Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Soviet BTR-60PB Motor Rifle Battalion

Just completed the first of the BTR-60PB batallions for the mid-1980s BTR-60 Motor Rifle Regiment that I'm putting together.  In the vertical view, at the top are three infantry companies of three platoons (stands) each, each stand carried in a BTR-60PB (H&R SM16).  At the front right is the HQ stand with a BTR-60PA command (H&R SM77) and a BRDM-2 (H&R SM22).  Next to the HQ is an SA-7 Grail SAM stand carried in a BTR-60PB.  In the centre is a 120mm mortar with Gaz 66 truck tow (H&R SM51).  To the left are two alternative ATGM stands, an AT-3 Sagger stand and an AT-4 Spigot stand, either carried in a BTR-60PB.


The HQ stand (right) and SA-7 Grail team in BTR-60PB (part of the support company).
 Also from the support company, a 120mm mortar and Gaz 66 truck tow.

Also from the support company an AT-3 Sagger and AT-4 Spigot stand, carried in a BTR-60PB.  The alternative ATGM stands represent historically earlier and later versions or could be used to represent CAT I and CAT II or III readiness units.
 Three platoon (stand) BTR-60PB company.
 All three companies and a company of BTR-60PB.
 Three platoon infantry company and BTR-60PB transport.

Just got to do two more of these and finish off the regimental supports to complete the Motor Rifle Regiment.

All were painted in my usual way, base coat white acrylic gesso; vehicles - dilute wash in Vallejo medium olive green cammo (formerly Russian Green), wheels in Vallejo black grey, exhaust picked out in Vallejo flat brown, washed in diluted Army Painter dark shade ink; infantry - Vallejo green brown wash, medium olive green cammo helmets, packs and equipment, Tamiya NATO black weapons, flat flesh, washed in dilute Army Painter soft tone ink.  All are varnished in Wilkinsons matt acrylic varnish.

For some variation, I'm thinking of substituting MT-LBs for the BTR-60s to represent at least two Motor Rifle Divisions that were allocated to Norway - some opposition for my USMC forces.  Apparently the MT-LB has a lower track pressure and was this more mobile than the BTR-60s and BMP-1s in regular units and so were more mobile on ice and snow.

As ever, thanks for looking.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

More Arctic Strike aircraft?

Been down in that London most of this week, just by Westminster Abbey, nice to visit but glad to be home!  I managed to fit a game in last Saturday at the Defenders games weekend, a refight of Lutzen, 1813, organised by Will (Russian), with Ian (French) and me (Prussian), using Black Powder rules.  Wills collection is mainly 20mm plastic figures, and they looked great on the table, especially towards the end of the game when the table was swarming with French.  Great fun, even if the Prussians enjoyed a truely terrible run of the dice, especially for orders and morale.  There's a link to Wills blog with photos below.

I've finished a couple more aircraft from Scotia for Arctic Strike next month.

A Shackelton Mk2 AEW (Scotia CABM06).

I painted this one up in RAF 8 Squadron colours, based at Lossiemouth as being most suitable to provide AEW support over northern Norway.  This one is based on the Dougal aircraft (apparently they were all named after Magic Roundabout or The Herbs characters) from Google images.  The model itslef comes in three parts with the wings seperate from the fuselage.  The wings are very heavy and take some glueing, so I'd recommend drilling out holes and using wire pegs to fit them securely.  White gesso undercoat, Vallejo Azure Blue and Tamiya NATO Black.  Decals from Dom's Decals.

 The U2 spyplane (Scotia CAUM16).

A single piece casting, undercoated in white gesso and overpainted in Tamiya NATO black.  Operating out of Wiesbaden airforce base, this aircraft would be monitoring Soviet land forces progress down the spine of Norway, the progress of Soviet amphibious forces and the disposition of the Soviet fleet in the Norwegian Sea and the vicinity of Murmansk.  No markings to reflect its role as a spy plane during the cold war.

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Turning to the Dark Side?

Taking the advice of various wartime (WW2) entreaties to "Know Your Enemy!", I've been slowly creating a Warsaw Pact Motor Rifle Regiment, based on T-55s and BTR-60s, plus varied support vehicles.  Longer term, this will provide me with an opponent for the USMC forces, for some solo play, and the flexibility to take on either side in any club games.  I've used T-55s so I can represent Soviet CAT II or Warsaw Pact units (I was thinking East German or Czech) - if I go the East German route I can always upgrade the tank battalions if I want to field units for the late 80s.

This is as far as I've got, although there is a veritable mountain of unpainted lead waiting for me to get the time.

Skytrex PTS-M (M773) heavy amphibian.

 H&R ASU-85 (SM27).
 BRDM-2 and Spandrel (AT-5) by H&R (SM25).
 H&R SA-8 Gecko (SM41).

H&R ZSU23-4 Shilka (SM37).

 H&R SA-6 Gainful (SM40).
 H&R SA-9 Gaskin on BRDM-2 (SM42).
 H&R SA-13 Gopher on MT-LB (SM43) - unfortunately I managed to mount the support for the missile array the wrong way around so the Snap SHot ranging radar is pointing backwards - ah well, that's another one to order next time.
 H&R BRDM-2 recce (SM 22).
 H&R PT-76 light amphibious tank (SM08).
 T55 HQ stand by H&R (SM06).
 Two tank battalions from Motor Rifle Regiments on the workbench.  I plan to upgrade one of them from three companies to five, to form the Independent tank battalion of a Motor Rifle Division. 

All are base coated in white acrylic gesso, washed in dilute Vallejo Cammo Olive Green (formerly Russian Green).  Tracks are picked out in black, wheels in black grey, exhausts in flat brown.  All are washed in Army Painter dark tone ink, heavily diluted with thinners, then varnished with Wilkinsons Matt Acrylic varnish.  Basin is on ERM 2mm laser cut mdf, textured with Vallejo desert basing medium and washed with flat earth, then partly covered with spring meadow flock.

As ever, thanks for looking.

BAOR Chieftains - early 1980's

For a bit of light relief from my ongoing USMC project, I painted and based up four Scotia Chieftain tanks (BM0001).  I painted them using a NATO two colour pattern to resemble those I had seen on a visit to Munster back in 1980.  They are base coated in white acrylic gesso, then washed in a thinned down Tamiya NATO green with some random splodges of Tamiya NATO black.  The gun barreIs are highlighted with Vallejo green grey to indicate what appear to be canvas wrappings on Google images.  I washed the models with very dilute Army Painter dark tone ink and varnished them with Wilkinsons matt acrylic varnish.

The basing is ERM laser cut MDF 40x20mm bases, textured with Vallejo desert base medium, washed with Vallejo flat earth.  Spring meadow flock was applied with PVA glue.  They are based for Cold War Commander, with three regular tank stands and a larger HQ command stand.

The three tank stands plus the HQ.
  The HQ stand in close up.
 The individual platoons.

Thanks for looking.

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

USMC late additions

Almost forgot these!

FAC, on the ground rather than lording it in a Bronco - for when those pesky Migs get air superiority!
 FAO/NGO stands, again on the ground rather than scooting about in UH-1s - again for when the Migs are out to play in force!
 Four "Rigid Raiders", by Scotia (STS14), but why-oh-why did I order them empty when I could have had a crew and passengers - ah well, maybe next time.  Anyway, these are ready for those stealthy insertions of Special Forces/Recce units for when helos just won't do it!

USMC almost done

Electronic warfare recce stands.  A Scotia LAV-C (UM0008) and a Hummer Command vehicle (UM0024) both with erected microwave mast aerials - think temporary mobile phone masts.  Masts and aerials on Hummer are copper wire drilled and glued in place.

Four batteries of 155mm M198s and M35 tows - actually Scotia British FH-70s (BM0013) and Heroics and Ros M35s (USM40) forming one battalion of the 10th Marine Artillery Regiment.

Front - 4 M109s (Heroics and Ros USM24), rear - 2 M109s and 2 M110s (Heroics and Ros USM21), each forming a battallion of SP artillery from 10th Marine Artillery Regiment.

A Scotia M60A1 with dozer blade (UM0045).
 Scotia LAV-C HQ stand
 Three marine infantry HQ stands with Bv206 transports

 Marine infantry regimental CO stand - one of those tiny figures should represent me in the upcoming weekend game - must remember to take care of this stand.

More aircraft for Arctic Strike

Fighter cover courtesy of a US Navy Carrier Wing.  Two F-14 Tomcats, "Top Gun" (H&R USMA401).

Marine attack aircraft, three A-7 Corsairs (H&R USMA205).
 Grey low viz cammo colours are a bit subdued, I much prefer the high viz colours of the 70's.  The mould for this model isn't anywhere near as good as some, lots of pitting and cavities under the wings.

Recent developments in 1985, three F-18 Hornets (H&R USMA413).
 As with the Corsairs, very subdued colours, but a nice model, still quite crisp.

US Air Force heavy lift helos, a pair of CH-47s (H&R USMA505).

Finally, three Royal Navy Sea King helicopters (H&R UKMA501) in the 1970's FAA colours of dark sea blue and white.  All ready for a bit of sonar dipping, AEW, troop insertion, etc.

 Is that Prince Andrew waving from the co-pilots seat - must be on Exocet deception duties?