FIRE TEAM Air Support – Hasegawa 1/48th AV8B Harrier

Fire Team air support …….

In between life issues I managed to get a little work done on the USMC air support part of our Fire Team Skirmish gaming project. The 1/48th Hasegawa Harrier is assembled and waiting the addition (purchase) of a pilot and underwing stores as the kit comes with nether. This is the first plane I’ve built in many many years and I was definitely a little rusty. This boy has some tricky fit issues too, especially around the upper wing and lower ventral stores/undercarriage areas. A little filler and like most of my builds I’ll make up for it with the paint ….. that’s the theory anyway 🙂

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And a little inspiration for the Harrier and the Cobra/Viper I’ve got to build ….

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AGM-114 Hellfire loaded by members of the USMC(MWSS-373) onto A USMC AH-1W SuperCobra at Tikrit

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LAH Kampfgruppe – wip2 Halftracks

2nd instalment in the LAH Kampfgruppe build …

The halftrack component of the LAH build was to comprise 2x 251/1 SPW, 1x 251/2 81mm Mortar, 1x 251/9 75mm SPG and two AA halftracks.

The 251’s are all Dragon kits and are pretty straightforward although reasonably involved builds. I always assemble the roadwheels and tracks first so the when adding the steering wheels I can adjust the sit and height so that they all sit square on the ground. The interior seats require some care along with other details so these kits are not designed for the casual builder. While they have the best details if an easier wargame build is what you’re after I would recommend the Hasegawa 251. However, I like the details so onwards …….. The only (slight) mods were required to produce the two support platoon tracks. I used the 75mm gun assembly from the Hasegawa 251/9 and made a mortar using bits from the spares box.

The two AA halftracks were vastly different in terms of build quality and detail. The Hasegawa SdKfz7/1 2 cm flakvierling 38 kit is old and lacks detail by todays standards. It basically falls together though and with care to set the track properly the trick with this one will be to shine it up using the paint.

The ACE SdKfz 10/4 2cm Flak 38 is a whole lot trickier. ACE kits in general are shorter run and thus some of the modling is a little soft and requires a lot of cleanup. They make up for this by offering unusual and interesting subjects. There is no one really difficult part about this kit as it all requires care and attention to get it right. The track assembly in particular though is difficult and I drilled out and replaced the front axel with brass rod. No mesh is supplied for the side folding fighting platforms and I sourced some from the spares box. The 2cm Flak is well detailed but delicate and also needs care while building …..

Once assembled all halftracks received the standard base coat/primer of Tamiya TS3 rattlecan Desert Yellow.

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My (easyish) method of painting wheels and getting a good defined wheel rim is to first run a very thin pin wash upto and around the tire/wheel rim edge using a fine brush. Filling in the sidewall is then much simplier and should be a bit easier to get a good clean edge. Note I always paint my wheels a blueish grey rather than black …..

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Cold War REFORGER “Team Yankee” 20mm battlegroup

About 99% finished now, just gotta sort out some decent crews, probably Presier US tank crews off Ebay. Also waiting to finalise a few markings as I really need some custom bumper codes to properly represent the teams units, TF-1-78 mech and attached 1-4 armd. As mentioned before the LAV doesn’t really fit in but it’s grown on me somewhat, so much so that I might make up a ficticous Marine group of Lav25s and ITs to replace the Battalions forward Cavalry screening force.

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Merdec and Nato 3-colour camoflage – Cold War 20mm moderns

Base painting on the moderns, my approximations of Merdec Winter Verdant and standard Nato 3 colour camoflage. I didn’t have good/clear 3 views of all the vehicles, so I had to make a few guesstimations based on as many photos (inc model pics) as I could find. I’m always wary using models as references as you never know how much compromise has already been used, so the bits I couldn’t find references for are “averages” of what pictures I could get.

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Cold War 20mm US armor

A rush project for my brother, well mostly anyway : ))) Some 1/72nd cold war US armor, Hasegawa M1A1, Revell Bradley M2A2, ACE Lav-ITV and a couple of Italeri M113A1 ACAVs. I’d like to pick up a couple more Abrams and some M113 ITV’s at some stage for a Team Yankee themed battlegroup, so they’ll be finished as lateish ’80s Reforger type vehicles …. now to find some decent crews …. and some opposition.

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20mm Panzer Aufklärungs-Abteilung SdKfz 234’s

A few finished pics are needed I think to balance out the recent wip postings. So here’s another completed commission, a generic Heer late war recce group. Hasegawa 1/72md 234/1 and 3’s and a kitbashed Esci 250/3 with AB crews. The 234’s are all OOB and the 250 has Fujimi 251 front wheels and Hasegawa 251 tracks.

I just love this unit. I don’t often get the chance to fit crews in everything from scratch and the whole thing just works for me. If I was doing “standard” WW2 in 20mm instead of ’46 I’d like to make a similar unit for myself, with a few more of the tricks I’ve learnt since completeing these of course ….. ; ))))

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