I gave some thought
to adding dried mud to the running gear but decided against it since I was unsure if the bearings were sealed or not. If flakes
of dried mud migrated into the bearings, it can form a thick abrasive paste with the bearing lubricant, affecting the ability
of the road wheels to turn smoothly. I did however add colored chalks to the inner hubs with a reddish-brown color to suggest slight rusting and
add visual interest.
The thin layer of surface dust on the Abrams is mainly accomplished
with pastel chalks. I ground up several different colors of tan, brown, and green pastel chalks, mixing them slightly in a
random fashion. They were applied to the lower running gear, and up the sided of the hull including the rear deck, and hull
front, constantly checking the reference photos for accuracy. By using different shades of tan and brown, I was able to add
subtle shading to the weathering itself. Incididentally the final layer of Testors Dullcoat was applied by airbrush at
60 psi to obtain a slightly granular surface. This allowed a thin layer of the pastel chalks to bind to the surface. It's
rather durable, running the Abrams in grass has not resulted in loss of the pastel chalk weathering!
|The rear hull towing hitch was fastened with a small sheet metal screw for strength
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