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Jehlik's Armoured Vehicle, 1916 – Scratching the Ridiculous Roller.

In your, frankly disappointing universe, Jehlik's armoured vehicle didn't progress any further than the filing cabinets of the US patent office, but in mine it went on to a gloriously disastrous career. Why limit yourself to this pretty uninspiring reality when a quick browse through the other more interesting alternatives is significantly more entertaining.
It's generally considered that the Americans were supposed to join the WWI party in 1917. However, in 1915 they got themselves a brand new toy and couldn't wait to play with it. The original idea was for the roller-beast to be built in vast numbers in a shipyard on England's south coast, before the British government tactfully declined, stating "There's no ******* way we want to be involved with such a studi...", well... the details aren't important. The contract went to a ship yard near Boston who built eleven metal monsters before they ran out of steel.
The machines went through exhaustive testing to see what they could achieve, and isn't it remarkable how fast a nations jubilation can turn to despair – squashing the marching band during the military parade can sometimes do that. With great fanfare the army held a service-wide competition to pick the crew, and the losers started their training soon afterwards.
Jehlik became a national hero… briefly, before changing his name and seeking asylum in Andorra where he lived out the remainder of his days breeding with sheep, sorry I mean breeding sheep.
After six of them ended up keeping the Titanic company on the bottom of the Atlantic, the remaining five machines trundled ashore in France. The initial surge of joy from the French was soon extinguished after the fourth village was reduced to rubble.
Their début on the battlefield would have been a great success, but as the existence of the roller beast was difficult to hide, those cowardly Bosch had dug a long pit in front of their trenches which caused the first four behemoths to get their silly rear castors stuck. How unsporting is that? The Americans wrote a very strongly worded letter to the kaiser saying it really wasn't fair as they were looking forward to a damn good squishing. To show the strength of their feeling they even omitted the kisses from the end. The kaiser missed the post that day as he was at the bingo.

Here we see the sole survivor, number 7 which also had the official name 'USLS (United Sates Land Ship) Friendly Fire' which became the only one to engage the enemy. Enabling the American to successfully take the German trench after finding the occupants helpless with laughter after seeing the roller-beast get stuck on a tiny muddy mound. The ref later ruled the American move to be off-side and they had to go back to their own hole in the ground, leaving the score nil-nil.

And so Jehlik's monster was edited out of history by an embarrassed nation.

Aaannnyyyway… This took about six months in total. I hope you like it.
If you want to read the 'making of' thread it's only 13,000 words long this time – that's a whole 4,000 words SHORTER than the Holt whopper thread! I may not have got the hang of short posts yet – but at this rate by the time I'm 100, even those who aren't retired might possibly get the time to read them.



41 | 11. October 2020, 16:35
Show 53 previous comments
Alex K
Oh my... Here he goes again! 🙂 👍
11. October 2020, 20:43
Daniel Klink
I, I follow.. i follow you, scratched things gorby...👍
11. October 2020, 20:51
René "Lord Bilbo" Bartholemy
I feel an itch for this scratch... Following!
11. October 2020, 22:34
Glad to have you all along for the ride (not that I'm convinced that this thing would ever have been able to move an inch). 🙂
12. October 2020, 08:45
Łukasz Gliński
Another one, yay! 👍 Welcome to 72!😉
12. October 2020, 13:25
insane... i would not miss it for the world. scratchbuild to its finest again 🙂
12. October 2020, 13:46
David Taylor
O)h Gawd here we go.
12. October 2020, 15:33
No pressure then (gulp). 😳
Climb aboard – there's plenty of room inside. 🙂
12. October 2020, 15:39
The Roller Beast rides again! The next update is available here:

And I'm starting to get the hang of the 'short post' concept.
17. October 2020, 16:20
Alec K
Short posts!?! BORING! I am in, of course 👍
17. October 2020, 16:30
😄 😄 😄
17. October 2020, 16:37
René "Lord Bilbo" Bartholemy
The result of the rollers is really quite nice. Kudos!
17. October 2020, 21:55
Thanks for taking the time to comment. 🙂 👍
18. October 2020, 13:55
Another big oddity
23. October 2020, 19:28
Dave Flitton
Awesome! Another Gorby scratches his What's It
23. October 2020, 19:32
Thanks for tagging along matiepoos. 👍

Roll up roll up, get your two free posts for the price of one!
I may have failed to understand the economics of why two free items are better than one free item twice. Don't ask such awkward questions!


24. October 2020, 15:56
Alec K
This thing is, well... crazy. Great progress Gorb 👍
25. October 2020, 01:18
Thanks Alec. 👍
It is slightly reassuring that even I know it's crazy.😉
25. October 2020, 15:04
What a crazy tank! This was only existing on paper as drawings I guess? Your scratch work is the opposite 👍
26. October 2020, 16:30
Yes frank, this thing only existed as a very poorly thought out patent. I've been looking through Google patents and it's amazing how many other misguided monstrosities are buried in there.
27. October 2020, 16:20
Oh yes, Google patents is cool! Find also interesting things about our beloved WWI biplanes 👍
27. October 2020, 17:15
14. November 2020, 15:43
Brandon H
What in tarnation?!
Very cool build
15. November 2020, 00:35
Thanks Brandon - glad to have you following. 🙂
15. November 2020, 15:28
Rui S
I was following, now I'm in for this crazy patent. Great scracth as always 👍
16. November 2020, 22:43
Thanks very much Rui mate. 👍
I just wish I could paint and weather as well as you can - that's usually when it goes down-hill for me.😉
17. November 2020, 09:52
Pierre Vauthier
that looks very impressive, can you make some size comparison picture of your model ?
17. November 2020, 10:58
Thanks Pierre.
Good point. I'll sort that for the next update. 👍
17. November 2020, 11:42
Daniel Klink
Why do i think of those guys while watching your progress👍
17. November 2020, 12:30
Rui S
Thank you too for that, Gorbygould. Very pleasant to read, but I think your work don't have down-hills, even in painting or weathering.
17. November 2020, 14:08
Daniel: 😄 😄 😄 What a fabulous contraption - I'm half tempted to build it.

You're too kind Rui, but I know that I'm not good at painting because I don't enjoy it, so I usually rush it to get it over with. I just enjoy putting the bits together – perhaps I'm channelling my inner toddler with the Lego I used to love playing with.😉
17. November 2020, 16:34
David Taylor
Im the same Gorby,prefer the modelling aspect rather than the painting.
17. November 2020, 17:12
Rui S
Well, i've to say that I also, prefer the construction part, even if it's a dio, but without paint it dosen't work. I even avoid painting subassemblies 🤔 but because I like dios, I've to handle figure painting. They are too difficult and take a lot of time, AHRRR 🙁
17. November 2020, 20:08
Tell me about it – I've just painted 51 1/72 figures for the dio for this monstrosity, although admittedly I stop short of following your lead and didn't paint their nails.😉
18. November 2020, 12:24
Rui S
Did you notice that? 😄
51? Where are you going to locate all that troop?
18. November 2020, 14:49
Yes I did notice that - you must be bloody mad. 😄
At the moment I have no idea if all 51 are going to fit on the dio - perhaps I need some sort of plan? 😄
18. November 2020, 15:04
21. November 2020, 15:14
😄 😄 😄
21. November 2020, 15:19
What a chunk! I don't want to stand in front of it when it rolls towards me! 😮
With paint it looks scary real 👍
21. November 2020, 15:42
Łukasz Gliński
Bloody ridiculous indeed 👍 Lovely scratchbuilding, I admire it 👍
21. November 2020, 16:26
Thanks mates. I've still the dio to do - currently about two thirds done. At the moment I'm making hundreds of tiny sandbags - remind me, this is supposed to be fun isn't it?😉
21. November 2020, 16:35
Michael Valentan
And again a real cool project...just getting in now, but what i see is fantastic...i really love your Scratchwork! Which Side is front?? The big roller i think, that would mean the cannons look backwards...absolute crazy!

Hope you build all the other crazy vehicles shown on that site you posted earlier...
21. November 2020, 18:12
amazing job!! i wonder what will be your next crazy idea... and i will certainly not miss it 🙂
21. November 2020, 23:57
Thanks very much mates. You will be seeing this monstrosity again when the diorama is complete. 👍
I'm sorry to disappoint you – my next project is to reduce my ludicrously excessive stash of ELEVEN kits! What on earth possessed me to buy so many?😉
Scratching the ridiculously is very addictive, so I'm sure I won't be able to stay away for long.

Michael: Yes the giant roller is at the front. It does take some brain readjustment to understand why ALL the main guns are pointing towards their own troops. What was Jehlik thinking! 😄
22. November 2020, 06:53
Alex Rodionov
Wow. It's fantastic. Nice weathering.
22. November 2020, 07:41
Absolutely😎, awesome build
22. November 2020, 08:03
Michael Valentan
Only 11 kits in stock?? Oh my god, that explains why you do that much scratching...i have 10 times of you in stock and always find something to build...from scratch...and every time i made a scratchmodel it comes out as a plastic-kit from a large manufacturer in the next year...last thing to build was a "Boarhound"...should be on display in Vienna in last June (GO Modelling)....will sadly never happen again due to Corona and austrian officials....

And i still wonder if the tank of jehlik was for America in the first line or for export to some "not so heroic" country...to shoot at fleeing soldiers was very popular in former times...
22. November 2020, 12:14
Daniel Klink
Whoaa!!! Very cool and with paint and weathering absolutely stunning !!!

22. November 2020, 12:40
Alec K
Really looking great Gorb. Very addicting indeed, for all of us hooked on your journeys. Looking forward to the dio 👍
22. November 2020, 13:49
Daniel Klink
That would be an absolute unique and spectacular Robo Vac
22. November 2020, 13:59
😄 😄 😄 – Oh yeh! Robo vac with attitude. 😄

Thanks very much matiepoos I'm pleased it meets with your approval. Not sure about the weathering myself, I sort of closed my eyes and threw mud at it.

Yes 11 kits Michael – but they seem to be 11 eternal kits. It seems that even if I build a kit, I count the stash afterwards and it's STILL 11 bloody kits – how does that happen? I even took one shoe and sock off last time I counted them.😉

Annnyyyway – more bloody sandbags to make. 🙁
22. November 2020, 16:05
Rui S
Very Nice paintjob.👍 Looking forward to see this Monster in a dio😎
22. November 2020, 23:51
Thanks very much matie. 🙂 👍
23. November 2020, 11:58
Good grief, won't I ever go away?*
It's Roller-Beast dio time:


(* Probably not. You could try ignoring me, although I'm likely to be like an annoying puppy, constantly yapping, yap yap yap until you look. I'll probably just pee on your leg for ignoring me in the first place).
28. November 2020, 12:04
Rui S
Hahaha ok. I do not ignore you, and surely don't mind look at your work 👍. Don't quite understand, why you didn't paint their nails, hehehe.😄 Looking forward to see the dio here😎
28. November 2020, 13:29
Of course I painted the fingernails Rui, you're just not looking closely enough.😉
I stopped short of painting the whites of their eyes because people start shooting when they see the whites of their eyes and that seems downright antisocial to me.
28. November 2020, 15:27
The end is nigh!!! The final diorama update!
(There's a few more updates as well, so you might need to get yourself a drink and a couple of tranquillisers and settle in for the evening).

13. December 2020, 16:27
Rui S
What a great work. The dio also turn out Great. Impressive work on this small scale. Very well done Mate 👍
13. December 2020, 19:50
Łukasz Gliński
Wow, pic #23 looks like a real thing, oh wait..😉 👍
Nice wire, how did you get it? OK, found the instructions in the provided forum topic, cool idea 👍
13. December 2020, 19:53
Brandon H
Awesome dio!
14. December 2020, 00:14
Another gift! Unstoppable!!
14. December 2020, 00:39
Thanks very much mates. 🙂
I'll try and get the final photos sorted out in the next week or so. 👍
14. December 2020, 10:26
14. December 2020, 11:42
Alec K
Man, that dio will give that monstrosity an undeserved air of legitimacy....😄 😄 😄
14. December 2020, 14:15
Thanks Spanjaard & Alec.
😄 😄 😄
It's almost as if you think Jehlik wasn't a genius! 😮
(exit stage left, shaking head with dismay, sobbing gently.) 😭
14. December 2020, 16:34
14. December 2020, 17:09
15. December 2020, 04:54
Thanks mates. 🙂
15. December 2020, 10:45
Michael Valentan
That´s a hell of a road roller...it even makes it´s own road...really imperssive, great dio!
15. December 2020, 14:49
😄 😄
Thanks Michael. 👍
15. December 2020, 15:23


In progress
1:72 MK II "Female" British Tank (Master Box MB72006)1:72 A7V (EMHAR 935003)1:72 WWI GERMAN INFANTRY (Airfix A01726 42 078)2+

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