My plan was to represent a Crusader II of the 1st Northamptonshire Yeomanry, 6th Armoured Division 1941-2. In the period 1941-2 they became part of the 6th Armoured Division. The Regiment remained in the United Kingdom and from 1941 - 1942 were part of the Coats Mission, the plan to evacuate the Royal Family in the event of a German invasion.
This kit was originally tooled in 1971. The kit is reputedly of dubious scale, but the olive-green injection mouldings are adequately detailed. The tracks are wholly inadequate being badly distorted. The small decal sheet is old and yellowed, but appears to be in register. The instruction sheet illustrates assembly in seven stages, with options to build Mk II or Mk III versions with decal options provided for a Crusader III of 1st Army 17/21st Lancers, 6th Armoured Division in temperate scheme or a Crusader II of 8th Army 10th Hussars, 1st Armoured Division in desert scheme. My original plan to do this as a 1st Northants tank is foundering on a lack of images and I have pictures of the 2nd Northants at Linney Head in 1942 and these look like Crusader IIs to me, so I shall try to replicate the muddy conditions at Linney Head in a small vignette.
Stage 1 sees the construction of the Mk.II turret. All went fine until I tried to cut the spade from the runner; it snapped into two pieces, one of which was consumed by the Carpet Monster.
I thought I might have a spare from a previous build but inspection of my bits and bobs failed to reveal one. However, I found something that looks like a starting handle, so fixed that in its place (having filled the locating holes with putty). I also found a British tank crew member I had built previously. I cut off his arms and repositioned them. He will stand behind the turret in a similar manner to those in the photos.
I also found a spare set of tracks. I have no idea where they are from and they’re probably totally inaccurate, but they may be better than the kit supplied ones.