login   |    register
Armor/AFV
For all military ground-force modelling subjects.
Decal Alignment Question
KruppCake
Visit this Community
Ontario, Canada
Member Since: July 13, 2015
entire network: 317 Posts
KitMaker Network: 12 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 12, 2018 - 02:53 AM UTC
Hello all,

I am attempting to figure out what the alignment of the turret numbers 1+09 on the below KT should be. There is only one historical photo of it which shows the numbers and it is from an awkward angle that doesn't help with the number alignment. The numbers are fairly spaced apart and projected onto a partially conical surface with curved and straight sides. Any ideas if the numbers are correct in the pics below?

One of the issues I'm having is that the alignment is very angle-dependent. The numbers appear to be leaning one way or another depending on even slight angle changes in the point of view. In the bottom picture, the numbers appear to be angled to the right (bottom half). If the angle is changed to straight on instead of from above, they appear to be leaning the other way.

How would the numbers have been aligned and applied on the real thing? Would they have measured both sides for symmetry?



Scipio2010
#401
Visit this Community
Georgia, United States
Member Since: December 08, 2013
entire network: 272 Posts
KitMaker Network: 44 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 12, 2018 - 05:34 AM UTC
KruppCake,

I know exactly what its like to second guess the placement of decals on the zimmerit. There are few good reference pictures out there of the 506th with KT's in the Ardennes - even in the Tigers in Combat series. I know of the reference picture you mentioned, and I think you did a solid job of replicating it.

That's just my two cents. hope it helps.

BTW, which kit and paints are you using?
KruppCake
Visit this Community
Ontario, Canada
Member Since: July 13, 2015
entire network: 317 Posts
KitMaker Network: 12 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 12, 2018 - 05:50 AM UTC

Quoted Text

KruppCake,

I know exactly what its like to second guess the placement of decals on the zimmerit. There are few good reference pictures out there of the 506th with KT's in the Ardennes - even in the Tigers in Combat series. I know of the reference picture you mentioned, and I think you did a solid job of replicating it.



BTW, which kit and paints are you using?



Thanks, Shawn! I spent ages measuring it both with rulers and a digital grid and it still bothers my eyes. I just canít convince myself visually of the alignment. I tried comparing the numbers to other Tiger II references and models and it seems technically correct, but visually off.

I used the following for the build:

Dragon 6303
Aber photo etch
Panzer Art smooth mantlet
Friul late type tracks
Aber barrel
Aber tow shackles
Aber gun cleaning rods and brackets (rods not attached)
Brass hull MG34

Vallejo 71.271 German Red Brown cut with a lot of white
Vallejo 71.025 Dark Yellow cut with a lot of white
Vallejo 71.020 German Green cut with a lot of white

I spent ages on the build but Iím not 100% happy with the decals. Not sure if I should remove them as best as I can and retry or just leave it at this point.

guni-kid
Visit this Community
Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Member Since: July 21, 2007
entire network: 408 Posts
KitMaker Network: 2 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 12, 2018 - 01:51 PM UTC
I think you will end up torn again and again... so I say they look cool the way they are and with some weathering they'll blend in and be not so much sticking out like now... let it sit for a few weeks (yeah, I know what I'm asking here... but don't let it become a shelf queen though ) and then have a fresh look at it again... that will most probably the way you see things... As I said: I like them the way they are, but can still feel your pain from my own experiences (vision can be a tricky little b*** sometimes)
Keef1648
Visit this Community
South Carolina, United States
Member Since: January 23, 2008
entire network: 1,235 Posts
KitMaker Network: 47 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 12, 2018 - 05:24 PM UTC
We are in a quandary it seems. Crews applied the markings and I doubt they took the time to get out measuring devices.

Some used spray guns and stencils, others stencils and hand brushing.

They were not expecting to be judged in a competitive arena or competition.

Locating the markings in the correct order was of course necessary and within the same area both sides of the turret.

And good a good judge looking at your model should NOT be measuring the application nor if it is perfectly vertical or horizontal!

The Zimmerit plays havoc visually.

What is more important is, do they look like the real item and have you done a good job with your application.

That's my two cents worth.
firstcircle
Visit this Community
England - South East, United Kingdom
Member Since: November 19, 2008
entire network: 2,044 Posts
KitMaker Network: 184 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 12, 2018 - 07:22 PM UTC
If you want to test yours out against the real thing, I suggest you take a photo of it from the same angle as the historic photo and then using some photo app, line one photo over the other, using the transparency slider to check the alignment. Something like Pixlr if you have an android phone, or PaintShopPro on a PC will do this quite easily.

I assume this is your photo?


I think yours look absolutely fine, but compared to the photo, I think perhaps you have them a little higher up the turret. Doesn't really matter though... unless you think it does

One other thing, are you 100% positive that the KT in the photo has zimmerit?

Matthew
Armorsmith
Visit this Community
Pennsylvania, United States
Member Since: April 09, 2015
entire network: 831 Posts
KitMaker Network: 39 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 12, 2018 - 08:55 PM UTC
The placement looks good to me. I think part of the problem may be that because of the ridges in the zim, combined with the curvature of the turret the decals appear to be wavy and therefore do not look like they are properly aligned. I wouldn't sweat it too much.
KruppCake
Visit this Community
Ontario, Canada
Member Since: July 13, 2015
entire network: 317 Posts
KitMaker Network: 12 Posts
Posted: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 02:57 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I think you will end up torn again and again... so I say they look cool the way they are and with some weathering they'll blend in and be not so much sticking out like now... let it sit for a few weeks (yeah, I know what I'm asking here... but don't let it become a shelf queen though ) and then have a fresh look at it again... that will most probably the way you see things... As I said: I like them the way they are, but can still feel your pain from my own experiences (vision can be a tricky little b*** sometimes)



Marian,

you might be right. I was thinking that even if I were to order replacement decals to redo it, I'm not 100% sure how I'd align those either. And no shelf queens here
KruppCake
Visit this Community
Ontario, Canada
Member Since: July 13, 2015
entire network: 317 Posts
KitMaker Network: 12 Posts
Posted: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 02:59 AM UTC

Quoted Text

We are in a quandary it seems. Crews applied the markings and I doubt they took the time to get out measuring devices.

Some used spray guns and stencils, others stencils and hand brushing.

They were not expecting to be judged in a competitive arena or competition.

Locating the markings in the correct order was of course necessary and within the same area both sides of the turret.

And good a good judge looking at your model should NOT be measuring the application nor if it is perfectly vertical or horizontal!

The Zimmerit plays havoc visually.

What is more important is, do they look like the real item and have you done a good job with your application.

That's my two cents worth.



Thank you, I appreciate the info and feedback! This is the first time I've had to deal with zimmerit carefully and on a conical surface too. It's no fun, to be honest.
KruppCake
Visit this Community
Ontario, Canada
Member Since: July 13, 2015
entire network: 317 Posts
KitMaker Network: 12 Posts
Posted: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 03:10 AM UTC

Quoted Text

If you want to test yours out against the real thing, I suggest you take a photo of it from the same angle as the historic photo and then using some photo app, line one photo over the other, using the transparency slider to check the alignment. Something like Pixlr if you have an android phone, or PaintShopPro on a PC will do this quite easily.

I assume this is your photo?


I think yours look absolutely fine, but compared to the photo, I think perhaps you have them a little higher up the turret. Doesn't really matter though... unless you think it does

One other thing, are you 100% positive that the KT in the photo has zimmerit?

Matthew



Hi Matthew,

I didn't try taking a pic with the same angle and superimposing it with the pic you posted (that picture was one of three references I used), but what I did do was hold the tank up to the screen at the same angle as the photo.

Also, I think you might be right, mine may be slightly high on the turret, but it's hard to tell since I can't get a side-on view of the real thing. The DML instructions are completely incorrect with respect to the decal placement. The problem is that when it comes to the scale model, the distance between two eyes is much more significant when looking at 11 mm numbers 15 cm away and meter-long numbers 15 meters away on the real thing. Turret curvature plays a bigger role in scale with respect to vision and the numbers look both crooked and seem to be leaning to one side. In the first two pictures above, both sets of numbers closer to the rear of the turret appear to be lower.

In summary, it's been a nightmare aligning these things. Usually I have no problems with some rulers and digital grids. This is the first major problem I have run into and figured some feedback and second opinions would come in handy.

With regards to the zimmerit, I'm not 100% sure it had it, but the general consensus is that it did, as did other vehicles in the same company. So I went with zimmerit
KruppCake
Visit this Community
Ontario, Canada
Member Since: July 13, 2015
entire network: 317 Posts
KitMaker Network: 12 Posts
Posted: Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 03:13 AM UTC

Quoted Text

The placement looks good to me. I think part of the problem may be that because of the ridges in the zim, combined with the curvature of the turret the decals appear to be wavy and therefore do not look like they are properly aligned. I wouldn't sweat it too much.



Thanks, Armorsmith! At this point I have either the option to leave it as is and move forward with weathering or to carefully scrape as much of the decals off as possible, order in new ones, and try better alignment. But as the others pointed out above, there's no guarantee the second round would produce any better results.

Sort of at a crossroads now with what to do. Usually I aim for precise symmetry and alignments.