1:35 Diorama Italeri Kit Conversion Military Modelling Scenery Showcase Ten Day Challenge Verlinden


How do you make a T-34 look just a little different? You convert it into an armoured recovery vehicle!

I really enjoyed this build and think it shows what can be made from a very cheap kit and accessory set, even when not working to a set plan or prototype.


You are given ten days to build a specific kit and can only use accessories from one additional set – what would you come up with?

Several weeks ago,  my good friend Jonathan Mock and I, embarked on a 10-Day Challenge. The idea was simple:

  • We both had to build a Tamiya T-34, mine the T-34/76 ‘1943’ and Jon’s the T-34/76 ‘1942’.
  • We were not allowed to use ANY aftermarket items to improve what was in the box.
  • We WERE allowed to use one, readily available accessory set, in my case, the Italeri ‘Field Tool Shop’, but no other commercial items from any other sets.
  • We could use plasticard, rod, strip and tools from our workshops, but nothing additional to that. Anything that we added, had to be made from scratch.
  • We could paint the model using our preferred methods – in my case following the same Verlinden Techniques that I’ve been using all summer for my ‘Legacy Build’ series of dioramas.
So this is what I came up with – a simple ARV conversion.

Though not based on an actual vehicle, I used some ideas from the Internet to create the model, all of the changes being made from plasticard and Evergreen, including the large wooden box above the engine deck. I needed some extra stowage bins, so these were cast from copied kit parts and then the optional commander’s hatch was used from the kit to detail the covered turret ring. All accessories are from the ‘Field Tool Shop’ set, with a spare wheel from the kit. The turret was built from the box to show what was supplied for the gun-tank.

Everything on the diorama is scratchbuilt, including the wall, rubble and the telegraph pole and sign. Everything was painted with acrylic base coats and then Humbrol enamels and Winsor & Newton oils to add details and weathering.

I really enjoyed this build and think it shows what can be made from a very cheap kit and accessory set, even when not working to a set plan or prototype. I hope you like it and I’d like to thank Jonathan for his part in this challenge. Here’s to the next one!


Tamiya T-34/76 – 35059

Italeri Field Tool Shop – 419

I'm formerly the editor in charge of Military In Scale magazine and latterly, Model Airplane International. Editing duties to one side, I'm now a full-time modelmaker with Doolittle Media, working to supply modelling articles and material for a number of their group titles, including MAI and Tamiya Model Magazine International. I'm also an avid fan of Assassin's creed, Coventry City FC and when the mood takes me, a drummer of only passing skill. Here though, you'll find what I do best: build models and occassionally, write about them!

2 comments on “THE T-34 CHALLENGE…

  1. Christian Atkins

    Nice one!


  2. Harold Cline

    That’s ten days we’ll spent.


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