WWII


1/48th Scale Supermarine Spitfire Mk IIa

A bit of a departure from my normal scale, this model was a 'Secret Santa' present from my work colleges. I have been putting off building it as I haven't built a model Spitfire in, well, let's just call it 'a long time'. Instead, I promised myself that if I had time at the end of the Challenge I would give it a go. I did, and I have and here it is.The aircraft is a Supermarine Spitfire Mk IIa and its marking and paint scheme identifies it as No 71 "Eagle" Squadron, Royal Air Force, North Weald, England, August 1941. North Weald is just 12 miles due north from where I live and is a place I have visited often. They have some excellent little air displays and a small but interesting collection of heritage aircraft on display. There is also a very interesting museum nearby that is well worth a visit.I'm not actually keeping this model as I don't have anywhere to display it, so it's going to my Brother-in-Law to become part of his massive collection of WWII memorabilia. No doubt he knows a Spitfire pilot or two t

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Attack on Foy / Disposable Heroes

Last Monday night at the club, I got a chance to play in the final test game of the Attack on Foy prior to Cold Wars.  This WW2 action was featured in the Band of Brothers TV series and was also one of the games in the first season of the club's LittleWarsTV project.  Here's a link to that video.As you can see the table looks great.  This version of the game uses the WW2 ruleset Disposable Heroes, which were written by Keith Stine.  Keith's also the gentleman putting on the game at Cold Wars so at least there will be no rules disputes as you'll have the author at the table.The game has a very interesting activation structure where each side is given a number of activation chits and during a turns the sides alternate actions were a chit is used to allow a squad/fire team to do 3 actions.  It can move 3x (3 inches each), shoot 3x or combinations of those and other actions.  A player can activate the same squad multiple times in a turn so it's really interesting and forces you hard

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Two Pzkfw IV Ausf J painted twice!

I nearly finished these tanks last week but in the end, I cleaned and re-primed them and started again...let me explain the madness. I decided to give these vehicles a different colour scheme, opting for something called Ambush Camouflage. This is a hard-edged camo that started to appear on German tanks in August 1944. It consisted of the usual Green and Red/Brown stripes over Dunkelgelb with dots of opposing colours over the top. A bit complex, but considering I don't have an airbrush I thought it would be a good alternative to my previous attempts at soft-edge camo. Initially, I was reasonably happy with it, although the dots were a bit bigger than I liked. Then I made a massive tactical error. Add captionI usually apply an ink wash to my models to darken shadows and, in the case of vehicles, deepen the recesses around hatches and engine grills etc. This time, for reasons even I don't understand I didn't use my normal ink but opted for Army Painter Strong Tone instead. And frankly, that ruine

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Organization of the WWII U.S. Army Infantry Rifle Squad

This video breaks down the infantry's "smallest tactical unit," introducing its basic composition and weapons, plus an examination of squad teams and the Buddy System. It all starts here.Note: Many of the quotations used in this video were originally compiled during the pursuit of private study and well before I had ever entertained the thought of starting a YouTube channel.  As such, I was lax with the citations; they are not up to the standard of my subsequent videos.  The final quote in this video was only vaguely credited in my notes to the "Infantry Journal, 1947."  Recently, while researching another topic, a fortuitous page-turn led me to the original quote.  The updated citation follows.Edwin R. Shackleton, Jr. (A/71).  "Rifle Squad," The Infantry Journal, Vol. 60, No. 4, April 1947, p. 76. Show more

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Quick visit to the Mucklebrough Collection

The Family and I went away last week as it was the school half term break. Thankfully it wasn't as cold as it could have been for the time of year and we managed to make the most of the trip, despite the fact that many of the museums I wanted to visit were closed for the winter! Fortunately, the Mucklebrough Museum was open and I was given a day pass by the wife to visit it while she and the youngling went to a nearby zoo.Concentrating while taking a selfie! I'm very happy in this picture...honest. Russian T34 & T55 tanks with a British A34 CometThe Artillery HallThe museum also has an excellent gallery of models and military diorams88mm FLAK37 German Anti-Aircraft gunCanadian 'Grissley' ShermanIf you are ever in the area this place is well worth a visit. Some of the exhibits are a little cramped but the collection is very impressive none-the-less. 

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Deadzone and Cystoscopy.

I didn't plan much for last night at the club as my holiday looms and I had other things preying on my mind (see below), so I took up Simon's offer for some fun with Deadzone, a sci-fi skirmish, a few people were MIA this week so only three games were on offer other than Deadzone; X-Wing, Frostgrave and Age of Sigmar, not a historical game in sight.Deadzone is much like a host of other games of its type, lovely figures, small table, plays quickly and doesn't last long, despite this the book looked fairly complex to me as opposed to say Dead Man's Hand which has about 10 pages of rules. The game itself proved to be fairly simple although like any game you play for the first time you will not be able to appreciate any subtleties. In the first skirmish I was given The Plague, horrible looking people up to no good, I think the enemy were humans or one faction of them. I simply tried my best and rushed in, obviously I was quickly shot down and Simon won the game comfortably. In the second we changed sides, I had l

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Sturmgeschütz III

(Saturday DRAFT) From LeeH - Battle hardened Sturmgeschütz III (8pts)The Sturmgeschutz series of Assult Guns was based on the proven chassis of the Panzer III and was probably one of the most effective weapons in Germany's armoured divisions. Initially designed as assault artillery its role developed as the war progressed. After encountering Soviet T24's and KV tanks the role of tank destroyer, with it's by now upgraded and powerful forward facing gun, became more important. Another factor in the success and utility of the StuG's was probably not something the Nazi regime would have liked to trumpet. They were relatively cheap to build and Germany was increasingly short on resources. By 1944 the StuG III had been upgunned with the 7.5 cm StuK 40 L/48 gun making it a much more deadly weapon. The final version of the series was the StuG II Aust G saw service right through the Normandy campaign and beyond. Its superstructure had been widened and it was slightly taller allowing

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We wus Robbed Sir.

 Muskets and Tomahawks last night, I arrived a bit late so the terrain had all been set out and as I chose to be British I was handed my OOB and orders. There was a French spy around, a Jesuit priest who we had to apprehend while keeping the unruly savages at bay, as we were the vanguard our forces arrived piecemeal so for the start of the game and most of the rest of it I had two light companies. To get further troops we had to reach certain points on the table, so it was my own fault I left my regulars to near the end.As my Jocks set about reaching the first reinforcement point it became apparent that there were a lot of Indians in them nearby woods. I thought here was an opportunity to get some points by wiping out the savages while holding the left flank as Rob made his way to rescue the settlers near the river. As ever my shooting was terrible and it took me a long time to make the left secure, so much so I did not make my way to the next reinforcement point until almost too late. Rob meanwhile took

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Sherman DD Tank - Water Feature

For the Water Feature bonus round, I have gone for a Sherman DD (Duplex Drive) tank wading ashore on a Normandy beach.  IN the end, more work went into the base than the tank but this time I'm really pleased with the end result.The DD's were a British invention (only us Brits are mad enough to attempt to make a tank float!) and were part of a series of specially adapted vehicles collectively known as Hobart's Funnies. The concept of the swimming tank actually dates back to 1918 when the first designs were being considered. Development continued in the inter-war period with initial designs using huge detachable floatation tanks. However, this made the tank very unwieldy and far too wide for any landing craft to carry them. The concept of the floatation screen - increasing the displacement of the tank until it floated -  was first considered in 1940 and was initially tested on the Tetrarch Light Tank and later on Valentines. By 1943 the first tests with Sherman were taking pla

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