including two extra, and suspension parts.  The long white things are supports for the fenders. 
The parts come packed in individual sealed plastic bubbles for freshness.  And it keeps you from losing parts until you are ready for them.
It also provides a little air pocket so they don't break during shipping.
Instructions are a bit vague but are not too hard to puzzle out.  The top of the rear mounted cargo shelf is flush with the top side of the rear hull.  In real life it folds down to form an L shape to hold cargo.  Paul includes a couple different versions including a folded up one.  The extra tracks links were stowed three per side along the fender.  They were always placed as shown in the drawing above.  The lower right illustration shows were to put the fender supports.  Since I am doing a wargame model that will be handled a lot so I left them and the headlight off of my models.
The large cupola hatch and small loaders hatch was a very late war combination, but very common in the Korea War.
Here is a listing of the resin parts.  The plastic sprue has both a .50 caliber and a .30 caliber machine gun, either one was common in WWII on the turret and sometimes even both at the same time.  Over all an excellent kit.