US Armor for 75th D-Day Anniversary

I am working on creating a Normandy scenario for a What a Tanker© game that I plan to run at a monthly gaming session at both the Mass Pikemen Gaming Club and the Historical Gaming Club of Uxbridge.  With the 75th Anniversary of D-Day coming up in little more than a month, I thought that would be appropriate. 

My challenge was that I really did not have enough historically-appropriate tanks and tank destroyers for such a scenario.  I did have 9 plastic British Shermans and 2 Fireflies that I bought on eBay that were well-painted.  I also had 2 resin Shermans and 2 resin Stuarts that I got from a guy who makes his own models and sells them already painted.  The British stuff came with a bunch of infantry that I sold, so the nice plastic British armor ended up costing me net only $1.40 each!  The US tanks were OK for the tabletop, and for the price (about $5-6 as I remember), a relative bargain – but I wanted better.  I also had no Germans for that theater, so that is part 2 of the project.  For this part, I am focused on five US vehicles.  Together, I will have enough to make a joint US/UK force.

Three of the five vehicles came from Battlefront and were metal and resin and some plastic:  one M3A1 Stuart (#US003); one M4A2 Sherman (#US045); and one M10 Wolverine tank destroyer (#US102).  The other two were M24 Chaffee tanks that did not make it to D-Day, but replaced Stuarts starting in the latter part of 1944.  These two were 3D printed models from somebody on eBay – and not great detail-wise.  But, the M24 was the tank my grandfather, Marcus C. Delaney, drove in Europe during WWII, so I thought I’d work on those at the same time.  I used many of the same research books that I have cited before – and I did not take pictures as these are more recognizable to most gamers and modelers.

Above, you can see the group – below is a group shot after assembly.

1 all assembled
Ready for paint – 2 M24 Chaffee’s, an M3A1 Stuart, an M4A2 Sherman, and an M10 Wolverine – with its crew on toothpicks.
2 turrets
Turrets mounted for painting.

I mostly used my airbrush for painting – and on the M24’s I tried to minimize the 3D printer lines with paints, washes, and weathering.  I decided to try a few Vallejo weathering products that caught my eye – I made a test of them first.  Of course, these are applied with a brush!

3 weathering
I thought the brown mud was too heavy, and the industrial splash mus was too thin – so I went with the other three.
3a weathering
I really liked these three – very nice weathering products.  The white labels on the top are what I do to help identify them in my supplies.
4 turrets painted
Completed turrets.

It’s now time to share some eye candy of the completed tanks and the tank destroyer.  Of course, I am also using these 5 as the first entry for a monthly painting challenge from Australia’s own Azazel – this being “Mechanismo May ’19 Community Painting Challenge“.

5 M3A1 front
M3A1 Stuart in the bocage.
6 M3A1 side
Side shot of the Stuart in a field.
7 M3A1 rear
Rear shot of the Stuart – it’s not as shiny as this!
8 M4A2 side
My M4A2 Sherman – “Deuces Wild”.
9 M4A2 front
Nice shot coming through the bocage – I really liked the mud and grass effects.
10 M4A2 rear
Rear shot – beware lurking panzerfausts!
11 M10 in field side view
Side shot of the M10 Wolverine cutting across a field into a gap in the bocage.
12 M10 in field side view
Another side shot – this was a very fun model to build.
13 M24's front
My two M24 Chaffee’s.  They won’t be at Normandy, but they will be later in the war.  I do like that I was able to give them some better texture with the weathering products.
13 M24's rear
Rear shot of the M24’s.  
13 M24's side
M24’s in convoy.  They were mostly used as scouts, and were used (and some are still used) by many different armies worldwide.  My grandfather told me many stories about his service driving one.
14 All US painted
My 5 US tanks for this project.
15 3 Shermans
For comparison, here you see three Shermans – from left to right – my M4A2, a plastic British Sherman I bought already painted, and the resin one I bought pre-painted on eBay.  
16 2 Stuarts
Here are the two Stuarts for comparison.  Mine is on the left – and the eBay resin one is on the right.  I will treat the resin ones as M5’s, which are better in What a Tanker
17 all Allied ETO
My complete ETO Allied vehicles – there’s a couple of Fireflies in there too.  I will use all of these except the M24’s for Normandy.

Now I have 18 US/UK vehicles for Normandy – which should be plenty.  I also know that some folks are bringing some DD Shermans and a couple of Churchill’s.  I have 6 German tanks and tank destroyers for Normandy and 11 for the Eastern Front (all about 60% completed), with 3 more to assemble (plus 5 scout cars).  That should be enough for a couple of fun games.  Stay tuned as I’m hoping to complete the Germans soon.

Thanks for checking this out – below are the paints etc.  Let me know your thoughts if you would!

PAINTS, INKS, GLAZES, SHADES, WASHES, PIGMENTS AND FLOCKING USED ON THESE VEHICLES:

  1. Vallejo “Flow Improver”
  2. Vallejo “Airbrush Thinner”
  3. Vallejo “Surface Primer – Black”
  4. Testors “Universal Acrylic Thinner”
  5. Vallejo Model Air “US Olive Drab”
  6. Vallejo Game Air “Black”
  7. Battlefront “Black”
  8. Battlefront “Dark Gunmetal”
  9. Battlefront “European Flesh”
  10. Battlefront “Skin Shade”
  11. Vallejo Model Air “Bright Brass”
  12. Vallejo “Base Grey Primer”
  13. Vallejo “Neutral Grey”
  14. Army Painter “Military Shader” 
  15. Vallejo Model Air “Wood”
  16. Polly S “Rust”
  17. Vallejo Mecha Color “Light Rust Wash” (wash)
  18. Gorilla Glue
  19. Vallejo Mecha Varnish “Gloss Varnish”
  20. Microscale Micro-Set
  21. Microscale Micro-Sol
  22. Microscale Liquid Decal Film
  23. Microscale Satin
  24. 1/8″ rare earth neodymium magnets
  25. Appropriate decals from Battlefront
  26. Vallejo “European Mud” (Thick Mud)
  27. Vallejo “European Slash Mud” (Splash Mud)
  28. Vallejo “Crushed Grass”
  29. Vallejo Mecha Varnish “Matt Varnish”
  30. Aleene’s poster tack

 

 

 

 

Author: Mark A. Morin

This site is where I will discuss stuff that I find interesting and that includes family, friends, golf, gaming, and Boston sports!

26 thoughts on “US Armor for 75th D-Day Anniversary”

  1. Very nicely done indeed, and I’m so pleased you’ve finally got M24s painted! I do like the weathering and shading on them all – it’s come out very well indeed (I’m assuming it’s the Army Painter Military Shader you’ve used as a wash on them). Love the M10, I think I need to get one! Will be good to see them in an a 75th anniversary game for sure!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks John, yes, it was either you and/or Pete who made me aware of the AP Military Shader. I really like it. The M10 you see here is resin, and that is now OOP but they do make plastic ones now. Appreciate the kind words!

      Like

  2. Very cool, Mark. I love seeing your grungy armour go through the production line and onto the tabletop. I think I’m going to have to seek out those Vallejo Weathering products from my usual paint sources as well!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I have previously used Vallejo pigments for my desert tanks, and fixed the powders with airbrush thinner. I think that blowing or washing off can be an issue with pigments. I still will use pigments, but it’s nice to have another option, plus these do not need to be fixed. I like showroom in a museum, and dirty on the tabletop!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Nicely done! I have used some 3D printed fittings for detailing 1/72 ships, I think the technology is still one generation away in resolution and price from being truly revolutionary for the modeling world. The resin printing technology is promising though!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hope so – as someone who is more attuned to working with metal and resin (heavier models) I prefer some heft to my tanks. When I finish my Germans, you will see that I actually filled the plastic hulls with different types of steel to weigh them down. I thought I’d give the models a try, it was last year and I was just getting going building and collecting AFV’s for What a Tanker, and I really wanted some M24’s. Of course, I always could just buy more, make molds, and cast them in metal! Appreciate your taking a look and the feedback!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Those look great. The weathering looks spot on. The tester card to try them out is a great idea too. I use old plastic figures to being able to compare them side by side is a big help.

    Cheers,

    Pete.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Pete and I now know (thanks to John’s previous comments) that you were the one to turn me on the Army Painter Military Shader. Thanks as that helped. I have now a sheet with all of my washes to see which one I want to use.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Brilliant mate – especially impressed that the 3D printed ones came out so well, given the inevitable print lines. That crushed grass effect paint looks brilliant!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Great mate ,yep the crushed grass is great I’ll steal that idea! The Vallejo weather was shown to me my model shop guy but they are big pots and came in packs so for me and my odd little tank or two it wasn’t worth it ,shame they seem to work well ,and of course the little Stuart looks a treat .

    Liked by 1 person

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