or we'll just call this one the "M1G"
There was a conversion going around on Armorama about putting a Sgt York turret on an M1 hull. Well, I figured what would be a more realistic combination that could reach soldiers in the field? Older M1 hulls matted with currently fielded Gepard turrets. Humm, idea here I thought so lets see if it would work. Pulled down two kits to do a test fit.
Ok, looks a little close but it seams like it will. Turret diameter of the Gepard is smaller than the M1. So there will need to be an adapter plate. Even though there is enough clearance the adapter will increase the clearance of the rear turret over the engine deck.
I'd picked up a started M1 kit so that would be the base for the conversion. I'll either use the old Gepard kit turret or pick up another Gepard kit. Getting started with the conversion I decided to fabricate the turret adapter. Using my trusty compass I cut a circle out of some sheet plastic. I cut the diameter a little under, duh, and had to glue some evergreen strip to the outer edge to bring it up to the correct diameter. Also puttied to remove the seam.
Glued the turret ring adaptor on and decided it should be bolted on. So I scribed a line around the outer edge with my trusty compass. I next used my compass to measure around the scribed line to mark the recesses for the bolt holes. Drilled the holes out in about ten minutes. Most of the holes will be covered but the holes will add a touch of realism most people won't notice but will see.
Well it fits!
Tracks arrived today from www.greatmodels.com four days from order to hitting my doorstep. Great!
I'll start on them tomorrow. I hope.
Got to mention that GM has a weird way of billing. They send an "invoice" but it's not "official" so they bill you in two parts, once for the kit and then again for the shipping. So be aware that the "invoice" might not reflect the true cost.
Ok, here they are. You get 12 trees with 16 track blocks on each. Each track block has two ejector pin marks on the interior surface, one on each side of the center guide.
Left picture is the inside of the track. Right, outside of the track that meets the road.
Here's the assembly sequence from the instructions, which are on the back of the box.
Ok, here's the deal so far. Injector pin marks got to go, so get out the x-acto knife and scrape toward the center guide. A few stokes they're gone. I found that with a good set of cutters, mine are XURON, the tracks can be removed from the tree without cleanup. I still dragged a x-acto blade over the cuts to knock down the tree gate stubs. I cut all the track blocks off after cleaning up the injector pin marks. I found that for me that if I did one block and connector at a time it was easier than trying to line up several at one time.
Here they are mounted on the M-1G. First shot they were a little lose, so I removed one link and tried again. Pretty tight but they fit very good. Now I might just leave the side skirts off. What do you think?
Well, here is another update. Decided to put an APU in the back end like in later model M1s. Posted a request for info on the Missing Links discussion forums and got a reply from John Charvat. Now for a little surgery and I'll have the APU. You can also see to good effect the anti-skid coating on the hull deck.
Here's my attempt to duplicate the above picture. I'll say one thing, the Tamiya M2A2 Bradley includes the old style side skirts and they provide allot of nuts and bolts for other projects.