Mercedes L4500A (Zvezda) and Anhanger cargo box trailer (Azimut)

Panzerwrecker

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Started in Jan 21 this project is still a way of completion. I am currently working on the many accessories that both vehicles were carrying and trying to get to get to grips with the groundworks that they be displayed on.

The Zvezda kit is a peach. Great value with only a few parts that put up a fight and the addition of some nice Panzerart resin wheels. The Azimut kit on the other hand is a pile of ###. You would think that engineering a simple box shape wouldn’t be too difficult to achieve but this kit goes a long way to challenge that. One side longer than the other. Roof section too narrow, and fit issues with pretty much everything else just to keep you on your toes. If it wasn’t such an unusual and rarely modelled vehicle it would have gone in the bin on the first day.

Hopefully at some point in the future they will end up sat displayed in a scene abandoned in a ditch with GI’s rifling through the cargo. I guess that will ultimately depend on events 1800 miles away to the East!

Progress so far20211125_013618_remastered.jpg256017414_3010849282505523_7708735725109795077_n.jpg256092478_3010880489169069_5819942273374516141_n.jpg20211125_014431_remastered.jpg20211111_033330_remastered.jpg20211111_033434_remastered.jpg20211111_033531_remastered.jpg
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Mini Me

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Very nice Los.....the M.B. looks the "bomb"! I'm surprised the trailer didn't come with "duals" in the rear.
That's tricky looking camo on the trailer. :thumb2: Rick H.
 

Panzerwrecker

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Mini Me

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Hi Lee.........I thought you might be around..... ;) Los, I have that ref. as well.....have seen others with duals front and rear.....same class of trailer. guess they could go either way depending on load requirements. Rick H.
 
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Dave Ward

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Los,
The half track Maultier version of the L4500 was the first model I made from Zvezda, that approached the standards of the Far East - and their standards have risen since then. The wheeled version looks just as good! What sort of load would you be thinking of for the L4500?
Dave
 

Panzerwrecker

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Los,
The half track Maultier version of the L4500 was the first model I made from Zvezda, that approached the standards of the Far East - and their standards have risen since then. The wheeled version looks just as good! What sort of load would you be thinking of for the L4500?

Hi Dave

This vehicle represents a 16th Pz. Div vehicle on a road north somewhere in northern France. Looking at pics of German columns retreating hastily to the Rhine they threw in pretty much anything that would fit in. The cargo trailer was built with a thin plastic card floor template that has stacks of tyres on it so I could slide it in-between the arches right to the front of the trailer after paint. The remaining space will be filled with all sorts of equipment that has been strewn about the back of the vehicle.

The truck will have a mixed load that has slipped to one side as the truck will be displayed pushed/driven into a ditch. Again, some items will be shown pulled out and scattered around. I am working on building and painting around thirty different items including a motorcycle and sidecar. I have a spare built up L4500 cargo bed which I am using to test fit all the different items in. Hopefully this will give me more freedom to ensure the dislodged load sits naturally even though it is all getting painted in separate sub-assemblies.

The truck build was designed to be viewed on its side so very little of the passenger side will be seen once it is sat in the ditch. Rather than focussing on the dark side of the truck more effort was spent trying to achieve a realistic result with the underside. I didn’t go the full hog and scratch build all the hydraulic lines, but I do have a few fragile cables to run from the rear hubs yet, but they will be added just before it is placed on its base.



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Mini Me

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Oh that is a piece of "Art" I'm really looking forward to this little display! :thumb2: Rick H.
 

adt70hk

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Los

That does look really rather good already. Well done so far.

ATB.

Andrew
 

Panzerwrecker

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Afternoon peeps. I'm back in the room with this one whilst another project awaits some AM goodies.

After starting to build and paint some accessories last year, I got side tracked, as I often do :rolling: so the truck and trailer were relegated to a nice dust free storage box. Last year I got some inspiration from the most excellent ‘The Army that got away' publication of how 15 Army largely escaped from their Atlantic coast defensive positions after D-Day. Pursued without any real urgency they escaped via the Scheldt estuary pretty much intact. It is a great read with some fantastic clear period images that I’ve never seen before, and it gave me some ideas on how I could finish off this project. I got the basic scene mapped out, but it too ended up on the queenie shelf whilst more pressing matters were attended to! So, lets have a quick SBS run through of how the base and groundwork took shape starting from the beggining.

To build a base that I could display both vehicles pushed off the side of the road it had to be a lot longer than anything I have done before. I would display them abandoned with GI's rummaging over the booty.

Starting with a suitably long wooden picture frame and some polystyrene I began playing with ideas. Having only really fully painted three sides of each vehicle with time spent weathered the underside of the truck, the intention was always to display them tipped on their sides to some degree. I eventually had them both sat in a roadside ditch. The bank behind them would contain a hedgerow and some trees. The scene would be set in Northern France, north of the Seine on the long retreat to the West Wall


Initial mock up
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I began laying down the groundwork contours with Sculptamold. Once the basic shapes had taken form, I framed the sides with Balsa wood. Once the Sculptamold had cured for a few days the final terrain layer was made up with mixes of AK Diorama series light and dark mud texture paste, and a few natural logs in the ditch were pressed into the wet surface. Wanting to test out AK's Diorama wet effects that was also laid down at the bottom of the ditch.
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Happy that the grauduated colour change AK textured paste colours was dark enough at the base of the hedge line, various sizes from 3mm to 7mm of static grass were added in a couple of sessions with an applicator over PVA glue.
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AK Diorama Asphalt paste was then added to the main road surface and smoothed out flat. It does look shiny, shiny but it does dry to a very impressive dried Asphalt looking texture.

Paste application
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Paste fully dry. I did end up with a few imperfections but these should add a little interest rather than distract from the overall effect. Wheel markers helped keep the vehicle placement in check.
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A recess was cut out for a resin telegraph pole base and much test fitting of the vehicles, bushes, and trees took place until final placement was made and futher bushes were marked out with cocktail sticks. More shorter grass has been applied to the road edge.
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Over a few evenings the hedgerow slowly took shape. I used scenic products from Mininatur, MK35 and the beautifully hand-crafted trees and bushes from Robert Benasiewicz. A combo of both AK textured paste and PVA ensured it stayed where it was placed.
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To combat the unnatural shine that many of these scenic materials exhibit, I always planned to airbrush various mixes of diluted Tamiya acrylics over them. I have in the past completely dark primed the whole scene once all the scenic planting were in place, as you can really up the final contrast. In this case the darker AK textured earth tones were a good starting point. I did however slightly enhance the shadow effects in places. Starting with a German Grey and Flat Earth mix, lightening to pure Flat earth, this was applied to the recessed areas of exposed earth in both ditch and on verge. This was followed by enhancing the grassy areas. The darkest shade being Dark green, through Nato Green and Light Green all the way to handmade mixes of Flat Yellow and Blue to create the most vibrant tones. Painting individual leaves and plants being quite therapeutic.

I much prefer the harmonising effect that this additional airbrushing creates.
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Flat earth and Buff mixes were also airbrushed over the edges of the road where it attracted the least traffic, and a very diluted misted layer was airbrushed over all the vegetation to rid it of any remaining unnatural sheen. This will form the base of future dust effects.
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More test fitting of vehicles.
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Temporary marks have been made in the initial airbrushed dust layer to mark the likely areas where the tyres dragged along the road surface as they were pushed off the road by a dozer. The truck marks would show two straightforward parallel marks, but I suspect the trailer would have first pivoted on its draw bar dragging the front wheels in an arc before the rear wheels followed when pushed again by the dozer. I will test the theory with two sets of axles attached with a draw bar to see what marks would show if the truck was pushed off first. The dozer marks on both the vehicles and road surface will then also have to be added.

The truck and trailer contents are being slowly amassed and the truck will have a nice surprise being uncovered. The trailer also requires additional weathering work to the underside and both vehicles will eventually display dried camo foilage.

The next session will make a start to building up, painting, weathering and fitting of the telegraph pole and dropped wires.

Los
 

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Panzerwrecker

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