A blog about miniatures, wargaming, and the people driven to ruin by them....

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Falklands: Argentine Anti-Tank Teams


I started collecting miniatures for the Falklands about 15 years ago.  At the time, I just bought whatever Combat Miniatures packs I came across.  I then moved onto ordering some miniatures from Platoon 20, having decided that 20mm was to be "my" scale for modern wargaming.  My most recent purchase for the Argentine forces were some anti-armor options from MJ Figures.

Included are 2x 3.5" Bazooka or 90mm recoiless rifle teams, and 2x 105mm recoiless rifles. 

[Insert explanation... these are M40 106mm guns, the Argentines used M68 105mm guns, but this is a good enough proxy in 20mm... also, the 3.5" and 90mm visually look similar to me]

Now... there are no crew for the 105mm guns.  What I chose to do was utilize 2 command figures from the Combat range (I have a few too many of these), and 4 near-useless figures from Platoon 20.  When I ordered from Platoon 20 I received a number of surrendered Argentine infantry... not something I found terribly usefull.  However, they appear to have their hands near the sides of their heads, so, its not a stretch to imagine them covering their ears instead of surrendering.

Or maybe I am just cheap.

There are a couple of options that might work from RH Models, unarmed crew, but for now this will be okay.

During the Falklands War, the Argentines did not use these weapons against the British armor (those 106mm guns would have knocked the crap out of Scorpions), but they seemed to have used them against British infantry.  Anyway, I like the completion of the forces in my collection.

These images especially remind me of how poorly my camera takes picture (a frequently heard lament!), these all look much better in person... but what are you going to do?  Also included are the Argentine riflemen from the bazooka pack, and a single Combat sniper... again, I have a few of these already, but decided to just paint him with the rest.
This weekend showed me, that while I may not have quite the painting skill that I once did.... I am still reasonably fast, having knocked out a slew of 1980's era 20mm modern figures.  I don't always get the chance to paint for more than an hour at a time, but I got a few hours in during the past few days.

Thanks for reading.


Friday, November 27, 2015

Afghanistan: 1980's or 1990's Mujahideen / Northern Alliance


One of the conflicts I game is the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.  I have had a "small platoon" sized force painted for years.  Last year I purchased additional miniatures and have just completed them.
These are all 20mm from RH Models, and are all good looking miniatures.  I have some of the early ones I painted based in groups, but I will probably start removing them and basing everything individually.

The back bone of this fighting force are 7x 9 man "squads", each equipped with an RPG and an lmg, either an RPK, RPD, or PK.  With that many troops to work with, it is very easy to form larger "squads" or more heavily armed ones.
There is a solid command team, easily reinforced if need be....
And plenty of support options.
There are 2x DsHK hmg teams, 2 SVD snipers, 2 2-man RPG teams, a Stinger SAM, a SA-7 SAM, and 3 extra PK lmgs.

Additionally there are a fair number of heavy weapons....
What you see there are 2x 82mm mortars, 1x B-11 (a 107mm recoiless rifle... the B stands for Big, ha ha), and 2x SPG-9 (73mm recoiless rifles).  A few crew wait nearby, ready to man whichever weapons are needed.

Now, I confess, the 82mm mortars and SPG-9s are also used by my Cold War era Soviets, so these weapons get double duty as needed.

These miniatures are meant to represent forces in the 1980's, fighting the Soviets, though they look pretty much the same as Norther Alliance fighting the Taliban in the 1990's... I suppose they could serve in some capacity as insurgents fighting coalition forces in more recent times.
It is a big mob of Mujahs, that is for sure.  They are interesting to paint... lots of muted colors, some odd to see like the muted brown-pink color.  Overall, I like the way they turned out.

Some of them have seen a bit of gaming, hope to have them all see some more soon.

Thanks for reading!


Persian Gulf Wars: Iranian Pasdaran 1980's


I have recently completed my Iranian Pasdaran forces for the Iran Iraq War.  The Pasdaran are the Revolutionary Guards of Iran, as a different military force from the regular Iranian Army.  The Pasdaran have control over the Basij, which are a voluntary revolutionary militia. 

These Pasdaran are formed and painted to represent "mid-war" forces.  They are depicted with green headbands (or painted green stripes on the helmets), as that is what I associate with the Pasdaran.  I associate the red headbands with the Basij, but, quite honestly, I am not certain of this, nor do I feel there was a set standard in Iran at the time.

This force is comprised of enough infantry to form 4x 10 man squads, each with an RPG and a PK lmg, plus a 4 man command team.  In addition there are 4 Mullah figures, religious inspiration on the battlefield.  Further direct fire support is provided by 2x jeeps with American M40 106mm recoilless rifles.  All of these miniatures are from RH Models, and are 20mm.

In the back are 3x Chieftain MBTs..... these are Airfix models, and were pretty beat up when I bought them in a large mixed lot.  With a little paint, including Iranian rondels, they don't look too bad, but not as nice as the rest of the force.  Still, those 120mm main guns might come in handy when fighting these guys here.

A little about the equipment.... the Shah had been provided with American equipment, including M60 tanks, M113 APCs, Cobra gun ships, and a variety of US artillery.  The regular Iranian army at the start of the war was armed with West German small arms, G3 rifles and MG3 lmgs, but as the war was fought large amounts of Chinese and sometimes Soviet equipment was bought and used to arm the various Revolutionary units.  Also from the time of the Shah, there were a number of Chieftain and Scorpion tanks.

For these infantry, I bought from three lines of miniatures.... primarily, from the multi-purpose range "Headbands with Beards" miniatures, using Soviet type weapons.  These guys definitely look the part for Iranian Pasdaran.  I mixed in some "Bandana" figures, also from the multi-purpose range.  I simply painted the bandana like a headband, and now I had "youthful" Iranians without beards.  Finally, I also used Iraqis in M1 helmets.... the Iranians used M1 helmets, and a whole slew of kit, so painted to match the other Pasdaran, they really fit in.  Because RH Models has such a wide range of things to buy from, this kind of mixing and matching is really easy.

You might notice a number of figures with blue-grey clothing... this was my attempt at the blue grey rain gear frequently seen in color images.  Granted, that represents only a limited portion of the overall war, but it is so distinctive, I thought it a nice touch to include.

Strangely, after starting with the Iranian regular army, they are the only force for the Iran Iraq War I don't have finished!  After painting Iraqi regulars and Republican Guard, and now the Pasdaran, I am tempted to strip the Iranian regulars and re paint them.  We shall see.

I have some thoughts about additional forces for the Pasdaran.... but I think I will hold off for now.

Hope to see some Iran-Iraq War gaming soon... thanks for reading!