Friday, 31 May 2013

In Maginot We Trust Part 2

One for my friend Virginia here. She claimed the Renault FT-17s featured in this post were like little ducks with big eyes. I fear these will get the same girly treatment.

A couple of Renault R-35s which I picked up at Salute and got around to building last night. They are a really fast build, each one took about ten minutes. From a Japanese manufacturer (S-Models) and with two toys per box a nice addition to the burgeoning DLM. Looking forward to some bright camo schemes on these two after all that German grey.

Eagle eyed readers will note that the box claims the toys are captured examples.
I say PAH!

I did one with a dome top and one with a flat top

I particularly liked the track arrangement on these toys. They come as a single piece but the are quite flexible. Careful with that cutting out, Eugene, but the effect is nice. The kits also came with the short barrel 37mm gun which will come in handy elsewhere. Also included were some brass parts, for example metal covers for the exhausts and lugs various. Needless to say these are being left off as extraneous matter. If anyone wants them drop me a line.

Off to Jumpin' At The Woodside and the forecast is GOOOOOOOD!

PS S-Models are available from PSC

Finished! At last!

Good morning!

I'm going on a well-earned break tonight and won't be back on line until Tuesday next. So to keep you going  this is the first of two posts today. First up, as the title suggests, is something that took me some time to complete. I'm quite proud of it even though it did drive me to despair on more than one occasion. I think the relentless grey was partly to blame. It reminded me of where pebble-dash goes to die. No matter, tis done!

As you can see from the shots it's a big beast. Huge in fact but that is to be expected from this 'army' in miniature. It was designed to be able to fight, drive and eat for three days without re-supply and on the whole it did this. That the Germans' acts of extreme folly during The Battle of France were crowned with laurels is immaterial at this distance of time. But just imagine what a more resolute and determined Allied command could have done to Guderian's panzer corps........

Enough what if. Here's the toys:

1940ish Panzer Division

Front Row L to R
Rear HQ Bus, BefiehlPz, Engineers Bn, AA Regt, 1 Pz Abt, 2 Pz Abt, Recce Bn

Back Row L to R
AT Regt & LOG, Motor Inf Abt 1-4, Div POL, Div LOG, Arty Reg & LOG


Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Wednesday Wish

UPDATE 03/06/13: The model with the most votes was Matilda II! Thank you all who voted.

Good people of the Blogosphere! It is time to exercise your franchise in the latest poll to pop-up. I have a number of models to make but there is, you'll be relieved to hear, a shortlist of just four.

Airfix 25pdr & Quad

Italeri Canone da Bang 149/40

Airfix Matilda MkII

Italerai ABM42 with 47mm A/T Gun

Your votes count!

Tuesday, 28 May 2013


Built-Up Areas and the fighting in them can be deadly for tanks and infantry alike. When the Germans sent their tanks into Warsaw in 1939 the Poles knocked out a colossal number. So, best to be avoided then. But you can't have a MB battlefield without BUAs, well, maybe in The Desert, but generally you'll need them.

I've knocked up some BUAs from some stuff I had in the 'Use It One Day' box. The tower blocks are nearly all kids play blocks with some roofed housing made from balsa. The resin country cottages represent villages. The brick factory, there's always a brick factory, is another play block with a dowel chimney. Painted grey and drybrushed with white. The windows and doors I painted quickly with little regard for right-angles and other such nonsense.

They're mounted on old gift cards with a PVA/gravel mix. Painted green/drybrush yellow for a bit of colour against all the grey. Nice and quick to knock up and ideal for the job in hand.

UPDATE: I'm now following AI's blog, it's ace!

Monday, 27 May 2013

1940ish German Infantry Division

I've been quiet for the last couple of weeks. Mainly due to going dancing a lot and working on today's offering. Swing dancing has become very important to me: I go to class three times per week now. Mind you  I'm improving at an exponential rate so it's worth it. This Friday coming I am off on my first dance-weekender! Three days of classes and socials: must pace myself or it'll be curtains. Lots of my friends are going but I'll be making lots more. Some are camping but not this hep-cat; I'm hotelling it and a good thing too! I'll be sure to take my camera to get lots of action shots.

Anyways, enough dance waffle. What you want is some pictures of figures and here they are:

Megablitz 1940ish German Infantry Division

Lesney VW, Zvezda & Matchbox Figures.

They should be on one stand. 
But as they are is fine should they wish to leave the VW and go for a walk.

Mercedes-Benz Radio Truck
Converted Matchbox truck.
I know it's modern. Call a solicitor if you're that bothered.

Three Infantry Regiments. Each of three battalions.
A mix of Caesar & Airfix figures.

Divisional Pioneer Battalion. 
Mean & lean Caesar figures with a Zvezda SdKfz251

Divisional Fusilier Battalion taking a sneaky peek.
Zvezda figures lying down on the job.

Divisional Artillery Regiment.
Zvezda 75mm infantry gun & crew.
Days Gone By LOG/limber.
Caesar groom.

Divisional Anti-Tank Regiment
Revell 'Doorknocker',
Airfix crew,
Days Gone By LOG/limber,
Caesar groom.

Grub's up!
Divisional LOG Column.
Also the LAST Horch I will ever make.

The Division on parade


Update: Just noticed the blog has gone over 10,000 views. Thank you everyone!

Sunday, 26 May 2013

BEF Bits

More Megablitzing with the BEF. Well, some of it, and, since it wasn't all that big anyway, I'm probably halfway there already!

What we have for you today is:

Lorry transport which can double as either a Brigade's transport or LOG vehicle. But not both.

A dedicated LOG vehicle. Commandeered heavy haulage for Lord Gort's brave boys.

A Vickers Medium Mk II tank. Now I know none of these tanks saw combat in France but it's what I've got. So it gets used.

I like the RAF roundels on the vehicles. It aids with recognition, my eyesight's not what it was, and looks quite charming.


PS Welcome to new follower Fraxinus; thanks for following!

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Percussion Adjustment

All hail His Serene Highness The Grand Tarboosh!

As is well known HSHTGH is an advocate of the modern: rifled artillery, radio-telephony and making Anahuaco like Tarbooshia. This is right and proper but HSH has not abandoned the old ways entirely. No! As a clear-sighted leader he knows his troops respond well to a perfectly timed beating. Able to send the commands of The Tarboosh over great distances and unlikely to have a power failure; we present to the world the latest addition to HSH's Household Brigade!

So, running dogs of Anahuaco, tremble before the Drums of Doom and flee from the Sticks of Slaughter!

The figure is, of course, a Mameluke drummer from Napoleon I's Imperial Guard. All I did was base him up and give him a coat of varnish. Oh and straighten one of his slaughtering sticks.

Updates as they happen!

Monday, 13 May 2013

Artillery... a bit like drummers. They sometimes forget when to come in but when they do it's Ian Paice As Thunder God (Why didn't you pick: Buddy Rich, Gene Krupa, Keith Moon, Neil Peart, Ginger Baker, Cozy Powell, Mick Avory, Topper Headon or John Bonham? Easy, they're in other artillery units). 

Which brings me rather neatly to today's offering. An addition to the 1940ish PzDiv in the form of a toy 105mm leFH 18 to represent the divisional artillery regiment. The tractor/LOG unit is one of those Krupp-Protzes I got cheap a while back. This division is going to be well supplied with them in various roles.

HOT NEWS! This just in: scored a Revell SdKfz 7 which will serve as the 105mm gun's prime mover and LOG vehicle!

The toys are Zvezda's 105mm Haubitze & Matchbox's Krupp Protze truck. All painted, based and flocked by me.



Sunday, 12 May 2013

Spring 2013 & Brum In The Rain

Couple of shots of blossoming vegetation in my back garden. Plus some images I snapped in Brum yesterday (12/5/13).

Beautiful Cherry Blossom

Ivy, Fig Trees, 
Yellow Flowers (ID please?)
More Cherry Blossom

Mint, Chives, Garlic

Digbeth In Bloom
To think Prince Rupert & his gangsters once attacked Brum up this very road.

The Selfish's Building

H Turns His Back On Mammon

The Level Foreground Makes Me Think Of The Opening Scenes Of Stingray.
Attention, Marineville!!
Saint Martin's In-The-Bullring

No Idea.......

Brum's Cathedral Saint Phillip's
Set In Pigeon Park.
Home of yoof loudness since the year dot. 
The park not the Catherdral that is.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

High Power To Berlin

The Sov Arty Div is finally completed with the arrival of its High Power Regiment. The toy is an Airfix 5.5in gun converted into a 152mm Gun/Howitzer as per the teachings of Tim Gow. The tractor unit is converted from a toy road mender I found in a bargain bin my local toy shop. The crew are left over toys from the Italerai ZiS 76mm guns and Zvezda 85mm AA gun kits.

And the gun commander has only got one hand. How heroic is that?

Friday, 10 May 2013

AufklärungsBataillon Has No Direct English Translation....

....But who cares?! We all know it means Recce and that's good enough.

So, we have the first part of the 1940ish PzDiv's Recce toys. First up is a m/c combo sporting a sizzling MG34; ideal for a snoop & scoot recce. Also pictured is an SdKfz 232 done up as an SdKfz 234 to confuse the enemy. Cunning, no? The remainder of the AufKlaBat is stuck in a convoy somewhere between here and Ebay. But the less said about that the better. Loose lips sink German ships as well.

The 234/232 is the trusty Italerai kit. A fairly simple and quick build apart from the 'look-at-me-&-I'll-snap' wheel mountings. Once again most of the extraneous matter has been left off the toy. Painted in Vallejo 'German Grey'; a wash with 'Dervlan Mud'; some mud splatter; based and flocked. The m/c combination is the Zvezda kit. Beautifully crafted but fiddly. The biker figure, despite my best efforts, does not have his hands on the handlebars. Still, it's a toy so it doesn't matter. YAY!!

SdKfz 232 ('onest, Guv) & Evel Von Knievel

Sunday, 5 May 2013

The Herbs

As keen-eyed readers will have noticed my blog title now contains the word 'gardening'. I say gardening but at the moment it's growing things in tubs and pots. When my landlord finally gets the back garden sorted each of the four flats will have a quarter plot to grow vegetables on. Plus the usual grassed areas of course.

One thing I would like to do is host a games day here this year. I have plenty of room for games indoors and outdoors: large living room, large covered patio area and of course the garden. There's a first rate chippy nearby and I will bake one of my Dorset Apple Cakes. Clotted cream and tea will accompany the baked treat.

Anyway here's some pictures from my burgeoning herb garden to keep you amused:

Spearmint & Orange Mint

Common Thyme & Golden Thyme

Updates as they happen.

In Maginot We Trust Part 1

History tells us this was a misplaced trust and those tricksy PanzerHobbitzes went round the Maginot Line and very nearly won the war. I'm reading 'Pillar of Fire' by Ronald Atkin at the moment. I've only got as far as the Allied advance to the Dyle but am enjoying the first person narratives from veterans. Compared to what came later in WW2 the Battle of France reads like a war from another century and possibly another planet. My interest in the period 1939-1942 is being further stimulated by reading Evelyn Waugh's 'Sword of Honour' and Len Deighton's 'Blitzkrieg'. 

Anyway, not being one to slouch about where toys are concerned here's the latest output from Fabrique National Champfroid de Suttone. It's the beginnings of my version of a Division Légère Mécanique (DLM) which means I'll use what toys I have available; look in my Terms of Reference, it says I can do this.

Thus far we have a Radio Truck, Regiment of Dragones Portes, 2 Battalions of FT-17 Tanks, POL & LOG columns. Most of the vehicles are from the cheap Lledo stall in Birmingham's Rag Market. The motorised infantry ride in a converted brewery truck. The POL column was a frying oil delivery bowser. The FT-17s are from Armourfast.

Radio Truck

LOG & POL Columns

Le División 
(quite well equipped going by some of the horror stories I'm reading)

Les Dragons Portes

Brigade des Chars de Combates

Au revoir!

Friday, 3 May 2013

Panzers, East! (Or, More Likely, West!)

Here are the latest vehicles from Die Cotgrafische Maschinenwerke. I had great fun leaving off all the non-essential paraphernalia from these toys. Headlights etc., who needs 'em? Not my glorious 1940ish Toy Panzer Division that's whom.

Schutzen Regiment 2 of the motorised infantry, not panzer-grenadiers, not yet. A LOG column which once delivered McVitie's biscuits from a cardboard box. A Panzer II masquerading as a Befiehl Panzer (who remembers the scene in The Battle of Britain when all those types are hooting 'Fuehrer befiehl!' at Gitler's ravings?). And a bus for the Rear HQ chaps complete with radio operator in front in case anyone asks for a return ticket to the shops. Mistakes like that can hold up an entire toy offensive. Or destroy the credibility of an offensive toy.

The Pics:

Gratuitous Group Shot



Schutzen Regiment Abteilungs I & II
LOG Column

Close-Up Abt II

Updates as they happen.