“The old bear” Painting and Finishing of the MAZ-537g

Good evening fellow people and welcome to episode 3 of midnight-master-models and the last episode on the MAZ-537g.

and with this one of if not the most interesting model of 2024 is already finished. This model was truly a monument for me personally as well as on my first exhibition. It kind of feels like this model was my breakthrough into the higher ranks of the German scale-modelling community and I am proud of it. I am proud of achieving this, I am proud of the breakthrough and I am proud of what is there to come now. And oh boy there is a lot to come both in this article as well as in the near and not so near future: Let’s get started:


MAZ-537g late Production with ChMZAP-5247G – Trumpeter 00212 scalemates

MAZ-537g (late Production) – Voyager PE35278 scalemates

V-54 Engine – Mini Art 37006 scalemates

Ural 4320 – Zvezda 3654 scalemates

Polystyrene sheet, copper wire, spare parts, etc…

Base painting pt.1 – everything according to plan?

First of all: This is if it wasn’t obvious the second part for this model. The first one, detailing the construction (aka pain in this case) can be found here. But now let’s get started with the second part: The painting for this model was atleast compared to the construction relatively easy. At first the painting of the chassis and wheels: Rims and chassis were painted in a black-grey as it was apparent from the beginning for me. The Wheels were not painted at this stage, since I will treat them right at the weathering stage.

The easy part now out of the way, now onto some more difficult parts. First on the list: Interior and Engine room. I painted the engine according to the chart provided by Mini Art. Pictures with the true colours are very hard to find. Most vehicles in active service have been repainted and originals are hard to find, at least for me. I painted the rest if the engine room with best attention to reference pictures and some artistic liberty. I did this simply to make everything feel correct even if not everything might be perfect.

For the interior of the cabin, I luckily had good references at hand. Thus, it was painted accordingly. I needed to pay some special attention to the dashboard, since Voyager provided a very nice inlay for this. Here I first base painted the original plastic-dashboard white to make it contrast with the black prints. Then the gauges in the form of inlay as well as the PE-dashboard were added.

Base painting pt.2 – Well well well, what do we do now?

The exterior was a whole different beast, however. The first plan was a very complex tri-colour soviet winter camouflage consisting of a lot of small faces. A Plan that would have yielded great results, there was however just one small problem. Time. The model was supposed to be done by the 3rd of March for the exhibition in Lemgo. At the current pace this possibility was not so possible anymore, however. A new Plan had to emerge, since I also did not want to paint this model something plain. It was still supposed to stand out from other MAZs. The new choice thus was the colour-scheme used for the KZKT-537L, not completely historically accurate, but interesting and plausible enough.

Weathering pt.1 – interior and engine – relaxing, yes, unbelievably

Let’s get started and get the easy parts out of the way. And in an unbelievable twist of events this actually was the case for once. For the first time in 9 years. Something that seemed easy was easy. The beginning was made by the engine-room. Here I only used as little weathering as possible to keep it as visible as possible. This I only used some minor discolorations as well as artificial shadows. Of course, pin-washing could not be missing, and some chipping was also made. In general, I kept the weathering however to a minimal, since the shadows already made everything seem dark and grim enough.

I gave the cabin almost the same treatment. First some discoloration, followed by a pin-wash and chipping. The only area where I paid special attention were the seats. First on the agenda: The fabric. I am not sure what kind was used, since it is dyed in a deep black colour. Most references show these however worn to a lighter grey tone. Thus, I began with a light dry-brushing followed by brush-painted highlights. I also gave the exposed filling some colour-variation. A basecoat of yellow was the altered with various tones of brown and orange. I applied these colours by sponge-chipping. Here you must use a very small sponge in order to not hit the black fabric.

Weathering pt.2 – chassis – some pain, but nothing in comparison.

Now I moved onto some more complicated things, can’t let myself actually relax now, can I? But in all honesty, it wasn’t that bad. Some dry brushing truly did wonders for the chassis. First layer was pale silver, followed by dark-earth and light dust and lastly some silver once again. In retrospect I should have done a lot more especially where all the cables are, since all that work currently gets lost in the model. Something to learn for the next model.

This did however not mark the chassis complete. I of course also needed the help of some more difficult techniques. First, starting with the finishing of the metal-parts. I first started by adding some brush and sponge painted dark-rust chipping, which was the followed up with some additional light and medium rust effects. Last but not least I was able to start adding grime and grease effects. For the “normal” parts I used some black wash. Places where I added this was on the driveshaft, transmission and also the oil tank on the side of the chassis.

Wheathering pt.3 – wheels – 8 and the 5th?

For the grime on the 5th wheel, I needed something more however: Here I mixed black-wash, gloss black paint as well as water-effects by Noch in order to get a textured semigloss surface on the 5th wheel. It is certainly not perfect, and I will have to continue to experiment. It is however for a first attempt a decent enough result.

The final part of the chassis were now the wheels. These only received a small amount of light-grey dry brushing which I then smear to make the edges feel soft and rubbery. The results that this made combined with the previous work on the tires yielded an ok result. I will however most likely change it up for the next models since I am not 100% satisfied with the result. Especially some improved

Weathering pt.4 – cabin and exterior – we be chilling.

Well, not that much to tell here. First of all, the same deal as with the chassis, dry-brushing and highlights. I followed this with some panel-lining and pin-washes and last but not least some artificial shadows. Afterwards some good old three-layered chipping. First a lighter form of the basecoat to simulate worn paint. After that dark rust for the exposed steel. I applied both first with a sponge and then corrected with a fine brush. The last layer consisted of some minor rust-washes to give the effect some colour and definition.

Now I only needed to add some exhaust-grime by dry-brushing and some good old, spilled fluids like fuel and oil by brush and speckling. To create speckles, I first load a brush with paint and then stroke the fibres with a toothpick. This the flicks small particles of paint on the model in a small and controlled area.

Weathering pt.5 – dust and dirt – Last touches and off to the finish line.

And now, last but not least, onto some final details: There is however just one small problem: just one week remaining until the exhibition. Thus, I had to make this kind of rushed. A little more rushed than I would have liked, but the result turned out at least in my opinion ok, nevertheless.

First some light-grey dry-brushing. Just a step to add a little bit more to the highlights and tie both cabin and chassis together. This was then followed with some darker and the again the same light-grey colour. For the darker I went more into brown rather than grey. We are still making dirt from a recent ride on a dirt road, not through a crumbled city. Last but not least some brush applied enamel weathering.

And now I reapplied some fine grime around the fuel tanks as well as the driveshaft and suspension as well as now the final streaking details with a dark brown and black wash.

Pictures – what would be a good article without some pictures.

Post-build – Let’s go!

I already said it in the beginning, but I believe that this model now is truly a step in the new direction. I already received great responses on the exhibition and also feel like I improved by a great margin on this model. Taking some more time on the highlights certainly paid off and I still think that I spend a little too little time there. Additionally, I should have spent more time in the 5th part of the weathering. Me cutting the time to add texture and more colour variation really is noticeable and does not look great. Especially in comparison to some other models. (however, even they do not look the greatest)

Otherwise, I am extremely happy, and this is a worthy new addition to the midnight master models. The next one is however well on its way, so stay tuned for that…

You have got an opinion about the model, let me know, email, comments, Instagram or other messages are always open.

Until we meet again

Floh out

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