Thursday, December 28

Finishing guide - Takom's 35th scale Merkava Mk.I

Paul's build of TAKOM's 35th scale Merkava Mk.I is now finished, today in the final part of his journey finishes the kit using AMMO's shades with a great result. See how he did it, and how you could take on your own kit in his finishing guide...

Finishing Guide: Merkava Mk I
Manufacturer: Takom
Scale: 1/35th
Type: Multimedia kit

Price: $62.23 AUD/ €41.07 EUR/ $47.64 USD/ £36.17 GBP from Hobbylink Japan
Available from Takom distributors worldwide

In-Box Review Takom's 35th scale Merkava Mk I

With most of the construction out of the way I can now start bringing the model to life. Being a single toned colour, I was given Mig Ammo’s Israel Defense Forces Special Edition
 set to use which has three different Israeli tones for vehicles of different time periods.
I started with A.Mig-066 Sinai Grey 82 to simulate the shaded areas on the lower areas. I painted the tyres with black and then painted the wheels with Sinai Grey 82 with the aid of a circle template. I picked out details with a pin wash using a mix of raw umber and black oils, but most of this will end up hidden by the wheels and side skirts so you can get away with not doing it to save yourself some time. The run of tracks was also painted with track primer and installed over the running gear.
As I mentioned in the build review, that flap on the front fender prevents you from gluing the hull together before adding the tracks so I had to paint the upper hull and turret separately from the lower hull. I used M.Mig-067 Sinai Grey 73 and lightened it with a few drops of white for the top surfaces. Another pin wash brought out the details on the details, particularly on rear of the hull.
Predictably, mating of the upper and lower hulls results in this seam which wasn’t a big hassle, but easily avoidable if it wasn’t for a small section of plastic moulded onto the front fender for some reason. I gave the whole model a wash with Abteilung’s wash brown, with some streaking on the long hull front and sideskirts to break up the monotonous colour.
Extra Luggage:
To finish off the last of the bits and pieces I added the final details including the spare track links and the tow cables. The tow cables were a little tricky to install, particularly around the stowage basket because it isn’t extremely fragile, it’s not particularly strong either. Going through the spares box, I found some stowage from Tamiya’s stowage set, and also folded up a little box from some cardboard.
I lightly weathered the tracks with a wash of Abteilung’s Light Mud, and dry brushed with a gun metal colour, and finally some exhaust stains with Tamiya X19 Smoke before sealing it all up with a matte coat.
This is another very enjoyable kit by Takom and is refreshing to build a kit without any PE at all. The only issue I have is with that little flap which changed the way I usually like to build my kits, but there are people out there who put the whole kit together before painting so it is not going to be an issue for everyone. 
Other than that, I can recommend this to all but the most inexperienced of builders. 
Highly recommended.

Paul Lee

Thanks to Takom for this kit to build and review

Thanks also to the guys at AMMO Who sent us the paints to use in this build...