Hell Cannons: A Pair of improvised mortars.

The tragic long running civil war in Syria has thrown up many examples of improvised military equipment over the years: from home made sniper rifles to converted apcs. Ace models have recently immortalised two such weapons in a plastic kit.

hell cannon 2

Hell Cannons are the name given to large improvised mortars that have been built by the rebel forces/ Free Syrian Army in the past few years. Consisting of a large metal pipe fixed to a truck axle they fire homemade shell that are mostly made from propane gas canisters. As can be imagined they are not particularly accurate and neither do they have a long range, barely reaching overa mile. A more in-depth  look at them can be found here .

Ace kits are a east European manufacturer of limited run plastic kits that cover a wide variety of subjects that are often not covered by the bigger companies. Given the limitations of their short run production their kits have a repuation of being difficult to build; the finesse and fit of the parts is not up there with the likes of Revell or Dragon. That said the two guns were built over the course of a single evening. I thought it was a nice touch that several examples of the relevant ‘shells’ were included too.

hell cannon wip

hell cannon 1

Painting was mostly done with a sponge to get the mottled camo and rust effects and didn’t take long at all.

The first gun is from the Ahrar al- Shmal Brigade nd was seen in the Idlib area in 2013.

hell cannon 3

hell cannon 4

The second gun was built and used by the Free Syrian Army in Aleppo in 2017.

hell cannon 5

hell cannon 6

I have bought some suitable figures from Elhiem to use as crew but I’ve not painted them yet.





13 comments on “Hell Cannons: A Pair of improvised mortars.

  1. It is quite surprising how quickly some of these models appear. You’ve done a very nice job on them I must admit! Will be good to see them with crew, maybe in 2019?

    • Pete S/ SP says:

      Thanks. Ace were pretty quick of the mark with these kits weren’t thay.

      They crew will get their first coats of paint on them this evening. I was hoping to get the finished atthe same time but that was not to be.



  2. Azazel says:

    That’s genuinely fascinating. I didn’t even know that these were a thing, let alone model kits of them existed. They look really great painted up, too – that rust and wear is incredibly effective and realistic looking. Great work!

  3. Marvin says:

    I can only echo the comments on the great work here. The metalwork in particular is great!

  4. Effective as hell, the weathering. Can’t imagine that the would be tactically effective, but I love what you did with these Pete, almost apocalyptic!

    • Pete S/ SP says:

      Thanks Mark. I think they are pretty indiscriminate weapons. I can’t imagine that there is much consistency in the construction of the ammo.



  5. […] following the “Diabolical” theme of the month, assembled and painted this kit of two Hell Cannons from Ace Models. What are Hell Cannons, you ask? I’ll let Pete […]

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