Saturday 18 December 2021

Skytrex Warsaw Pact Troops

 Some time ago I purchased a large number of Skytrex Firefight 20 figures from the UK. While long out of production these figures still have a great deal of character and their sculpting style lends itself well to my style of painting.

Armed with a mix of AK-47s, SVD-63s, and RPKs

The purchase was made up of from a variety of their modern ranges, including:
  • Dogs of War
  • Vietnam War (both North Vietnamese and US Forces)
  • Cold War East Germans
  • Cold War Soviets
I like the look of these larger stands with prone figures.

Unfortunately there wasn't quite enough of the East Germans or the Soviets to make a reasonable stand alone force. So I decided to combine the figures into one force and paint them all in my usual Soviet paint scheme.

Crew served support weapons.

One of the nice things about this selection of figures is the number of support weapons that is present. I was particularly pleased to discover two packs of  AT-3 Sagger ATGMs

Close up of the Sagger stands.

When these figures were produced information on Soviet and Warsaw Pact produced weapon systems was hard to get and was often based on blurry photographs and speculation.As a result the detaails and scaling of some of the weapon systems are a little off.

AGS-17 stands.

The biggest error is in the size of the AGS-17 Automatic Grenade Launcher (AGS). It is rather larger than it should be. I did debate replacing them with a more accurate version, but I decided against it as it would have involved a great deal of effort removing the weapon from the gunner (it is a one piece casting) for ultimately marginal benefit.

82mm Mortar stands.

The mortars are most likely meant to represent the model 82-PM-41 82mm mortar a WW2 era system that soldiered on in the Cold War. While the 2B14 Podnos 82mm mortar had entered service during the 1980s, the bipod for that weapon attaches further down a much longer barrel, so it is very unlikely to be intended to represent that weapon system. 

Other support weapons include a couple of RPG-7s and a pair of SA-7 Grail MANPADS.  The SA-7s are rather chunky and held at an angle suggestive of being an anti tank weapon rather than an anti aircraft weapon.

Also included in the selection were two figures that could be used in Command Decision as command stands, and three figures that could be used as radio stands or as FO/FAC stands.

Overall I am very happy with how these figures have turned out. I can only hope the rest of the figures turn out as well.

Sunday 5 December 2021

Soviet Anti-Tank Rifles

 I am currently attempting to finish a number of unfinished projects that are overdue for completion. This weekends effort was finishing off some WW2 Soviet Anti Tank Rifles (ATRs) of which some had been lurking around uncompleted since at least 1999 - if not even earlier!

I have started using larger bases than the standard Command Decision base for some prone figures and support weapons - particularly where the figures the protection a larger base can provide. 

Esci Russians converted using resin Leva Productions parts

The first two stands  use figures from the Esci Russian Soldiers set (PSR review here). Two prone LMG gunners had their DP-27 LMGs removed and respectively replaced with  PTRS-41 and PTRD-41 ATRs from the Leva Productions WW2 Russian Pioneer Equipment set  that also contains dogs with anti tank mines, demolition charges, flame throwers, and various other combat engineer stores. (Henk of Holland has details on Leva Productions and other Leva sets)

Spot the Clone 

One of the figures on the right hand stand is a scaled down clone of an Airfix 1/32 scale Russian. I have a number of these Hong Kong produced figures spread throughout my Soviet forces.

More ATR stands

Since I was already doing some ART stands I figured I could paint up some metal figures of unknown manufacture that I acquired in the early 2000s but had done nothing with. I had enough to make four ATR stands - each equipped with a PTRS-41. 

ATR stands or AMR stands 

I hope to be able to integrate these stands into both WW2 Soviet and postwar Soviet/Russian equipped forces as either ATR stands or as Anti-Materiel Rifle (AMR) stands. Post WW2 both the PTRS-41 and PTRD-41 ATRs have seen service, with the most recent use being in the current conflict in the Ukraine as an AMR (click here for more information). Given that, it would also seem very likely that they would be used in that way by various forces in Twilight 2000.