I don’t know how about you, but I really don’t like the finishing construction phases when building a model. For me this is the time, when zillion tiny details have to be added, touched up, fixed, corrected, repaired, adjusted, etc. A lot of work as the process is usually tedious and little progress visible. Of course this work pays out once you paint and weather he model and all those tiny details suddenly spring to life and make your model stand out of the crowd.
Abrams is not an exception in this. As I have mentioned in my previous post on this build, the casting of details on this kit is not as refined as one can see from Dragon today, so all these details take an extra time to remove and clean all the sprue attachments and mold seams. Dragon does not make it easier, rather contrary. To make sure you have added all the tiny parts one has to scourge the whole instruction sheet with a magnifying glass and even then some parts “magically” appear in their place without being mentioned in any of the construction steps.
Over the past days I have thus added stowage baskets, identification panels, antenna mounts, tow cable mounts, grenades in the grenade launchers, machine guns,…
Well, at least I added almost everything – except for stowage. I am facing my usual dilemma whether to add the stowage now or after the painting. I usually add after painting, but the problem sometimes is that the stowage does not visually “blend” with the model. In case of M1A1, it might also be difficult to add stowage later, as it is quite tucked in all the stowage basket, where it would be difficult to paint afterwards.