Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Caunter scheme for Matilda Mk2

As part of my British desert force I bought a couple of infantry tank regiments (each represented by 10 tanks including command): One comprises Matilda Mk2s, the other Valentines. As these are stand alone regiments they are quite easy to get done and Matildas will be something of a change from playing with British light cruiser tanks (my alternate option was to paint 31 Stuarts - very fast American light cruiser tanks).

Being a bear of little brain, or perhaps just enough brain to be dangerous, I find Caunter schemes quite confusing. Even with plans of a scheme in front of me I find it difficult to transpose 2D to 3D. Consequently, I like to paint a single model as a '3D pattern'. The one good thing about Caunter schemes is that they didn't vary, once a pattern had been designed for a particular vehicle it was used, pretty much without deviation, on all vehicles of that type.
The vehicle, glued to a lolly-pop stick handle and undercoated in sand enamel paint,
There are several colour pallets for Caunter scheme and there is much argument over which ones are correct. However, I like the look of stone, grey blue and dark green so that is the one I've plumbed for - I think most people go for an light olive green rather than grey blue these days but I like the contrast given by the grey blue.

First, so the paint colour will match with my other British vehicles, I shaded the areas to be left stone colour with brown acrylic ink then dry brushed it. Usually I would treat the whole vehicle in this way but because Caunter scheme will be used I thought it prudent to use the ink to give the rough outline of the pattern. I'm glad I did because I made a mistake: The front left track guard (as you look at it from the front) will be blue. Apart from that, the scheme is well under way.

Next I added the grey blue and the dark green. These were painted on with enamel paint two shades darker than the final highlight will be. The vehicle looks a mess, and far too dark, but things tend to look this way using my painting method. Note that the ink has been dry brushed with the original sand colour before the rest of the Caunter scheme was applied.

That was the difficult bit. Now, using lighter shades, each colour is highlighted. After that, the 'Crusader Stripes' are put on, the tracks are done and some black paint is applied to the palstic bristle radio antenna. 

I just have to copy that nine more times and the job's a good one. This Matilda took about an hour and a half to sort out and paint. With a 'pattern' to follow the rest will take far less time.


Regiment finished, including pennants and tracks. Unlike most of my armour this regiment is 'generic' and consequently I've gone for 'red over' pennants.  These shot also better represent the blue grey shade. The vehicle above has not been repainted, it's just a light thing, and these new photos show the actual model colour much better.

Out of over 100 British tanks I have to paint I still have nearly 50 to do, but getting halfway seems like an achievement. I might start painting the 31 Honey's next, including General Gatehouse, sitting in an arm chair, on the back of one of them. 


Dartfrog said...

Amazing work. Thanks for the step by step. I intend to give it a try on my own Matilda's.

Colin Ashton said...


Sun of York said...

It's a classic scheme. Your end result looks fantastic.

Clive w said...

Thanks for showing the technique

Steve-the-Wargamer said...

Excellent - I've always bottled out of doing Caunter scheme...! :o)