The M8 Greyhound was a six-wheeled light armored car that attempted service in the United States Army in 1942, the first production vehicles rolled off the Ford production line in early 1943. The command and engineer version of this vehicle without a turret was designated the M20.
An older (2001) resin kit from Extratech company came to my desk more than half-completed and lightly damaged, and without any decals. However, since this is the only Greyhound I have managed to obtain in recent years, I was very happy about it. Historically, three “greyhound” kits were available, the old resin TP Model, then this Extratech one, and in 2004 and 2007 a really nice plastic Italeri kit was available. Unfortunately, Italeri kits are out of production and even Italeri itself has no idea if their reissue is real (as they answered my inquisitive question). Both Extratech and Italeri have also released a command variant of the M20. Unfortunately, at the time of writing these lines, all these M8/M20 kits in 1/72 are unavailable.
The first step was to completely dismantle and clean the almost completed and partially painted model. Some resin and etched details were lost during this operation, something I managed to save, and some I had to scratch again. During the “reconstruction” of the model, I thought about how I would solve the decals. I tried writing to Hauler to see if they – at least – have digital data available for this old model when they took over most of Extratech’s production, but they didn’t. They advised me to contact Mr. Bodeček, under whose leadership the kit was once created. And I succeeded, I got the data for the original sheet from him. Also, thanks to a friend, I managed to get a scan of a sheet of Italeri decals that contain the same “Colbert” machine, that I chose for my model. By studying the available materials, Extratech and Italeri decals and decals from the Tamiya kit for 1/48, I concluded that each kit has the decals unfortunately quite different. Based on the only photo I know, I “averaged” everything, reworked the entire decal sheet for the machine from the battles in France in 1944, completed it, and had it printed by APC Decals. In the meantime, I completed the model and painted it, and after decal application, standard patination techniques were used.
I am glad that I managed to save an almost-lost model and turned it into a good-looking miniature, the invested effort paid off. We can only hope that some new M8 and M20 1/72 models will appear in the future, the market just lacks them…