I had a box of Pegasus German Mortars and another of Zvezda German 81mm mortar teams. You get a whole heap of figures and mortars in the Pegasus box and two identical mortar teams in the Zvezda box. I decided to mix it all up and make five mortar teams, trying to make unique looking bases.
The Pegasus box has lots of different poses from people loading rounds, dragging boxes and putting their hands over their ears. Great stuff. Also some radio operators, who ended up missing out. The Zvezda men are either dropping a round or holding a new one. I used three figures on each base. I also had a heap of shell boxes from my AB figures mortar teams which I added to some of the bases for interest. All of them were painted german field grey with grey helmets. I am trying to paint epaulettes and collars with some detail but find it quite tricky.
For these i used 25mm plywood bases which are nice and thin. Plenty of flock and tufts to finish them up! I will not need any more mortars for any German forces now, this will do it.
I have finished a few mortars teams. Two sets from AB fIgures and another trio from SHQ. All painted with field grey pants and peadot camo smocks. The AB teams come in identical groups of three so I mixed them around on the base for variety. You also get some spare rounds and boxes which I used on the bases. The SHQ group are also excellent figures and fit nicely with the AB soldiers. They are not quite as refined or delicate in detail but adding some variety is not a bad thing. I think I bought the hardwood bases from Warbases and they are a perfect size for this kind of weapons team. I now have 5 groups of mortar teams a mix of Zvezda and Pegasus plastic figures to finish. That will be enough mortars for any German force I ever play with!
I totally forgot that I had already built one of the cool vehicles from the Airfix Diorama Kit. This is the Tilly car I made a few weeks back. Awesome little car for your officers to cruise around in. It must be a new AIrfix mould as it comes in the same nice grey plastic that makes building a breeze. Loved it. The windshield and doors are all transparent plastic so need care when painting. It is a tiny little car but simple to build. I added an AB driver and left the doors open so you can actually see some insides.
Here is Colonel Mustard emptying his trusty pipe while Corporal Smith keeps a keen watch out for any hostiles on the horizon. Or maybe he is seeing if the next village has a good cafe where they can grab a baguette and a coffee.
I had a change of direction this week and built one of the Superquick card models i had lounging around. It makes a nice change to build something not out of plastic and also a switch to some scenery. These kits maybe old but their design really stands the test of time. I guess they are older than me and pre 1970 even!
This one is the Railway Hotel and seemed to me like it would fit into any European town. So now it is called the Hotel Du Canard Mort and will be sitting pretty in my Normandy towns and villages. When building these card kits I make sure I use some foam board bits to reinforce the whole thing rather than just rely on the card supports supplied. Makes the whole thing much straighter and stronger. Rather than use the flimsy base supplied I used 3mm MDF covered with paving slabs glued on individually. I also added some foil flashing superglued on as box gutters in suitable places. Its a good finishing touch to paint all the exposed cardboard edges with matching paint colour. This definitely makes a big difference. I added some weathering powders to rough it up a bit too as cardboard tends to look to clean. The street lights are little kits from Langley Models in the UK and added a nice detail I thought! Oh I also added black drain pipes using painted wire glued straight onto the card and also metal chimney pots from Langley Models again. These little additions take the card kits up a notch. Bit like MDF kits when you make that extra effort!
I had bought this small half track from S and S models to bulk up a purchase and make the postage from UK to Australia more palatable. Usually I try and stick to plastic model kits but will make exceptions in some circumstances! This was only a few parts with a resin hull and metal tracks and wheels to super glue on. So the whole construction did not take long. The paint job was fun. Dark yellow undercoat and some green camo stripes. The interior was bare so I added some spare crew men I had half painted. A couple of Plastic Soldier Company men and an Esci dude carrying one of those range finder thingies or he just a bought a poster from Amazon and it showed up in a tube. I also added some extra camo green foliage to brighten the whole place up. Lots of dusty powder and some basing tufties finished it off. It was fun to get to the painting part quickly as construction was so quick. S and S Models have a good range of stuff and also lots of more obscure things. I have a Bofors gun on the back of a Bedford truck which is in the lineup.
Happy New Year everyone!!! What can i say!?? I like armoured cars and I keep building them. This is a another Italeri Puma for my German forces and this is third and final one i will be making. It’s a super easy kit and takes minutes to build. i spent more time on the dark green camo and the paint job. The decals are really nice in this kit and it comes with a couple of options. I think I found this kit on eBay for a bargain which is why I bought another Puma….. that’s my excuse anyway!!! Not much else to tell you on this one. My only complaint would be the lack of opening hatches which means you cannot add a commander figure unless you are brave enough to surgically remove hatches. For this reason I still like the Hasegawa Puma kit a little better. Oh I did add an aerial to this guy plus a an aerial holding place too.
This little tank is dedicated to my friend John at Just Needs Varnish in the North Of England who very kindly sent me a Marder sprue from The Plastic Soldier Company a while ago and it has been sitting in my WIP pile for a number of months waiting for some love. So finally I made an effort before Christmas. Plastic Soldier Company kits are minimal parts, with good chunky details and very easy to put together. So I find them excellent additions for smaller models in 1/72 scale as there are no really fiddly bits. This Marder comes with one piece running gear and tracks which always speeds things up, no numerous wheels or tiny links to bother me. So an easy build and very hard to get wrong. I gave him a matt black primer, then a dark yellow basecoat. I painted dark green camouflage splashes and then resprayed from my tamiya spray can more dark yellow to blend the camo patches in. Tracks were painted black, then grey and then weathered using track rust powder and an 2B pencil for the metal bits. Decals I found in my spares pile and just added some random ones, I was keen to use the white 65, just because. I painted three Plastic Soldier Company crew men (you get a few crew with the kit – one who is unusable as he has comedic long arms) with fancy camo pattern pants and then added three infantry with greatcoats hitching a ride. These figures are plastic from Caesar Miniatures and are great for adding tank riders to a model. All I have left to do is some dirt and dusty powder and then some flock and tufts on the base. Hey Presto another groovy little tank buster for my German forces. Thanks John!!
I finished another very cool truck from the Polish company IBG Models. This time a towing vehicle for the British Bofors anti aircraft gun. I always enjoy building their kits and they do produce a wide variety of different models at very decent value. My only criticism is sometimes the parts have too many connection points and removal and clean up can be annoying. This one was also a bit tricky getting the cab put together as lining everything up is more a trial and error thing rather than having specific guide holes or slots. I added a driver as they do not supply one. You have to have someone in control! I used normal cement glue on the windows and windscreen which was not good enough and my windshield fell in after i had completed the kit. So i suggest using super glue instead…..
I wanted to do the mickey mouse camo scheme which is one of my favourites. I also added two relaxed looking passengers in the back, from AB figures as usual. This was a fun build and an excellent addition to my growing fleet of British vehicles.
So another German half track rolls off my painting (dining) table. This time from Special Armour, which is a company I have never built before. It’s a nice little half track mainly used for towing guns I think. Another eBay purchase that I found quite cheaply. The kit was quite a challenge with various small PE parts that raised my frustration levels a fair bit. I lost at least one door handle in the process. The worst thing though was the front engine and drivers compartment did not fit properly on to the chassis. So the front section was too high and there was a gap between the chassis and the engine, and the front suspension looks a bit high. I am not sure if it was my building that went wrong but I could not see how it was meant to be any different as the whole back section was correct and in line. Anyway I wont be buying one of these again. Luckily you cannot really see the problem.
I used the usual dunkelb dark yellow and did a fair amount of chipping with my sponge and added plenty of dirt and dust. The squad in the back and the driver and officer are all from AB figures. I tried out a new M44 camo scheme using an awesome set of paints I bought. Also threw in an old fuel barrel that I rusted up.
Airfix kits just have that nostalgic smell and something that takes me back 35 years, and I love them. They may not be as well detailed or the same size or fit together as well as any other more modern brands, but I don’t care. Even the cardboard box and the instructions have a deja vu type feeling for me. To complete my recent Churchill tank building spree here is the Crocodile flame thrower to join them.
The wheels are fiddly as you have to add them individually and get them straight. But apart from that this went together pretty easily. The tracks were toast in this particularly eBay purchase, but luckily I had a nice new set of flexible tracks from a Dragon kit left over. Very nice. The fuel tank towed at the back is particularly well put together and obviously a different, newer mould than the actual tank. The turret hatches are all moulded shut which is always a shame. You could do some tweaking and open them up, but I am always too worried about making a pig’s ear of it. I did add an aerial but that was about it.
In plastic I do not think there is another alternative for this vehicle. It is a bit smaller than my other 1/72 scale Churchills, but not too much so that it really makes much difference. In the last photo for comparison I have put an Esci, Plastic Soldier Company, Dragon and finally an Airfix Churchill together. You can see Mr Airfix is a touch shorter than the others. Now he really needs a flame to show the flame thrower in action. Ouchy hot.