From the Shed: Vietnam Tunnel rats.

Another quick post- found these lurking underneath a piece of paper whilst looking for something else. I painted them when I did the Navy SEALs but did photograph them at the time.

The old Platoon 20 range for Vietnam is rather extensive and has some really characterful models in it. I should gets some more really but it will wait as Vietnam isn’t on my projects list.

Still might do- damm my scattergun approach to hobbying….

I’ve noticed in the photo that one of the bases needs touching up- I’ll do that before I store them away.

Cheers,

Pete.

From the Shed: The RDF light tank aka LAV75.

The RPG Twilight 2000 is a classic game for all of us who are nostalgic for the Cold War eras (something comforting about a simpler bipolar power split I think). In the first edition it introduced some fictional vehicles in the game world that it predicted would be in service at the turn of the millenium. One of these was a light tank called the LAV75. A crew in hull design with a 75mm autocannon design to support airbourne operations. In really life it was based upon the RDF light tank which got to prototype stage, it was designed to replace the ill- starred Sheridan.

There are model available of the RDF tank in 6mm that I’ve painted previously but I was looking for something in 20mm to go with my duplication of forces. I asked on a Facebook group and was pointed in the direction of a GI Joe toy design- the Mauler tank- based on the same RDF light tank prototype. Close enough for my purposes I thought so I promptly printed a couple out.

Here the pair are in the bare plastic and assembled. The RDF (and LAV75) didn’t have the side skirts but given the design of the model’s running gear I added them.

They should provide a nice addition to my 20mm collection- fictional tanks for fictional wars… why not? It ties in nicely to both my 6mm collection and the old RPG, which has just had a very successful kickstarter rerelease.

Cheers,

Pete.

Game Report: Falklands War Matrix game.

Last week I got the chance to play in another Matrix game- this time a rerun of the Falklands War of 1982. Again it was with the group from the Sheffield Wargames club but with a suitable socially distanced format through Skype.

 

Matrix games are really all about structured discussion- state and action and an effect with three reasons why it will happen and then the umpire adjudicates and in this case tells you if you have succeded or not. You are not limited to just yourself and your forces you can try and have an effect on anything.

 

The game was for seven players, Thatcher and Admiral Woodward for the UK, President Reagan and General Haig for the US, Galtieri for the Argentinians, As well as Pinochet and the UN being played. Each player was given their own briefing in advance. I was given the role of President Reagan with the basic tasks of ensuring that the islands were returned to the UK and offering some support too.

 

I played quite aggressively; with the US as the preminent economic power house I made sure to funnel supplies to the Brits (I knew they’d need them) as well as trying to distract the Soviets with naval exercises in the Med, hopefully to stop them meddling. I also gave Pinochet some cash to run month long exercises with his armed forces to make sure the Argentines were distracted there too. Am pleased to say that the game followed the history fairly well with the Black Buck raids, Exocets and the eventual recapture of the Islands all happening in more or less the right order.

falklands matrix game

The game was great fun to play- a good chance to do a bit of roleplaying too. Can’t thank Tim enough for running the game and the other players for making it so much fun. The format of the game worked really well over Skype too. Tim just set the camera up at the representationmal map whilst we presented our arguements.

falklands matrix game 2

With a couple of matrix games under my belt I’mm eager to play another one.

 

You can find Tim’s reports on the game here and here. The scenario is considered a matrix game classic and has been well recieved by a wide vareity of players and organisations, it is available in this book.

Cheers,

Pete.

From the Shed: Dodge Ambulance and air field equipment.

I’ve just finished this rather smart little ambulance in 1/72nd scale from Academy.

dodge ambulance

I struggled a bit with decals, even after all these years of making models it is still something I find problematic.

The tractor and bomb trolley makes for some nice extras- they’d go well with the old Airfix figures on a air base set up.

Both should be good for my WW2 games or even into the Korean War.

 

Cheers,

 

Pete.

From the Shed: M1 Abrams

Just finished this modest expansion for my 6mm Cold War collection: two battalions worth of M1 Abrams for 5core: Brigade Commander. This are the first production models with the 105mm gun.

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For those ‘Cold War goes hot’ games I think that for tabletop games the balance of forces is ‘best’ in the early 80s, much later and the mix of 120mm APFSDSDU tank shells, MRLS and Apaches skews the balance too much.

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I added some roads on the bases of one battalion to differentiate it. Also I went for the plain forest green paint job on these as that way they could be easily distinguished from the M60s (in MERDC) and the later M1A1s (in NATO 3 colour).

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A trio of M1s on smaller bases rounds out this little force.

 

Cheers,

 

Pete.

From the Shed: US Rangers and Special Operations Forces.

I’ve just finished up some quick US Speical Operation Forces types.

sof and rangers

First up we have 4 men armed with MP7 Personal Defence Weapons (the fancy new name for SMGs that fire modern body armour defeating ammunition), great for clearing buildings .

sof mp7

We have a 2 man command team for the Rangers: a soldier with a map and a radioman. Useful for bringing in off- table assests.

ranger command

Finally a pair of snipers manning the huge .50 Barrett sniper rifle. Witha massive range (and massive weight to go with it) it is an immensly powerful weapon.

ranger heavy sniper

Again Elhiem figures were the manufacturer of these figures; can’t wait to get them into a game of Black Ops or similar soon. All of the figures were painted in the latest multicam cammo pattern uniforms.

 

From the Shed: More Elhiem figures.

A couple of quick pics here…

 

First up I painted 4 USMC figures, enough to form a fireteam, to try out the colours to paint Woodland MARPAT pattern see here for an example. I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out. Although a full platoon of them would take a while…. Will try the desert scheme next.

marines woodland marpat

I also painted up some assorted Cold War Soviet figures for a couple of scenarios I’ve got planned, the guy with the white helmet is a Military Policeman on traffic duty:

assorted cold war soviets

Finally I got some of the insurgent gun crew to go with the improvised mortars I featured a bit ago:

insurgent gun crew

gun crews and mortars

https://www.elhiem.co.uk/

 

Cheers,

 

Pete.