Book Review
Video Review included
Modelling German Armor
Modelling and Detailing German Armor
  • German-Armor_header_picture-01

by: Henk Meerdink [ HENK ]

The Internet, and a number of dedicated websites in particular, have been instrumental in showcasing the work of many modellers, and most modellers have been more than happy to share with others the techniques and tricks they apply to achieve these stunning models. This has enabled many modellers to improve their skills, and make better models as a result. Still, the best way to learn is to see somebody actually do it, explain what he/she is doing, and why. On this video Graham Dunbar Brown does just that. During the 55 minutes of the main feature, Graham shows how he turns the Jagdtiger into a stunning display model, from opening the box and checking the pieces, to the final weathering touches.

The second part of the DVD contains some extra features, such as a profile of Graham Dunbar Brown, a list of products used and references, and tips on how to easily correct some common (and easily made) mistakes. A 'Model Panorama' shows a number of 'stylised' pictures of the model, without sound. The total running time of the DVD is approx. 85 minutes.

  • adding detail
  • Battle Damage
  • Camouflage
  • Crew Scuffs
  • Decals
  • Emergency (Tow) Cables
  • Inner Wheels
  • Kill Rings
  • Laurel Camouflage
  • Main Colour
  • Modifying Markings
  • Mudguards
  • Paint Schemes
  • Panorama
  • Pre-Shading
  • Profile of Graham
  • Removing Decals
  • Torsion Bars
  • Track Assembly
  • Track Painting
  • Trimming Edges
  • Turntable
  • Undercoat
  • Washing
  • Weathering
  • X2 Photos A
  • X2 Photos B

The DVD is extremely easy to navigate, every individual chapter can be reached from the menu, to make looking up a specific part quick and easy. The quality of the filming and sound is good, with clear images and transitions between takes.

The main feature
The subject of this build is the Henschel Jagdtiger 'X2', which surrendered near Iserlohn in April 1945. Using period photographs as reference, Graham recreates every detail, from the prominent battle damage on the front glacis, to the heavy foliage camouflage, and shows and explains how he does so. Graham starts refreshingly right at the beginning, and explains why it's important to check the contents of the kit before you commence the building process. The build then starts, following the instruction sequence, and the various steps are shown in great close-up detail. The pace is slow enough to be able to take everything in, whilst still moving along quick enough to keep the interest fresh.

Most of the model is fairly straight forward, but where Graham adds details, such as the shell impact on the glacis, he gives a detailed explanation of how he does this. Combined with the close-up view of the use of materials and tools used, these are very interesting chapters.

Again using the period photographs as reference, Graham continues the process and applies the base coat of Dunkelgelb, explaining along the way the impact of various weathering techniques, and how these influence the choice of colour for the base coat. The strength of this video comes particularly to life when Graham applies the various weathering techniques. You get to see the process and this makes it so much more clear than just a sentence stating "I applied an overall wash of...". Having seen the ease with which he uses the Mig (premixed) wash, I will definitely try them myself. And if you have difficulty getting the look of tracks on your AFV's right, Graham demonstrates how to recreate those worn and dirty tracks.

After using the various weathering techniques to finish the model, Graham adds the final touch by adding the heavy foliage camouflage that is apparent in the period photographs. The use of tree branches, shrubs and other foliage to camouflage vehicles was wide spread by the German Army, and is something that is often overlooked or left of by modellers. There are quite a few possible ways to recreate foliage, and here Graham shows how to do it using natural ingredients.

Whilst the title correctly describes the actual content of the DVD, as in that it shows and explains in detail how to build a WW II German themed AFV model, most of the techniques are applicable to virtually any subject matter. Basic building and detailing, as well as foliage camouflage and painting, are just as relevant for Allied AFV's as they are for German ones. Of course the basic colours, and subsequently any weathering techniques, will be different, but quite apart from being an entertaining hour or so in it's own right, there are plenty of little tricks and tips to improve your skills and enjoyment of the hobby.

To see techniques demonstrated in 'real time' makes them much easier to understand. And thanks to this DVD, you can watch it as many times as you need, at your own convenience. Recommended.

Highs: There is no better way to understand new and sometimes confusing techniques than to see them demonstrated.
Lows: It would have been nice to have some more, different subjects included, or indeed a chapter on painting and weathering Panzergrau.
Verdict: This DVD will be a great teacher and inspiration for both beginners and more advanced modellers, and if you have ever wondered; 'how does he do that?', than this DVD will show you
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: CF098
  Suggested Retail: 14.99
  PUBLISHED: Jun 19, 2008

Our Thanks to Casemate Publishing!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Henk Meerdink (Henk)

Copyright 2021 text by Henk Meerdink [ HENK ]. All rights reserved.


Video Review

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