June already and the prospect of further restrictions being lifted in the near future gives me some hope that the various elements of the Schloss Itter project will finally be reunited. Both James and I are keen for this to happen, not least so we can see what finishing touches need to made in order to bring it to some form of resolution. There is no doubt that working from home for the last two months, allowing myself an hour or so a day hobby time, has seen most things on my 'to do' list ticked off, one of those being this rather splendid 'Rubicon Models' Half-track.
James very kindly put this kit together when I was elbow deep in builders' caulk and Sculptamold and then it sat idly for an age waiting for me to paint it. In my defence the Half-track was only ever going to be for table dressing, an element to hint at how the mighty '88 had managed to be deployed before shelling the castle. That said it is another fine model with a good number of options and so warranted some love and attention.
Given that it was supposed to have towed the '88 into position, I approached the painting in the same way starting with some bold strokes of colour with the trusty airbrush. These were then refined with the brush before going to town with the weathering and chipping. This final stage is still approached with some trepidation as the idea of 'distressing' a perfectly serviceable paint job seems a little counterintuitive, but I feel as if I am becoming more familiar with the techniques and so a little more confident with managing my expectations.
With the painting finished it still felt a little incomplete, possibly as I have chosen not to base this model and so it is without the customary flock and tufts that have adorned the previous models. Fortunately I had picked up a stowage set from the same company with a view of making some loot markers for the game and a quick review of the sprue threw up a couple of possibilities in the shape of a tool chest and rolled up flag.
Once again I need to credit he very talented Nick of 'Moiterei's Bunte Welt' fame for the idea of the flag, something I had seen on his amazing blog and was keen to try for myself; the splash of vibrant red really helping to lift the piece. The final detail was some of my home made camouflage net, stowed in the rear cradle, ready to deploy. Having been a model that I was struggling to get started on, the half-track has now become one of my favourite pieces and I am thrilled to see it next to the '88, just want to see it on the table now!
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