Passing in Review … a series of modeling reviews by Ned Barnett
A Weathering Special Photofile, by Gonzalo Diez
Publisher: Leopard Club, © 2014
16 pages, 62 photos
Note: This is also available in Spanish.
Price: € 2.00
The Leopard 2E is based on the Leopard 2A6, but modified for the needs of the Spanish Army their Ejército de tierra. It has additional armor on the hull’s glacis plate, the turret frontal arc, the turret roof, and an APU in the right rear hull corner. Replacing the Leopard 2A4 in front-line service, 219 of these main battle tanks were acquired as part of the Spanish Army’s 1994 modernization Programa Coraza, and is scheduled to remain in service through 2025.
The Leopard 2E was built by a consortium of German and Spanish companies led by Santa Bárbara Sistemas, a defense subsidiary of General Dynamics Europe. Spanish industry produced 60 percent of each tank, with the other 40 percent produced by German firms.
This monograph differs in several ways from other Leopard Club offerings – it has detailed three-view drawings of the tank, and a great many more photos of the finished model and of the prototype Spanish tank. More historical information is included, and it was written by a Spanish modeler who is clearly proud of his country’s potent main battle tank. The kit is boxed as the Hobby Boss Spanish 2E, which is completely incorrect. The kit in the box is the German experimental tank, the 2A6EX, but with Spanish decals – and the author set out to build the correct version, scratch-building most of the conversion items needed to make the kit accurately reflect the actual Spanish tank. However, the author also notes that some after-market kits correct the most glaring faults of the Hobby Boss kit.
What you get in this monograph, in addition to kit and prototype photos, as well as three-views, is a useful guide for scratch-builders on helpful techniques. For instance, he made impression molds in “Instant Mould,” a product also known as Polycaprolactone, filling the impressions with Milliput.
However, the bulk of this monograph focuses on painting, from mixing the appropriate Spanish Green to chipping, weathering and aging the model. He provides mixing formulas for his various colors in a helpful reference table. Very well-done, and more important, useful for any modeler who builds armor. He carefully cites his sources and inspirations for various techniques, such as Mig’s FAQ 2, which I find helpful.
This monograph also covers the creation of a base for the tank, including how to articulate the running gear and tracks.
While not your run-of-the-mill Leopard Club monograph (which I find very useful), this different approach is also excellent. I especially liked the real-tank photos, the 3-views and the color mixing tables, all helpful to modelers. If you want to build a modern tank, this has enough to keep you happy, for sure. Recommended!
“Passing in Review” is a series of modeling kit, accessory and reference material reviews, written exclusively for the MHISC Forum by Ned Barnett – IPMS Life Member and Former IPMS Quarterly Journal Editor.