Modeling the Sherman Tank in 1/72nd Scale
Variety of Sherman Accessories O3D Miniatures
Article by Doug Chaltry; last updated 28 December 2023
O3D Miniatures was, I believe, the very first company that began providing us with Sherman tank accessories through the 3D printing process. They work through the Shapeways website to produce and market their products. Several years ago, the owner (Sonny Sy) was generous enough to send to me some samples of his products. Unfortunately I was unable to post previews of those items until now, for which I sincerely apologize to Sonny. Looking at the photos that are included on the O3D Store (link here), the products appear to not have changed much from the samples sent to me earlier. There are apparently two options for the quality of the resin/printing, with the items shown below being printed in the higher quality "Clear Ultra Fine Detail Plastic". I don't know how the quality differs from the lower grade "Tan Fine Detail Plastic".

Sherman Tank Detail Set

If you look at the image on O3D's webstore, you will see that purchasing this set will give you two complete frames of items; only one is shown here. I show a photo of the unpainted set on the left, as it is delivered, and a photo of the primed set on the right, which better shows much of the detail of the parts. As you can see, there are a plethora of useful items included in this set, from fuel filler caps to periscope guards. If you compare the two images, you may notice that an antenna is missing from the frame that was primed; that's because as soon as I took the original photo, I dropped my camera on the frame of parts! Luckily, and I think this says a lot about the material it is printed in, the only item to have snapped off was the angled antenna, and yet it broke off the frame exactly where it was supposed to. And I managed to find the wayward antenna as well, so it's all good.

T-48 Tracks with Extended End Connectors

"Short hull" Shermans (i.e., not the M4A4 or Hybrid) had 79 track links per side. This set includes 192 track links in lengths and individual links, so there will be plenty left over for other tasks. I have not yet tried to fit these tracks to any specific Sherman model, so I don't know if the pre-formed parts (those that curve around the sprocket and idler wheels) will fit any and all kits. I imagine it may be necessary to modify some of the available sprocket wheels to make these compatible with whichever kit you are building, but hopefully not. As you can see in the close-up scan below, there are noticeable printing artifacts on the track shoes. Those on the surface of the rubber chevron will be easy to sand smooth, but those not on the tops of the chevrons will be harder to deal with. I think some judicious use of mud or dirt would be in order here.

WW II US Tank Tools

Note that the sets sold on the webstore include double what is seen here. I really like the selection of tools here, and they will come in handy to replace the tools on all of those kits that mold them onto the kit hulls, which is almost all of them. I think I may carefully cut off the mounting brackets from the tool handles, as they are a bit blocky, but the tools are nicely shaped.

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Modeling the Sherman Tank in 1/72nd Scale