Sunday, November 6, 2011

Landing Craft

Back in around 2001/2002 I wanted to run some games involving amphibious operations in the Pacific. In order to do so I had to acquire landing craft - in particular LCVPs. Since at the time there wasn't any easily available in NZ, I decided to scratch build some. The basis for my scratchbuild was a plan from a guy on the old rec.mininatures,historical newsgroup (or something like that), which I lengthened and modified by putting in guntubs and some crew.
Cardboard LCVPs.
The parts were then cut out of cardboard in slow periods on night shifts, and assembled in batches on days off shift. As I needed quite a few of these, the idea was to create a model that could take four infantry stands (In CD each model represents aprox. four real LCVPs each of which could carry around a platoons worth of troops or one light vehicle). In addition the model had to be cheap to make, and easy to produce. Detail was deliberately sacrificed in order to produce 20 models in a short period of time. The idea was to produce 48 models as suggested in a CP as what should be available for each USMC Division landing, but was scaled back for reasons of sanity.
Nearly a decade later and still in good shape.
 The part of the project was to give each LCVP a coxswain, two .30 cal, machine guns, and two gunners. Not all of the LCVPs received these as I wasn't entirely happy with the ones I had done.
The only one which got gunners and a coxswain. The cardboard shield need redoing.
The basic premise of quantity having a quality all of its own has been proven quite successfully by these craft, as they have made appearances on more than my own games, having been borrowed for a few Normandy games, in addition to my own games and my large Tarawa mega game of CD.
Another view showing how the rear has been squared off for easy construction.
The simple interior makes it easy to put stands in and out.

I also tried making a simple scratch built cardboard LCA. I based my model off a resin one (maker unknown) I bought at a bring and buy at the Irish Society Hall in Christchurch.
The first and only effort. Difficult to make.
This project was shelved as I came to the conclusion that the effort put in to this project could be better spent on others. However, I have always wanted more than two LCAs...
Another view. Detail adds complexity, complexity requires effort.
The major flaw on the LCA is that the 'V' shape at the rear should be pointing to the back and not the front as I have it. This is only a minor flaw and has never been pointed out to me by others, perhaps out of kindness. I however noticed just after I painted it, and it still bugs me. Should I make more, this will get fixed.


  1. I am impressed with the scale and industrious nature of your construction :)