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strtgng 02-06-2006 09:08 PM

Okay, for my first vBench build I'm working on the DML ISU-122-2, or ISU-122S, or JSU-122S, or...well you get the idea. They all mean the same thing. A late war ISU with the D-25 gun and manlet.

Never really considered myself a huge ISU fan, but recently they started to look good. I'll be trying out a bunch of new stuff for me in this build and will be posting as I go. A lot of stuff will be really basic stuff - but to me it is learning new stuff and recalling stuff I learned 15 years ago and have forgotten since!

New stuff to me on this build: Friulmodel tracks, scrathbuilt brass fenders + soldering brass (I hope), PE parts (sorta new - used some basic stuff a few times), resin casting (more on that in later posts), and I'm sure a lot more as I go along.

For now, here are the goodies I'll be using:

...and some late additions:

Not on the ISU, but a great little reference on the IS, and many areas are the same on the ISU:

Not sure which tracks I'm going to use, I think I've seen pictures of both fitted:


Vadster 02-06-2006 10:02 PM

..we have the technology... or in your case alot of references and extra goodies for what I hope will be fun for you - I'll have fun watching. :)

Larry Bates 02-07-2006 12:01 AM

This should be fun! ;)


brokeneagle 02-07-2006 06:57 AM

Yeah baby, yeah! keep us posted. :)

Sticky 02-07-2006 10:13 AM

I think you are missing some PE, I only see one set! :lol:

strtgng 02-08-2006 07:07 PM

Ok - so my first step was to remove the molded on fenders and the molded grills - all to be replaced by PE and brass sheet. I tried to keep the fenders relativly intact while removing them so I could use them as a pattern for the replacemants. Just some quick scoring with the X-acto and they came off no problem. The grills were a little more work due to the location, and the plastic was thicker - but no major issues.




strtgng 02-09-2006 10:05 PM

Next I decided to add some braces to the inside of the upper and lower hull parts, so later when I had to do some sanding and scraping they didn't flex as much.

I cut some heavy styrene plastic to fit - using index cards as templetes first. After I glued in the braces I used baking soda and super glue on the edges to reinforce them. I love baking soda + superglue...instant concrete! :lol:

strtgng 02-15-2006 01:38 PM

The biggest flaw in the Dragon ISU and IS series of kits is that the hull is not tall enough. If built out of the box it is supposedly very hard to get the tracks to fit under the fenders. I first heard about this problem while reading the JS-II Heavy Tank DML / MB Models build comparison article in the Vol 1 #2 issue of Military Miniatures in Review. The other big problem discussed in that article is that the Dragon kit's wheels are to small ...more on that later.

The height issue is also discussed in the Osprey "Modelling the IS Heavy Tank" book. Between the books and some online research, it looks like the hull needs to be raised somewhere between 1.8 to 2.0 mm to be correct. I went with some 2.0 mm Evergreen strips - once added, it measured out well against the scale plans in the Ground Power issue on the ISU.

Here are some pictures - the front and rear, especially around the rear step, can be tricky, but with lots of test fitting it seemed to go okay. The pictures were taken before some final filling of gaps was done.

Stuke Sowle 02-15-2006 01:55 PM

I've got one of these hidden in the stash. It's one mean lookin' mofo. Looks like you are off to a solid start. I am not looking forward to raising that hull up but will follow your SBS closely to make sure I get it right.

Sticky 02-15-2006 02:24 PM

looking great so far, this is gonna be a fun one to watch!

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