Friday, 23 June 2017

Rapid Fire! Russian Contemporary Wars in 1/72nd scale - Georgian retreat from South Ossetia...

In August 2008, the invasion of South Ossetia and Abkhazia by Georgia ended with heavy casualties on the Georgian side. Here a group of Georgian light infantry retreats from South Ossetia under the watchful eye of the Russian victors.

This imaginary scene also has some imaginary models namely the T-64AK which was not present in this conflict. The Russian 58th Army only had T-72 and T-62 in its ranks but this T-64 came out of my modelling desk this week so it had vainly to be shown.

The Georgian Land Rovers are Cararama 1/72nd scale Die-Cast models. I had a box of six hanging around for years. Originally I was planning to use them as British in the Gulf War but they ended being smuggled to the Georgian Army.

The other three are hard top Land Rovers also used by the Georgians in this conflict that I will convert and paint later on. 

I made a number of changes: placed a pair of seated figures on the rear made out of bodies from ESCI US Modern infantry and GreenStuff legs; canvas cover made of Evergreen and GreenStuff and a plastic engine cooling exhaust pipe on the right side. 

The colours are NATO colours which showed the clear interest of Georgia entering this organisation. Fortunately, NATO recognized in time that the Saakashvili leardership was not trustable and declined the Georgian intentions. 

I also tried the tricky camouflage on the uniform of my first Georgian Infantry on these three 82mm mortar stands.

I used bodies and legs of different  ESCI US Infantry and mixed them. These figures are Ok for the modern Georgians as they use much of the NATO equipment given by the peaceful G.W. Bush always eager to wage war in every part of the planet. Included was the M4 rifle which looks like the M16 rifle and thats also why I used ESCI figures for the Georgian Infantry. 

When making the rifle companies I'll use some ESCI Warsaw Pact infantry as Georgians were still using plenty of AK-47.

The T-64AK is based on the standard 1972 model from ModelCollect with a scratch built big antennae as provided for the command tanks. So this model will force me to find another six to field a full battalion for Rapid Fire!

The colours are the MIG modern Russian colours again. The figure is an own cast of an Irregular Miniature figure.

The BMD was present in the Russo-Georgian War of 2008 in the Airborne units.

The Models are S-Models with the usual added crew, antennae and stowage. 

Next: more 2008 Russo-Georgian War for sure as there is a number of stuff on my table and on  the surrounding environment. 

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Rapid Fire! 20mm - Gulf War 1991 - 82nd Airborne Division.

I know everybody was waiting for me to keep the promise of showing another chapter of one of the most important periods of wargaming: Georgia 2008 (its what I'm doing at the moment)! But instead my devious mind was left in the desert once more.

This time I'll show you some elements of the 82nd Airborne deployed in Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Shield.

In fact, taking out the tanks, I use all three battalions to represent Mechanized infantry, Marines or Airborne troops as the uniform is basically the same as well as much of its equipment. Still some weapons are missing like the mortars and HMG's but in due time they will be added together with new battalions. 

All figures are ESCI and the Sheridans are Airfix.

The DBDU camouflaged uniform is relatively simple to paint in spite of looking complicated. I only placed one or two blotches of Red Brown in each arm or leg and the same with the Black/White dots. For that the last picture shows it better.

Some of the infantry have the Olive Drab bullet proof vest others have the camouflaged version. Don't forget that about 1/3rd to 1/4th of all army personnel are Afro-Americans and a darker skin tone is necessary in many figures.

The M551 Sheridan of Airfix needs an armoured protection to be built in plasticard around the HMG position in order to portray the correct version used in the Gulf. The searchlight is another addition showned here covered in canvas. The figure is an old Atlantic figüre.

The Dragon ATGM was the main anti tank weapon of those days for the US foot soldier and ESCI made it a bit small but still reasonable.

Next: Georgia 2008, I guarantee!!! I think...

Friday, 9 June 2017

Middle East/Arab Mosque in 20mm (2)

A Mosque is mandatory in all places in the Middle East. In fact their minarets is one of the main characteristics of the landscape and they can be recognized for miles.

The minaret on this one came out too large. It looks more with a lighthouse than with a minaret.  I only realised that after finishing gluing it to the building and base but then it was too late. At least its sturdy...well, we have to find some satisfaction on our own blunders, right?

Many Middle East construction have beautiful varandas and woodwork.

The base of the minaret is a yogurt cup.

The dome is a half of a christmas tree decoration ball.

Next: as you fly away from middle east you will go back to Georgia 2008 soon.

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Middle East/Arab Houses in 20mm (1)

I've been thinking about Middle Eastern houses and a way to produce a number of them quickly for a long time. For most of the  WWII games you only need a few but for modern games, specially the Lebanon, Gulf Wars or Syria, you need more as the action tends to happen in more urban environment.

These houses are also easy to build as the roof is generally the most complicated part of a house and middle east roofs are quite simple.

I used several types of card and acrylics textured with sand before drying. The bases are plywood and the palm trees are plastic. For ease of construction most of the windows are glued pieces of card as the defenders can use the roofs or the many low walls available for protection.


I placed some brick floor I had around in this one to make it look like a richer house.

The well is a piece cut from an old hose.

This one pretends to be an embassy or a museum. 

The dome is half of a Kinder Egg. How can a modeller say that chocolate is bad for the health?

This building is an apartment block of a typical type seen in the big Middle Eastern cities.

You can see them in Istambul or big cities of the region were some old stone structures are mixed with newer brick or cement ones.

This one is a simpler house but with plenty of places for infantry to dug in.

And the simplest of them all. " Hey, I´m small but  I`m  the only one with a chimney!"

The last one intends to be one of the many arches connecting houses over small streets.

On top of them some Iraqi infantrymen from SHQ survey the area looking suspiciously at the newcomers...

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Rapid Fire! Russian Contemporary Wars in 1/72nd scale - SS-25 Topol and a few extras.

Somewhere inside Russia, Putin orders the powerful SS-25 Topol to change its location. Some support vehicles and tank protection follows. You can never know when separatists may strike...

The 4D SS-25 Topol is the last offer of this nice Chinese company. Its a tough competitor for the Zvezda kit but only at a fraction of the price. This one is around 18 Euros, directly from China, free post, while the Zvezda is something around 50 Euros.

Comparing with the S-300 models of 4D its a much more complicated model with many dozen pieces, specially in its chassis. 

The model was painted with the Russian modern range paints from Mig. 

If such a thing will be ever used at wargames? Probably not but you can always threaten your wargaming opponent with an ICBM...

To go along the Topol or to tow or carry some heavy stuff I repainted these Fabbri MAZ-535. I have a few aside to be converted to the MAZ-537 tank transporter.

Finally, I also repainted a Die-cast Zvezda T-90 with the new (at least for me) Mig colours and a figure copied in GreeStuff with Blue Stuff... companies are getting less and less imaginative with names...

Monday, 5 June 2017

Rapid Fire! Russian Contemporary Wars in 1/72nd scale - Georgian T-72 SIM and Aero L-39

In August 2008 the spearhead of the Georgian army enters pro-Russian South Ossetia. Mr. Saakashvili is looking for trouble...

The Georgian MBT was, and still is, the T-72. By August 2008 some 120+ out of a total around 200, have been reworked by the Israelis of Elbit Systems to this SIM-1 version. Six are the correct number to simulate the tank battalion in a Georgian infantry brigade in RF! terms (30 in reality, integrated in a Mechanized Battalion together with infantry. The rest of the Brigade has three infantry battalions, plus artillery, engineers, etc).

These models are another six from the 3D printer of (Super) Mario Laranja the owner of Tuga Models, after the first four which are serving the Kremlin.

The camouflage of green/brown/ grey was seen in the imported wheeled vehicles from Turkey during the war of 2008 and also in the BMP series but was not widely spread, namely to MBT's. Nowadays it seem to be standard on all AFV's, judging from parade pictures and exercises.


Regarding construction and add-on parts I only placed the small box to the left side of the turret, close to the fume grenade launchers, to simulate the GPS antennae of the SIM-1 version. Most of the other specific details of this version are inside the turret and can't be seen. Also some copies of Irregular Miniatures WWII Soviet paratroopers torsos made out with Blue Stuff were used, as well as antennae and the tricky scratch built  (total 13 parts each... glups!) AA NSVT machine gun. The rest was left untouched from the T-72B version.

A lonely Aero L-39 Albatros (Kopro model) was built to give some ground support to Mr.Saakashvili intentions. The next Mil-Mi 24 and Sukhoi Su-25 I found will also go to the Georgian  airforce.

Saturday, 3 June 2017

Rapid Fire! Russian Contemporary Wars in 1/72nd scale - BM-27 'Uragan' Batteries

Somewhere in South Ossetia (I can't precise the place as I also don't know) two battalions of 'Uragan' are ready to fire on Georgian positions...

All models are repainted Fabbri models. Only the Transport-Loaders have its decks converted as you can see ın the last post.

This is the way as the Uragan reload its missiles. The elevator on the 9T452 lifts each missile at a time making the entire procedure of reloading the 16 load of missiles very time consuming, around 20 minutes. More recent Russian missile systems have quicker missile reloading time.

The BM-27 is a machine from the seventies and replaced many of the older BM-21.

Here you can see to advantage the cocktail sticks that I used to make something like the 220 mm missiles.

If I haven't been lazy I would have carved a decent missile and reproduce it in Press Moulding but I was too eager to see the final result. Like this each missile head became a little bit too pointy,

Next: something for these Uragan's to shoot at: Georgian Armour!