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Gordon Williamson

Bergepanther

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I was up in the attic looking for something the other day and came across an unbuilt kit from years ago. After seeing Spasm's fine Panther model ( a tank I have always had a great interest in) I decided to dig this one out and put it together.

Sadly once I opened the box, I remembered why I hadn't bothered to build it. As an ARV without a turret, the interior is visible and the interior provided with the kit is extremely crude and simplified.

Here are the forward interior parts and the winch parts from the kit, just thrown together for comparison purposes. Obviously a bit of work and careful painting would improve these a little.

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I decided to look around and found a resin moulded interior set. Nightmare to work with, with tiny brittle parts and many parts still attached to large moulding plugs, having to be carefully separated witha razor saw. Add to that parts which were provided with no indication of what they were for and very vague instructions, these resin sets are not simple to work with.

However, once I finally figured out what parts went where and put it together, the winch was a huge improvement over the crude kit parts.

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The new resin hull floor was also a bit of a nightmare, with a lot of cutting and filing to get it to fit properly. Still, looking down into the hull with the suspension torsion bars and the transmission, driver and radio-operator areas etc all faithfully reproduced, it was worth the effort.

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The Bergepanther could be equipped with a 2cm cannon and two machine guns, but these were rarely if ever fitted in action so I won't be permanently attaching these.

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One thing that struck me when I first set eyes on a real Panther was that it is a really big tank. Well over 2m from ground level to the top of the hull. Figure shown here for scale.

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Next stage is the broken down Panther this this Bergepanther will be towing.

The tracks provided with the Bergepanther kit were dreadful so the Panther G it will be towing donated its tracks and it in turn will receive a set of real metal tracks, each pinned together just like the real tracks. I saw a neat article showing just how fantastic these metal tracks look when properly weathered with a special chemical specifically for that purpose.

The Bergepanther will be dressed up with lots of the "clutter" that is found on a real ARV when its ready to be mounted with the broken down Panther G.

Meanwhile here is a shot of the metal tracks shown alongside the good quality Plastic tracks from the Panther G, that went on to the Bergepanther..

More to follow..........

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Thanks for the kind words Joe. I haven't done any serious Armour modelling for many years, but there is a frustratingly long wait between releases of component parts for the wooden Victory and Hood projects so I decided to wait two or three months and let parts accumulate so I could make decent progress in one go, rather than adding a couple of parts then waiting weeks for the next components.

Meantime, I thought I'd have a bash at some Armour for a change. At least AFVs take up a lot less room that large ship models.

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For somebody who's heart didn't seem to be in this project at its onset, you did a marvelous job! It really looks great! Looking forward to the full diorama with the Panther!

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For somebody who's heart didn't seem to be in this project at its onset, you did a marvelous job! It really looks great! Looking forward to the full diorama with the Panther!

Many thanks. I'm glad you like it.

As one who can remember spending pocket money on Airfix kits costing 2 Shillings ( 10p or 15cents in Todays money) back in the early 60s, when kits were really crude by todays standards, and as someone who trained in Engineering as a toolmaker, I can really appreciate the phenomenal skills of the guys who make the tools to create these kits.

The Panther lower hull running gear and tracks are now done. These are the real metal tracks once they are chemically corroded etc.

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But look closer at the tiny track link and see that they have even been able to replicate the foundry casting serial number on the link.

Wow! :o What's the scale? 1/35?

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Yeah, 1/35. What looks like a large chunk of cast metal weighing many kilos in the pic is actually just over a centimeter long and weighs about a gram. :-)

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Keep this coming! Did you know that over 80% of the readership of magazines about miniature modeling comprises people who will never do it themselves but are transfixed by the models and the methods of those who make them?

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Hi Prosper,

I agree entirely re the mags. When I buy them its usually to admire the work of one of the really dedicated, serious modellers and marvel at how the heck they managed to produce something so magnificent.

Anyhow, here is the Panther G. Basic paintwork and filters applied but quite a bit of weathering etc to be done. It represents a Panther of 11 Panzer Div in France before the invasion, so no battle damage or anything like that.

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I love the real metal tracks even if they cost almost as much as the kit itself. They reproduce the characteristic "sag" of the real Panther tracks perfectly though.

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another impressive effort!!!

i did loads of tanks and airplanes as a young'un...

my sons and i visited the USS North Carolina when

they were much younger and i followed up with

a model of that wonderful ship...

maybe it's time to get back to it....

always interested in you next effort!

joe

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... maybe it's time to get back to it.... always interested in you next effort! joe

Never too late Joe ! The level of quality of plastic moulding these days has to be seen to be believed, so it isn't difficult to produce a decent effort with a little care. I don't consider myself particularly skilled, just a blundering amateur compare with what some modellers can produce.

Here is roughly what the set up will look like. Not planning a fancy diorama ( a whole other skill set required there) just a basic "roadway" base as the concept is simply a Panther that has broken down ( Panthers were notorious for mechanical trouble) and about to be towed. Final weather and finishing will be done when I get around to making up a base.

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Outstanding work Gordon. 1/35 scale gives lots of opportunity to detail it up. :cheers:

Edited by Laurence Strong

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