M11/39 — a truly terrible tank

The STLs are available on Thingiverse at https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3385848
 I've been remodeling m_bergman's 1/200 scale Italian WWII M11/39 tank, up-scaling it to 1/100 scale and adding and refining a lot of detail. I had to strip away all of the running gear and replace it with completely new geometry; not a straightforward task at all, but I got a decent result in the end.

The original model was fine for silhouette, but it was pretty chunky, for reliability in printing in the smaller scale. It's still a bit chunky — the 37mm gun is out of scale for a start — but it will look OK on the tabletop, and that's the most important thing.

These things were already obsolete at the beginning of WWII. They did OK against machine-gun-armed Vickers light tanks in Libya and Egypt, but that was about the limit of their usefulness. They were quickly replaced by the M13/40, which added some armour and moved the main gun to a larger revolving turret.

Test Print

Assembled and primed

The first test print was reasonably OK, but it has identified a couple of issues.

The stem of the turret plug was a fraction too long, so the turret doesn't sit snugly down on the hull top. That was easy enough to fix.

The 37mm main gun is more problematic. Because it's printed standing vertically (the hull being printed in two halves, front and back) any tremors in the printer show up glaringly, especially if, like mine, your printer is not absolutely perfectly dialled in. It might be better to remove it entirely maybe, and print it horizontally as a separate piece, or even replace it completely with a turned brass gun. Not least because it's way out of scale.

I'm pleased with the way the running gear turned out though. I think it does make a marked improvement, having some detail in the tracks themselves.

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