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Building the Academy M3 Grant

  • P6100008
Painting and Weathering

Those of you who followed the blog will know that I paint as I go. On this model I used White Ensign Paints, which are enamel based and were not something I was familiar with using, but offered the best choice of desert colours I could find. The kit was base coated in Humbrol Matt 70 in specific areas and in Light Stone overall. I used Dark Olive Green for the camouflage. On the internals I used Vallejo Off White and weathered in worn spots and grease. The kit was weathered in with a variety of Mig Filters and finished off with some Mig Pigments, for a dustier look.

I have no special technique for painting, mostly trial and a lot of error, but I do tend to paint from light to dark and build up the finish over several layers.

On the question of the white paint on the side doors; normally these would have been OD or desert yellow. However, the Lees when they arrived from the factory had white internal doors and Iíve opted for this finish simply as I rather like the effect and it is therefore possible newly arrived Grants were also finished in that way. As part of modelling is to attract the viewer, then the open white doors help to draw the eye into the vehicle, so Iíll probably leave them as is for now.


This came from a variety of sources, Resicast, Accurate Armour, and Tamiya and was secured with rolled lead wire straps as necessary. I fashioned a small bin for the RHS fender. I did attempt to make a canvas cover but whilst the canvas worked OK, I couldnít get it to sit correctly as it was secured by 2 plates that are visible in most pictures and I couldnít reproduce these incorporated into my paper canvas. I have opted for the Lion Road resin cover which will arrive I hope when they get back from holidays. I opted to sling the towing cable around the outside rather than rolled up neatly on the back.


These came from the Echlon set for the Royal Wiltshire Yeomanry. The Royal Wiltshireís took part in the 2nd Battle of El Alamein, reportedly the first unit into action against Rommelís forces. They were attached to 2nd New Zealand Division, 9th Armoured Brigade. There were equipped with a variety of tanks, Crusaders, Grants (Heavies) and Shermans. They were only in Egypt for about 3 or 4 months and there is evidence that they carried forward their vehicle names from Crusaders to Grants to Shermans.


Well the test is did I enjoy the build. The answer to that is yes, very much, it was very challenging at times and very frustrating at others. Iím happy with how the kit turned out and learnt a lot along the way. Would I build another? Well if they fix the suspension problem then probably yes, I would. I still have one old Tamiya Grant rotor for the turret problem and a Grant in Burma would be a nice variation on this one. Not this year though!!

There are now 2 PE sets available for the kit, not around when I built mine, well turned up just towards the end, that will I imagine add to any future builds.

To all those who contributed to the build both here and on SMW; many thanks guys.

"As with a lot of builds there is always something that comes along just when you think you have finished. In this case it was the placement of the spare wheel in the centre of the rear hull plate. There was an access hole there (not in the kit), so that the engine could be turned over, something that happened each time before the tank was started, to manually force any pool of oil out of the cylinders, so I had to move the spare wheel and drill a small hole to represent this." My thanks to Paul Roberts for pointing this out, which just goes to show don't trust museum pictures too much!!!
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About the Author

About Alan McNeilly (AlanL)

Greying slightly, but young at heart. I've been teaching adults off and on for most of my life. Left the services in 85 and first started modelling in about 87 for a few years. Then I had a long spell when I didn't build anything (too busy) and really just got started again during the summer of ...


Hey Al, Not sure if anyone in Canada was able to take advantage of the offer. The MRC/Stevens International replacement deal only seems to be for kits purchased in the U.S.A. Academy's English language site is not the best and at times is very hard to access things like their email address. I think I'll get my Korean friend, who owns a LHS, to contact them directly and see what they can do. Failing that, my friend that imports Academy may be able to help me out. Cheers jjumbo
JAN 11, 2009 - 08:10 AM
Hi john, If you know the chap who imports them then he should be able to sort one out for you. Al
JAN 11, 2009 - 08:24 AM
Hi Al ..great article ...
JAN 11, 2009 - 11:59 AM
Hi Rick, Thanks, you comments and assistance during the build were much appreciated. Al
JAN 11, 2009 - 05:44 PM
First nice build Alan. Great job on the beast. A couple of questions. First why did you not go back to Academy they were giving the Suspension parts away? Now charging $8.00 here USA in shipping charges. Second I hate to say but are not the Exhausts in need of changing? If you did discard this as a Alzheimer's thing. I am not sure on the Grant on the Lee I am working they do to be changed. If so Tiger Models has then for $3.50 here anyway but I guess for you across the pond would be $14.00 which I think is a bummer. Here is what I mean by rear end. Image from US Army Ordnance Museum And in case you were wondering how they did those Rivets. photo by Wikipedia. Boy if that was today OSHA would be all over them fellows no eye protection ETC... Looks like they got a little sloppy with that Filler also. Well correcting myself Alan in fact it appears that the British did in fact use the old style of pipes as Displayed on the Grant Monty. So one down and one to go. Good job Mate.
JAN 27, 2009 - 01:21 AM
Hi Jeff, Thanks for dropping in. The exhausts are OK for this one, so no worries there. On the spur, you probably missed the post up above, but I did in fact manage to get a replacement set of spurs here in the UK through Toyway. Unfortunately they came too late for the build which by that time I had finished. Thanks for the comments, apprecaited. Nice pics - yes the H & S guys would be having a fit Cheers Al
JAN 27, 2009 - 07:40 AM
Alan do you get the replacement sprue with the kit now or do you have to get it seprately?
JAN 27, 2009 - 08:40 AM
Hi James, My understanding of the situation is that all new kits would have the replacement spur. You would need to check with your supplier or Academy to be sure. You could phone Toyway on 01462 672509, I think the chaps name was John or email to toys@toyway.co.uk Bets I can do. Al
JAN 27, 2009 - 08:47 AM
Thanks Al i will indeed
JAN 27, 2009 - 08:52 AM
Hi James, Let us know what answer you get. Al
JAN 28, 2009 - 05:49 PM