How to Paint IDF Vehicles...

...a 'Solution Book' from Ammo of Mig Jiminez

In recent years there has been a notable increase in the number of models of IDF (Israeli Defence Force) AFVs available on the market. They range from 1/72 plastic and resin kits, as well as larger 1/35 models as well, and all from a good variety of manufacturers. Over the same period, there has been a relaxation in the security of availability of references in the form of photo books, particularly I would say from Desert Eagle Publications, who do some super books. Hence a popularity in modelling IDF subjects, so it is very useful to have this new 'Solutions' book produced by Ammo of Mig Jiminez. The title talks of 'Painting' IDF vehicles, but actually it goes further than that, covering weathering with washes, filters and pigments as well.
The book is available in a special 'Solutions@ set, which includes the book along with the selection of Ammo products used in the book to enable you to have a go. Still, it is helpful that the book is also available to buy by itself. The book covers the build of a 1/35 kit of the Merkava 2, a recent Takom kit. The build does of course use Ammo products throughout, including acrylic paints, primer, paint brushes, filters, washes, streaking brushers, oil brushers and pigments. In the opening section, there is a section of text describing each group of products, and this is presented in 4 different languages (English, Spanish, French and German). The step-by-step photo sequences which follow also use simple icons to indicate what is to be done at each stage. So, it doesn't tell you how to build the kit, but how to paint and weather it. The only element that might be considered part of the build, is the application of the new Ammo Anti-Slip texture to the upper surface of the turret. Step 2 is the application of a coat of primer, followed by 3, applying the base paint colours. With that done, step 4 applies a general Filter before adding more specific Washes in step 5. Step 6 describes adding Chipping effects and then 7, streaking, such as rain effects. Adding pigments for Dusting, and fixing it in place is step 8. This leaves it to the final step 9, adding effects for Oil & Fuel stains.
While the book focuses on the one Merkava, the lessons can be applied to any of the sand coloured IDF vehicles you can find on the market these days, and in whichever is your chosen scale. Personally I have been intrigued by some of the IDF armour over several years, as they make such good use of old and otherwise obsolete hulls as well as their new build Merkava MBTs. A handy modellers guide.


My thanks to Ammo of Mig Jiminez for our review copy.