Monday, May 3, 2010

Project: 1/48 SU-122 Progress I

As I had mentioned in the last installment of this project blog, I intend to build this kit mostly OOB. This consequently means a fast build, so here is the progress so far.

Construction on this kit is essentially done. There were no real hang-ups in the construction process, and it (like most Tamiya kits) went together almost flawlessly. Especially nice were the auxiliary fuel tanks on the hull rear, which had the seams cunningly hidden via the construction process. It still pays to clean up the seams, but this method goes a long way to improving the look of the kit.

Also of note is that the kit possesses adjustable idler mounts. This means that the modeler can adjust track tension to make sure the tracks fit perfectly. While this is a good idea, I still managed to have a gap in the tracks (though I hid it for the most part under a fender). If I adjust the idler back anymore, it will rub against the first road wheel (these tanks had rear-mounted transmissions, and thus were rear wheel drive). In the future, it might be better to simply add a link to the tracks (the kit gives you a few spares) and see how that works.

The kit in the photo has been primed using Testors Enamel Light Gull Gray in the spray can. This will provide a nice, neutral base for further coats of paint. Also because it is an enamel (and using an organic solvent it is slightly "hot," producing a better chemical bond to the plastic) it will better hold the paint for follow-up coats. Also the tracks as can be seen are constructed to be removed, and have been primed black, to give it a good foundation for producing a steel metallic color.

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