1/24 Kit Form Services Alvis Saladin mk.2 Armoured Car

By Steve Stucliffe
For this build I am going to be tackling a 1/24 Kit Form Services (KFS) Alvis Saladin mk.2.
Its the first time I will tackle an armour build that is larger than 1/35 scale.

Here is a couple of pictures that I took of a Saladin a couple of years ago at the Battle Group North Show which is held every year at the Yorkshire Air Museum.

The KFS Saladin is a true multi-media kit and as you will see by the price on the box its not a cheap kit….

in the box you will find everything you need to build a highly detailed kit. First of all the resin parts…

The Photo Etch parts and the various sizes of brass rod that you will need….

The White Metal Parts…

You also get resin tow ropes and ammo, various sizes of plastic rod, strip and tubing. There is a brass ring, a small section of aluminium pipe, different light lenses, clear acetate and material which is used as straps.

One thing worth noting, none of the resin and white metal parts have part numbers, however the resin parts you need for each section tend to be packed in the same bag which makes things easier. One good things is that the resin parts have been removed from their casting blocks which saves you a lot of time, though a little clean up is still need on the parts

You get several marking options on the decal sheet….

The instructions are on 24 pages of A4 paper stapled in one corner. There is a mix of text and black and white pictures which are straight forward to follow.

The instructions brake the build down in to five stages…

Stage 1…  The Hull & Suspension, steering and External fittings

Stage 2…   Engine &Engine Compartment, Fuel Tanks and Engine Decks 

Stage 3…   Hull Internal Detail & Stowage & The Drivers Position

Stage 4…   Turret, Fighting Compartment & Main Armament

Stage 5…   Finishing Off, Tools, Commanders MG, Lights and Minor Fittings

As for which colour scheme I will be going with I am still undecided. This will no doubt be a long and involved build. Where I can I intend to add some wiring to add that extra bit of detail.

PART ONE……Hull, Suspension and steering

As this is a quite complicated build I am going to follow the instructions step by step. In Step 1 of the instructions I needed to added the PE drain plugs and access ports to the underside of the hull.

In the instructions they have drawn a line straight along the centre of the underside and then more lines where the axles are. This helps to place the PE parts in the correct position.

Also 0.8mm brass rod was used to make lifting/lashing eyes which were then fixed in place on the hull using CA glue

Now I move on to the suspension, steering and axles.  The first job was to prepare the stub axles, the Saladin’s front 4 wheels all steer and the rear wheels are fixed. On some of the stub axles I had to remove some of the steering arms. The front whees have two steering arms, the middle wheels have just one steering arm and the rear stub axles have none.

I have highlighted in RED the steering arms that had to be removed.

The stub axles then had to be joined with the King posts, 1/16” plastic rod was used to join the two parts together, I had to make sure the parts moved freely 

Moving on to the steering drop arms, these were fitted to the drop arm housing gain using plastic rod as  pivot. This assembly was then added to the lower hull making sure the steering arms are moveable.

The white metal drive shaft gaiters were then added to the suspension wish bone units. CA glue was used.

The suspension units were then put to oneside while I assembled the hub reduction units. Once these were assemble they were added to the king post and stub axle assemblies which in turn was added to the suspension units. Hope you are with me….

As the rear wheels don’t move locking plates had to be added to the rear suspension units. The shocks were also added.

The middle suspension units needed to have their shocks installed. Also a white metal steering arm and a PE washer had to be added. Again I had to make sure the steering arm worked.

Next was the front suspension unit, again shockers were added and for the time being just one steering arm. The unit was then glued in place on the lower hull. The steering arm was connected to the drop arms making sure everything was free to move.

The inter-axle steering relays were assembled next, these were white metal parts and plastic rod was used as a pivot.

It was then a matter of attaching the mid suspension units, at the same time I had to connect the inter-axle steering relays and the torsion bars. The rear suspension units went on last.

In total there are 26 points that needed to be kept free so that the steering is fully workable.

Thanks for looking and I hope you understood the technical terms for the very parts. So ar I am very impressed with the quality and fit of the resin and white metal parts.

in the next update I will start adding external fittings to the hull which includes the exhaust.