Saturday, 30 April 2016

Lebanon 1982 - 1/87th scale Syrian and Israeli latest MBT's

My AWI armies are having a break and I'm also having a break from them. After a while something bangs your head and you're back to something you left behind.

Lately I've been around Lebanon 82 again, something I never forgot as I was 14 years old when it happened and I still remember the TV news with tanks and air battles on the Bekaa Valley and Beirut.

The left Magach was born as a Salvat (Andrea Miniatures) M48 and the  one to the right had an even more difficult and unknown childhood starting its life in a Chinese toy shop. I already looked for more but nothing...

Plenty of pieces were added specially styrene for the Blazer armour.

 Here you can see them painted with the Vallejo Surface Primer IDF Sand. In 1982 the grey sand was still in use in the IDF as recently they seem to have changed to a greener and darker tone. 

The T-72K to the left is a Salvat so nothing special just say its a very nice replica of the real thing. The one to the right was more troublesome as it started its career in the armed forces as a Salvat T-80. A lot of Evergreen plasticard, cutting, sanding and moved parts were necessary to turn it into a T-72.

The final result is quite pleasing. I did the same to a number of Revell T-80's in 1/72nd scale that were turned into Iraqi T-72's. But that is for a series of articles on my Iraqi 3rd Saladin Armoured Division for the Gulf 1991.
The final result after painting and basing.
And another T-62 and T-55. No please, they are not drying their pants, no. The grossly exaggerated flags are made to represent command vehicles on K versions of the tanks which externaly only differ from the normal MBT in their 4 meter antennae. This lot of 4 Russian tanks was bought in a toy fair, nowadays one of the few places to get the nice Salvat model tanks in 1/87th scale.  

Saturday, 23 April 2016

Lebanon 1982 - 1/87th and 1/100th scale Israeli army

This is the Israeli army I managed to put together up to now. One of the Merkava was painted just a few days ago but most of this collection has already many years. 

The same is happening to my Syrian army were I also use both 1/87th and 1/100th scales. If I had started these armies recently I would have stuck only to one of these scales. 

But in the late 80's and 90's the variety we have nowadays didn't exist and I was mixing all 'small scale' (these two I'm referring) and keeping the 'big scales' (1/76th and 1/72nd ) together for other modern conflicts like Vietnam, Angola or the Gulf. 

Starting with some heavy stuff I managed to build up to two battalions of Merkava I. They are all collectable Salvat 1/87th scale from a nice collection we had in Portugal over 15 years ago. This collection was made by the Italian Andrea Miniatures company. I run to all paper shops I could find even in other towns. 

When the Salvat Merkava came out the collection was maybe in its middle and these guys were already hard to find opposite to the number 1 which normally floods the market. 

The M577 command vehicles and the M152 jeeps are Roco Minitanks. 

The Salvat/Andrea Miniatures were very nice models made in both metal and resin. The original painting was not very good but it was a useful primer and detail is good enough for washes and dry brush. 

Only the second M60 Magach to the left is Roco, all others are Chinese copies I found don't remember where. As the Magach was covered with Blazer armour most of the inacuracies are hidden with plasticard pieces. The top right M60 is the only Salvat model I could place my hands on with added plasticard grading it to Magach. 

This is the final result of the Chinese copies.  The commander is a resin copy from the set of US vehicle commanders. 

The Centurion Sho't are also Salvat covered with Evergreen Blazer armour. 

The M109 are old 1/100th scale Eko while the Lance recharger, the truck and the M107 are 1/87th scale Roco. The crew for the M107 is 1/100th scale Peter Pig. 

I built a set of two frontal stowage equipment for the M109 and cast a few copies in resin enough for an artillery battalion. 

The Vulcan to the right is a CMSC model. Years later CMSC was closed and I scratchbuilt the one to the left on a Roco M113. The figure is a soft plastic Atlantic 1/87 taken from their small naval and  landing craft box. 

The Israeli mechanised infantry is made from 1/87th Atlantic infantry with loads of conversions as charged arms and added backpacks, antennae, Dragon missiles and RPG's from Esci ( yes, different scale but only you know). The M113 are Roco and the M125 mortar versions are Eko. 

The Roco M113 have added extensive stowage all over, rear fuel drums, MG's and an Evergreen exhaust pipe to the right side. 

The RPG's conversions. Parts from Atlantic and Esci and arms from GreenStuff. 

And the Dragon conversions (Roco Dragons and Atlantic bodies). 

This other mechanised infantry group is all 1/100th scale metal mostly Peter Pig which makes some very nice Israeli infantry and vehicles. I base the 1/00th scale vehicles in the same base as the 1/87th if, as it is the case of M113, I use both scales to the same vehicle.

The Chaparral is Roco as well as the other M113. This group is the beginning of a divisional command and/or other divisional assets. 

Still to be found/done: 
- 2 Merkava (1/87th scale) for the command of those tank battalions. 
- 1 M60 Magach (1/87th scale) for the command of its tank battalion.
- 2 M48 Magach half made and 5 new ones I have to find somewhere.
- 3 Sho't (1/87th scale) to finish the battalion. 
- at least 2 other Vulcan and one Chaparral. 
- 2 M109 (1/100th scale) on the way from Zvezda. 
- 3 M577 and 3 M125 in 1/100th scale to complete the vehicles for the last 3 infantry battalions.
- enough figures for 2 infantry battalions. 
- some helicopters, Defender and Cobra  in 1/100th or 1/87th scale.
- plenty of planes in 1/100th scale, Mig, Phantom, etc...

Let's begin the work and may the Force be with me. If the Force isn't, I'll return to the AWI...

Saturday, 16 April 2016

Iraqi P-6 Torpedo boat, 1/72nd scale, Kuwait 1991

    After entering to the Red Storm Rising Fb page the usual thing happen and we started showing each other our toys like grown up kids we all are. 

The Soviet made P-6 torpedo boat of Saddam's navy participated in the ill-fated operation around the Saudi Arabian city of Khafji, besides many actions in the previous Iran-Iraq war.

The model started from the hull of the Tamiya 1/72nd Japanese modern Torpedo boat. When I first bought it I think I made the same mistake as many: no, this is no WWII Torpedo boat...

Well, the mistake was made. But Later while reading about Khafji I found some utility for the model. I scratch-built all details usig only the torpedoes from the original kit and its nice crew figures to produce a sort of P-6.


Looking at real pictures of the boat the final result is not bad. In fact any flat deck hull of a PT shaped boat can be used if you want to produce a post-WWII Soviet torpedo boat. 

American war of Independence - Will Mcnally's rules - 3rd Pennsylvania Brigade, Brandywine 1777

Last unit for Stirling's Division, the 3rd Penn. Bgde of General Thomas Conway.

Once again I had to beef up the numbers with some coated infantry as my numbers of uniformed AWI infantry is dwindling day by day. Coats in September are not very logical but they give a certain rag-tag looks to American infantry of 1777. 

The flags came from a nice page of generical flags I found in the net as Pennsylvania flags are rare to find. But if you look for AWI flags you will find plenty more. These are just cool as they are conjectural.

Monday, 11 April 2016

American War of Independence - Will McNally's rules - 42nd Royal Highlanders Regiment of Foot, Brandywine 1777

First of all another big compliment to the big winner of the last poll, that is the mighty JMM from Brigada Tripeira who erased from the map all competition with his wisdom and scientific knowledge beneffiting also from the fact that he was the only one who entered this challenge.
The 42nd Highlanders picked my imagination since the TV series from the 80ies  'George Washington'. The 42nd fought in the major engagements of the AWI and distinguished itself in most of them. At Brandywine they were kept in reserve and only the flank companies fought and suffered a few casualties.
The figures are all Revell 7YW Austrian, including the officer that comes from the artillery box. Only the Piper is half Napoleonic ESCI with legs from another ESCI French figure.
I chose these Austrians because they have a Mitre cap tall enough to be modelled, each figure has a waist cartridge box like the Highlanders did and all wear trousers as they abandoned the kilt quickly for service in America.
The Mitre caps were heated with a lighter and squashed until the shape of the Scotish cap was obtained. The black feather in a small piece of GreenStuff.
The back part of the coat was shortened and with all these transformations they became quite close to the original, which by the way doesn't exist for sale in plastic.

Sunday, 10 April 2016

American War of Independence - Will McNally's rules - New Jersey brigade


These 7 stands represent the New Jersey brigade of Col. Matthias Ogden from Stirling Division during the Brandywine battle. 
The uniforms are for the 3rd New Jersey, the famous 'New Jersey Blues' but represent the entire brigade.

Here you can see the round hats I showed you two posts ago already painted. 

The shouting figure to the left has a different head and the ones sporting the hunting shirt have the new round hats.  The old Airfix officer still fits nicely in the middle of more recent figures. 
Next we ( I mean me and Google blogger) will unveil the secret regarding the misterious figures from last post. JMM already got there and inspite of the usual lousy photograph he is the big winner of this great contest!
Congratulations JMM! Your name is in the history of the Hobby!!!


Tuesday, 5 April 2016

American War of Independence - Will McNally's rules - One secret unveiled and another to come, Brandywine 1777

And here they are. After filling the comment box with hundreds of messages, which I could not read all,  none of you was right.
The many thousands who didn't have the courage for expressing themselves (for fear of being mistaken, l'm sure) might be right, but no one will ever know.

The Queen's  Rangers (this was the right answer...) were a loyalist unit who became famous in many actions of the AWI, including Brandywine were they suffered heavy casualties on the Chad's ford sector. 

They are converted grenadier figures from the Revell Austrian infantry.

Only the coat tails were erased with a X-Acto so they can sport the short coat that made them famous and also the cloth bag hanging from  the helmet was also taken out.

And now a new challenge: can any one guess what is coming?

Please don't answer all at the same time, keep calm and everybody will have his chance.
The usual fantastic prizes are available!
Good luck!!

Sunday, 3 April 2016

American War of Independence - Will McNally's rules - Latest stuff forBrandywine 1777

Managed to finish another American brigade. Fortunately they were quite small around 1777, with regiments from 60 to 400 men. So these 5 stands represent the entire 1st Maryland Brigade of Sullivan's Division.

With my big numbers of tricorne infantry from the beginning of this project reduced to a few dozens I had to use the Revell American boxes more efectively. The problem is that the headgear of these miniatures is composed of some very specific ones that can only be used in some units and not representative of the vast majority of the Continental army.
This was my oportunity to use round hats, the most common headgear along the tricorne in the AWI... that don't exist in plastic other than for ACW and mine are all at usage. So I had to come with a way to produce round hats:
-I used a hole punch on a plastic sheet so the figures kept on being 100% plastic.
- Then I pierced the center of that circle with an X-Acto knife. Looks tricky but then you get used to it.
- Finally I trimmed the head of the victim a little bit if necessary so the roundel can fit.
- Glued it and that's all.
Then I got excited (in modellistic terms, that is) and made the same to many figures. Specially I used heads which are bold, or with hoods or without any headgear.

So a new division is about to show and that will be "Lord" Stirling's division with a total of 13 stands.

And now a bit of a challenge with the usual prize (that is the pleasure of guessing and writing it to this fantastic blog that rocks the wargaming and modelling world each few days). 
Any guesses to which famous unit from the AWI is this one...
 ...made out of Revell Austrian Grenadiers?
... cutdown jackets... rifles...
Ok, it fought on the British side.
Sorry, that's all the help you will get.
So run to your source books and web and risk yourselves to the prize described above.
Good Luck!!!