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  • Avatar photoFrank Ryan


    1 and 4. Wargaming and modelling, but you wish to spend the bulk of your time wargaming, not preparing. Don’t forget that Modelling can produce that yet to be produced model that you need (/want! and I always want more).

    • Consider buying second hand painted armies on Ebay or similar platform – you will always get the bulk vehicles then get what’s missing from the manufacturers (hint: the tanks and mechanised infantry vehicles will be there in heaps, the supporting units may not be. Of course, you may decide you don’t want to model the supporting units and can skip them altogether – but where’s the fun in that!).
    • As regards simplifying painting, start by making all your German units Yellow or Gray  (the German WWII mustard colour was used in later units Grey earlier, combined with other colours as appropriate but I’d stick to just one colour initially) and your Russian Units Olive Drab or White.
    • There are some free 1/285 Paper models that may also interest you (good for buildings and other scenery, I don’t use paper for this small a scale – too fiddly).

    2. You want more than one model so I suggest you look at historical formations and then decide how many models you wish to represent these formations with. Of course, various rulesets will recommend/mandate ratios.

    • I prefer company sized units modelled 1:1 in 15mm and I include some support units like Artillery, Engineering/Pioneer/Bridging, Medical, Supply, Air and HQ units.
    • I start off with a reconnaisance company (Commonwealth term Squadron), an armoured company  (Commonwealth term Squadron), a mechanised company and the supporting units as listed. Each company will be between 20 and 40 vehicles, depending on what you are modelling and how depleted your unit is from prior combat.
    • As an example, a Gepanzert (Amoured) Pazergrenadier company from 901st Panzergrenadier Lehr Regiment in July 1944 contained 28 vehicles at full strength – 2 motorcycles, 1 Kubelwagen, 3 Kettenkrad, 4 Sdkfz 251/10, 2 Sdkfz 251/3, 12 Sdkfz 251/1, 2 Sdkfz 251/2, 2 Sdkfz 251/9 – spread across a Company HQ, 3 Panzergrenadier Platoons and a Heavy Platoon including HQ, Heavy Gun, Heavy Machine Gun and Mortar Sections.
    • Attrition – 2nd Company 101st Heavy SS Panzer Battalion (Commander Michael Wittman) nominal strength was 14 Tiger tanks, but deploying in Normandy they only had 6 tanks, 2 of which required urgent maintenance. And, from my “allied” perspective, this was a good thing.

    3. Scale 6mm – GHQ is a good choice.

    • There are lots of others – google search will show lots more (check postage from the manufacturers to your country – this may have a significant impact on overall price. I am in Australia so overseas postage ranges from hardly noticeable to “forget it!”).
    • I tend to use plastic models (long time aversion to keeping lead away from children and now grandchildren) and Butler’s ( works for me. If you decide to try them, get a small order first – many don’t like the quality but I like their variety and find their quality acceptable and improving with a new resin formula.
    •               This advice goes for whatever manufacturer you are considering.

    Have a great day, Frank

    Avatar photoFrank Ryan

    Stephan, Four questions.

    1. Are you going to wargame or just model?

    2. Regardless, are you looking at modelling just one each of (for example) a particular half track, all variants of a particular half-track, real life formations, or a scaled down representation of these. A friend of mine can identify every mark of Spitfire and is really picky about them, whereas I am a bit of a Philistine and don’t really care.

    3. What scale? Or are you prepared to use different scales?

    4. What sort of models are you looking to create? Really detailed with accurate paint jobs, or close enough and cheap beats detail any day? I use both approaches.

    For Germany, I have a stack of German half tracks and trucks with small numbers of tanks and some 1946ish planned vehicles. Works for me. In reality, the Germans used a lot of horses for transportation even late in the war. I don’t.

    Have a great day, Frank

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