Saturday, 27 June 2020

20mm WW1 Middle East British Camel Corps and dismounted cavalry (lockdown 18)

I wanted some dismounted British cavalry for WW1 in the Middle East, so out came the dismounted Imperial Camel Corps from Strelets.  While I was looking at them, their mounted mates managed to get some elbow room on the painting table.  Again, I followed the guidance in Mark Hargreaves book, modified for the smaller scale and my painting abilities.

First up is the mounted set, painted in khaki drill.  Shame the camels are generic, mainly Arab-style, rather than regulation British equipped and with next to no baggage.  Nice set, showing troops in relaxed walking or standing poses, without anyone appearing to be firing their weapon, just as it should be for troops used rather like mounted yeomanry.

The mounted commander.

Then these are nine dismounted troopers to represent dismounts for the Camel Corps.  These are painted in khaki drill to match the mounted chaps.  The guy at the back is a camel holder from the mounted set.

Then we have a unit of twelve dismounts in khaki serge.

And finally for now, a unit of twelve dismounted cavalrymen in khaki drill - suitable for dismounts for the lancers posted earlier.

These newer style Strelets figures are really nice compared to their earlier chunky style.  The animation of the skirmish poses, especially the prone figures and some of those advancing or running, is really quite pleasing.  One or two of the helmets appear to have part of the rim missing, which seems to be a casting flaw, but generally they were clean and relatively easy to paint.  I'm really impressed that they are starting to fill some of those larger gaps in the WW1 ranges, especially for the Middle East.  They also fan my interest in some of the what-if's around Allied intervention in Russia and the Soviet Union in the last year of the war and the immediate post-war period.  Now, how cool would WW1 Greek infantry be to game an Allied intervention force in Turkey?

As ever, thanks for looking.

Wednesday, 24 June 2020

20mm WW1 Middle East British artillery (lockdown 17)

While I ordered the infantry in solar topees to head swop for the British lancers, I also picked up a pack of Hat British artillery crew and 4.5" howitzers.  First up is an Emhar 18lbr with Hat crew figures head swopped with solar topees,

And a second one.  The crew that come with the Emhar kits don't really look the part, much better with the Hat crews.

The pair of 18lbrs.

One of the Hat 4.5" howitzers with Hat crew.  These were modified with helmet neck guards made from thin strips of kitchen roll and PVA glue.

And a second howitzer.

The pair of howitzers.

Then for spotter/command stands, I started out with the telescope and heliograph figures from the Strelets British Camel Corps set and added a Hat artillery crew commander with solar topee head swop.

And for a second spotter/command base, these are Emhar and Hat artillery crew commanders with kitchen roll neck guards and an Airfix WW1 British infantry signaller with solar topee head swop.

Although not truly artillery, this is a Roden FWD model B 3 ton truck to haul ammunition for the artillery.  The kit doesn't include crew, so I used one of the seated Hat artillery crew figures, trimmed a little to fit the cab and with a kitchen roll neck guard.  Not sure if these were used in the Middle East, but it looks good and will fit right in, especially in any what-if type games.

I used the painting guide for WW1 British troops in the Middle East by Mark Hargreaves for 28mm figures and modified his guide to suite the smaller scale and my painting abilities.  It made a nice change working with the blue-grey palette for the artillery crew and I enjoyed painting the disruptive camo pattern on the 4.5" howitzers.

I've got the Camel Corps figures to finish off and then will try something different while I decide what next for my WW1 collection.  As ever, thanks for looking.

Saturday, 20 June 2020

20mm WW2 Airfix British infantry (lockdown 16)

A bit of nostalgia in this post.  These are some of the original release "new" Airfix WW2 infantry from the mid-1970s, bought with pocket money.  At the time, these figures were such a jump in quality compared with the older Infantry Combat set, but by today's standards, not so great.

A complete platoon, three 10 man sections with Bren gunner, a 5 man command section and, on the left, a 2 man artillery spotter team, a Vickers MMG team (this one from Italeri), two 2 man 2" mortar teams and a lone spare infantryman.

Part of the command team.  I agree with PSR, the big issue is the skin tight clothing, which looks more like a boiler suit than battledress.

Vicker MMG team from Italeri, a lot more detail and a nice look to the folds of the uniform.

Spotter team, Airfix chap shielding his eyes and Italeri RTO.

2" mortar team, head swopped from Italeri commandos using 8th Army tin hat heads.  The 8th Army bodies have the cap comforter heads, more on those later.

Some of the sections in closer detail.

Fun to get these table-ready.  Nice to see them finally looking as they should - I'd have loved these as a gift when I was a kid, but alas now they are unlikely to be pressed into service unless I'm looking to field an entire company.

As ever, thanks for looking.