Building the Formations 1/35 Chaffee (part 4)

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Time to rock.


Here is some junk stuck to double stick. Its a great way to store parts. The two little hatches are periscope covers. They were originally flat on the underside, I took my dremel with a small round bit and hollowed the bottoms. When I put em’ on the model, because they were flat on the bottom (they are stamped sheet metal) they didn’t nest on top of the popped up periscopes.


Here is the bustle on the real vehicle. (funny I took 250 pictures, and not one good one of the bustle).


This is the resin one, basically a cleaned version of the plastic Italeri one. It seemed too wide to me. Besides, I just wanted to build one. So here we go! The first thing to do is look at pictures of what to build. (I have other references, but cannot post them here or I’ll get yelled at). I made a paper pattern first. You can see I’ve already squeezed it.


Testing it on the model. So far so good. There should be smooth transitions.


Here is the fist one. It’s cut out of a .005 brass sheet. The edges are scored with a dull X-acto and bent on a hold-n-fold. Then it is soldered on the inside (make sure to use Flux). This one’s too big. Thats OK, making the fist one is slow, the next ones go fast.  The brass has the right thin sheet metal feel that I wanted.  On a model I like the contrast between heavy armor plate and thin sheet metal.


The next one…


This is the one! You can gob on the solder, because you can use a file to shape the outside.


Next, the tripod mount for the .50 cal Mg.


Time to make the .50 cal mount on the model. First I drill the collar out. Here’s the parts.


Mark the width where it connects to the turret on a piece of tape (the right width, dummy).


This becomes a reference to cut the parts so they will fit right. I draw a center line for the tubular gun mount, and you can see the trimming that needs to be done. The parts are stuck to double sided tape.


Trim with a flat blade…


Cut and ready to install.


Make sure they are straight and level.


Add in the rest.  I put the tubular collar in first, then the rear brace.  I just kept trimming until it fit.  You can also see the bustle (I’ve already redone the hinges. They were shaved off the old Italeri part. You’ll see that in part 5).


Here’s a photo of the real cupula.  Check out the vision blocks.


I decided I wanted clear periscopes on mine too. Yes, yes I know.


First, I drilled each end, so it would be round.


Like this.


I didn’t drill all the way thru. I’m going to daub in some clear resin. (I hope it works).


I slotted the opening. I’ll clean it up once it has paint on it (In the cream resin it’s impossible to see anything). This is that Micro-mark scalpel chisel thing I use. It is one of my most used tools.

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Aunt Petunia!  Look at the time.  I listened to a live quartet during this part of the project.  See you in part 5.  (will this thing ever get finished?)