I first got interested in the late model panzer 3’s a few years ago with coming across how it was used on just about every front the german army had been involved in .
With the early release of the engine compartment and just recently the the fighting compartment I chose to do the first full on job you can expect to get a Panzer 3L as accurate as possible.
The Panzer 3 interior lower hull had to be slightly modified to allow for the Verlinden interior and engine compartment to be dropped into position .The kit was modified by removing the moulded plastic sleeves for the return rollers.
I used flat strip in the emergency doors due to it being impossible to try to sand smooth.
The resin walls of the engine bay and fighting compartment wall were thinned and glued into position.
The coolers and fan assembly were glued and test fitted Take note that the fan assembly Ensure assemblies face in the correct direction.
The resin engine was glued together and test fitted with the oil cooler wall by checking the alignment of the exhaust outlets. The fuel tank received some minor modifications to fit into the compartment. All resin components have been trimmed and test fitted prior to gluing into position. Wire was attached to the rear of the instrument panel gauges but unfortunately when the upper half of the hull is fitted into position the radio blocks the view.
There was an additional grill attached around the smoke dischargers.
Wire was added for the communication cable box just inside below the cupola for the commanders earphones .I also added plastic strut and wire support beams for the gun traverse lock which is bolted from the roof. I added a manual traverse handle as well as a spare barrel for the co-ax machine gun.
All items inside the turret and lower hull had been glued into position before gluing the 2 halves together.
The Tamiya instruction sheet is incorrect where the position of the axe is placed.( refer to scale plan ACHTUNG PANZER). This is confirmed from other published books .Brass engine grills and tow cable holders have been used on engine deck. I scribed a recess line in the engine deck .I added lifting lugs which come in the kit sprue but are not listed on the instruction sheet
Wire chain was added to the smoke dischargers and tow hooks on rear of vehicle. A resin stowage box was glued to the turret after the 2 halves of the turret had been glued together
Humbrol and Testors colours where used for interior and exterior painting.
A mixture of Testors burnt sienna and Humbrol chocolate was used for the base coat for the engine bay .The fighting compartment interior received a coat of cream.
All doors and hatch’s had been painted separately. The engine and cooling fans had been painted before being glued into position. This enabled me to detail rear engine doors.
After painting I applied a black/brown wash to give the vehicle a little depth in appearance.
Each area of the panzer 3 was painted separately .The turret and hull was kept in the 2 halves for painting ease. The vision blocks inside the cupola was painted after the cupola was stuck to the turret .
The exterior of the vehicle received a coat of chocolate brown on the lower half with the upper half receiving a coating of dark yellow and a coat of Testors burnt sienna over the top. I then used lighter enamel coats to bring out the various panel lines
After painting I applied a coat of Testors flat clear to seal the vehicle and gave it 24 hours to dry.
A dark wash was added around the recessed edges. This then made the paint job stand out a little brighter than what I wanted. Because of the brightness I then used a fine coat of dark yellow and misted across the exterior of the vehicle to make the paint colours blend in together.
All of the running gear was painted separately to the lower hull.
The vehicle then received a coat of gloss varnish in the areas where the decals had to be applied
I used Gunzy Mr mark softer with water and tissues to apply the decals.
Once the decals had set I used a coat of Testors flat clear to cover the decal ,This then blends the decal in with the flat appearance of the vehicle.
This concludes a very long project and in closing I would like to say the detail sets are very fiddly but over time and practice with working with small components you will achieve great results .
The finished model can be seen in the Gallery - Webmaster