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M29C Weasel- wow this is tiny


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Happy New Year folks! Time for a new build. 

This is the new Takom M29C Weasel kit. This is based off their almost as new M29 Weasel kit without the amphibious gear. 

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Prior to this one, there was one by Monogram and a resin one my by LZ Models. I nearly bought the latter for the project I had in mind but it was never near the top of my must buy list. 

I read a build review on The Modeling News where the kit almost broke the reviewer. Seems there's a lot of small fiddly bits. I guess I wanted to find out for myself. 

First off, I'd you hate road wheels on tracked vehicles, be prepared as there are 64 in total. Plus they're tiny. I painted them first in rubber black along with the tracks which are rubber  as well. At least in real life. 

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There are 8 bogies, 4 to a side and each with 8 wheels. I made a change from the instructions and assembled the bogies first.

I trimmed the parts off and gave myself some room so that I could clean up the sprue connection points easier. 

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Tamiya cement bottle for size reference.

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One assembled bogie. 7 more to go. 

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And the rest...

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The chassis is next. For the outriggers, I found it easier to glue the plates to the chassis and then insert the centre section. The centre section is also handed so watch out for that. 

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Carl

Sure is tiny and along with its size are what seems like a zillion tiny part but the kit looks to be very well detailed. 

Will be following and nice to see the build is going to have its own build thread as trying to follow a build on What on your bench right now is nearly impossible; very much appreciated.:construction:

 

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Thanks Peter! 

For me the "What's on your bench?"  thread is a great place for stuff that in my case I may not finish. Sometimes I'm just fooling around with it and if it works, then I might continue. It's informal and I sort of like that approach.

Of course, a serious build can be a pain to follow in that sort of format like you rightly said.

 

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More suspension work on the Weasel. Each bogie gets attached to the chassis with a leaf spring and what looks like an outrigger but is the upper arm. 

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The instructions have you attach both the chassis first and then add the bogie. 

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First thing is, the bogie has two pins that snap into the end of the leaf spring. Trying to get the first one into place was a real test of nerves. If you push too hard, you can easily snap the bogie, the upper arm or both. 

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Also, it's not mentioned in the instructions but the bogies are handed. There is a front and back to them. The backside has a very small notch in the upper mount. This attaches to the upper arm. 

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So after I did the first one, I took a different approach. I attached the upper arms to the chassis as per the instructions.

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I then attached the leaf spring lower arm to the bogies, making sure I had the bogie oriented correctly.

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The sub-assembly was then glued to the chassis. You want to do this while the cement hasn't fully set to be able to make alignment adjustments if needed. 

All the bogies in place. And it seems to be sitting level. 

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The idler wheels have a PE rim that goes inside both side. 

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Then it was onto the road wheels. I found the easiest thing to do was to remove them as a strip, clean up the sprue joint along one side, then cut them free and clean up the second joint. Repeat 64 times. 

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I then glued them onto the bogies. The fit is a bit sloppy so it's hard to keep them vaguely aligned. The problem is made worse in that there's no positive joint between the paired road wheels. 

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Anyway, the suspension is all done and next step is the floorpan. This is three parts. 

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Tedious work Carl, but that´s why they made magnifiers :icon_eek: and good background music. The running gear looks great and next are some bigger parts for a change.

Cheers Rob

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With the chassis assembled, I painted it in Olive Drab.  I'm going to be doing a British one but the notes day it was left in OD and not repainted in SCC15.

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I used my newest Iwata to freehand paint the road wheels rims in rubber black. They're just too small and fragile to mask properly. 

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This Iwata is perfect for these sort of jobs. No big colour cup so you can mix up a small amount of paint (two drops in this case), fine needle and a separate air control valve right on the airbrush. The best part is that it was $71 direct from Iwata. I think they may still have some. 

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Anyways, back to the Weasel. Most folks complain when tank models have rubber band tracks in them. Guess what, the Weasel had rubber band tracks in real life but Takom has done them as link and length. Not only that, but the Indy link bits go in a specific spot so don't hacking them all off the sprue at once. They're also directional and there's a scrap diagram in the instructions that shows you which way is forward. Took forever though to see that the only way to tell is by the centre section at the end. They should have made the pic bigger. 

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Again, the fit is just sloppy enough to make them move around on the drivetrain. 

That, and the lower run is one track too long. At least on the first side I've glued together. 

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Once that dries, I'll start the other side. 

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On 1/3/2024 at 7:28 PM, ScottsGT said:

Nope…nope….nope!  I’d lose what’s left of my mind working on that tiny of parts. 

Reading your comment made me think of this song. :D

And yes, all these tiny, not so great fitting parts are a real mind killer. 

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The tracks and suspension are a real fight. 

I finally got the second side done. But it's nowhere near perfect. I had to remove a link, trim off some track teeth, sand off a few end pins. Ugh, what a pain.  Guess I'll be breaking out the mud to hide some of those gaps. 

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Takom overdid it in their quest for detail. The suspension could have and should have been simplified a bit. It wouldn't have hurt the overall look and would have made things much easier to put together. 

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9 minutes ago, BlrwestSiR said:

The tracks and suspension are a real fight. 

I finally got the second side done. But it's nowhere near perfect. I had to remove a link, trim off some track teeth, sand off a few end pins. Ugh, what a pain.  Guess I'll be breaking out the mud to hide some of those gaps. 

PXL_20240105_212805946.thumb.jpg.9154cc16037d95ab8045ec7bcb96dcf0.jpg

Takom overdid it in their quest for detail. The suspension could have and should have been simplified a bit. It wouldn't have hurt the overall look and would have made things much easier to put together. 

Nice work Carl!. I have the same kit, it looks challenging. I wonder why they

went with link & length, as the original Weasels had rubber tracks! 

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6 minutes ago, belugawhaleman said:

Nice work Carl!. I have the same kit, it looks challenging. I wonder why they

went with link & length, as the original Weasels had rubber tracks! 

I suspect they did it as the kit suspension wouldn't be able to take the elastic stress of rubber tracks. Most reviews I've read the reviewers broke the suspension arms during assembly. It doesn't surprise me seeing how they designed it. 

Usually folks complain when rubber tracks are in a kit but this time, it would have been the right choice. 

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This kit is absolutely over engineered. That wouldn't be a huge problem but Takom insists on these tiny instructions where you can barely make out the part and not always where it goes 

For example, there's a tiny PE bit that goes on the end of a cylinder on the top of the firewall. There's 4 in total. It's so small, they give 6 extras. Even then I lost 7 so I'm short one. Plus I have idea if I have them on right or not. 

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Okay, rant over. 

I started work on the inner hull. The drivers compartment has a lot of levers to add. 

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The backside of the firewall has additional details. 

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At this point, I took a good hard look at my progress and hated what I saw. The tracks are a complete mess. The links don't line up. The road wheels and bogies have the worst alignment and angle all over the place. I haven't done this badly on running gear since I was 5. 

Originally I was going maybe do some weathering and muddy up the tracks to cover up some/all the faults but there no way to do that and make it look realistic. Best option would be to sink it in a diorama up to the waterline. Which doesn't help my cause as this was supposed to go inside an LVT. 

Anyways, I'm putting it back in the box for now. Best option is to try and find another one and apply what I've learned from this mess. 

Sigh. 

 

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2 hours ago, BlrwestSiR said:

This kit is absolutely over engineered. That wouldn't be a huge problem but Takom insists on these tiny instructions where you can barely make out the part and not always where it goes 

For example, there's a tiny PE bit that goes on the end of a cylinder on the top of the firewall. There's 4 in total. It's so small, they give 6 extras. Even then I lost 7 so I'm short one. Plus I have idea if I have them on right or not. 

PXL_20240106_195239537.thumb.jpg.4928e259858fc5425753cb50ab315e16.jpg

Okay, rant over. 

I started work on the inner hull. The drivers compartment has a lot of levers to add. 

PXL_20240106_195249921.thumb.jpg.41380baaf45365cc83a57caedabebb7b.jpg

The backside of the firewall has additional details. 

PXL_20240106_195225240.thumb.jpg.1a484d800dceee8c8c32f420f83f224f.jpg

At this point, I took a good hard look at my progress and hated what I saw. The tracks are a complete mess. The links don't line up. The road wheels and bogies have the worst alignment and angle all over the place. I haven't done this badly on running gear since I was 5. 

Originally I was going maybe do some weathering and muddy up the tracks to cover up some/all the faults but there no way to do that and make it look realistic. Best option would be to sink it in a diorama up to the waterline. Which doesn't help my cause as this was supposed to go inside an LVT. 

Anyways, I'm putting it back in the box for now. Best option is to try and find another one and apply what I've learned from this mess. 

Sigh. 

 

I guess my kit stays in its box.

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