Friday, July 26, 2013

Finished M4 Sherman - learned some stuff along the way

I picked up a Hobbyboss 1/48 Sherman M4 with 75 mm gun, an early variant of many different versions to come during the war. The one in the kit is the 'welded' hull variant, there was also a 'cast' hull variant, which had a much more rounder look.

I can't use an airbrush in my house, so I knew I had to do some super dry stippling. I primed the kit white and then, holding the model upside down, primed black, so the bottom was shadowy and dark, but the top stayed white. Then primed with Tamily Olive Drab, all the way green. After that some brown wash and lots of pushing paint with an old brush, like stippling but harder and very dry and going lighter in the middle part of each section. After that the usual weathering and adding some dirt wash to the bottom part of the tank,

I could not find real life references to the 'hell with it' marking, but I liked it so I did put it on, risking that this particular vehicle never saw action in Italy with the 92nd.

Here's an action shot of black troops, taking cover behind a M4.

This photo would actually be a great diorama. I love how the soldiers strapped their gear to the back of the vehicle, things that would be fairly easy to model. It looks like the tank in the photo has the 75mm gun, just like the model does. It's the lightest armament of the all Shermans.

You can also see the extra armor plates on the side, which were put on places where ammo was stored inside the tank. There were lots of fires in the beginning with ammo exploding after being hit, so the plates gave extra protection.

The cupolas up front have extra, angled armor as well, since the upright original design made it a target for anti tank weapons. Sloping the armor increased rate of survival.

My friend SC John, who is expert on many things WW2 related, told me that many tank crews removed big stars from the tanks, because they could be used by enemies as a target. As you can see in the WW2 photo, that Sherman also doesn't have any markings besides a number and a name. I did decide to add the top star, since airplanes could see the tank was an ally.

It's been great learning while building and this will be the joy of this hobby diversion and the blog. Anyone with pointers or more info is welcome to contact me at scwarhammer at gmail dot com or leave a comment!

SC Mike


  1. Very nice model. The cast hull Sherman is the M4A1 and is my favorite version.

    1. I am on the lookout for one. It will be a bit harder to paint I think, but it looks great!

  2. Tamiya makes a very nice model of this tank. I built one a few years ago. I might need to do a couple more.

    1. great job! I added your blog to the roll on the right as well. Love the buildings you are working on now!

  3. great work on the model and more impressive as no air brush was used, look forward to your desent into Historical gaming
    Peace James

  4. Very nice looking - especially for no airbrush! Stand proud!

  5. Forgot to mention I did a Sherman once, too:


    1. wow. that tank looks really, really good. thanks for the kind words. I added your blog to my roll, unless the clearance sale means, you are done with modeling...

    2. Thanks! Mine was airbrushed, so I kind of cheated... ;)

      Definitely not finished - I am just "refining" my interests and unfinished collections.

      Lots of Bolt Action in my world. :)



      ps - added you to my roll, too!

    3. all right then, looking forward to more stuff!

  6. I have yet to paint any vehicles and I cant afford an airbrush, so I may give your method a try as it looks superb.
    Thanks for sharing,