Sunday, 4 December 2011

Amourfast Firefly

I'm in the middle of moving from one house to an other but found some time to update this weblog. This time some pictures of a models I've made a few months ago. It are two armourfast fireflies.

The Firefly was essentially an American Sherman modified to carry a British 17-pounder AT gun. The 17pdr was hastily developed to counter the Tiger tank which was pretty much invunrable to virtually any allied AT gun at the time of it's introduction. The 17-pdr fired a 76,2 mm shell with a muzzle velocity of 884 m/s and was able to knock out heavy german tanks. When the weapon was ready there was no tank developed to carry the gun. About 200 'Challengers', an extended version of the Cromwell, where made but finally the Sherman was chosen to house the gun. The turret was too small for this gun however so the radio was moved to a separate basket at the back end of the turret. Apart from this and the gun itself there are no real differences between these and other Shermans. The gunbarrel was longer and was painted in a special way to hide this fact. This was necesserry because the Firefly was a prime target for german tankers since it was the most dangerous tank from there point of view.

Armourfast is a company based in the the UK and produces 'fast build tanks'. These are tanks with 10 to 15 parts for wargamers. Italeri also has a few models after this concept. The models of Armourfast are quite sparese; The have no tools molded on for example. I like the tanks from Armourfast better though since Italeri's details are a bit soft. The tracks are also better.

The basic model is very good and in true 1/72 scale. The only other model in 1/72 scale is from Dragon and quite expensive and hard to find. Revell has a 1/76 Firefly which is quite good but really to small compared with 1/72 models. Sometims 1/76 models can be mixed with 1/72 ones but not this one. For my armourfast models I've made extra parts, most notably the headlights, rearend and tools. The modifications can be seen here:

The finished models:

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