Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Minor update.

A semi-productive day today. I ran out of glue last night so I couldn't finish the second halftrack. This necessitated a trip to the shops and while there I picked up a third halftrack and some Revell German Infantry that a friend of mine has volunteered to paint for me as one of the Grenadier regiments of the 176th Infanterie Division.

Arriving home I finished off the second halftrack and started painting some of the Revell US Paratroopers I picked up a while back. These guys will represent the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division (cliched, I know... but they were there....). I finished one test model who came out rather well and got the rest of a twelve man squad half-finished. They look rough, but passable.

I started on the third halftrack but by now I am tired and cranky so I shall call it a night and finish it tomorrow evening. After messing around with two machine gun assemblies I think I'll just stick the last one on a post and remove the entire cupola thing. I justify this by the old "it'll look cool" defence. I'm not entirely sure if I'll bother with the trailers. They might be a useful addition to some part of the XXX Corps units somewhere, but they are rather bland looking.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Moving Swiftly Along

I picked up a couple of Airfix M3 Halftracks over the weekend for the Grenadier Guards Motor Batallion seen on the org chart here and made a start on the oldest of them (the local model shop has a rather spectacular variety of obvious batch lots on offer) just to see how they go together.

So far the kit seems passable, although like all airfix kits the first one seems to fight you to make you earn the understanding required to build it. There is now a rather large gap at the front of the bonnet that will need some careful putty work to fill.

One complaint - there is no roof on the driver's cabin as shown on the box. Pictures of actual vehicles seem to be hard to come by from overhead angles, so I'm going to trust the box and just bodge on some plastic-card to put some form of covering on there. It'll also save me having to paint what passes for internal detail in the cabin. It may be innaccurate, but I've made my decision and I stand by it.

Three more to go, then painting. Pictures will be delivered when the sun comes up and the putty has dried.

[EDIT] Pictures! They always show up the flaws.... click thumbnails for larger.

[Second Edit] As expected, the second kit is going together perfectly. It's a dramatically different shade of green plastic too.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

First progress - 2nd Battalion Irish Guards Sherman Platoon

At 1435 hours on September 17th 1944 the Irish Guards under Joe Vandeleur led the way for XXX Corps as the spearhead of Garden. As an Irishman and in light of this it is only appropriate that the first unit completed be representative of this.

Based on an extremely helpful chart found here I worked out the unit marking for A Squadron of the 2nd Battalion Irish Guards Regiment.

The unit consists of three Airfix M4 A1 Sherman tanks and one Revell re-issue of the Matchbox Firefly variant Sherman. All unit markings and insignia are hand painted as I've never had the patience for transfer sheets and I wanted to practice my freehand. The tanks were spray undercoated black and then airbrushed with Games Workshop's Catachan Green. Details are GW paints again, with Badab Black used as a final wash to dirty them up a bit.

All in all, not a bad start to the project, even if they did take a long time. Hopefully I'll manage a more consistant work rate with the rest of the units.


In every wargamer's life there comes a point where they find themselves longing to run a game of scale so grand and scope so epic that they seem mad. For me, this game is Operation Market Garden. I aim to represent each Regiment (or Batallion, if things work out) that participated with at least one platoon of representative troops at 20mil scale. The entire project is to be completed in time for Gaelcon 2010, and will ideally be run as a participation game there. This blog is a way of tracking my progress, recieving advice and feedback and generally motivating myself to keep going on this insane venture.

As such, any help that anyone can supply on the subject is greatly welcome, be it so large as to paint an entire Division for me or so small as to provide the name of a tank in XXX Corps.

PS: no, I did not notice the date before I started this. Just one of life's happy coincidences.