Friday, 13 May 2016

WW2 - Planning a new army

Well, not a whole army.  Just the infantry element for my BGK germans.

I had added a number of single based figures to my collection which had been put together for PBI. The problem was now that I had different basing schemes and some of the older figures were showing their age. I wanted a Waffen SS themed collection so I ordered three packs of BF SS Infantry and was sorely disappointed in the quality of the castings, a good variety of figures but they didn't float my boat.  The alternative...take some of the LW Germans from Peter Pig carve off the pockets, add smocks where appropriate and add helmet covers.  From other packs take off the heads and do some head swaps and then the same job with a scalpel and milliput.  With that idea in mind I ordered a rough sample of packs from Peter Pig and tried out a couple of ideas.  This is the rough idea of what they looked like.  First time I have really used milliput so the helmets do look a little overdone but as that will be the first thing you see when looking down on the table it gives me something to spend time on painting.

So, with the packs on the table, I took out all the unique figures from the following packs to see what I could do with.  I didn't order any specific firing, prone or kneeling packs.  This is what I have to work with

  • 216. Tank Hunters in caps. This gave me two useable figures. One carrying a tellermine the other with AT grenades.  I can either use them as is or do a head swap from the German heads in Range 6.
  • 125. DAK LMG.  I had a pack of these left over from another project. This threw up one useable figure which is a walking carrying an ammo box and a belt of ammo slung around the body.  Again an option to either use as is or do a head swap.
  • 68. LW Rifles Advancing.  Three rifle armed figures walking.
  • 459. LW Advancing under fire. Three rifle armed figures in a more animated pose one of whom has a ammo belt around his shoulders.
  • 455. LW German Grenadiers. One standing figure throwing, one standing preparing a grenade and one kneeling figure throwing a grenade. Not massively useful but I will use the odd figure here and there.
  • 450. LW LMG Advancing. All MG42 armed. One carrying the MG over the shoulder, one at the trail with an ammo box and one with the MG at the low carry.  All very useful figures and as I only want a platoon the one pack is enough.
  • 336. LW Tripod MG42.  Three two man teams of a gunner and loader both kneeling and 2 kneeling gun crew commanders.  The gunner and loader will stay as they are and I will use the kneeling ammo carrier from 454 to make up three guns.  No variation in these so might see if I can recover a couple of the BF ones that I didn't like with a head swap.
  • 454. LW Ammo Carriers.  I have used these figures before and they are cracking figures for any force.  All three are festooned with ammo belts. The one kneeling has an ammo box, there is one standing pointing carrying another ammo box and one advancing under fire with a belt around his shoulders.
  • 451. LW SNCO with SMG. Three well animated NCO figures all armed with MP40.
A good mix of poses which are well detailed and animated.  So what do I need to make up a platoon of either Grenadiers or Pioneers?
  • Each section of 8 men is split into a "rifle" group of 5 figures and an MG team of 3.  The rifle group can be armed with a mix of SMG and rifles as can the other figures in the MG team so I have some flexibility.  I probably want two SMG armed figures in a section but if I keep it at just an NCO figure to start with it keeps the pack count down.
  • The Platoon HQ is 6 Figures strong and contains an Officer.
  • Support options for the platoon are a medic, Tripod MG team & 3 man loader team, 81mm Mortar team & 3 man loader team, 50mm Mortar team & 3 man loader team and an AT Gun & 3 man loader team.
  • The differences between Grenadiers and Pioneers is that the rifle group can take upto 2 demo charges, and each section can swap out a rifle figure for a Flamethrower and a minesweeper.
As I can also add separate sections of either Grenadiers or Pioneers I am going to start off with a Grenadier Platoon and an attached Pioneer section.
  • 4 LMG teams made up of:
    • 450. LW MG Advancing. (4 Figures with 4 in the spares pile)
    • 454. LW Ammo Carriers. (8 Figures)
  • 4 Rifle Groups made up of:
    • 451. LW SNCO with SMG. (4 Figures with 4 in the spares pile)
    • 68. LW Rifles. (8 Figures*)
    • 459 LW Rifles. (8 Figures*)
    • 216. Tank Hunters (1 with Tellermines)
    • 461. LW Flamethrower. (1 Figure from existing forces)
    • 462. LW Mineteam (1 Detector and 1 Tellermine from existing forces)
  • Platoon HQ Group
    • Officer from an existing base
    • NCO from the spares pile
    • 4 Rifle figures from the ones thrown up by the Pioneer additions of Tellermines, Flamethrowers and Detectors, or the 455. Grenadiers or the DAK Ammo carrier.
End result is a complete infantry platoon from the packs I bought and shopping list of two packs (68 & 459) to add a second Infantry platoon.


  1. This sounds like a plan. It will be interesting to see the painted figures. Have you planned what camo design you'll go with? The good thing is that you can mix and match uniform pieces with some figures wearing feldgrau pants and even helmets, with a mix of designs for smocks, pants and helmet covers. Nice work.

    1. Plane tree is my plan, but I have just done a test set of a section using a black undercoat and I am not happy with it as my eyesight isn't as good as it was so will look at using a white undercoat next time. The milliput has come out reasonably well. I have missed a couple of places which I need to watch out for on the next figures