Sunday, 27 June 2021

Rapid Fire! Market garden in 20mm - Oddities and such (part 13) - Last few models for the Germans

This post is about the last few German vehicles and figures still missing for the new Market Garden RF! book. It´s again a bit nostalgic post as it marks the end of a project started many years ago with the first OMG book and with a few converted Char B1bis into German flamethrowers. Here there are also some extra guns and vehicles that  will be used in other 1943-45 campaigns. 

The vehicles are 3d prints in resin (Sdkfz 11s) and PLA (RSO). The guns are S-Models for the SIG 33, Resin prints for the Zis-3 and a scratch for the 75mm IG37.

These are the two Soviet Zis-3 for the FJ Regiment von Hoffman, part of KG Walther. 

The guns were printed by my friend Mário Laranja and the figures are converted Esci and Revell FJ. 

One of these Sig33 150mm guns will go to the SS Infantry gun Training Battalion of the SS Mattusch KG part of Von Tettau 'Division'.  By having a pair of these they can also become, for instance,  the 13th companies of each of the Regiments of PzGrenadiers of the 12th SS in Normandy.

The S-Model guns are crewed by converted PSC figures from the Support Weapons box. 

Again more PSC and an Esci figure to crew this IG37.

This one was made from a multitude of origins:
- trailer from a shortened Zvezda 75mm gun;
- plastic wheels;
- barrel from an old Esci 25PDR gun;
- muffler from a piece of carved plastic;
- shield cut to shape from a metal part of a Lorraine 75mm SP from Skytrex that came surplus by mistake. 

Another Revell command group for the FJ. 

A few more Sdkfz 11, tows of 75mm/ 105mm guns in late campaigns. 

The models are resin prints made in one (!) piece. Well, it has a separate steering wheel...

The RSO is a PLA MiniGeneral print, for SS Eberwein KG, very nice and sturdy. I have a number of them already with snow in the bases for a  1944/45 VG division but as everybody knows "It never snows in September".  A trick I´m nowadays using in 3d prints is to spray them with varnish before priming them. Somehow the printing lines get much more disguised. 

Next: More HG division fore Sicily 1943.

Friday, 25 June 2021

US Heavy Armored Division in 20mm, Normandy 1944, for Rapid Fire! Rules

The 2nd and 3rd US Heavy Armored Divisions fought the Normandy campaign with a total of 15 tank companies each comparing to the Light Armored Divisions with 12 tank companies. So this is a lot of tanks, mostly the reliable Sherman, but also M5 light tanks, M10's and plenty of others. As usual many kits of different brands but also many scratch built models and conversions.

Next: most probably the last article for the Germans at OMG.

Thursday, 17 June 2021

British Armoured Division(s) in 20mm, Normandy 1944, for Rapid Fire! rules

This video shows a full Sherman equipped Brigade as the basis for whether the Guards or the 11th AD (it can also be one the Sherman equipped independent armoured brigades if you ignore the numbers on the Arm of service). Also present is another Cromwell equipped Brigade that allows to portray the 7th AD and the 6th Guards Tank Brigade with its Churchill tanks.

Next: German bits for several projects.

Friday, 11 June 2021

Rapid Fire! Sicily 1943 in 20mm - The first battalion of PzGrenadiers of the FPD 'Hermann Göring'


On the news of the Allied landings the I. Bn/Grenadier- Regiment 1 joins at the slopes of  Monica Belluchi hill(s) and prepares itself to drive the enemy back to North Africa.

The figures are all soft plastic figures from Esci, Atlantic, Airfix/Chinese copies, Revell and Matchbox. All figures had some kind of modification: the ones with original Feldmutze had it changed to the usual HG side cap and all trousers with boots had a bit of EverGreen for them to look like the larger and looser trousers used by these units. 

The MGs 34 were a bit more complicated. The firer and tripod are the very old DAK Matchbox figures with the much nicer Revell barrel and a few more details. The mortar is also Matchbox (with the outer ring cut off) and converted DAK Airfix commander. 

This battalion had its coats painted in one of the numerous SS camouflage smocks used by the HG PzGrenadiers. I will do two more of these battalions (only 3 saw service in Sicily) and they will be painted in another SS scheme. 

The MP40 firer managed to bring some ashish from Morocco and is still under its influence. This is one of the figures with a hat change. 

The command company got some bent arms, torsos on different legs and a radio on the back of one of the figures. 

The weapons company already painted with plenty of conversions that can be recognized from the time of dry mud sent against plastic miniatures on the back yard. Now I got slightly more civilized. 

A full company of Grenadiers. 

Lastly, the first of the three companies of the Pionner battalion of the FHG division.

Next: one more of these battalions, Epic and Kallistra ACW or some more German tows. 

Friday, 4 June 2021

Rapid Fire! Sicily 1943 in 20mm - The Pz III M of the FPD 'Hermann Göring'

As this is Italy I should start with these miniatures in some place called 'Monica Belluchi' but, as I´m in love with her for some 25 years at least I will let that stupid remark aside as a sign of respect ... even if respect is not exactly what I think when I see Monica...
The Fallschirmpanzerdivision 'Hermann Göring' was an interesting Panzer Division. It had three tank battalions each of them equipped with a different tank: the I Abteilung had Pz IV, the II Abteilung had Pz III and the III had Stug III. Also the 14, 16 and 24 PDs had this planned structure after its destruction at Stalingrad. 
 As both I and III battalions are easily done with models from other units I had to make the II battalion due to its particularities: first I couldn´t use the Pz III M from my Kursk project due to them having side schuerzen and second the ones from HG simply had the dunkelgelb painted and no camouflage. Another interesting aspect was the absent crosses, typical of most of Germany's AFVs. Also the uniform of the HG tankers had some particularities. 

The models are the great 3d resin prints of Mário Laranja. I asked him to make this group of Pz III M only with turret schuerzen. I couldn´t find a definitive answer to the reason for the HG Pz IIIs not having the big side protections. It´s true that the AT rifle was not a big threat in the West as it was in the East, but there were Bazookas, PIATs and 57mm and 37mm AT guns that the Germans knew about. But maybe the small Mediterranean roads sided by tall stonewalls in many places or even the tight roads of Sicilian  and Italian villages  forced the Germans to discard them. 

This level of detail is made with only three pieces, hull, turret and a piece of track to be placed in the front. 
The only additions were a crude plastic cylinder to insert the antenna, the figures and some stowage. 

Painted at the front you can see also the interesting way to mark each company (not only of the tank regiment but of all the HG division) with a clock in which the hour represents the company. 

The Panzer crews used mostly tropical items mixed with the normal uniform so I mixed a tropical cap with the usual black uniform. 

Can´t really be sure about this one. The 7th tank company had a few Pz IV (hence only two Pz III in this one) and at least one had painted crosses, so I used them also in the other tanks of the company without being certain about this choice. 

The 6th company had a black '6' in the rear turret as a specific mark of this company. 

I couldn´t find a specific image of any of the II battalion´s commanders tanks so this 'I' is just a guess. 
Most of the information used to paint and model these tanks was taken from the great Firefly No 3 about German armour in Sicily. 

Next: maybe some Sdkfz 11, a new video or something else. Stay tuned in the best blog of Travessa Moura e Sá, No15, Coimbra!!!