Sunday, 30 May 2021

20mm WW2 German Horch staff car

A Readytoroll Horch staff car for a late war battlegroup HQ.  What is now my usual mix of Vallejo Middlestone and Iraqi sand (2:1 to 3:1) with irregular discontinuous stripes of WW2 German field grey mixed with refractive green.  Wheels black grey, windows and screen are indigo, overpainted sky blue with white squiggles for reflections.  Tilt is dark sand.  Whole thing is washed in Agrax Earthshade and dry brushed Iraqi sand to make edges pop.

Decals - number plates only - are from Skytrex.

A one piece resin casting with no obvious bubbles or missing detail.  Hard to beat for the price.  I'm working on some assorted German vehicles, so hope to have more to show soon, this chap, along with some motor-cycle recce and a Pak 38 and tow, should be appearing as a battlegroup HQ for a Rapid-Fire force soon - just the tow vehicle to wrap up.

Thanks for looking.

Friday, 28 May 2021

Post-lockdown wargames resume

Last night I managed to roll some dice in a game for the first time since the WMMS show in Wolverhampton in March 2020.  Sadly, the old venue for the Deeside Defenders club is being demolished and, despite assurances from the Wings Club that we were still wanted they offered another group Thursday evenings, leaving us less than half the space previously available and only on a Wednesday.  We decided to explore alternative venues, one group heading off to Mold on a Thursday and the other heading to Elton the same day.  The group in Mold have kept the Deeside Defenders title, while the group in Elton are now Beacon Games Club, meeting at the Elton Community Centre (bar open 6-11pm, gaming from 7pm at the moment).

Will, Richard and I played a game of Rapid-Fire 2nd edition using the scenario of Steve Shann published in the latest Wargames Soldiers and Strategy.  This pits a brigade of Will's Soviet infantry with supports and 6 SU-76s against an initial force of two reduced strength battalions of German infantry, with a reserve force including 2 Tiger IIs and a battalion of infantry arriving on an average dice plus 6 (we rolled for 9) turns into the game.  Russians came on from the right table edge in the photo below, one battalion of Germans deployed along the hard cover of the railway embankment, the other in or within 6 inches of the village.  Russians from Will's collection, Germans from mine - all recent additions during lockdown so suffering the curse of new units in spectacular style.

I think Richard and I should have used some movement to get our troops out of the pre-planned artillery bombardment zone.  It's tempting to hunker down in the hard cover of the railway and buildings, but Will's heavy artillery support was quite devastating when it hit.  I'm tempted to think the troops in the village should have deployed as close to the rail lines as possible to start shooting before the Russian artillery whittled them down, especially using the PAK 40 to take out some of the SU-76's.  Alternatively, the German forces could have pulled back from the rail line and village into woods and another village at the rear of the table to wait out the bombardment and arrival of the German reinforcements.  Another play through might help test the alternatives.

However, in the end, both German battalions took heavy casualties and were routed, leaving the Russians two turns in which to deploy along the rail embankment and push their SU-76's into the village or hull down behind the railway.  The Tiger IIs came on into a line of sight slugging match.

In the first round of fire, the SU-76's managed a solid hit and a lucky conversion of that into a Tiger kill, stopping the lead Tiger dead.  The following Tiger rolled a 1 to hit in reply, no effect.

The village firmly in Soviet hands - the menacing hulk of the Tiger just adding a minor road block.

The Soviet horde making good use of the railway line for cover.

Anyway, it was great to meet up with loads of old friends and get some gaming in.  The new venue seems to be all we could have asked for and perhaps a bit more, so I hope it continues to grow.  Looking forward to next week already.

Thanks for looking.

Friday, 21 May 2021

20mm Early War German vehicles

Will and I shared postage on a shipment of First to Fight vehicles, quite a while ago now.  Unlike Will's, most of mine sat in a box until I found myself looking for kits to build over the Christmas holidays.  Since then, I've been trying to work my way through them.

Here is a Zvezda Pak 36, Krupp Protz 69 tow vehicle, SdKfz 247 command/recce vehicle and an SdKfz 222 armoured car.

The SdKfz 222 - as with all vehicles, painted in Vallejo grey violet, with a Mig panzer grey filter and washed in Agrax Earthshade, with a very light dry brush in Iraqi sand. 

The SdKfz 247 with standing commander in early panzerwaffe uniform.

The Krupp Protze 69 artillery tow vehicle.

And with the Pak 36.

The finish is a little darker than I wanted, but overall looks suitably menacing.

Thanks for looking.

Friday, 14 May 2021

Elefant/Ferdinand heavy tank destroyers

I finished the second Elefant/Ferdinand from the Christmas build.  I did this version in a scheme more common in Italy, with a base colour of Middlestone with Iraqi sand and a web overlay of German field grey with a little refractive green, all washed in Agrax Earthshade and dry brushed Iraqi sand.

Compare with the version more typical of use in Russia, although both will be used together if needed with the open hatched version acting as commander.

I thought I'd try a couple of black and white images as well.

As ever, thanks for looking.

Friday, 7 May 2021

20mm WW2 beute French field gun.

 All are from Raventhorpe, a captured 75mm ex-French field gun - as shown in the Rapid-fire D-day supplement, with three German artillery crew, an officer in field cap and a more senior officer in fur trimmed coat.

Field gun with 4 crew.

Officer in field cap.

Artillery crewmen.

Officer in fur trimmed coat.

I might have to give him a Knight's Cross ribbon to provide a splash of colour and better fit his rank.

Nice figures, probably best used in an open emplacement firing direct onto the D-day landing beaches as per the R-F D-day supplement.

Thanks for looking.

Saturday, 1 May 2021

20mm Late war German infantry - Platoon20

I bought these as a job lot from Ian at the Defenders club a couple of years back.  I spruced up the existing paint job so they fit in with the rest of my troops.  As is the norm for Battlegroup platoons, these guys are organised with a six man command team at the front, followed by three 3 man MG34 teams and three 5 man rifle sections.  I have no idea off the original manufacturer, so if anyone recognises them, I'd love to know if they are still available (as StevenC points out below, they are Platoon20 figures, currently available through East Riding Miniatures).

CO and 2IC.

Riflemen - using a spare Revell rifleman to make up the required number (front right).

MG 34 teams.

Optional extras for Battlegroup or core supports for Rapid-fire.  Two sustained fire tripod MG 34s and an 81mm mortar team.

These guys seem to be from the same range as the metal figures.

These guys are from the Armourfast German MG set.

These guys are from the Armourfast Mortar set.

Both Armourfast teams were gifts from Ian, repainted to match better with my other forces.

Thanks for looking.