AK Interactive – Tracks & Wheels

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AK 47 is the tool, don’t make me act the motherfuckin’ fool.

There are two big names in the scale modelling arena, AK Interactive, currently run by¬†Fernando Vallejo Calleja, and Ammo run by Mig Jimenez. Seems there’s a whole truck load of pit beef going on between those guys, but that’s not the focus of this article. Tracks & Wheels is. Making them look manky and old, to be more specific

Being fairly new to the weathering game, having been introduced to it by the Forge World Masterclass books by Phil Stutcinskas and Mark Bedford, there’s one aspect that never gets much coverage either in the Scale Model magazines or the Forge World publications, and that’s tank tracks. For some reason, they’re glossed over as if the reader already has a fully comprehensive knowledge of how to not only weather the running gear, but also how to tie it in with the rest of the vehicle. I don’t know about you, but I wasn’t born with an inherent knowledge of how to make model tracks look old.

This has always been a frustrating bone of contention for me, as I predominantly weather up tanks, Rhinos etc, with the Fellblade a case in point. The major feature of tanks is they have TRACKS, which are undoubtedly one of the main reasons they’re cool in the first place, and therefore a focal point. And fuck me is it annoying when you don’t have the skills to weather them properly.

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The detail each guide goes into is insane!

Thankfully this has now changed with the third publication of the AK Interactive range, AK Learning. This is a fully comprehensive step by step book on how to weather wheels and tracks, just the subject matter, nothing else. I suppose to some, that might sound dry as fuck, but for someone who’s looking to push their game, this tome is essential, and a snip

The book is set out in a really easy to follow way, each section just concentrates on one subject matter, split down between differing wheels and tire techniques, alongside tracks which are even further broken down with guides for rust, rubber road wheels, metal road wheels, the full works you can expect to find on both historic and modern day AFV models. Consequently, you can port all these skills to your futuristic armour, be it Forge World or whatever to get that desired finish to suit.

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Need to paint up that Macharius in vostroyan colours, but don’t know how to make the wheels look slushy? Now you do.

I’m genuinely both thankful that someone’s taken the time to cover what can be a daunting and difficult subject, and impressed with just how its been done in such a clear, concise manner. If you have an interest in getting realistic effects on any form of armoured vehicle, then I’d recommend you check this out, you can combine it with any other guide you like, covering the plating, weapons etc, it fits into any set of techniques you already have, being as it is, limited to the matter at hand.

One for the book shelf of any painter or modeller with an interest in armoured vehicles, recommended!

1 thought on “AK Interactive – Tracks & Wheels

  1. The scale modeling community has SO much to teach us if we just stop and listen. It’s amazing what folks like Mig can do, and there’s NO reason a lot of us war gamers can’t steal a few ideas from them. With ForgeWorld bringing bigger, more realistic tanks into the game there’s never been a better time to start getting serious about super detailing and weathering. I really hope those MasterClass books bring more attention to this subject. Thanks for this article. I’ll look into that book for sure.

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