Dragon King Tiger and Italeri Tiger I in 1/72 - Part 1

After a few grueling weeks at work, I found some time to paint this weekend; I was excited too because I have several nice plastic kits just waiting for a fresh coat of paint (and a good mud bath).  I used to HATE putting any type of model kit together, but I'm actually enjoying 1/72 because there aren't hundreds of pieces like 1/35.  I've also picked up some nice tools recently which actually makes the process kind of fun.

First up is a King Tiger kit by Dragon Models; this is nice indeed and very detailed.  I didn't mind the 50 road wheels at all because everything went together so well.  The single piece soft plastic (vinyl?) tracks are very detailed and weren't as rubber band looking as I had thought.

The second model is a Tiger I E by Italeri; this is a kit from their Fast Assembly line and while it's not nearly as detailed as the Dragon King Tiger it's not bad either.  The Tracks are probably the most lacking area of the design but it's marketed toward wargaming, which is how I stumbled upon it.  It seems pretty tough and durable, without any brittle details.

After cleaning a few mould lines, gluing (plastic cement), and applying masking tape in the areas that I didn't want paint, I sprayed a coat of Vallejo's Grey Acrylic Polyurethane Primer.

Same treatment for the Tiger I.  I've mentioned before that I really like Vallejo's new Polyurethane Primer...  it goes on so smooth and is very durable.  Vallejo has some new additions to this primer product line to match World War II Armor colors (Dunkelgelb, Grey, Allied Green); I'm very anxious to get my hands on some but I'm not yet willing to pay the high prices from the UK as I haven't seen it in the U.S. yet.

Next, I sprayed my basecoat: Vallejo Middlestone.  I use Vallejo's Model Color range and then mix about 50/50 with Liquitex Airbrush Medium and a few drops of water.  After the basecoat I highlight by mixing 1:3 (or 1:4) Middlestone:White; this is sprayed over larger panels leaving the darker Middlestone lightly showing through on edges and corners.

Again, same thing on the Tiger I.  You can see the dark contrasting color of the original Middlestone coat on the masking tape in the center of the turret ring.  Most of the model gets the highlight and just the edges remain slightly darker.

I really like the look of a single tone Dunkelgelb tank, so I'm always tempted to stop the airbrushing here.  However, one or two additional camo colors are more accurate for late war heavies like the Tigers.  For the green I used Vallejo Reflective Green and German Camo Bright Green (mixed 50/50).  The brown is Vallejo Flat Earth.

Overall I'm pretty happy with how the camo turned out...  I think it'll start to look even better as I apply washes, wear, and possibly a color filter.  After the camo, I sprayed gloss varnish over everything; this was done by mixing Vallejo (Model Color range) Gloss Varnish with Liquitex Airbrush Medium (50/50).

Now...  I really hope I can get back to these soon.  My last tank took well over a month to complete :)  I've finished Part 2 so be sure to check it out!


  1. Really nicely done so far and good tutorial.

  2. Hey Tanner - you are tempting me with all these great looking plastic kits and pics!

    Great stuff!


  3. Perfect Troy! It would be awesome to see your painting on plastic, especially 1/72 :)

    Thanks Lurker, hopefully Part 2 turns out well and I don't botch these models in the process.


  4. A tip for the Dragon rubber tracks I picked up somewhere is to cut a tiny notch (~1mm each side) between each link. This creates a weak point where the track will bend so the individual track pieces will stay fairly flat while the curving occurs at the joints between them.

  5. thats so cool i wish i was as goood as you

  6. You are an absolutely amazing artist and creator. I very much enjoy viewing all your work. This may be a very weird question, but would you be willing to divulge how you either made or purchased your paint racks I see in many pictures? It looks so very clean and crisp and is exactly what Ive been looking to do, second to buying a few nail polish racks. I cant seem to find anything on your page if theres something listed there about constructing them. If not would you mind emailing me any info to FUJI7532@aol.com? Thanks for all your help and happy modeling!



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