7 October 2012

What is an army without opposition ?

Having spent some time on refurbishing my Wehrmacht and expanding its capabilities, it was only fair to do the same for my Allied armies. The Russians in particular were under strength  with regards to tanks and artillery.

This was soon rectified by adding a couple of T34/76s and IS 2s, a refurbished M40 155mm SP Howitzer

The Artillery received a couple of towed howitzers, 17 and 14 pounder guns, complete with tractors and limbers.Softskinned vehicles for support and HQ use.

A GMC truck with a .50 cal mounted, and two M3s with the same for troop transports

M3s with 75mm antitank guns act as tank destroyers. The first troops to receive a lick of paint were the Late War European Front Brits. The Yankees and Russkis are still languising without base coats. Have at least been removed off the sprues. A box full of ANZACs and Gurkas have also been obtained via Trademe, as well as some 8th Army Africa/Italy Commonwealth troops.

IS 2s (Josef (Iosef) Stalin), Sherman Jumbos and SP Howitzer

M3 Half track Troop Carriers and Tank Destroyers

Late war Sherman Fireflies and Churchill VI

"Easy-Eight" Sherman and GMC truck toting .50 cal MG

More Shermans


Alongside the IS2s to show relative size

Morris Gun Tractors with 17lb and 14lb Guns, Howitzers, German Summer Army in background

The Boys of Summer

Parallel Development:
The Boys of Summer are back!

I have been revisiting and expanding my original summer themed Western Front Wehrmacht Heer (middle to late war) alongside developing my new Autumn themed German Army.

This is the Army that I first started gaming with back in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Somehow they survived my student days, moves to Cape Town from Johannesburg, and back; and then managed to follow me to New Zealand, to be rediscovered decades later ! The joys of gaming with them have not diminished any.

 A Unit of 4 PzKfw VI Tiger E's, a single PzKfw IV, a couple of PzKfw IIIs, a Jagdpanzer IV and a Jagdtiger (Jagdpanzer VI), the Pumas are being refurbished as we speak.

Artillery support is provided by two 88s drawn by SdKfz 7s, a couple of 20 mm anti-aircraft guns, and a quad vierling, towed by soft-skinned vehicles, and a single Pak 40 75 mm gun, towed by a looted British vehicle. There is a Pak 38 somewhere on my bench, but it requires a vehicle to tow it. A Kettenrad or Horch may just do the trick. As you may notice there is also a lone Flak 88 languishing without something to tow it.

Meanwhile my Autumn artillery is progressing nicely, I think:

Light Field Howitzers LeFH 18s 

Anti-tank Pak 40s

Swap Day Success

We had a great Swap Day at the Kapiti Wargames Club today.

A great forum for wargamers to interact, sell and swap. Most of us found a treasure or two, and sold some of our unwanted gaming bits. My World Eater Army went to a good home, as did my dismembered Demon Prince and Raptors. Found a lovely stash of Fantasy Bits, some classic Chaos Warrior pieces, and a SdKfz 234/2 that I plan to convert to a SdKFz  263 Command 8-Rad, and a load of terrain material (deep green coloured lichen, trees and other basing material). Thanks to everyone that helped make the day a success!

2 October 2012

German Autumn Army taking shape

My WWII German Army is starting to come together nicely. My photography is lacking though... the macro lens does not seem to do the figures justice. I suppose 20mm figures are not meant to be seen up close, and neither is my paintwork!

Anyhow, here we have my Autumn themed 1942-43 WWII Falschirmjäger, Waffen SS and Krad Zug, along with the Recce Platoon, and a PzKfw VI Tiger E and Nashorn thrown in for good measure. A train has just arrived, disgorging PzKfw IVs and VIs, still in the 1942 Grey and Green "Taubendreck" camouflage; before the order was issued to use Dunkelgelb (Dark yellow as base colour), the colour used for most of the rest of the war.I chose this scheme as it can also be used for a Russian East front Summer scheme or a desert scheme, making the armour in particular more useful and true to the period of the war.

The figures are Old Airfix, New Revell and Italeri figures. Artillery (not shown in this post), Svezda and Airfix.

I still need to do a lot of work on them, shading and highlights, weathering on the tanks, etc, but I recon they're ready to take on some upstart Allied models!

(Click on images for a larger view)

Falschirmjäger (Parachutists) guarding the train while the newly arrived armour is off-loaded

The recce unit consisting of SdKfz 222s and command 223, a 250/9 and 37mm anti-aircraft cover move out across a field of crops

While Waffen SS detachment move forward through 
the thick carpet of fallen leaves

Like their Falschirmjäger brothers in arms, their camouflaged uniforms afford them extra protection from detection:

Not so their less fortunate Heer (Regular Army) comrades, who wear the standard Field Grey (Feld Grau) uniform of the day, making them conspicuous in the deciduous forest.

The motorcycle (Krad) zug moves out on their Zundapp Motorcycles,
 some with side-cars mounting MG 34 machine guns.
They also avail of camouflaged uniforms, that identify them as SS. 
They are wearing a different style camo uniform from the infantry unit.

They pass a Falschirmjäger command HQ group, who have dismounted from their Kubelowagens to relay orders to a stationary Tiger tank, covering the advance of the Krad unit

The Kampfgruppe swells in numbers as more armour arrives. A self-propelled Elefant and a PzKfw IV lumber past the Tiger on their way forward

A unit of 4 Tiger E's have been off-loaded, while 2 PzKfw IVs await their turn. 
These tanks have arrived from the Western Front, where there was little need for camouflage up to now. 
The grey tanks have hurriedly been camouflaged with dark olive green paint, in a scheme known as Taubendreck (Pigeon droppings); as scheme well suited for the pine and plantan forests of Western Europe, but not the steppe grassland of Russia.
 This scheme will not last for long, as the train also contains a consignment of the yellow ochre paint that the crews will likely soon  put to good use.