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Project Firefly. (Or "Why We Can't Have Nice Stuff")

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  • #21
    ...back to our regular scheduled programming...


    How sure are you about a small hatch conversion? Uhm... pretty sure by now... And see that big hole?


    Yeah, gripped the post a bit too hard and I managed to snap it off. So much for all my smart solutions... I made a quick template for the posts positions and they will be placed back later.


    Good thing that came from that unfortunate affair; no more faffing about with sanding off details, and out comes the grinding disc! Really got to sometimes, ya know?

    To Be Continued...

    TTFN,
    Rob
    Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

    Comment


    • #22
      Some more progress today;


      Temporarily attached the top back to the bottom for alignment, don't want the new glacis to go on crooked. And yes, masking tape is a valid method of tank construction... Ask the Japanese...


      Made a new oversized glacis from 2.4mm thick ABS sheet, and beefed up the side edges with another strip of 2.4mm. Now comes the "fun" bit...


      I have to get the bottom edge at just the right angle for a good solid weld. So I need to find my shooting board, or make a new one. But that's tomorrow...

      Also; pulled the trigger on some stuff from Shapeways. If anyone asks (like SWMBO) it was a gift from someone on a forum somewhere...

      To Be Continued...

      TTFN,
      Rob
      Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

      Comment


      • #23
        Well... I got my angle at the bottom right. Took me a while...


        ...only to find out I overestimated the thickness I needed and I had to file away a groove at the sides. But after that, it fit perfectly.


        Next was filling in the hole on the top of the deck. Clever things were done with cardboard and markers and whatnot for the exact shape and size of the first layer...


        ...and more clever things were done with strips of ABS and goop. When this is all dry, I will make another layer for the top of 0.5mm ABS sheet, and that layer will be so tight it will hide all the gaps.

        To Be Continued...

        TTFN,
        Rob
        Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

        Comment


        • #24
          Holy crap, that's some modifications there! Very cool seen the Sherman being modded like this!

          Comment


          • #25
            Originally posted by UltraVargen View Post
            Holy crap, that's some modifications there! Very cool seen the Sherman being modded like this!
            Thanks, we do try to at least entertain... Fellow Dutchman I see. Groetjes uit Leerdam!!!

            Aaaaand we're slogging on...


            This morning added the last layer to the fill-in piece for the top of the hull. Carefully made a sheet of 0.5mm ABS to fit (almost) perfectly, and glued it in with a combination of MEK and ABS slurry, so the slurry could fill the last tiny gaps that were there. Also brushed slurry along the ring to blend it in. And now I hear you asking; "And slurry is..?" Slurry is thin-downed goop. And if you don't know goop, you don't know life...


            Tonight the slurry had gone off enough to do the sanding. Slurry, like goop, can't be rushed. If you sand it while it's still "hot" you make a mess. No seams, just how I like it. This morning I also used goop to fill a few minor gaps, and they came out awesome too.

            Next up on this build? Well, right now it's a race between Shapeways and work on the hull, or Forgebear and work on the turret. Got parts in production with Shapeways which should ship Friday, and arrive Saturday. The stuff from Forgebear has been "pending for Customs inspection" since the 16th...

            Also have some stuff to do on the Sherman 105 hull... which needs Forgebear parts from the same shipment...

            FML...

            To Be Continued...

            TTFN,
            Rob
            Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

            Comment


            • #26
              Originally posted by Rob1970 View Post

              Thanks, we do try to at least entertain... Fellow Dutchman I see. Groetjes uit Leerdam!!
              Ha! I hadn't noticed. I'm from Veenendaal, nice to see yet another dutchman here.

              Comment


              • #27
                Yay!!!


                MY SHAPEWAYS ORDER JUST SHIPPED!!!!

                Saw just in time they shipped it with UPS, so I changed the shipping to delivery at the local UPS point. Last time I had something shipped to me with UPS they "said" they were at my house three days in a row, but I "wasn't home". And the fourth attempt they delivered... to an address (not mine) 140 kilometers away...

                To do something useful while I wait for stuff to come in, I did a few things today. This morning I remade my shooting board (See this topic;
                https://www.hobbysquawk.com/forum/el...shooting-board), and then decided to do some work on the Sherman 105mm hull.


                In this area I need to restore the details I removed. So, 0.8mm ABS sheet, and a sharp blade...


                Carefull cutting, measuring, cutting again, filing, sanding and fettling will get you this...


                You do that twice (let's be honest, I did it 4 times before I was satisfied...), and weld it in with MEK...


                And then the new toy comes out!!!


                Yeah, calling that 1.5mm...


                To quote Gen. Anthony McAuliffe at the Battle Of The Bulge; "NUTS!"
                Actually my second batch... the first batch was offered to the Carpet Monster when I sneezed at the workbench... :O
                I was planning to stick them on today, but my physical therapist did a number on me this afternoon, and I am a bit broken right now. But tomorrow!!!

                To Be Continued...

                TTFN,
                Rob




                Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                Comment


                • #28
                  Sometimes all you want from life on a Friday afternoon is a moment of peace and quiet to get your nuts in the right place...



                  Also; 20 nuts used to get 12 into place... The Carpet Monster was having a field day...

                  To Be Continued...

                  TTFN,
                  Rob
                  Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                  Comment


                  • #29
                    Well, the Shapeways Stuff is here, and it's awesome!!!

                    British Antenna and Firefly Gun cradle from Niall...


                    New mantlet...


                    ...Engine deck and Small Hatch Conversion from Woz.
                    All great stuff! I could print stuff like that myself (I've got two FDM and a resin printer...) but my skills at design are still at the Tinkercad level... But maybe someday... For now I am happy and lacking patience. ;D


                    The Small Hatch conversion is pretty much a no-brainer. Figure out the exact placement with the help of drawings I gathered, and close up the sides. Woz designed them for a Heng Long Sherman with an unaltered glacis.


                    The new engine deck is also pretty easy to figure out, thanks to 43rdRecceReg's excellent thread here. I noticed that he shortened the new engine deck at the front end to make it fit, and that's what I am going to do as well.

                    Also noticed he straitened the rear end of his Sherman by adding a plate with a spacer. His infamous butt-lift. While browsing my various drawings I noticed something about that, and it bugged me enough to do some clever stuff with percentages and my printer, and I found this...


                    The butt doesn't just need straitening... it needs... shortening?


                    And by a pretty decent amount?

                    Opinions?

                    To Be Continued...

                    TTFN,
                    Rob
                    Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                    Comment


                    • #30
                      Love the 3D printed stuff, and the Shapeways parts look good.

                      Drawing the parts yourself is not super difficult as long as the shapes are inorganic in nature. You could try it. Earlier this year I started modding a Panzer III for which I'm drawing and printing up some parts to make it a bit more accurate and to turn it into a Panzer III N. With my vacation starting this weekend I'll probably be continuing the project over the next couple of weeks. My work-in- progress thread is probably a couple of pages back by now.

                      Comment


                      • #31
                        Originally posted by UltraVargen View Post
                        Drawing the parts yourself is not super difficult as long as the shapes are inorganic in nature. You could try it.
                        Oh, I've tried it. And I did some nice stuff...
                        Click image for larger version

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                        Yeah, that's a 12 cylinder radial engine... designed myself in Tinkercad and printed... you can find it here; https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:4078304
                        It's the tiny stuff that gives me trouble.

                        Originally posted by UltraVargen View Post
                        Earlier this year I started modding a Panzer III for which I'm drawing and printing up some parts to make it a bit more accurate and to turn it into a Panzer III N. With my vacation starting this weekend I'll probably be continuing the project over the next couple of weeks. My work-in- progress thread is probably a couple of pages back by now.
                        I'll be sure to check that out!

                        TTFN,
                        Rob

                        Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                        Comment


                        • #32
                          Use some bondo and reshape the driver compartment hoods, They are totally wrong. Good photos on Sherman minutia

                          also, you need to move your engine deck backwards and then cut the back of the hull off vertically and make a new rear to shorten it up, The A3 which HL modeled was much longer than M4 hulls with the radial engine.

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            Click image for larger version

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                            Here are some large shots of my Alco Locomotive Works M4 circa March 1943 production as is from the factory.
                            I have an enormous amount of hours in just doing the photo research to get this model built and detailed correctly. I’m notating you need to be as accurate as me, that’s what I like, but I’m showing you for reference to hull length regarding the back deck and the unique shape of the driver hoods, which are considered the narrow hoods on the m4s. Woz hoods are not accurate which is why the ones I got are still in the parts bin. But you can use bondo and shape them properly.
                            also, while the front of an ear,y m4 was pretty standard save some minor details between the various manufacturers, the rear would be either sloped (like my Alco) or vertical, like on a Baldwin m4.

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              Originally posted by RichJohnson View Post
                              Use some bondo and reshape the driver compartment hoods, They are totally wrong. Good photos on Sherman minutia

                              also, you need to move your engine deck backwards and then cut the back of the hull off vertically and make a new rear to shorten it up, The A3 which HL modeled was much longer than M4 hulls with the radial engine.
                              Hi Rich,

                              That's a great tank, nice pictures. Very helpful.

                              Already figured the hoods needs rounding off, which was the plan. Not sure if I'll go for bondo tho. Also planning on shortening and making the rear vertical. I'll probably attach the air filters to the upper hull so they aren't on the 105mm hull when I swap tops. Not sure what you mean with "move the engine deck backwards"? The other build I mentioned cut a strip off the deck at the front (at the double red lines in the picture) and placed it so the splash guards of the deck and turret met.

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                              This is one of (the many) screenshots from WT I am using as a reference as well. You can see the small hatch hoods indeed need rounding. Not planning to please every Sherman specialist with my build, mainly myself.
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                              TTFN,
                              Rob
                              Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                Regarding the red arrows pointing out the filler hatches, from one mfr to another you will find some dimensional variance when basing different parts together for a model.

                                Comment


                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by Rob1970

                                  And by a pretty decent amount?

                                  Opinions?...
                                  Well, my reference model arrived with the post... Guess I will do lots measuring and maths! Also noticed this version of the IC has the squared, slightly downward-angled bumps for the small hatches... Choices, choices...


                                  Good thing I build for my own pleasure. Imagine having to do your hobby to get the approval of others... *shudders*

                                  To Be Continued...

                                  TTFN,
                                  Rob
                                  Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Maths has been done! And I cheated; http://www.scalemodelersworld.com/on...rter-tool.html

                                    And like a true engineer I have come to a couple conclusions. And a quick reminder for those who are not exactly clear on the definition of "Engineer";
                                    Engineer
                                    [en-juh-neer]
                                    (noun) Someone who does precision guesswork based on unreliable data gathered from questionable sources to meet unrealistic customer demands.
                                    (see also; Wizard, Magician)

                                    What I've found; From comparing blueprints, the Tamiya 1/48 hull, various pictures on the interweb and some guestimations;
                                    • The Woz engine deck does indeed need to have that front 7ish mm shaved off (the red bit), so the bullet-splashguards of intake and turret meet.
                                    • The hull needs to be shortened by about 11mm, and the angle changed from the 21 degrees of the HL hull to around 10 degrees. The white line is the cut line, and it makes the proportions of various sections of the upper deck look better in my eyes.
                                    • Shortening the hull and adding back the rear plate also lines up the back with the track in a way that looks correct.



                                    The white line here would be the cut line, the darker line the new rear plate. And it looks good to me.

                                    Now, as a true mechanic I shall take these ideas and work from them for the rear and the engine deck. And a quick reminder for those who are not exactly clear on the definition of "Mechanic";

                                    Mechanic
                                    [muh-can-ick]
                                    (noun) A person who fixes the mistakes made by engineers to the specifications the customer didn't know they wanted.
                                    (see also; Grand-Wizard, Miracle Worker)
                                    To Be Continued...
                                    TTFN,
                                    Rob
                                    Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      *Twilight Zone Theme*

                                      Rod Serling; You're traveling through another dimension -- a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That's a signpost up ahead: your next stop: the Twilight Zone!

                                      Imagine a small room in a community center... People gather to heal...

                                      Counselor; "Hello everybody, Welcome to Engineers Anonymous. I see we have a new face amongst us. Why don't you introduce yourself?"

                                      Me; "Hi, I'm Rob, and I over-engineer stuff. Like... really badly."

                                      Counselor, chuckling; " Now, we all feel like that sometimes. It is probably not all that bad. You can share here, this is a safe space..."

                                      Me; "Weeeelll... I could show you?" Brings up this post on his tablet and shows the group. Gasps of horror fill the room, one of the people shrieks and begins sobbing...

                                      Counselor, firmly; "I'm going to have to ask you to leave... THIS IS A PLACE OF HEALING!!!"


                                      *Twilight Zone End Credits*

                                      Aaaanyway, if you want to do major surgery on a patient, you gotta make sure the patient is stable first...


                                      If I just go at it, those posts are going to die. And I want to keep them...


                                      So some square ABS tubing, a strategicly places hole, and some sanding at the shooting board to get it juuuust right...


                                      Shooting boards are AWESOME!!!


                                      Step one complete...


                                      Time to add some angles. I like to use cheap dollar-store plastic playing cards to make templates. Or use them as shims. Or as scrapers. Putty knives. I don't play cards tho...


                                      And when you transfer your template to your 2.5mm ABS sheet, it's time to cover your angles...


                                      ...like... all the angles...


                                      ...and then I mean ALL the angles.


                                      Even if I have to rip out this one when the surgery is done (or move the speaker box...)

                                      To Be Continued...

                                      TTFN,
                                      Rob
                                      Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        I'm starting to dread looking at this thread (but in a good way!): I've a still boxed HL Sherman here that I mean to basically be "spray and play" with just minor modifications, a nice easy project for after I finally finish my current conversion project. I now think it won't be so easy to not be tempted to do more modifications. Damn your Sherman (read as: Good work!).

                                        Is the HL Sherman that inaccurate, or is it mostly the difference with the Firefly variant? I'm not very knowledgeable about any tank really, and basically just dive into research material when I start and during a specific project. I also prefer it to look right and give a feeling of "Yeah, I did that. I learned something, it was fun to do, and it looks good", not having to be be wildly accurate but accurate enough for myself and other people to appreciate.

                                        Comment


                                        • #40
                                          Originally posted by UltraVargen View Post
                                          Is the HL Sherman that inaccurate, or is it mostly the difference with the Firefly variant? I'm not very knowledgeable about any tank really, and basically just dive into research material when I start and during a specific project. I also prefer it to look right and give a feeling of "Yeah, I did that. I learned something, it was fun to do, and it looks good", not having to be be wildly accurate but accurate enough for myself and other people to appreciate.
                                          The HL Sherman is wildly accurate for what it is at 20 yards away; a "toy" Sherman M4A3 with a 105mm houwitser. Now if you get some people started about it they will point out ALL the flaws it has. And don't get them started on the difference between the HL and an actual Firefly.

                                          Personally I am building this
                                          • as a Sherman IC
                                          • based on the 1/48 Tamiya kit, several drawings I found and screenshots from a Sherman IC I play on War Thunder
                                          • for my own satisfaction and enjoyment.
                                          Pretty much how I have always built my models. Static and otherwise. I want to approach the end goal with as much fun, skills and information as possible. When anything of those last two gets in the way of the first, they get adjusted.

                                          So yeah, get it "right" for my own satisfaction. I've dealt with enough rivet counters in the static model competition scene to be totally cured of them. So if any rivet counter wants to creep up on the rear of my Firefly with a tape-measure to check my work, they are going to get a BB to the face (if I get my 360 conversion done...)

                                          TTFN,
                                          Rob
                                          Sherman M4A3 105mm Houwitser / Sherman Firefly IC *under construction* / Panzer IV *awaiting side-grade from TK7.0S to TK6.0S* / Stug III / King Tiger / KV-1 *awaiting upgrade to TK6.0S* / Tiger I / T34-85 / Leopard 2A6 *waiting upgrade to TK7.0*... No, I do not have a problem....

                                          Comment

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