Marder II scratch build

How to Scratch build a 28mm Marder II

By Christoffer Aarhus

Christoffer: At the moment, I’m working on terrain and miniatures for gaming the early and mid war in the desert. So I wanted to see if I could build a tank from scratch. I choose to build the Marder II and to add to my collection of German 28 mm miniatures. I wanted to build the Marder II, as the early version. It has now joined my miniature DAK regiment.

So this by reusing scrap cardboard and other wrapping materials, and the usage of white paper glue almost gave this project a feeling of sustainability…almost. But the thought of building your miniatures from scrap cardboard and old bits is very satisfactory. Also, the price is very nice. This one comes with a maximum 2 or 3 £ price tag, and you get the fun of researching and building. Whats not to like about that

First step: I started out by researching a bit about the Marder II. Online there are tons of images, that can help you get an idea of the design and its history. It’s fantastic. I found drawings online and printed an A4 sized sheet. I scaled the sheet before printing it. Then I was able to use it directly on the cardboard, with my dotting technique. The cardboard you use should be thin enough to bend, easy to cut, but hard enough to be able to keep the model stable. I dotted each corner of the tanks main parts. I kept the cardboard below. In that fashion, I was able to draw my own little set of pieces (model kit), ready to be cut out and glued together.

Below is the A4 paper I printed.

So after drawing the pieces, it was time to cut them out and start glueing the pieces together. Below are some images of the work in progress.

Below is shown the parts before being glued together.

The detailing takes a sharp blade. Remember – be very careful when cutting cardboard. It gets better when you cut multiple times, without too much pressure than cutting I one move. So keep your patience, and DONT cut your fingers. Take care 🙂

I used pro-create putty for some of the finer details.

The loading area for the gun was made with polystyrene and cardboard. The gun barrel is made from an old birthday flag and supported by bits of piano wire, fixed with pro-create and super glue.

Interior detailing is made with a rubber band, cardboard, piano-wire and procreate. The tip of the gun was made from pro-create, and the gun barrel was made from old birthday flags.

Wheels were made using a tool for cutting circles. that gave a precise circle shape. Notice the white glue. It gets stickier when it’s taken out of the tube a little before you start modelling.

The model gets more and more detailed. I googled Marder II interiors and found a lot of great material on the web. Other than that, I found different images that showed the storage and other equipment they drove around with.

Below the spare water tank, ammo box and cover have been added.

On the side, an ammo box for the MG and two camo-covers made from pro-create has been added. Notice the MG has been mounted and the water hose made from rubber band on the inside.

On this side, a helmet, entrenching tools, and a spare wheel has been mounted. The entrenching tools are made of pieces of wire and shovel parts from Warlord games British late Infantry.

The parts that hold the gun barrel is also made of piano wire.

Interieur view showing the grand points made from pro-create. also, we can see the loading area clearly. With all the detailing ready, it was time to start painting.

I’ve started by reading a painting article by Andy Singleton on the Warlord Games site here.

Andy’s article is great and has really shown me a new and quick method, to make your models look great. Make sure to check it out, if you feel like a little inspiration.

There you have it. An alternative tank, made at a cost of about 1 pound (in extra parts). An alternative, but not near as nice as Warlord Games’ real deal 😉

Best of luck to you all.


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