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ROADBLOCK TO ROADSIGN - KV-II

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Tamiya KV-II
For his evocative diorama, Doug Frame chose a legendary behemoth, the KV-II.

At the outbreak of Operation “Barbarossa”, the German invasion of Russia, these Russian heavy tanks came as a bad headache to the German tankers & infantry.

As regards the kit (Tamiya Ref: 32538), suffice to say it’s pure Tamiya – add glue – shake box – done deal! A great & simple 1:48th scale kit. Sure, a little extra detail could be added, weld seams, metal barrel or a bit of photoetch but that’s a personal choice.

The idea was simple. A once-proud KV-II which had stood tall against the Nazi advance, is now tamed, pushed to the side of the road, rusting & silent.

Having got it worked out on a sketch, Doug had a base made up, making sure that it would not swamp the tank nor squeeze the kit.

As Doug got his hands on the kit “complete” save a few details, he sprayed a basic green on the kit after priming with Halfords Grey primer. He then lightened the base coat with additional coats of green with highlights added last.

After each colour change, Doug placed the kit onto the base in its final position at an angle, to be sure that the slope of the tank had an influence on the colouring of the kit.

A few airbrushed light coats of Johnson’s Klear were followed by Red Star decals from the Tamiya kit, applied using Micro Sol & Micro Set then finished off with several more light coats of Klear.

Bleaching effects were next, applied to all the top areas, again using successive lighter coats of greens, tans, browns & buff, all from the Tamiya Acrylic range heavily thinned with their thinner & sprayed using a Badger 200 gravity feed airbrush at a low psi.

Chipping followed using Vallejo Model Colour paint, thinned with distilled water, mainly using a light green mix followed by a touch of German Camo Brown to the centre, some chips received a light or dark grey colour to the centre to vary the tone of the chipping & give some contrast throughout the model.

After a little post-shading, the tracks were sprayed in situ (not as hard as it looks) with a dark brown/rust mix & coated in Mig Pigments.

The Graffiti came next – toned down with light passes of the airbrush loaded with thinned Tamiya Buff XF57 & some pastels. The Graffiti came from several photos showing a destroyed KV-II with its turret blown off & lying upside down.

Drips, stains, wear & tear, were applied with oils & pigments around the exhaust & engine deck before putting it aside to dry. After drying, worn metal was depicted using graphite.

The KV was then added to the base along with some oil barrels & topped off with a Dartmoor Models German MP directing traffic. He was painted with various colours from the Vallejo range. A “Name-It” nameplate with the diorama's title - Roadblock to Roadsign finished it all off. Job done!

More of Doug’s models will be appearing on Scale War Machines soon, so a big thank you to Doug. Don’ forget, you too can submit articles, just like Doug did.

Tamiya KV-II
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Tamiya KV-II
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