Nearly finished all my British troops for Normandy, just finishing up some support weapons and then should be able to field a battalion or full company depending what system I use. This is AB figures British vickers MG teams, you get two MGs and gunners plus three loaders and a sighting seated figure. I already used the sighting figure some other time. So i had a spare MG and gunner from another bunch of metal figures no idea who. This made up three MG teams. Not much to say about AB figures apart from they are the best! Painted in my usual British uniform plus tiny arm decals from Company B. Based on hardwood bases covered in clay and sand. Lots of tufts and grass finishing them off. I have four infantry mortar teams to go and that is it for the British! Finally!
A quick post of a prone British sniper from AB figures. He has some scrim camo covering his helmet and rifle and has found an excellent firing position in some shrubby vegetation. Mounted on 2mm wooden base I added plenty of cover for him to wait patiently in! Have some more AB machine gunners nearly done just taking me ages to finish anything………
My second build from Vespid, the first one being the most excellent A34 Comet, and another cracking little kit. Not the cheapest (i think $25 ish), but well worth the dollars. Lots of cool detail, PE parts, options for different versions, nice decals, nothing to really fault it. These newer kits just go together easily. I left the hatches open (on the Trumpeter and Zvezda kits you cannot), and added two excellent AB tank commanders. Also added my own plastic aerial.
Painting I sort of copied the box art with a brown and dark green splotchy camo over usual dark yellow. Some brown washes and plenty of european earth powder. I also added some muddy texture under the hull above the tracks. Tracks were done quite rusty with highlights using a pencil for the metallic effect.
Overall lots of fun and well recommended. Now I have four finished Jagdpanthers that is more than enough …… he said never………
I have built one of these Jagdpanthers from Trumpeter before, but somehow discovered another kit in my ginormous stash. Funny that. Who knows what lurks at the bottom of all my plastic containers filled with kits. It was a nice easy build for the second time as these Trumpeter kits are pretty quick to put together. One piece rubber tracks superglue well and on this model I added the side skirts for something different. I think all the hatches are moulded shut so unless you want to do surgery no commanders will be popping their scones out of the hull. I added an aerial as usual for essential communications with troop leader. Not that Jadgpanthers were very common in Normandy it’s a pretty cool tank to add to my forces. I have another one to go (a Vespid kit) but that will be more than enough. To make this one a bit different I added a squad of SHQ tank riders to the back hitching a ride. Great group of figures in nice poses. I painted them with a German Field Grey from a new paint set I bought. Good thing about Field Grey uniforms as they cover a heap of different shades, and you cannot really get it wrong. Also popped a panzerfaust onto the back just in case of emergencies. Felt like some extra camo foliage on the 88mm gun which was just bits of lichen and bandage sprinkled with flock and leaves. He will be able to sneak around in the bocage now far more stealthily.
I finally finished up the second IBG bren carrier i had lying around in the never decreasing pile of kits. I was building up the courage to attempt the smallest link and length tracks in the universe, for the second time. I really like IBG kits, they are always really nice to build. Clear instructions, pieces fit easily together and lots of detail. They give you loads of decal options too which is great for building up a collection of spares. My only gripes are the super delicate bren guns supplied – I managed to destroy two of them by breathing on them. They were replaced with two metal ones I had which are much sturdier. The front bren I cut in half and added last after I had added the crew as it had to fit through the firing window. The individual tracks are always going to be tricky and not for anyone with especially big hands or bad eyes. I tried a technique of using tape to keep the little links together so i could glue them and then bend them into the right shape to fit around the sprocket wheels. This sort of worked. IBG do provide a template to build the tracks around but I could not make that work very well either. So there is no way round it, it is a fiddly exercise. My conclusion was to be patient and glue two little links together at a time.
I added some excellent AB figures crew who fitted very nicely, except for the driver who needed some help ie surgery on his lower extremities so he would fit nicely. Also two aerials were added from washing up brush bristles. I had some stowage from Value Gear and also a rusty bucket from somewhere. It was nice to get my tiny British insignia decals out for the crew if you look closely at their left shoulders. I would still recommend the Plastic Soldier Company carriers as an alternative, especially if you would like to avoid the immensely fiddly tracks………
I picked up a couple of these excellent ICM armoured car kits. It ended up being an accidental double up with my over zealous shopping forgetting what I had in various shopping carts. But this was a Bob Ross happy little accident type thing. The first ever kit I have built from ICM and what a nice one it was. Armoured cars are my favourite and this was a fun build. It was a nice easy kit with plenty of detail. I particularly like the PE roof hatch, which although tricky to fold comes out very nicely and so much more realistic than a solid plastic version. I added a wire aerial for strength and drilled a hole for that. Also some extra stowage including bed rolls and a bucket. My paint job was just a brown camo scheme on dark yellow with a brown wash. Plenty of dirt and dust as usual and an MDF base to finish him off. I have been slightly distracted lately with a side project which will post some photos next time!
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!
Zvezda make a heap of small scale kits including groups of troops and lots of armour and guns. They are super good value and perfect kits for wargamers. I built two of their German 75mm infantry guns in a matter of minutes as they come in minimal parts but do not sacrifice too much detail. It’s a soft grey plastic that glues nicely. There is a base supplied but I abandon those as prefer to do my own thing. Each gun comes with two crew figures, a loader and a gunner. I am sure the minimum crew for one of these would be more like four, so I pinched a couple of other crew men and just some kneeling troopers to bulk up my crew. The build was really easy and painting was just a coat of dark yellow and a brown wash. The crew took me a lot longer in various shades of field grey. I also added a box or two to the base for some added interest. I have a Zvezda Pak-40 sitting on the bench which will have some excellent AB crew painted up next.
I have built some Plastic Soldier Company German trucks recently, which are now labouring in the work in progress queue to be finished. The kits come three in a box with Opel Blitz, Mercedes or Maultier options. This leaves you with various spare cabs and other bits. Not quite enough to make a full extra truck but plenty of scraps to make some more wrecks to scatter around the place or use as wrecks when things actually do get blown up. I like the idea of having enough wrecked vehicle models to replace working ones with their destroyed counterparts. Anyway this is my Frankenstein’s truck made up from various bits and pieces and mounted onto a rubble strewn base of MDF. I used some sponge for chipping effects and lots of dirt and dust. I think some smokey effects with black cotton wool might also add to the flavour.