Glühkäfer Build Diary

This is a fun little kit bash project. The concept is inspired by one of the Junk Tank Rock designs The Viper. I loved the concept and decided to build something similar but with the kits I have on hand. The main fuselage is of course a 1/48 Messerschmitt Bf109 the wheels and transmission are from a couple different 1/35 armored car kits.

Build

The intent was for this to be 1/35 scale, but the fuselage is a tad too narrow for a driver’s shoulders, so either only small guys can drive or I’ll just say it’s “box scale”.

 

Details

Major construction is finished, actually all construction is finished. If I add any more it will be too much. Replacing the panel lines I erased was fun. I was a little lazy when I glued the two halves together. I don't know how aircraft guys work in this scale, the parts are so small. 1/35 isn't much better, so many tiny seam lines to clean up.

The nose is made of two parts. The Bf109 spinner chopped down and a drive housing from an old Dragon Nashorn or Hummel. The part was held in the drill press with a nut and bolt and turned down and re-shaped until it was a good fit. Looks like a jet engine now.

I wasn't sure if I wanted this to be armed or not, but after finding the barrels from the Flakpanzer, I just had to. If you need specifics, lets say the engine is in back, transmission and ammo storage are in front, and the rear wheels swing up and down to adjust firing angle.

 

Paint

The model was preshaded with Tamiya Semi Gloss Black. All panel lines were traced and the front transmission received an overall coat of Black. Over this preshade, I airbrushed Gunze Bright Silver onto the fuselage, nose, and rear transmission and Flat Brown over the front transmission, wheel rims, and underside mechanicals. When this dried, I decanted hairspray into a jar and applied two coats over the prepainted areas. Over the dried hairspray, I airbrushed Gunze RLM 75 and Tamiys Olive Green. Both colors were then lightened and airbrushed to lighten panels and fade colors. The black square was airbrushed free hand with Tamiya Flat Black.

I then used an old #2 round brush to moisten the surface to soften the hairspray and flake and scrape off the paint around the mechanicals, rims and driver access. Some areas sloughed off a little too easily, so I touched these areas up with more of the base colors.

 

Decals and Weathering

Once all the paint had cured, I airbrushed a coat of Tamiya Clear to seal the surface and prep for decals. Decals are mixed from various spares. After decals, I airbrushed a coat of Polly Scale Satin to prep the surface for weathering. The front transmission was detailed with Vallejo Panzer Aces Dark, Standard, and Yellow Rust, dabbed on with a torn bit of foam. Numerous oil paint washes and MIG filters were applied to tone down the contrast and add grime and details. The dust was first created by airbrushing a very thin mix of Tamiya Buff and Tamiya Lacquer Thinner. This mixture was built up on the sides and wheels to represent road dust. I then used various MIG pigments mixed with Turpenoid  to add the built up dust and dried mud sprays.

 

 

Groundwork

The groundwork is my usual mixture of Acrylic Gel Medium and sand, dirt, root litter, small rocks, etc. I skipped on the pigments this time as I haven't quite figured out if I am going for a darker European earth or a sandy desert color. I still need to decide if I want to spend the time on a figure and what other elements will go in the scene. Or if this is the base I'm going with.

 

 

The groundwork has been painted with a base color of Polly Scale Dirt. The rocks are picked out with Vallejo Model Color Sky Gray and Iraqi Sand. The groundwork was then drybrushed to blend things in. The tufts of grass are a combination of synthetic field grass clumps and dried seaweed fibers. The tufts were then airbrushed with Tamiya acrylics. The small branches are roots from the flower bed.