Sunday, 29 September 2013

Luga River Line

This was a WW2 Airsoft game I went to recently, held at RIFT Airsoft in Oxfordshire. It was the first in an ongoing series of games covering operations around Leningrad, in this case the German assault on the Luga fortified region on the approaches to Leningrad in July 1941. It pelted with rain the night before so the day started rather damp and muddy. Not much point in a game commentary but here are some pictures. A pretty good kit turnout for this one, but it is Airsoft and not full re-enactment so people wear the gear they have got, hence anchronisms like gaiters, bergemutze and M43 uniforms in 1941. With my wargamers/modelling hat on, it is always interesting to see what colour full sized uniforms etc look outside.

Germans briefed by their CO

German platoon photo

The heroic defenders of the Motherland. Figure painters may wish to note the huge colour variations in the uniforms, from tan brown to green.

1 Section, which included two real Russians.

2 section, engineers

3 section, artillery crew

Comrade Commanders. Not sure about this dual comand thing.

Soviet briefing.

2 section move out loaded down with mines.

2 sections first task was to mine the road and plant schu mines in the verges. This entailed a lot of milling around.

The German CO looking a bit  like Captain Stransky.

German MG team

More Germans in the woods. Their first task was to cover their engineers clearing lanes through the minefields.

Oh dear.

Camouflaged Soviet AT gun.

Germans hanging on the wire. The wire barrier also had to be cut but was covered by interlocked fire from the Soviet positions.

Hanging around in the car park.

More hanging around. There is always a lot of this.

BMW and sidecar, this was used in the game.

Germans queuing up to get their guns checked. Note how grey the feldgrau looks in daylight, the smart chap on the left is wearing Steingrau trousers, the colour contrast is quite noticeable. In woodland the feldgreu acquires a more green hue (as in the German platoon photo).

A lot of these Russians are wearing the darker green hued heavier wool uniforms, although bizarrely they look dark brown here.

More hanging around. It was quite wet first thing hence the number of rain capes.

Some fine chap with an SVT-40 converted from an M14.

Artillery section make themselves comfortable.

Soviet position in the woods covering the main minefield. This particular strongpoint was very well placed to put down flanking fire on the Germans who for some reason didn't directly attack it until the afternoon.
AT gun, this was on loan from Gunman Airsoft and has an eletcrical firing mechanism which makes a very load bang but doesn't actually fire any projectiles.

Teller mines on the road. There were also a few schu mines (with 12 gauge shotgun blanks in them) buried in the verges.

Airsoft Teller Mine. These are pressure activated with an anti-lift device. Engineers disarm them by (very carefully) unscrewing the fuse cap and disabling the firing switch. I usually blow myself up at least once doing this.

Even more carefully arming the mines with 5 gram charges. Setting them is the reverse of the disarming procedure but you don't want to be holding one of the charges if it goes off.

Looking at maps time
More map time. A map related faux pas produces general hilarity.

And more. Where are we and where are we supposed to go is quite important to get right.

I usually do the 'full kit challenge' for these sort sof things but it isn't very onerous or heavy for the Soviets. In this case, mazagine pouches, grenade bag, raincape, gas mask bag, entrenching tool, water bottle and bayonet.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Airfix Conversions, Sdkfz 7 37mm AA

This was another conversion on the Airfix Sdkfz 7 chassis. A bit more ambitious this time as I did the 37mm version with armoured cab.

The finished article.

It all looks a bit wobbly from the front and cutting out the vision ports in the front plate was a real pain.

It looks OK from the side though. The wood finish rear deck surround is just scored plasticard.

The 37mm was converted from the gun in the Airfix Sdkfz 2341/234 armoured car. A bit of a waste perhaps!

This model is currently serving as the Flak battalion in 26th Panzer Division.

I recall at the time when I made this being quite pleased with it as it involved some fairly extensive hacking around. I am not sure what happened to the rest of the German armoured car, although one of the crew is currently serving as the commander of a Panzer IV and the other two seem to be manning a scratch built Ostwind turret.

It was repainted several years ago when I was assembling the components of 26th Panzer Div for Megablitz. Usual dunkelgelb and camo over a black base, and in this case a dark brown inkwash and a light tan overall drybrush.

Sunday, 22 September 2013

20mm First World War British (Part 2)

More 20mm Brits, the fun stuff this time, tanks and cavalry...

Mark IVs supported by infantry.

Emhar Mark IV made up as a female.

Male version on the right. These were all painted green even though they should really be khaki.

Emhar Whippets. I really like these models, went together well and paint up beautifully.

Whippets and cavalry co-operate.

The cavalry are Tumbling Dice 20mm figures.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Zvezda Stug IIID

More Triples purchases, a pair of Zvezda Stug IIIds. Well you have to have two don't you?

The pair of them in their grey splendour. Very easy to assemble.

These are absolutely beautiful, the detail on the track gaurds is amazing. Unfortunately this picture is a bit blurry but you can see the detail in the others. Make my 15mm metal Panzer IIIs look like big blobs.

The rather undetailed tracks aren't at all obvious. Looks like I missed a bit of flash on the gun, oh well.

The engine deck, grill work and various raised edges and bits all take a drybrush nicely.

These chaps will be joining my early war 15mm German armour which to date is entirely made of metal and incredibly heavy, so something which weighs next to nothing will be a welcome change.

They are done in faded panzer grey over a black base, heavy mud drybrush around the  running gear and lower areas and a very light tan drybrush to pick out the highlights with 'dust'. Tracks are my usual dark inwash over a red brown base and highlighted with dull metal.