Like a lot of modelers, I have my fair share of "shelf queens." For a long time, this was something I had actively avoided, but as of late, I'm finding it more difficult to finish projects. Right now, I have six tanks/SPGs on my desk—I only photographed five of them—in various stages of production so let's have a look!
|Takom M3 Lee (1/35 scale)
|Tamiya ISU-152 (1/35 scale)
|Warlord Games/Italeri M3 Stuart (1/56 scale)
|HobbyBoss SU-18 (1/35 scale)
I'm a sucker for ugly inter-war tank designs, and the SU-18 definitely fits the bill. Based on the T-18, the first Soviet designed tank, the SU-18 mounted the M1927 76mm regimental gun in a non-rotating casemate. The SU-18 project was abandoned in 1930 before any working prototypes could be built. This was my first HobbyBoss kit and I like it well enough. The instructions weren't the best and I ended up building the the idler wheel on the right side wrong but I don't think it will matter in when the tracks are on the running gear.
|Meng Renault FT (1/35 scale)
Following my entry into AFV modeling, I bought a bunch of World War I-era tanks. One of the coolest ones, the diminutive Renault FT, has been wonderfully reproduced by Meng. There are two version of this kit available: the cast Girod turret with full interior and the riveted Berliet turret version with a neat diorama base. I have both kits and decided to start with the riveted turret version to avoid doing the interior. The kit built up nicely and the fit was pretty good, with a little care needed to make sure all the hull facets align properly. What killed me on this build was the paint job; it was my first attempt at multi-color camouflage and I wasn't really happy with how it turned out. I tried to fix it a little bit with some filters but that made it worse in my eyes. This model is probably the closest to completion out of any of my shelf queens and I'd really like to get this one done but it remains to be seen if I could do that without a complete repaint.