Author Topic: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets  (Read 9307 times)

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John

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #30 on: October 13, 2018, 06:12:52 AM »
+2
I have a bunch of the Can-Do 1/144 M1A1s for my NscaleKits loads .. took some shots with the cell phone this morning comparing them with the MT version .. I haven't put the MT M1 together yet, so its just a dry fit .. but should be a good comparison









« Last Edit: October 13, 2018, 06:15:10 AM by John »

John

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #31 on: October 13, 2018, 06:19:55 AM »
+1
Not to cause thread drift ..a quick comparison between the MT Flat and the NscaleKits FGE 68"





Mark W

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #32 on: October 13, 2018, 11:45:00 AM »
0
Couldn't you come close to the desired appearance with paint?  Paint it dark and flat, then highlight the tracks and wheels with the desired finish colors?

Yes, that's certainly how Micro-Trains intended the kits to be built.  But come on now, this is The Railwire!   :tommann:


I'm going to keep at it in search of a more practical way to daylight the wheel gaps.  I'll do a comparison when done, but I know will be a significant visual difference. 
That being said, I'm certainly not doing the drill and chisel method on the next fourteen tanks from the first three sets being released.


Not to cause thread drift ..a quick comparison between the MT Flat and the NscaleKits FGE 68"

Great comparisons, John.  I think this is actually the first time I've seen identical models in 1/144 and 1/160 side by side! 

You mentioned using the tracks from the 144 model; are they independent/free-rolling?
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Shipsure

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #33 on: October 13, 2018, 02:54:40 PM »
+3
Daylighting makes a bid difference visually.  But I'm still wondering why MTL didn't simply mold them that way?  @Shipsure  Could you provide some insight? Couldn't you guys make mold that part with gaps between the wheels?

The shut offs between the two halves of the mold would have been almost impossible to keep from flashing and the mold designers were concerned about getting the plastic to flow through such thin attachment points where the wheels meet the track on the bottom.  Styrene and ABS do not flow as well as Celcon and other engineering plastics.  Folks look at some of the fine skinny stuff we do but that's in a plastic you can't paint. 

There you go.

Joe

Mark W

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #34 on: October 13, 2018, 05:12:53 PM »
0
Thanks for the insight Joe.  I've gotten to know the tread peaces quite well today and can see how difficult molding open gaps would be.   An alternative would be molding each wheel and treads as separate parts for assembly, but that's probably a little bit deeper into kit form than MTL wanted to dive for this. 

The good news for those eager to take on the challenge, I think I've come up with an easier way to accomplish the daylighting by using brass tube. There are a few variations on this method, which revolve around the wheel hubs (heh).  If you look really close, MTL molded rim and lug detail inside of that hub!  That's the kinda of detail I want to save, but it's a little tricky to get there so when removing the entire row of wheels you want to be surgical.  Alternatively, if you can live without lug detail then you don't need to worry about saving the existing wheels at all.


https://i.imgur.com/Pzp4bz9.jpg


Working with a fresh xacto blade, very carefully trim around the hub to fit inside the brass tube. 


https://i.imgur.com/FQXOGqa.jpg


A few gaps around the edge are inevitable.  Hopefully primer will fill that in, yet hopefully primer will not completely mask those lugs. 


https://i.imgur.com/tYck35E.jpg


Since this is the sacrificial tank, I'll try brass wheels without saving the hubs on the other side.  This will gives us a full comparison with daylighted wheels, and a look at saving hubs vs completely scratch built wheels. 
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MarkJ

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #35 on: October 13, 2018, 05:51:42 PM »
+1
Mark,

Would it be possible to sand or file down the back of the tread until the “fill” area between the wheels is removed (or at least thin enough that it can be easy cut out with a sharp hobby knife)? I know you’ll lose some tread width, but it might be an easier route than what you have proposed above.

Looking at your photo of the part on page two, is should be easy to make a jig that holds the part while you file away on the back of the tread. I wouldn’t try working on the part freehand without a jig as you may destroy the part as you remove material and make the treads and wheels weaker. You can always add back the tread width on the visible areas using styrene (the bottom of course not being visible and not needing any attention).

Thanks, Mark

Mark W

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #36 on: October 13, 2018, 06:33:57 PM »
0
...Would it be possible to sand or file down the back of the tread until the “fill” area between the wheels is removed (or at least thin enough that it can be easy cut out with a sharp hobby knife)? I know you’ll lose some tread width, but it might be an easier route than what you have proposed above...

That's a great idea, I hadn't thought of that.  But unfortunately, looking closer at the part, the fill area extends further forward than the hub so the first thing to go would be the part we're trying to save.  But still, it's worth a try at making things easier.  I'll give it a shot!  I'm still brainstorming ideas to replace the treads all together too. 



https://i.imgur.com/ZvYQ6Sx.jpg
« Last Edit: October 13, 2018, 06:36:14 PM by Mark W »
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James Costello

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #37 on: October 13, 2018, 09:06:32 PM »
0
In terms of effort vs reward, maybe only the end gaps that are worth it. There's not much daylight getting through:

https://www.railcarphotos.com/PhotoDetails.php?PhotoID=101441

https://www.railcarphotos.com/PhotoDetails.php?PhotoID=31379

https://www.railcarphotos.com/PhotoDetails.php?PhotoID=2808

https://www.railcarphotos.com/PhotoDetails.php?PhotoID=34288

This was the only photo I saw on railcarphotos that made me second-think the above.
https://www.railcarphotos.com/PhotoDetails.php?PhotoID=81589

So obviously viewing angle is factor here too.
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MarkJ

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #38 on: October 13, 2018, 09:13:17 PM »
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Mark,

Yes, you’re right. I didn’t see that in the previous photo. Filing and sanding probably won’t work. It looks like your first idea of replacing all the wheels is probably the best option. I just don’t see how you can get around this easily. And since you're replacing the outer rims of the wheels, you may as well just make new centers and hubs. At least that will save you the trouble of cutting out the originals. I mean cutting out those tiny wheel centers...14 times per tank...is going to get tedious real fast. Like the previous poster just said, this may not be worth the effort.

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #39 on: October 14, 2018, 01:32:28 AM »
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You mentioned using the tracks from the 144 model; are they independent/free-rolling?

They are not, I bought a bunch of them in the mid 2000s for plans to use them on Alan Curtis/NSK cars, which I never got.

But nice thing about the Dragon stuff is that they make multiple different armored vehicles.

John

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #40 on: October 14, 2018, 06:16:14 AM »
0
They are not, I bought a bunch of them in the mid 2000s for plans to use them on Alan Curtis/NSK cars, which I never got.

But nice thing about the Dragon stuff is that they make multiple different armored vehicles.

The Dragon tanks have a rubbery material for the tracks and wheels, cast as one piece then inserted into the body ...  I like the detail on these vehicles .. quite a bit more relief than on the MT models..

I think I may just spend some time adding a few small details that aren't on the MT molding .. like the identification panels, the second small tube near the main gun. Daylighting the tracks at the ends is probably all I am going to do with these ..  another mod that might be easy to make is the latest version with the TUSK system





« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 06:20:23 AM by John »

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #41 on: October 14, 2018, 08:42:55 AM »
+1
The Dragon tanks have a rubbery material for the tracks and wheels, cast as one piece then inserted into the body ...  I like the detail on these vehicles .. quite a bit more relief than on the MT models..

I think I may just spend some time adding a few small details that aren't on the MT molding .. like the identification panels, the second small tube near the main gun. Daylighting the tracks at the ends is probably all I am going to do with these ..  another mod that might be easy to make is the latest version with the TUSK system





The second tube that you are referencing is the flash suppressor for the coaxial mounted M240C machine gun. The ID panels, reactive armor, the CROW system that comes with TUSK, etc would all be removed during shipment, since you are not going to MGs and depleted uranium armor just sit out in the open. The stripped look the Micro Trains molded is how the tank would ship.
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John

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #42 on: October 14, 2018, 08:48:08 AM »
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Thanks for the info on how these things would ship that's good to know

John

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #43 on: October 14, 2018, 08:52:00 AM »
+1
I played around with the first one today a little bit. I daylighted the front tread and also scribed some Treads with the razor saw. I think the experiment came out okay. Painted with Krylon camouflage sand and weathered with oil based pastel .. too much black .. so back to the paint shed











« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 12:06:32 PM by John »

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Re: Detailing the Micro-Trains DODX M1 Abrams Tank Sets
« Reply #44 on: October 14, 2018, 09:05:18 AM »
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The shut offs between the two halves of the mold would have been almost impossible to keep from flashing and the mold designers were concerned about getting the plastic to flow through such thin attachment points where the wheels meet the track on the bottom.  Styrene and ABS do not flow as well as Celcon and other engineering plastics.  Folks look at some of the fine skinny stuff we do but that's in a plastic you can't paint. 

There you go.

Joe

I can appreciate the concern, and the answer Joe.  Thanks.  That said, I have boxes of 1/100 plastic (styrene/ABS) M1A1s, Chieftans, T-64s et al with daylighted wheels.  Something to think about for next time, say the AAV-7s or M88 :)

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