I am coming to the end of the batch of resin kits I bought on my last trip to the Far East. One thing I got was M7 Priest kits that were missing the gun. While I could have somehow made a gun I have Priest models already and I have been meaning to make some Defrocked Priests for a while. These are vehicles the British converted to amroured personnel carriers by removing the gun, putting in a floor and some raised sides by welding on sheets of metal.
I will do as size comparison as the kits are more like 1/150 than 1/144 and talk about how I did the conversion but first some pictures of the final models:
The models are about 1:150 so I have compared with a Minifigs 10mm/12mm British Sexton. Minifigs are generally on the larger end of the 10mm manufacturers and the Priest is pretty much the same size as the Sexton.
Comparing now to a Takara 1/144 Sherman M4. The Defrocked Priest is a bit smaller but only slightly so and on a gaming table this won't be noticeable at all.
A quick run through the conversion process. First the bits that came in the kit:
The kits was very cleanly cast and required very little clean up, just the removal of the pieces where the resin flowed into the mould. The model has the legs of the gun cast into the inside of the hull and that had to be cut off to allow a flat floor to be added. I used black plasticard 0.5mm thick (or 20/000). I have taken to using black instead of white as it is better for basing (slight gaps in sand glued on really stand out with white and thinned paint does not cover it as well) plus for modelling you can see what you have done much easier when doing conversions or repairs. Some of the same plasticard was used for the piece that blocks the gun aperture and the raised sides. Given the plasticard is quite thin I cut strips of the required width with a craft knife but to get the lengths right and the shaping for the floor around the inside detail I then used nail scissors (scissors not clippers!) to cut the plasticard. It was then easy to just snip of a little bit more to get the pieces to fit properly.
While I did this conversion with some resin kits the same approach can be used on any model of a Priest, for example metal models that most manufacturers make of the Priest.
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