By: Tony Leone
November 24, 2018

HILOBROW friend Tony Leone is not only an award-winning graphic designer, he’s an award-winning model tank builder, too. HILOBROW is pleased to present a series showcasing ten of his favorite builds.


TIGER I (Mid.), s.SS.Pz.Abt.101, Normandy

The Tiger tank is one of the most legendary German tanks of WW2. The model featured here is a mid-production Tiger I, number 331 of the 101st Heavy Tank Battalion. The 101st saw action in Normandy and fought against the British around the town Caen. I’ve always been intrigued by the 3rd company Tigers of the 101st and their blue tactical numbers. The base kit is an older kit by the manufacturer Tamiya. I picked up the kit at Armorcon (a NorthEast regional model show and competition) a couple of years ago thinking I found a bargain, but the slippery slope of aftermarket add-ons and the quest for detail eventually got the best of me and my wallet.

Bargain it was not, and while the Tamiya Tigers aren’t the most accurate or detail oriented, I enjoy making fixes when I can — I scratch built the the main tow cables and mounts, added headlamp wiring, created weld seams on the turret, thinned the fenders, affixed aftermarket tool and stowage clamps, and fastened some foliage for a bit of natural scale and contrast.

Many of the Tigers seen in Normandy carried a ceramic coating called Zimmerit. This coating protected the tank from infantry-held magnetic mines. The Zimmerit on this model is from a decal sheet by Tamiya. They’re a type of decal that has a dimensional texture. I was skeptical of these, but they worked well and I like the look and scale of the finished application. Some super-glue artistry was needed on the mantlet, but otherwise the decals went on like a charm and were pretty spot-on in terms of dimensions. The decal sheets even offer an alternate pattern of Zimmerit application for the turret which was evident in photos of the 3rd company tanks. In some areas, I carefully cut away pieces of Zimmert to replicate the wear of a tank in the field as the Zimmerit was prone to chip and crack.

Build kits and components include the Tamiya Mid-production Tiger I, Tamiya Zimmerit decals, RB Barrel, Fruil tracks, Aber German tool clamps, engine vent screens, Bison decals and an Alpine commander.

This is a build of firsts — this is the first 1/35 Tiger I I’ve built in over 35+ years in the hobby, my first attempt at the German tri-color camo scheme, and the first use of Fruil tracks (metal aftermarket tracks).


CURATED SERIES at HILOBROW: UNBORED CANON by Josh Glenn | CARPE PHALLUM by Patrick Cates | MS. K by Heather Kasunick | HERE BE MONSTERS by Mister Reusch | DOWNTOWNE by Bradley Peterson | #FX by Michael Lewy | PINNED PANELS by Zack Smith | TANK UP by Tony Leone | OUTBOUND TO MONTEVIDEO by Mimi Lipson | TAKING LIBERTIES by Douglas Wolk | STERANKOISMS by Douglas Wolk | MARVEL vs. MUSEUM by Douglas Wolk | NEVER BEGIN TO SING by Damon Krukowski | WTC WTF by Douglas Wolk | COOLING OFF THE COMMOTION by Chenjerai Kumanyika | THAT’S GREAT MARVEL by Douglas Wolk | LAWS OF THE UNIVERSE by Chris Spurgeon | IMAGINARY FRIENDS by Alexandra Molotkow | UNFLOWN by Jacob Covey | ADEQUATED by Franklin Bruno | QUALITY JOE by Joe Alterio | CHICKEN LIT by Lisa Jane Persky | PINAKOTHEK by Luc Sante | ALL MY STARS by Joanne McNeil | BIGFOOT ISLAND by Michael Lewy | NOT OF THIS EARTH by Michael Lewy | ANIMAL MAGNETISM by Colin Dickey | KEEPERS by Steph Burt | AMERICA OBSCURA by Andrew Hultkrans | HEATHCLIFF, FOR WHY? by Brandi Brown | DAILY DRUMPF by Rick Pinchera | BEDROOM AIRPORT by “Parson Edwards” | INTO THE VOID by Charlie Jane Anders | WE REABSORB & ENLIVEN by Matthew Battles | BRAINIAC by Joshua Glenn | COMICALLY VINTAGE by Comically Vintage | BLDGBLOG by Geoff Manaugh | WINDS OF MAGIC by James Parker | MUSEUM OF FEMORIBILIA by Lynn Peril | ROBOTS + MONSTERS by Joe Alterio | MONSTOBER by Rick Pinchera | POP WITH A SHOTGUN by Devin McKinney | FEEDBACK by Joshua Glenn | 4CP FTW by John Hilgart | ANNOTATED GIF by Kerry Callen | FANCHILD by Adam McGovern | BOOKFUTURISM by James Bridle | NOMADBROW by Erik Davis | SCREEN TIME by Jacob Mikanowski | FALSE MACHINE by Patrick Stuart | 12 DAYS OF SIGNIFICANCE | 12 MORE DAYS OF SIGNIFICANCE | 12 DAYS OF SIGNIFICANCE (AGAIN) | ANOTHER 12 DAYS OF SIGNIFICANCE | UNBORED MANIFESTO by Joshua Glenn and Elizabeth Foy Larsen | H IS FOR HOBO by Joshua Glenn | 4CP FRIDAY by guest curators


Kudos, Sculpture