If you're planning on starting to fool around with Leopards have have to take a serious look at the German Marder MICV. My brother made one of these in 1/35 scale like 100 years ago and I've always remembered that crazy looking vehicle with the remote machine-gun that could fire backwards.
So when I started this whole Cold War Hot bent the Marder was one of the first vehicles I bought (and now I have 5 of them - with only 2 completed though).
So here's a link to the Marder MICV
So I made these Marder's months ago now (in fact they were my first NATO kits built). I made these one at a time - and tried to remember all the difficult bits from the first build. As it was one of my first kits I was a littler overwhelmed by it to begin with - I'm used to building 15mm wargaming models with a maximum of about 15 pieces!
I had my standard track problems, and the MILAN is a little tricky to fit, and I couldn't for the life of me work out how to add the cam nets provided (so left them off). I also ended up cutting down the rear-vision mirrors, as they are quite large and I decided that they would be the firstthings to get knocked off/broken in a game.
Otherwise I made it straight out of the box. The only thing I don't really like about the kit is that none of the hatches can be set open - without cutting up the model. But anyway - I still think that this is a great little kit.
I'll leave out the whole sorry painting saga - which can be found in the Leopard 2A4post and just say that I used exactly the same colours and methods for these kits. Once again all I can say is that it takes a long time to paint 3 tone camo!
Not wanting to waste my Tamiya NATO Brown, I took the cap into my LGS so I could use it to find the closest match in Vallejo. In the end I choose Vallejo Flat Brown, which I think is as close to spot on that it doesn't matter!
Must say that I was amazed at how long it took to paint on the cam patterns - not something I enjoy doing!
Only issue was the MILAN on one of the vehicles. It came off while I was drybrushing it and try as I might I haven't been able to get it back on! So basically I've decided to leave it off - very pragmatic of me...
So once again - here's the finished product. Marder 1A3 with MILAN:
From the Front
From the Back
Marder 1A3 with dismounted MILAN
And here they are together:
As always - here are some youtube links.
First up, an nice little doco on the Marder - and for once it's actually set in the right time frame:
Second up, an excellent clip demonstrating the Marder:
Another similar demonstration:
Next - if you can get past the loud music that invariably seems to be attached to modern German military clips - this one has some excellent still and video of the Marder in action:
Last up a good compilation clip that includes footage of the Marder in Afghanistan: