Am I late for the tram?

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Am I late for the train?
A while back….okay, a LONG time ago I started a project using MiniArt’s European Tram kit, model number 38001. Since starting this project, the kit itself has been discontinued from MiniArt’s line, having been replaced by the German Tram (Triebwagon 641), model number 38003. No matter, the build must go on. And on it did.

Unfortunately it took me much longer to get this one to the finish line than anticipated. But in the end, making it to the finish is all that really matters. So in this feature, I want to talk a little bit about the build but focus a little more on the painting of the tram itself. Since I decided a while back to build the Tram as a wreck of some sort, I needed to work in some destruction and possible some burnt stuff. Hopefully I will be able to shed some light on a little bit of what it takes to create some burnt effects.

The Kit & the Build
The European Tram, and I suppose the German Tram, from MiniArt has over 600 parts to the kits. At least 1/3 of these parts are attributed to the chassis and suspension; largely made up from some of the smallest molded styrene piece known to man. Bill Cross has an excellent review of this kit here on Armorma, if you have the chance, please stop by and check it out.

Bill's Review Live links

The construction process was fairly straight forward…of course, aside from the tons of little parts to deal with; all located on a section presumably never to be seen if the model were placed upright on the base provided. The undercarriage is highly detailed and for all intents and purposes, impressive. It did not take long to construct the lower end of the Tram actually. I think after a couple of nights of snipping and cleaning, followed by plenty of sanding, the entire undercarriage was together…and the wheels are movable; just in case you wanted to play a little.

After that, it was a matter of muddling through MiniArt’s a pile of wall panels for the trams car construction. Typically this would be where another tedious process of the build would take place; the endless and all but mindless sanding of tiny little plastic window bars. I chose to eliminate most of this process after a few of these snapped in half when trying to remove them from the sprue trees. The plastic in this kit is a little brittle and deserves a lot of care and patience.

Fortunately for me, this will be a wreck. This meant that certain parts and sections can be omitted from the building process due to the fact that either the parts would be depicted damaged or gone completely form the destructive force that cause such damage.
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About the Author

About Todd Michalak (TRM5150)

I am building what I like, when I like and how I like it; having fun doing it. I have been building and finishing models on and off my whole life but the past ten years things really exploded. Just about anything goes when it comes to hitting the bench, but wrecked armor, rusted hulks, ships or ...


Yes,"thumbnails", hope they come in economy packs for those of us who are all thumbs!
MAR 07, 2015 - 07:44 AM
LOL...I have a box full of thumbs! Use them ALL the time
MAR 07, 2015 - 10:04 AM
Wow, great job Todd, very realistic! Thank you for the great step-by-step, I have something I want to try and this will help me out, hope it turns out as well as yours!
MAR 07, 2015 - 11:03 AM
Thank you Colin! I'm sure things will turn out just fine my friend! Play around with things and have some fun! If a question pops up, let me know. If I can't answer it, I'm sure we can find one!!
MAR 07, 2015 - 11:35 AM
Todd, great job! Seems a shame to put 600 pieces together and not have it bright and shiny, but I like this scene better! Your damage and weather is great.
MAR 08, 2015 - 07:16 AM
Thank you Fred!! It does seem just like that sometimes my friend! I look at in terms of complete in either case. If I had decided earlier to make a wreck though, I probably would have done half the work underneath and had it probably standing upright. Kind of a "luck of the draw" thing!
MAR 08, 2015 - 07:30 AM
Great to see this all finished! Excellent work Todd!
MAR 08, 2015 - 12:38 PM
Hi Jim!! Thank you!! I to am glad to see this one reach the finish line!! ....
MAR 08, 2015 - 04:57 PM
Nice project and reference. I'm doing one now..a tropical tramcar. thanks. It's sunny over here.
APR 13, 2015 - 10:22 AM
Thanks Ed!! Best of luck on the build!! It's getting sunnier over here too....only really slowly!!!
APR 13, 2015 - 03:19 PM