Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)

Fighting First: US Forces In North Africa 1942-43

Assembling the Hull
Step 1. Begin by attaching the upper hull section to the lower hull. Step 2. Next, attach the rounded hull front section to the front of the hull.
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)
Tip: Although regular Hobby Glue can be used to assemble plastic vehicles, we recommend that you use good quality plastic cement instead. It gives the strongest bond when gluing plastic to plastic.
 Step 3. Attach the rear exhaust plate to the lower hull, making sure it is aligned neatly with the bottom of the hull.  Step 4. Now attach the rear plate with tools in the space at the rear of the upper hull. Try to apply a thin line of glue evenly along the edge of the part, and it should slide neatly into place.
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)
Step 5. Next, attach the tracks to the lower hull. The tracks are keyed to correspond with a particular side of the hull: two pegs on the left and three on the right. This ensures correct orientation of the tracks. Below: The completed hull.
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)
Tip: Some modellers find it easier to paint the tracks separately and attach them later. Whichever method you prefer is fine.
Assembling the Turret
Step 1. After selecting the right parts, attach the gun breech assembly to the turret bottom. Step 2. Next, attach the turret top to the turret bottom. Step 3. Glue the gun mantlet in place on the front of the turret.
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)
Which counterweight?

Due to the size and weight of the M7 3in gun that armed the M10 GMC, a counterweight was needed at the rear of the turret.

Two wedge-shaped counterweights were attached to the turret to provide balance. Later production runs of the M10 had a better-designed 'duck-bill' counterweight (so named because in profile it looked a bit like an upside-down duck's bill) which better balanced the gun, as well as increasing space in the fighting compartment. The 'duck-bill' counterweight began to be introduced as early as June 1943, but both shapes of counterweight would still have been common throughout the war, so you can really feel free to use whichever design you prefer. It would even be conceivable for units to have a mix of different counterweights.

Step 4. Once you have chosen which counterweight you want to use, glue it in place at the rear of the turret. Below: The counterweight in position.
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)
Either shape of counterweight is valid for the British M10C, as both turret variants were up-gunned with the 17 pdr.
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)

Step 4. Glue the gun into the hole in the mantlet.

Note: For the standard US M10, make sure you use the M7 3in gun (highlighted in blue on the left). 

 Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)
Step 5. Glue the .50-cal AA MG into the mounting hole at the rear of the fighting compartment. There are two MG's on the sprue; the M10 uses the one without a post. Step 6. Finally, glue the turret plug into the space under the turret. It plugs into the hole in the hull, allowing the turret to turn towards the target when your M10 shoots.
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)
Adding Rare Earth Magnets
Alternatively, you may choose to glue rare earth magnets into the recess in the hull and to the bottom of the turret. Magnets are a quick and secure way of fixing your turrets to the hulls, as an alternative to the included plastic peg.

Rare Earth Magnets (XX105) are available through the online store here...

Rare Earth Magnets (XX105)
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Read Chris' guide to Rare Earth Magnets here for more tips and tricks...

Adding crew

You can add crew to the turret if you like – choose any three crew from the crew sprue. You may find it easier to paint the crew separately before gluing them in place. British and Soviet crew sprues are available from the online store:
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Plastic British Tank Commander Sprue (BSO194) Plastic Soviet Tank Commander Sprue (SSO205)
British Crew Sprue (BSO194)... Soviet Crew Sprue (BSO194)...

Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)

The racks on either side of the hull are for carrying track grousers, which could be fitted to the tracks to increase traction in loose or boggy terrain.

You can leave the racks empty if you like, or you can add a slightly different arrangement of grousers to each vehicle, make each one unique.

Some optional stowage items are included on the sprue to let you further customise your tank destroyers if you want to: a fuel can, spare track link, spare wheel and an ammunition crate.

Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53) Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)

Below: The completed M10 3in 
Assembling The M10 3-Inch Tank Destroyer (UBX53)