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I paint small metal and plastic figures and rarely get to play with them. But that is fine with me.

12 April 2022

Clever Hans - part 10 (Volksgrenadiers, Hanomag, Flame Thrower and Observer)

Finding time to paint of late has been tricky, but this weekend my wife had a hair appointment and a shopping trip so out came the painting station and I got to work on some more WW2 Winter Germans in an effort to get that project done and ready for the gaming table!
Covering the medic previewed in my last post as he helps get the injured to the half-track. 

First up a closer look at the platoon's Sd.Kfz. 251D half-track. These armoured transports were iconic and the Germans used them throughout the war, with other nations utilizing the design for quite a bit after the war's end in their own armed forces. Featuring an MG42 machinegun both fore and aft of the vehicle, they not only were splendid for transporting troops where they needed to go on the battlefield, but also could provide suppressive fire support once the troops offloaded at their destination. Sadly, in the Bolt Action rules set these things are a bit naff, costing far too much points-wise for how survivable they end up being on the tabletop - but they are iconic, so I had to include one in my force!

What's missing from these pics? That's right, markings. For now. Decals to come at a later date when I have more time to get back to hobby.

Tried to make it look a little dirty/muddy on that flooring.

This is a Warlord Games plastic kit. Went together relatively easy and was VERY happy to only have to deal with single piece track sculpts! 

Tried to show wear on the paint work from where passengers likely clambered in and out from. I mean, there's doors at the back, but who uses doors?

Doors and mud and snow and more wear. Forgive the focus being out on this pic, phone wasn't playing ball at all.

After the halftrack I got on with the next part of my plan, a 10-man Volksgrenadier squad. Volksgrens (For short) were a type of unit created by Hitler's orders to help bolster his then retreating armies in the later stages of WW2. Whilst they got spiffy new uniforms and were outfitted with the best kit (Read, LOTS of Panzerfausts and Assault Rifles), they were far too rushed to the front lines and received equally rushed training. Their creation was more of a propaganda effort than anything else and their exploits in the field were very mixed.

The first two of my squad are the squad's sergeant and his mate who's about to toss a primed potato-masher grenade.

Both Warlord Games metal sculpts of a very nicely detailed set. Not Winter theme'd though, so expect more white-painted helmets and trousers from future posts in an effort to make them fit in with the rest of my Winter Germans. 

This is the first Warlord metal squad where rank badges weren't sculpted onto the figs. I'm of half a mind to leave the sergeant's uniform bare of them as it's pretty obvious that the only pointing bloke in the squad MUST be the leader, right?

Not wanting to get bogged down painting all the Volksgren's at once, I then moved on to a support team for these frosty fellows, a nice flame-thrower duo. Another Warlord Games effort, this time from their Winter line. Am very much loving the sculpts and as they were mostly "Greatcoats" as far as painting was concerned, they were relatively swift to get done.

Flame-Thrower packs were heavy kit in general. German ones were apparently heavier than most. No wonder this poor bugger is having a rest before having to muster out to BBQ his next victims.

Another pointing sculpt. But not a sergeant seeing as he's holding a rifle and not an SMG, so he obviously doesn't count. Obviously.

Last up for today's post is an Artillery Observer/Spotter. A fun pose where this "camouflaged" chap is doing his best to stay hidden whilst he gives the artillery crew the co-ordinates for their next barrage into a portable field radio.

Not that one should have an Observer in a position to require him to have to actually shoot a gun in-game, but just in case he should need to, I stuck a spare Soviet SMG on his base for the job. 

Snow covered bushes to help hide him. Not sure they'll do a very good job tho.


Getting these six things finished up keeps me on track for my personal pledge of a minimum of 2 a week with it being Week 15 of the year and my total of fully painted models up to 30 now. Good stuff.

And that's it for now. Easter weekend will be a family affair and I'll have no time to myself for more hobby so not sure when I'll have anything new to show off. 

04/12/2022, week# 15 - 30/100 mini's done

28 comments:

  1. Halftrack and troops look superb! The snow/ice/mud caked halftrack looks well used.

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    1. Thanks Jon! Been a while since I've painted up a vehicle for my Winter project and I hope it matches well enough with what was done 3 years ago...

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  2. Awesome work, Dai! The half-track is excellent, the wear and tear you added is excellent! Great work on the troops, too, especially the poor sod lying in the snow :-)

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    1. Thanks Matt! Glad you like. Since starting out on this Winter project, I've really enjoyed trying to get my minis and vehicles to look as believable as I can for the setting.

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  3. Wow, amazing work. I love every bit, the observer is ace! Oh, and you are right, single piece tracks are a blessing! XD

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    1. Cheers Suber. Makes me think I need to make sure to take a full army-on-parade shot once I get those last 8 done.

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  4. Well done on the observer and the camouflage; it must be working bc it took me a minute to actually ‘see’ him. 😀

    Half tracks while being super cool and indeed iconic always seem to have survival problems in games that also include tanks and air support in the rules. Makes them brittle.
    They only seem to be cool in scenarios that are infantry only.

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    1. Hopefully he'll work out as well on the tabletop! Cheers Stew.

      Couldn't agree more. In all honesty, transport vehicles have no place in the tabletop gaming in any scale bigger than say 6mm where they'd be kept well clear of front lines. But Bolt Action has been described as "The Video Game of WW2" for a reason and so they are an option. Fun? Yes. Anywhere close to realistic? Not one bit.

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  5. Great stuff Dai! I especially like that observer model 😀 Brilliant weathering on your half-track!

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  6. I quite like the mix of winter garb with regular greens. The potato masher fig stands out with a bulky set of snow pants nicely grubbied and a nicely contrasting jacket. Well done.

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    1. Yeah, have to admit there's a pleasing aesthetic to the mix, even if those without winter garb are probably freezing their baguettes off! LOL
      Cheers Dave.

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  7. Great looking additions Dai...does the SdKfz 251 come with crew figures...I always like to see gunners hanging off the end of the LMG's! I agree with Stew, an APC is going to be in trouble if on the same table as anything heavier than LMG gunners, even a 2lb AT gun would make a big mess of a halftrack!

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    1. Thanks Keith! The Warlord Games Sd.Kfz 251/1 Ausf D kit does come with passenger figs (Though they are way smaller than regular infantry sculpts, hence why I left them out), but no actual "crew" (Driver, gunner, etc) for some reason. I think though you can purchase metal crew separately and I may well do that at a later date.

      Couldn't agree more and hence why I like to include Anti-tank Rifle teams in my Soviet lists! :)

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  8. Excellent work throughout Dai, your attention to detail and history on these, really shines through, it's as if each one is telling his own story, and not just a number, stellar work mate.

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    1. That's one thing I really enjoy about painting these WW2 projects. Whilst I've not been adhering super strictly to the actual histories, using them as a guide has been both enjoyable and rewarding throughout.

      Thanks Dave!

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  9. Lovely looking half track and troops, greatbasing as well. I've come into some nicely painted winter Germans that I could do with rebasing and adding a half track to ,to oppose my Soviets!
    Best Iain

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    1. Thanks Iain!

      Well that's a nice happenstance! Looking forward to seeing that new collection mate!

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  10. Nice work on these fellows. The mix of camo and whites is very iconic.

    I think part of the reason that halftracks are useless on the tabletop is the very short range of machine guns and the constrained nature of the tabletop. If the table was 8 feet deep and machine guns could shoot the whole distance it would give them some utility in delivering the cargo part of the way and suppressing the target during assault.

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    1. Thanks David!

      That's also a good point. Chain of Command deals with weapon ranges far more realistically, whereas Bolt Action and Flames of War are very 40K-ish abstract.

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  11. Apparently the doors on those things were a nightmare.

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    1. I didn’t know that. Thanks for that tidbit!

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  12. Well done on them Dai! The Hanomag looks excellent! Though I myself will stick to the early war Non winter stuff hehe

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    1. Cheers Terry! Yeah, no need to have to dip your toe in a new theatre for your WW2 - too much work!

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