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Stug 40 by Dan Vadas - FINISHED - GPM - CARD - WW2 German Tank -

Dan Vadas

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Hi all,

My next Card model - a WW2 German Tank, the Stug 40. This kit is from GPM in Poland, but I bought mine through Fenten's in Brisbane for $35.00 including postage :). Those of you who saw my GPM Bismarck may remember that I wasn't very happy with the quality of the kit, but this one seems to be OK so far (but I haven't really started yet ;) :D).


Here's a pic of the cover art from the kit :

Stug 40 Coloured.jpg


I've made my usual preparations - cut out all the pages from the kit book, scanned them, placed them into a clear-leaf folder and made up the Part Finder Spreadsheet. I've also translated the Polish instructions well enough to work out what they mean. Now to start the real work.



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2 hours ago, Canute said:

Danny, what's the scale? The Treadheads have a slew of aftermarket goodies. Maybe you'll find something for those treads.

It's 1/25 scale. I wouldn't doubt that there would be a lot of PE etc out there. This particular kit doesn't seem to have Laser-cut Treads, at least not from GPM as far as I could tell.


I DID however, just now find THIS laser-cut set for the frame and wheels. Too late now, I'm already most of the way through laminating the paper templates for same :). Besides, I'd have had to wait about a month to get it, plus pay nearly 30 Euros for a 5.50 Euro kit once the postage was added :(.



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Hi Grant, yeah it's a bit different to what I'm used to :). This kit also comes with a detailed cockpit and engine compartment, so that will be fun.


As I didn't get any laser-cut framing etc for this model I've had to do it the hard way, glue the parts to 1mm card and cut out. I've found it's a lot easier and more accurate to actually glue it to some 0.5mm first, cut out the piece, and then glue it to another 0.5mm card and cut out again (the 2nd time is a lot easier). This ensures a much squarer cut without running off on an angle. I'm using fairly hard card, the "right" stuff is easier to cut but I've run out of large sections of it at the moment :




Several parts require an angle to be cut on at least one edge. I use a scalpel to take off the bulk of the material, and finish off with a 150 grit sanding stick :



Once the main hull was glued up it came time to fit the outer skin, which comes in one piece. It actually fit quite well :





The lit supplies extra parts if you want a more "3D" effect than merely the printed covers etc. The longer pieces in the pic below are slightly rounded using a brass rod and a piece of high-density foam :



The start of the suspension :



These little (3mm) boxes were a bit more difficult to make than usual because they are double thickness. Despite that they turned out quite well :




To avoid damaging the parts that protrude past the floor level while working on the rest of the hull I used double-sided tape to stick on some 4mm thick card packers :




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Thank you all.


Fitting the interior skin looked like it may have a problem with alignment. I'm not going to second-guess it, I've made that mistake before, so I've glued it up by aligning a couple of areas where I knew it was right. The pics below show where it looks like the skin falls way short or overlaps - most likely it's actually OK :





The Torsion Bar suspension comes next. I could have rolled paper tubes for the bars themselves, but the kit didn't supply any parts for these. Instead they had a template which I would have had to cut from plain paper and paint, or they suggested I could use wire. I chose PVC tubing, which was the right diameter and painted them to match the floor :




Some of the side bracing. Once again I used my punch kit to make the holes :



The transmission tunnel :



Some tiny parts - the wingnuts that close the hatches :






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I needed to roll 28 small tubes, I'm not sure if they are supposed to be bolts, pins or whatever. The parts supplied in the kit were obviously wrong - the tubes are supposed to be 1.5mm diameter x 2.0mm long, but the kit parts were only 2.0mm square whereas a bit of very simple math comes up with a part that is 2.0mm x 4.8mm. I cut new parts from some left-over hull skin from Bismarck. The tubes were rolled around a 1.2mm drill bit :




The assembled drive mechanism fitted to the gearbox :






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The driver's seat :




The engine has a few details, most of which are completely hidden once it's fitted :





I found out a bit too late that I'd fitted the engine a bit too far toward the rear. There were no pics or diagrams anywhere in the instructions as to where it should have fitted :(. It SHOULD have been hard against the firewall. I had a fair bit of modification to do to the radiator later on to get it to fit :



The radiator and fans. The centres of the fan spindles took a bit of work :




No parts were supplied in the kit for these two exhaust pipes, so I made them from PVC tubing, heated with a hot air gun to get the bends. It took a few goes to get two pieces which looked the same and actually fitted :) :




My progress to date :




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The main gun assembly was particularly difficult to work out due to the VERY poor instructions. I'm not at all happy with the effort, or rather lack thereof, that GPM put into these. Why on earth would they bother "detailing" how to assemble a bucket, axe and German helmet for instance, but show only a very basic drawing of the really complex assemblies? Makes my blood boil 🤬.


Not to worry, I eventually worked it all out :). The pics below are of the breech and the elevation/sweep support bracket. I've managed to make it work both ways. I used a piece of 3mm PVC tubing for the elevation pivot, as the kit probably didn't allow for this assembly to actually work :





This whole assembly, including the outer skin, is still only dry-fitted, there is quite a bit more work needed before I can permanently mount it :






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21 hours ago, nikbud said:

Looking good!

Is that arrangement going to be stiff enough so that the gun won't "droop"?


Maybe. I'll have to actually install the barrel and then make some modifications to the elevation pivot if needed.


Now we're really getting ridiculous. These are by far the smallest diameter tubes I've ever had to roll - a mere 0.6mm in diameter. They are the handles for control wheels, and are rolled around a 0.4mm drill bit (a 1.0mm drill bit is shown for comparison). The second pic is of three sizes of tube for the gunsight assembly, with the largest being 1.5mm diameter :




The gunsight and gunner's seat completed and glued in place :




More pieces of the breech fitted, including the catch basket for expended shells :





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I had planned to make the roof removable to show off the interior, but it turns out I can't. So I decided to make the four hatches with working hinges so some of the interior will be visible. Here are the first two - they work perfectly :) :








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