The CVR(T) series of vehicles are one of the more enduring vehicles on the planet with their design origins back in the Malayan Campaign and enduring still with our deployed forces in Afganistan. This particular beast is the Scimeter which with Scorpion provide the mainstay of formation and close reconaisance throughout the back end of the cold war. The Scimitar equipped the close reconaisance platoons of Mechanised track and Armoured Infantry Battalions and always needed to carry more equipment than you could possibly get in it. This lead to a degree of central and local modification of external stowage solutions throughout this period which radically altered the shape of the base vehicle.
The kit itself is relativly straight forward to construct except for the tracks which were particularly painful to get to stick. The principal problem is that the kit represents an early version, devoid of external stowage and including the floatation screen which was abandoned quite early in the vehicles existance when the British Army gave up swimming rivers having realised that the main issue was getting out on the other side. Leaving the flotation screen in place inhibits the ability to build and attach correctly the various stowage bins and containers that were added. Compare the build from box picture above with the vehicles as used that it sits between. Effort is required to adapt the kit to be more representative of vehicles deployed in the mid to late 80s.
Having built the hull and basic turret I removed the flotation screen with Knife and file. The vehicles were then crewed and stowed. Crews came from SHQs gulf war range which being quite small 20mm figures make good crew.
The principle stowage items added were external stowage boxes simply constructed from plasticard. The main one being the large box on the hull rear. Webbing items which were draped over the hatches were built from green stuff and antennas from brass rod. Ammo boxes, jerry cans, sleeping matts and canvas rolls came from Goffy.
The vehicle had cam nets added from non elasticated bandage soaked in white glue and hessian rolls attached to various parts of the lower hull which were draped over the track and front of vehicle to eliminate deep shadow when the vehicle was static and cammed up. Painting was in line with the guide provided in the FV 432 post and the crews DPM uniforms are in line with the DPM painting guide. Markings came from the model trans British decal set.
The CVR(T) series are some of my favourite vehicles but require a bit of effort to get the period look and feel right. No British cold war army should really be without them and there are numerous models on the market in addition to the Airfix one. It is not however particularly difficult to take the basic Airfix model and turn it into something more representative of the period. Currently the kit is quite difficult to find a few are still popping up on e-bay, hopefully Airfix will get it back in production sometime soon.
FV 101 Scorpion (better example of the cold war hull)
LEP Scimitar (post cold war hull stowage, reasonable example of turret)
ORBAT 1980's British BG - Part 4 Recce Group
Review - Model 1/72, Britannia FV432 Painting Guide for British Vehicles
Painting British Army DPM
Review FV107 Scimetar Review @ Miniatures.de