Many many modelers use to make me this question time after time.
Unfortunately, there´s not an answer for this. It depends on how easy is to paint them once glued, for example. It also depend on the vehicle historical´s context as sometimes crews used to paint the tools at the same time as they painted the camo over the vehicle.
In any case, I confess that I use to paint the tools once glued as you probably have observed looking at my articles. I do this because I like to glue strongly the tools on the vehicle and if you glue them after painting the tools apart, you can spoil the paint, you have to remove it carefully with a blade, use a little amount of glue … too difficult for me!
Anyway, this time, I´ll paint the tools of this 1/48 Jagdtiger before placing them.
The kit …. Tamiya´s 1/48 Jagdtiger.
Out of the box, I just added the periscopes and the Hauler real grills (a must….)
Now, some basic techniques to paint your tools in a easy and fast way.
Step 1: Primer
This time I used Mig´s primer. Why? Nice cover properties and a smooth finish without sanding.
Step 2 Basic colors
For the tracks I used several shades of rust colors. Even the same piece have several shades over it to maximize the tonal range.
For the metal parts, diferent mixes of Satin Black and Gun Metal.
And finally, for the wood I used the old wood paint and a earth color for the new wood. For the fire extinguisher I used a fielgrey color.
Step 3 Let´s do it funny!
With a sponge, using several shades of rust colors (different as the ones used for the base color) I added several shades and dots over the links to achieve a rusted, random effect
A very useful visual «trick» is changing the color of the wood parts. This contrast makes the appearance and final look of the elements more attactive.
Step 4 A little bit of weathering
Using highly diluted paints as can be seen in the tissue paper of the picture, I apply punctual washes to soften the rusted effects into scale.
Nato vehicle´s wash is perfect fo the final look of your tools. Deppness is always welcome!
As soon as I return from Wilnsdorf (Germany), I´ll show you how did all these tolls were placed on the Jagdtiger after a 10 hours massive painting class! Stay tuned!