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135
G.I. Combat’s THE HAUNTED TANK

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After sanding off the putty, I finished off the upper deck sides with the “welded look” technique (fig.14) using liquid glue-dissolved sprue then roughing it up with a knife tip to simulate a steel weld bead. I scratch built the exclusive Jigsaw Tank “H” handle bars on the rear engine cap (fig.15) using paper clips cut and bent to size and glued together with superglue, then lightly coated them with putty heavily dissolved in liquid glue. This putty coating will also help the paint adhere on the metal paperclips.

The top view of the Jigsaw illustration depicts it having a turret top deck similar to a late type M4 Sherman, with the commander’s vision cupola and a loader’s hatch on the left side. Luckily I had an unbuilt Tamiya Sherman 105 in my stash, but instead of also murdering that kit for this crazy project, I opted for making a copy or duplicate of the parts I need via the magic of cheap latex molding!

A couple of years ago, on kitmaker.net I posted an article on the age-old technique of latex casting, which caught the irk of some members, such as this guy calling himself T34-85, (ironic name isn’t it) who blasted my article saying latex is yucky and cheap so why bother – well Mr.T34-85 if you’re reading this, you’re right, latex casting is dirt cheap, like $5.99 a jar of latex cheap, and stinky too – but it still worked for me in this project, so read on - LOL!

So using the technique from my article, and quoting Mr.T34-85’s own words, I “wasted an inordinate amount of my time brushing yukky and stinky latex on every nook and cranny” of the top part of my Sherman 105’s turret; I also needed the driver’s and radio operator’s hatches to be in accordance with the illustration too, so I applied latex to them as well. I used stick glue (ugh!) - yes as used on those cheap glue guns - for casting material by simply melting a few sticks in a metal pan until it was liquid then simply pouring it into the latex mold and voila! One turret deck (fig.16) made out of stick glue, all ready for trimming and fitting.

It was impossible to put actual Panther engine deck vents on the rear hull simply because they’re too big and won’t fit (fig.17) so I had to scratch build the round vents using a small bogie wheel from some 1/48 kit then covered it with a screen; the rectangular vents are from our T-34 kit. When I installed the replicated driver and radio operator hatches on the front top deck, I realized my big mistake of cutting the hull top and bottom too short! Oh well no turning back now. LOL!

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About the Author

About Rei (muttley)
FROM: ONTARIO, CANADA

I started building armor and aircraft models when I was 9. The passion for the hobby was on and off depending on my other interests in life - like serving in the military, working overseas, getting married and all that stuff. I decided to go back and polish on my building skills once again, probabl...


Comments

I was glad to see this. I have been a Haunted Tank (G.I. Combat) fan since my early youth!! I always really enjoyed reading about Jeb and the boys!! I have entertained the thoughts of scratch-building a project like yours myself for years but have just never done so. Now thanks to you I have a renewed enthusiasm to do so!! Thank you, Randy
AUG 04, 2012 - 02:32 PM
This is really cool!
AUG 04, 2012 - 04:04 PM
this is a realy cool build,thanks for shareing.
AUG 04, 2012 - 06:30 PM
very unique project - well done ! really brings back some memories for me in the 70`s as a kid in Calgary, walking over to the 7-11 to get the comic GI Combat and Sgt Rock. I can also vaguely remember some story about a german tank crew that were disfigured from burns? anyone else remember what that was? cheers Mark
AUG 05, 2012 - 07:24 PM
Excellent work... Rei! Look's great! Bring's back a lot of great memories. David
AUG 08, 2012 - 02:09 PM
Rei, I grew up in the west end of Toronto (Etobicoke) during the 1960s, so The Haunted Tank I fondly recall --- it was 12 cents then --- was the old M-3 Stuart light tank (which neatly tied together the name of the tank commander and its ghostly Confederate cavalry patron). As an eager reader back then, it took plenty of disbelief to accept the miraculous bottom-of-the-hull-as-it-comes-over-the-hill shots by which the little tank regularly blew Tigers (and, occasionally, Messerschmidts) to kingdom-come, but I was an optimistic kid, as most kids are by nature. I agree with the preceding comments --- you've done a heckuva job reproducing the comic's "replacement" tank --- part-Pershing, part-Comet, all ugly. I'm glad I'd been distracted by girls before the "new, improved" version (with its idiotically oversized machine gun position) came along. A job well done. My only regret? I don't think Sgt. Fury and the Howling Commandos -- that ghastly comic named as the result of a bet between Marvel Comics' Stan Lee and his publisher that he could create a success even with that dreadful a title --- ever featured a tank. Oh, well ... there's always Sgt. Rock!
AUG 09, 2012 - 10:16 AM
Thanks guys Fred, I believe this is the Haunted Tank you grew up with I actually built it after I did this Jigsaw, more of it at this campaign link LINK
AUG 10, 2012 - 01:48 PM
Jeff Stringer: this Haunted tank is a different build than the one being chronicled over on FSM. FYI Both are neat interpretations of the comic book version, though.
AUG 11, 2012 - 01:03 AM
Thanks, Rei. That's a beautiful model of the little Stuart. Speaking of mysterious Stuarts, Season 5 of the Twilight Zone TV series had an episode titled "The 7th Is Made Up Of Phantoms" in which the crew of one such tank --- a national guard unit on military manoeuvers near the site of the last stand of Custer and the 7th Cavalry 88 years after the battle --- find themselves transported back in time to the battle itself, in which they dismounted to join the ranks of Custer's doomed command. Rod Serling himself wrote the episode. Why he had the crew leave their tank, I'll never know...
AUG 12, 2012 - 10:37 AM
I loved the story and the model,but I remembered in one of the issues' letter pages they (editors) said the turret was a Panther turret,with a T-34 hull and 76.2 mm main gun,and a 20 mm gun in the glacis plate.The M-24 Chaffee did not enter service until the last year of the war,so a Chaffee turret would not be "authentic" for the period in the war the story portrays.
SEP 03, 2012 - 05:41 PM