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Broken Down in Italy

Introduction
The base kit for this diorama is the Dragon (#6358) Panther Ausf A late version. My objective when I started this model was to create a scene showing a tank in Italy undergoing some maintenance work in a field setting. As my references I used several books dedicated to the Panther tank from Concord, Spiel Berger, Osprey and Panzer Tracts, as well as my own experience in the US Army as a tanker. To the base kit I added the engine from the Tamiya Tank Engine Maintenance Crew set that I had in the box and combined that with a couple of Verlinden resin pieces and Friul model Tracks.

The Verlinden pieces I had were a full engine kit and a full interior kit that I had put in an older Panther kit; I cannibalized these for this project since I wasn’t happy with the way the older project had turned out. But instead of using all of the Verlinden interior and the full engine kit like I did in the older Panther, I used the radiators/fan in conjunction with the Tamiya engine; then I added the Verlinden resin turret interior along with most of the resin interior from around the driver and radio operator to fill up the empty spaces you would normally see with open hatches.

Build
I built the model straight from the box and then added the engine, metal tracks and resin parts to create an accurate tank that is undergoing some repair work at a field maintenance site. I tried to show this tank with moderate wear and tear; chipped paint, dried dirt, dust, and wear on the drive sprocket and corresponding road wheels. Since mechanics are bigger pack-rats than tankers, the scene is set with loads of extras including empty shell casings, fuel and water cans, tool chests with extra tools, pioneering tools, empty cardboard box, extra track links, track connector pins, extra road wheels, boxes, crates and other pieces from the spare parts box. The extras for this diorama come from Tamiya, AFV, Evergreen, Verlinden, and Warrior. I tried to put in as many tools and parts as I could since when work is being done in the field on any armored vehicle, the site usually becomes quite chaotic.

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About Kevin Potts (ElCapitan)
FROM: PENNSYLVANIA, UNITED STATES

I started to build models at the age of 6 and somewhere in my teens I took a long break. Then a couple of years ago I returned to the hobby and got back into it, so now I try something different on each vehicle in an attempt to push myself.