Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Building a 1/35 Japanese Kurogane 4x4 staff car diorama - Part I

Hello hello,

This is the first post in a multi-part series on how I built my 1/35 Japanese staff car diorama.

The kit is a Kurogane Type 95 staff car, otherwise called an "IJA Type95 Small Personnel Carrier" made by a Japanese manufacturer called Pit Road.  I bought it in a hobby shop (Mr Hobby, I think?) in Tokyo when I was on holidays there in mid-2013.  It cost me 2350 Yen, about AU$20. It sat on my To Build shelf for a couple of years, and then I decided to tackle it as I wanted to make something a little bit unusual compared to the normal Jeeps and Kubelwagens you see.

It's a very cute little machine. It's tiny - only about 100mm from front to back bumper.

Pit Road IJA Type 95 Kurogane 4x4 staff car - box art
They called it a "Small personnel carrier" - and yes, the figures which came with the kit were indeed very, very small...

Pit Road IJA Type 95 Kurogane 4x4 staff car - box art
Bargain.  I've not seen this kit anywhere else since Tokyo!

The Kurogane staff car comes together
It does look like Noddy's car.
The Kurogane staff car comes together
Neat build, trouble free.

The first piece of personalisation: I added dents to the front fenders, it just looked too pristine and too much like a Noddy Car. This needed to have some credibility, needed to have seen a tough war!

I did this using incense - see my post in September if you'd like to learn how, there is a video tutorial and everything: click here.

Dented fender of the Kurogane staff car
Check out that sweet dent in the fender!
This kind of detailing really sets your model apart from a plain old build straight from the box.

Then I airbrushed the entire car in Tamiya enamel Dark Iron XF-84.  This was the base coat, to look like bare metal, which I would chip back to.

First coat - bare metal.

I love using Tamiya's Dark iron .

Next, I realised that the interior needed a little love. It was too plain, too boring.  

So I jumped online, found some references of the interior of a Kurogane (my god, you can find everything online, absolutely everything) and scratchbuilt a glovebox, passenger grab handle, a couple of missing switches on the dashboard, and some detailing for the otherwise very boring doors.

Scratchbuilt interior of Kurogane jeep
Scratchbuilt details in white styrene strip.

Scratchbuilt interior of Kurogane jeep
They really do elevate the interior. This was not going to have a roof, it needed detail inside.

I hope this is of interest!

Check back next time to see Part II, where I used the hairspray technique to chip and weather the car's overall khaki paint scheme.



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