Wednesday, 12 August 2015

1/144th Tatra T18 Armoured Draisine

Some years ago I had the pleasure of taking part in a game at Colours with my chum Keith, where my Russians where part of a force attacking a Polish armoured train in 1939. The train attracted loads of attention throughout the day and rightly so. It certainy does make for a great centre piece to any game. Ever since then I have wanted one for my 10mm armies.

Keith's armoured train and Draisine escort in action during a recent game.
Being a typical wargames butterfly my attention wandered, only to be re-ignited when I started wargaming the 'A Very British Civil War'. Armoured trains seemed to be a perfect fit for these games and so I determined to scratch build a complete train with various options. That was around two years ago and after a flurry of research, frankly I got distracted and the project fell by the wayside. Pretty typical for me I'm afraid.

However recently I dug-out my half-finished Tatra Draisine and finally managed to finish it. The hardest part of the build was the actual size of the Draisine. The overall size is 26mm long by 12mm wide by 14.50mm high. A magnifying lamp was essential for this as my eyes are not as good as they used to be. It has taken a long time to get to this stage but I'm very happy with the result.

The Draisine next to a 1p coin to give an idea of size. The turret fully rotates and I decided to arm it with two MGs, rather than some of the other options available.
A 'rear view', though in reality the Draisine is symmetrical as it had two drivers 'front and back'.

I haven't as yet decided on a colour scheme, but I would love to paint it in the top centre geometric camo scheme. However due to the small size of the model I'm not sure I could do it justice. In all likely hood I will go with a Polish scheme so that the Draisine (and train when it's finished) can by used for the AVBCW through to the early part of WWII with a planned future Polish army.

So having finally finished this I'm tempted to try and finish the main part of the train. I've certainly got some scenarios planned. In the meantime the Draisine will have to fight on its own, poor thing.



  1. That's cracking! I second Edenviews' query on the BKC site though - what's it made from, and how did you do it :D

    1. Body is sanded and carved from Ureol, which is a modelling board that we use. In essence it is a very, very dense foam, but you wouldn't believe it if you work with it. The door and vision slits are carved in with an eye surgery blade and scalpel. The headlights are styrene rod fitted into pre-drilled holes. The wheels are from styrene rod.

      The turret is turned from ABS rod with 1.0mm brass tube for the barrels.

      The finished model is then sprayed with cellulose primer to give it a coherent finish and colour so that you can check the shape and surfaces are correct.

      In terms of time taken, the actual making (uninterrupted) would be less than a day.

    2. Very impressive, you have more patience than i :)

  2. Stunning build, very impresive !

  3. That is great Steve and plenty of detail for something so small.
    Excellent job.

  4. Anybody would think you're a professional model maker Steve! Cracking job, and good luck with progressing to the full train and some scenarios.