This page is to document the building of revells 1/72nd scale Panther Ausf A. The completed Panther will depict Ernst Barkmanns famous "424" in the St. Lo area of Normandy July 1944.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Mr Barkmann in his hatch and doesn't he look great. Now the only thing left to do is work out what is on the inside of the commanders hatch? I've got about 20 photos of an open hatch but not one is clear enough to show the inside details. Any one have an idea or a picture would be even better.

The bucket, I gave this a few washes with burnt umber then some MIG pigments European dust mixed to a mud with water. I reckon the tracks arn't to bad either.

I really like the radio operator and how he fits in the hatch. Another fault with the revel kit is the turret is positioned to far forward and the hatches are slightly to big.

The right side. The tow cable are fantastic and come from Karaya in Poland. I took the ends from the Dragon Panther G, cut the cable off and drilled out the ends then inserted the Karaya copper (0.6mm) cables, they like all the other tools are painted in Vallejo 822 German camo black brown.

here is the left side, I'm pretty happy with the multiple layers of mud on the road wheels.

With the crew in place here are a few shots of the finished model. The photos arn't great, the lighting is uneven and that kept putting the white balance out. I'm waiting for a nice sunny day so i can get some good old fashioned, even sunlight.

For the cuff band i printed up some decals using inkjet printable white decal paper. I made the cuffband in Illustrator and then Photoshop. They are very small and dam fidley little bastards to work with. In all the cuff band is just a little less than 1mm wide and about 8mm long. My printer is not very good ($50 HP cheapy) but you can still read the writing!! I'd love to print some out on a decent high quality printer. They were then set in place with Gunze Mr Mark setter and Mr Mark softer to get them to bite down. After they were on I gave the figure a quick squirt with soom matt varnish to finish off. I hope you like them.

Here is Mr Barkmann himself! I�m pretty happy with how he has turned out. All I need to do is add some gloss to the lenses on the binoculars and that�s it.
He was painted entirely with Vallejo model colour acrylics. The undercoat is pure white.
Flesh tones:
Basecoat of 845 sunny skintone mixed 50/50 water and applied in 3 coats.
1st highlight was the base colour mixed 50/50 with 815 basic skintone and again cut 50/50 with water.
2nd highlight was basic skintone mixed 75/25 with white and this received a little more water maybe 33/66 paint to water.
1st shadow was a mix of 75% sunny skintone and 25% 814 burnt cadmium red and again cut 50/50 with water.
2nd shadow (darkest) was 25% sunny skintone to 72% burnt cadmium red mixed about 33/66 with water.
The lips where a mix of sunny skintone and 876 brown sand heavily cut with water (have a very light touch with the lips!).

Basecoat was mix of 66% 994 dark grey and 33% 950 black with about 25% water.
Highlight was 992 neutral grey with a tiny bit of base colour mixed 50/50 with water.
Shadow was pure 950 black cut with water 50/50.

Badges and equipment:
The badges were a mixture of Humbrol silver and a silver pencil, the headphones were painted pure black and the microphones (around the throat) painted a mixture of field grey and pure black.

The figures are now done and as I post this I'm waiting for the glue that holds them in the Panther to dry.
The figures are from the AB figures range "tank crew for hatches" (I think?) there's about 12 half figures in the set and they are all very good. This is the radio operator, I've added the cord running to his headphones from very fine copper wire.

Monday, April 03, 2006

At last nearly finished! Just a bit more mucking around with some pigments and then that's it. I've picked out 2 crew figures, one for Mr Barkmann himself and the other for the radio operator, the drivers hatch will be closed. I've chosen some AB figures for the crew and they look great. The weathering to this point: a light overall wash of burnt umber oil paint then a few days latter some pin washes around selected details of burnt umber and a little bit of black. I then mixed up another oil paint wash of raw siena with a tiny hint of humbrol signal red and added, sparingly, some rust spots and streaks (they are very faint but subtlely change the appearance) I did the same with a raw umber wash too. Next came the paint chips using Vallejo model colour 822 German camoflage black-brown and Vallejo model colour 976 buff, I find buff works well as a minor (not to bare metal scratch) on dark yellow paint jobs. I use these straight from the bottle their oppacity is fantastic. I didn't like the tracks so after the paint chips i repainted the tracks Tamiya NATO black and mixed up some MIG pigments dark mud with some matt varnish and thinner (a very runny mix) and painted this on the tracks, working about 3cm at a time, and wiping most of it off with some paper towel. I also applied this under the sponsons, up the superstructure side and to the underside of the tank. I'll explain the mud and dust (still to come) on my next post.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

The rear decal was quite tricky due to the rain guard around the hatch but the Gunze products really do the trick. The tank has also been given a post shading with Tamiya flat earth mixed with a tiny bit of NATO brown.

I've also painted the damaged zimmerit with Humbrol red oxide 113 were it's chipped all the way down to the armour and a concrette colour where it has only chipped the outer surface off the zimmerit. This was done before the decals went on and i will need to touch up a few spots as the decals fall on some of the damaged zimmerit.

The decals are on and don't they look good. I set them in place with Gunze's MR Mark Setter and then used Mr Mark Softer to get them to bite down onto the zimmerit surface. The Gunze products are certainly very good and easy to work with, although it did take me a bit of trial and error as everything except the name for this stuff is in Japanese!!

Monday, March 06, 2006

Hurrah!!! the decals have arrived and they are perfect, thank you Lawrence. This pic does not do them justice, in the flesh they are just fantastic the suttle variation in the numbers and the bulken cruz make them super realistic and stand out in the crowd, they will add that special something to anyones model.
He has also released a set for the tiger tanks of Schwere Panzerabteilung 502, and the Abrams and more are planned. You should all support this guy as he's taking a bit of a gamble in supplying us 1/72nd scalers with quality decals and he realy diserves to succeed. Each sheet has enough decals to make many tanks they are the best I've seen in this scale and arn't very expensive either. Check out his site:

Here is a better shot of the DML panther G. It was also my first attempt at a base to mount the tank on, I think it came out quite well. I'm waiting on the figure to put in the commanders couploa, I've ordered it from Eureka minatures in Melbourne Australia, it's a metal figure from the AB range. I used the blue tac method to mask the the areas not to be painted and laid the paint down starting with the yellow then the red and finaly the green. It's a very time consuming method and difficlult to get right but I feel it's worth persisting with.

Here are a couple of pics of the Dragon Panther G that i have recently finished. The model has a terrible die cast metal hull and many flaws, but it does have a suppurb turret and fantastic wheels. I should have used the wheels and turret from this kit on my Barkmann panther.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Here is another veiw (I should of at least sanded the scratches out of the storage bin!)
The only modification to the kit was the side skirts which had been replaced by home made styrene parts. The kit was the Revel early tiger, and it has realy bad decals, the white part looks more like a drop shadow than an outline.
Hope you like it and as an end note Lawrence from Echelon Fine Details tells me the decals will be ready by the end of January, that's only a few weeks away!!!

I've just finished this monster!! I inherited it pre-built and decided to just paint it as it was, worts and all. I'm pretty happy with the finished product.

Friday, November 25, 2005


to all the people that visit my blog and all those that have put links up on their sites. Since i started with the stats in July I've had nearly 900 visits and I've discovered i have links to my site from several other very popular sites (unsolicited too). This has all been terific for my google rankings and now "Panther Build" falls on the first page of a google search, so thank you all. I hope to have the decals soon and can get the beast to the finish line.

Waiting on decals

It's now been 5 months since I last posted and for that matter touched my panther. I'm waiting on some decals that Lawrence Goh is making for me and there have been a couple of delays. He normaly makes 1/35th decals but decided to help me out with my project but in order to get the quality he wanted in this scale he needed to change printers and that has been the hold up. He sent me his proof sheet to look at and they are fantastic, i can't wait to get my hands on the finished product. I'll put up a link to his site when I can find it.
In the mean time I've nearly finished the Dragon T34/76 1940 kit I got to the tracks and as everyone knows they are terrible and I can't decide what to do, as this was supposed to be an real Out of the Box build i don't want to replace them but ... I've also finished several figures I'll stick some pics up soon.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Here are the edges and the recipe. The first thing i did was paint the tracks with a very dark brown mix, nearly black infact. Then a light over spray with Tamiya flat earth XF-52 in a random pattern followed by the pastels. I use standard chalk artists pastels from the art shop that I grind up into dust. I used three colours here, a bright orange, chocolate brown and black that I mixed into 3 little piles. The first 50/50 orange with chocolate the second a 50/50 chocolate and black and the final pile was pure orange. I started with the choc/orange colour mixed with lots of water, I dabbed it randomly over the entire track. I did the same thing with the choc/black and by the end of it over 85% of the track had been hit with the diluted pastel mixes. Now comes the orange colour, this I diluted much more than the other colours, much much more. I kept the orange to the edges and between each link then I dobbed a few sparse random splashes on the tracks themselves. Voila.

Now the front view, as you can see I've managed to break off a mud guard in the process of painting the tracks!! I'll add a coat of dust and some other weathering when I do the rest of the tank, then I'll finish off with a touch of graphite on the ice cleats and edges, that should be about it, I reckon.

Tracks, I've made a start, about 3 times now!! but they are nearly there I think?