Hooben 1:10 Leopard 2A4 build log

Postby inger » Sat Apr 17, 2021 7:56 am

Hello,

I am about to start a build, or to be accurate a re-build of Hooben's 1:10 scale Leopard 2A4 and conversion to 2A4M CAN standard as deployed to Afghanistan. Should be be fairly straightforward.....

Some background: this is a project I have in mind for about 8 years. I have previously built this particular Leopard as 1:35 static model.

For an even longer time I have been eyeing-off Peter Muller's all metal Leopards in 1:16,10, 8 scale and have always left them as a bit of pipe dream. As most will be aware, these models are a serious financial investment. Beyond the price tag, the 1:10 and 1:8 models are really heavy, so the cost of freight from Germany to Australia is almost as much as the model itself. Lastly, I am not set-up with tools etc for metal work.

Enter Hooben. I expect everyone will be familiar with Hooben and will have an opinion. Around 7 years ago I brought the T-55A and had an enjoyable few years build a static Iraqi version. The end result is show below:

T-55.JPG


Turning this build. Again, most will know that a 1:16 Leopard 2A4 has featured on the Hooben website for a very long time and has yet to see the light of day. My original plan was use the 1:16 scale model as the start point for my conversion.

I was pleasantly surprised when 1:10 model made an appearance. The tipping point that caused me to part with some cash was a short video Hooben posted on the Facebook Shop. Just looking at the how the suspension was assembled was enough to convince me it would be solid start point for a seriously good build.

As some will know, dealing directly with Hooben can be something of "challenge". To help me with buying from China, I employ a translator who talks directly with the factory - this make everything smoother and overcome any issues with delivery time, what is actually in-stock vice something that is still a dream! I did this with the Leopard buy and with Can Shuo earlier.

Nine days after placing the order the model arrived. Pictures speak a thousand words:

I have hit the maximum image limit for this post....more in the following posts
Attachments
1.jpg
A Big Very Sturdy box
1.jpg (39.19 KiB) Viewed 1356 times
2.JPG
Unboxing and Instruction manual
2.JPG (32.49 KiB) Viewed 1356 times
IMG_0303.JPG
Always amusing translations
IMG_0303.JPG (44.2 KiB) Viewed 1356 times
5.JPG
The packing was very good
5.JPG (40.26 KiB) Viewed 1356 times
6.JPG
Separately boxed TX - looked encouraging at the time of unboxing....
6.JPG (45.24 KiB) Viewed 1356 times
7.JPG
Screwdriver, Allan key and detail parts
7.JPG (44.46 KiB) Viewed 1356 times
8.JPG
Despite the careful packaging, the MG3 was broken
8.JPG (39.74 KiB) Viewed 1356 times
9.JPG
Once again, great packaging.
9.JPG (44.88 KiB) Viewed 1356 times

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby inger » Sat Apr 17, 2021 8:09 am

Further Images....

More to follow, along with some commentary on the electronics etc etc

Inger
Attachments
14.JPG
Good detail - better than expected
14.JPG (46.27 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
13.JPG
IR battle system
13.JPG (37.93 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
14.JPG
Detail of the smoke dischargers
14.JPG (46.27 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
15.JPG
Tow ropes are stainless steel wire
15.JPG (44.2 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
16.JPG
Front view - the upper hull has a slight warp
16.JPG (43.3 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
17.JPG
Tools - molded tool holders - not unexpected but will replaced during the re-build
17.JPG (39.12 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
18.JPG
Belly showing upper-hull release knob. Tracks are nylon. Road wheels have rubber tires.
18.JPG (44.57 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
20.JPG
Under the hood
20.JPG (51.66 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
26.JPG
Lower hull
26.JPG (56.21 KiB) Viewed 1352 times
29.JPG
Impressive roller bearing turret race
29.JPG (33.6 KiB) Viewed 1352 times

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby inger » Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:20 pm

Further images....
22.JPG
Torsion bar suspension
22.JPG (43.55 KiB) Viewed 1311 times
27.JPG
Power and charging ports are under the engine fan
27.JPG (39.19 KiB) Viewed 1311 times
31.JPG
Barrel recoil and elevation
31.JPG (45.82 KiB) Viewed 1311 times
33.JPG
33.JPG (43.73 KiB) Viewed 1311 times
34.JPG
34.JPG (36.91 KiB) Viewed 1311 times
35.JPG
Barrel counter weight
35.JPG (36.77 KiB) Viewed 1311 times

Some observations.

Hooben sell these models as RTR. I my case the Leopard was not even vaguely RTR!

- The TX supplied bore no resemblance to the one shown in the instruction manual.
- On powering up, nothing (nothing) functioned. That's not entirely true, all the lights did illuminate and flash. No matter what channel was in use, or which stick was was applied nothing worked.
- For some inexplicable reason, moving one of the TX trim controls did finally cause the chassis to move forward. The only way to then stop the chassis was to turn of the main power supply.
- The vehicle control unit (as Hooben call it) bares some resemblance to those from Heng Long but in the my opinion the quality is poor in comparison.
- The instruction manual is not particularly useful and does not include any form wiring diagram making fault find close to impossible. In my case, I really didn't bother even trying to fault find.
- I ended up using my own spare TX/RX, by passed the control unit and got the motors running and was able make a small test run. Video to follow.
- The model came fitted with an IR battle system.

Turing to the model itself, this was in all respects a pleasant surprise.

- The overall detail is good and better than I was expecting. Out of the box, it is an impressive model and certainly not "toy-like". Many will be quite satisfied with level of detail "as is". For me the pleasure of this hobby is in the build, and aside from a complete type conversion, my plan is to make very most out of the huge canvas an add as much extra or improve detail as I can.
- In my opinion the construction technique used Hooben is quite clever. The entire lower hull, less the rear is formed and welded stainless steel. The torsion bar suspension is all very securely screwed in place. The torsion bars themselves and made from 3.5mm rod.
- Swing arms and road wheels are molded nylon. The road wheels have separate rubber tires. At the time of writing I have not disassembled the road wheels see what the axles are made of or what bearings are used.
- The idler and drive sprockets are metal. A track tensioner forms part of the idler assembly.
- The tracks are molded nylon with rubber track pads. Double track pins, as per the real tracks, hold the links together. The track horns or guides are separate pieces, again, as per the real tracks.
- The upper hull comprise an outer detail layer of molded nylon screwed and probably also glued to a stainless steel "skeleton". In my view, this manufacturing method is very clever. The steel skeleton makes the whole model very robust and rigid while the nylon layer reduces the overall weight of the model while allowing for high levels of detail to be molded on to the hull. The turret is manufactured in the same way.
- Many detail components are molded separately and held in place by pins and friction! This is in contrast to the metal parts which are screwed in place and secured with a Loctite type paste.
- The lighting system is complete and with the right electronics, should function very nicely.

Turing to my build plan.

I will convert the model to the 2A4M CAN as deployed to Afghanistan by Canada in 2011/12.

The 2A4M CAN is shown below.
Leopard-2A4M-CAN.jpg
Leopard 2A4M CAN
leopard_2a4m_can_l6.jpg

9l4KLaj.jpg
Leopard 2A4M CAN before fitting the Saab Barracuda Mobile Camouflage System


At the moment I expect that I will make the conversion in two steps.

1. Strip out all electronics, less lighting and replace them with a complete set from German SGS Electronic (https://www.sgs-electronic.de/). This will include barrel stabilisation and wireless connection between the hull and turret. Test new electronics etc

2. Model conversion work, starting with the hull and working up to turret.

My target is to complete the build by October....

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby Herr Dr. Professor » Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:28 pm

:) Oh, this is going to be fun to see! I am glad you will be showing the build with so many photos. Thanks! :thumbup:
User avatar
Herr Dr. Professor
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 782
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:48 pm
Location: Southern Wisconsin USA

Postby EAO » Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:35 pm

Inger,

Beautiful static T-55, I think you're going to fit in quite well here! :thumbup: I'm impressed with the Hooben Leopard, it looks quite good right out of the box. The big Leopard is my favorite modern MBT as it seems to somehow still have some WW2 Germanic tank lines to it!

Cheers,
Eric.
User avatar
EAO
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 842
Joined: Sun May 10, 2020 5:29 pm
Location: Central Missouri, U.S. of A.

Postby inger » Sun Apr 18, 2021 10:20 am

Hello Everybody,

A little bit of progress. I need to remove the barrel elevation drive motor supplied and replace it with a servo. The electronics that I plan use have barrel elevation features that will only function with a servo controlling barrel elevation and depression.

To remove the motor has meant removing the barrel and stripping the turret bare.

38.JPG
Barrel assembly with counterweight and recoil servo
38.JPG (46.87 KiB) Viewed 1236 times


The elevation drive is identical to the turret drive, which I have also removed from the underside of the upper hull. This will be re-installed in the turret so that there is no wiring between hull and turret.

Some of you will have seen that various wiring harnesses have been labeled by Hooben. This would be useful if the labeling was correct.

In the photo below you can see that the wire is labelled "barrel elevation". In fact this is the barrel elevation drive.

36.JPG
Stripped turret, showing steel skeleton and the removed barrel elevation drive motor.
36.JPG (48.37 KiB) Viewed 1236 times

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby lmcq11 » Sun Apr 18, 2021 4:59 pm

Interesting. Do you have plans to reproduce the Barracuda camouflage system ?

lmcq11
Warrant Officer 1st Class
 
Posts: 1742
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 8:42 pm
Location: Quebec, Canada

Postby inger » Sun Apr 18, 2021 11:01 pm

Howdy. Yes, I have a plan to reproduce the Saab Barracuda camouflage. Although it will cover some of the surface detail, I think the mobile camouflage system will make for an interesting and unique model.

Here is a shot of the garnish material. I will be making some test camouflage panels in the next few weeks.
39.JPG
Camouflage garnish. Saab Barracuda Mobile Camouflage System in 1:10 scale
39.JPG (60.51 KiB) Viewed 1182 times

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby Herr Dr. Professor » Mon Apr 19, 2021 12:43 am

Until just now, I had not seen your build of the IDF Centurion. I have no idea how you are going to make anything more realistic than that. This truly is going to be a stunning build to watch.
User avatar
Herr Dr. Professor
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 782
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:48 pm
Location: Southern Wisconsin USA

Postby inger » Mon Apr 19, 2021 6:55 am

Hi thanks for your positive comments. One of the reasons I'm here is because I know this will be a tricky and at times frustrating build and from time to time I will need encouragement to keep at it !!!

(BTW did you mean Iraqi T-55A or are you confusing me with someone else?)

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby Herr Dr. Professor » Mon Apr 19, 2021 7:35 pm

Hmm... I am easily confused nowadays. ;) But, hey, take the compliment and run. :P
User avatar
Herr Dr. Professor
Staff Sergeant
 
Posts: 782
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:48 pm
Location: Southern Wisconsin USA

Postby inger » Mon Apr 26, 2021 8:32 am

Hello All,

While I am waiting for electronics and other mechanical parts to arrive, I've been doing some test work for the 1:10 scale Saab Barracuda mobile camouflage system.

Before fully committing to the conversion, which will involve cutting up parts of the turret etc (the point of no return), I want to make absolutely certain that I have a scale solution for the camouflage.

I have a quantity of the vinyl garnish which was cut to about 1:10/ 1:8th of the real materiel. Simply draping the vinyl over the tank will not accurately replicate the camouflage system.

The Saab Barracuda mobile camouflage is made from a number of components to form tailored panels that are attached to the tank by large strips of Velcro. The underside of the panel is a made from a material that is designed absorb heat and reduce the tank's interior temperature. This material is covered in tough vinyl and garnish is stitched to the vinyl layer.

43.JPG
Scale garnish and a small piece thermoplastic sheet.
43.JPG (35.93 KiB) Viewed 976 times


To replicate the camouflage accurately, I am using a 1mm thick thermoplastic sheet. This sheet becomes highly malleable when heated. This will be used make the individual panels that cover the tank. Because the sheets can be molded to tightly conform the shape(s) of the tank, the final result should look like the real thing.

40.JPG
Thermoplastic before and after heating
40.JPG (36.67 KiB) Viewed 976 times


It took a couple of goes to figure out the best way to attach the garish is a realistic way. I am using Mod Podge Matte (a highly tacky pva glue that dries clear) to glue the garnish to the thermoplastic sheet. In the first attempt I covered all the garish in glue on both sides. This resulted in something looking like fish scales - fail!

44.JPG
Attempt 1 is on the left - the garnish is too flat and looks like fish scales. The second attempt is right on the and is beginning to look more realistic.
44.JPG (48.82 KiB) Viewed 976 times


The following pictures show how I finally attached garnish to the thermoplastic.

46.JPG
Blobs of Mod Podge.
46.JPG (36.8 KiB) Viewed 976 times


47.JPG
Fold back clips are used hold and stretch out garnish
47.JPG (32.92 KiB) Viewed 976 times


44.JPG
The final result on the right
44.JPG (48.82 KiB) Viewed 976 times


50.JPG
Final test piece - the scale effect will quite good.
50.JPG (43.26 KiB) Viewed 976 times


In addition to the camouflage tests, I have started to prepare the Leopard A4 to A4M conversion parts.

I am using parts from 1:35 kits a general scale reference.

52.JPG
Hobby Boss and Y Modelle kits. Parts from both kits will be used as a scale reference for the conversion
52.JPG (49.79 KiB) Viewed 976 times


49.JPG
1:35 parts to used as reference
49.JPG (43.72 KiB) Viewed 976 times


The next step will be to laser scan the 1:35 parts and re-render the resulting CAD models and enlarge them by 350%. Once the parts have be correctly scaled, they will be 3D printed in resin,

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby lmcq11 » Mon Apr 26, 2021 1:15 pm

Hi,

I suggest you ask one of the moderator to move your build to the "Other builds" and "Modern build" sub section of the forum instead of the general Modern tank discussion. I was earlier looking for your build and could not find it.

This is a most demanding build. The method of using a good 1/35 kit as reference has proven to be very most efficient and accurate, much better than trying to eyeball pictures. I used the same method on my 1/16 Leopard C2 Mexas using the Meng kit as a model for all the Mexas armor (dimensions, all angles, positioning).

One 1/35 resin model on the market that could be very useful for 2A4M specs and Barracuda layout is the Perfect Scale Modellbau below. I did not check for accuracy though but it looks good.

Capture31.JPG
Perfect Scale Modellbau 1/35 Leopard 2A4 CAN
Capture31.JPG (65.11 KiB) Viewed 958 times


I did purchase the 1/35 Black Dog Leopard 2A6M Barracuda conversion kit a while ago. I have not build it yet. I was surprised that the kit is offering a full replacement of the Barracuda exposed turret and upper hull (almost everything other than the lower chassis...) instead of trying to provide a thin add-on layer of Barracuda in resin or plastic sheet like we get for Zimmerit (ie Atak). But your real skin method will look much better, provided you can support the fact that you will be hiding most of your hard 2A4M turret and hull conversion. I suggest you keep it simple under the Barracuda and concentrate detailing only on the exposed areas.

regards, Louis
Attachments
Capture30.JPG
Black Dog Leopard 2A6M Barracula conversion kit
Capture30.JPG (93.87 KiB) Viewed 958 times

lmcq11
Warrant Officer 1st Class
 
Posts: 1742
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 8:42 pm
Location: Quebec, Canada

Postby inger » Mon Apr 26, 2021 9:56 pm

Hello, Louis. Thanks for your useful advice! I have, in the past built the Perfect Scale Leopard 2A4M CAN and it will be useful as the build progresses.
On the topic of moving the thread, yes I have already sent a couple of messages to Admin but for some reason my IMs have stayed in the outbox....something else to look into!

Thanks again, Inger

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby HERMAN BIX » Wed Apr 28, 2021 12:41 pm

Pm just arrived to me. I will get it moved tomorrow morning folks .
User avatar
HERMAN BIX
Lieutenant-Colonel
 
Posts: 7568
Joined: Sun Jan 12, 2014 1:15 am
Location: Gold Coast,Australia

Postby HERMAN BIX » Wed Apr 28, 2021 12:45 pm

Or now !!
User avatar
HERMAN BIX
Lieutenant-Colonel
 
Posts: 7568
Joined: Sun Jan 12, 2014 1:15 am
Location: Gold Coast,Australia

Postby Son of a gun-ner » Sat May 01, 2021 12:08 am

You are doing a grand job Mr inger :clap: :clap:

As for trying to contact the admin, in future, don't waste your time, contact one of the mods, they're the ones that do the real work anyway ;)
User avatar
Son of a gun-ner
TOTM Admin
 
Posts: 5436
Joined: Sun May 07, 2017 8:49 pm
Location: Surrey UK

Postby inger » Sat May 01, 2021 8:45 am

Hey, thanks for that.

A bit more work planned for tonight and tomorrow. A couple of gears arrived which I need for the new barrel elevation servo.

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby inger » Sun May 02, 2021 10:28 am

Hello, in order for the barrel stabilisation system to work properly, I needed to replace the OEM elevation drive motor with a servo.

To mount the servo meant using the original mounting bracket for the elevation and attaching new aluminium servo mount.
Attachments
Elevation bracket.jpg
Elevation bracket
Elevation bracket.jpg (32.58 KiB) Viewed 742 times
bracket2.jpg
Modified bracket
bracket2.jpg (29.72 KiB) Viewed 742 times
elevation servo.JPG
New mounting and servo
elevation servo.JPG (35.63 KiB) Viewed 742 times
IMG_0447.JPG
Elevation servo
IMG_0447.JPG (46.82 KiB) Viewed 742 times

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Postby inger » Fri May 07, 2021 12:15 pm

Some progress rendering bar armour for printing.
Attachments
image (2).png
Bar armour
image (2).png (89.76 KiB) Viewed 654 times
image (1).png
image (1).png (44.27 KiB) Viewed 654 times
image (3).png
image (3).png (48.97 KiB) Viewed 654 times

inger
Recruit
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:40 am

Next

Return to Modern builds

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: bowlman and 6 guests