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Shiny New Bolt Action British.

At last! After the rumour of a new British sprue from Warlord started circulating probably 3 if not 4 years ago my plans for a British force can finally take shape.

British were the first figures I bought and built and I had put together a 1000+ point army. I was pretty happy with them but the rumour started and despite my intention to make this the biggest force I own its only now that I can really go for it.

The plan:

-Complete the whole of 7 Bn the Hampshire Regiment ( with relevant attachments) as part of 43rd Wessex Division in Normandy and North West Europe.

-As much as possible complete it in plastic

-Create all the appropriate options to make up lists from the various campaign books and be able to use the army for multiple gaming systems, Bolt Action, Chain of Command....

In order to do this justice I've been dipping into several sources of reference and since its on the doorstep and lockdown is easing up at last a trip into the Royal Hampshire Regt Museum in Winchester will be necessary.

What to say about the new box? There are several Unboxing videos and articles out there already (notably check out You Tube and F 4 Freddie which is a channel from my Friend Adam ). Overall its a welcome addition, the quality is what we have come to expect although I did find the mould lines were quite prominent in comparison to other releases. Its easy to sit and criticise a new release for missed opportunities and all those bits that haven't been included. But it is truly welcome and I am hopeful of great things. There are some very nice touches, dust cover on the 2 inch Mortar as an example and the inclusion of Mk 2 Stens means that another project ( involving some dubious 'Polish Paratroopers exercising in Norfolk) has taken a step closer.

Kaprals Jankowski and kunicki made up of Warlord British Para bodies with arms from the New Infantry set.

I suspect that the master mould has been created like the 8th army/commonwealth sprues with some bits that can be swapped out- the head options- so this sprue will likely be the basis for a replacement of the Commando set in due course. That's a great idea but perhaps reducing the PIATS and 2 inch mortars ( how many do you need!?) so that Radios, a sniper rifle etc.. could be included in a set would rival the Perry releases which do contain such. That is something that Warlord could consider for future releases however, according to Warlord 'there are a possible 396 variations that can be made before the consideration of optional heads and additional accessories'. I'm not going to put that to the test, but certainly after building my first platoon I can believe it. In addition since I am using an equal number of the older sprue and parts from the Eight army box I'm hoping to get an opportunity to maximise conversion possibilities- the kneeling figures being on opposite knees already opens lots of possibilities one of which can be seen further down . Sadly no prone figures so the Eight Army one will be getting big boy trousers.

I should also mention that with some careful planning the spare arm sets of the new sprue work well with the old sprue so for those of you who don't like the fiddlyness of fixing rifles to independent arms this will be a bonus. Examples will follow below

Metal Crews will be getting replaced for support weapons and vehicles wherever possible. As can be seen in this WIP picture here the metals are just small in comparison so a bit of butchery and/or scratch building will be in order.

So out of the racing blocks and 4 platoon and a couple of attachments are built. When I manage to get to my local store to pick up a pot or two of suitable 'English Uniform' the painting marathon can begin. That's another positive thing in this release both in box and online decent paint guide for both British and Canadians.

photos of the Work in Progress follow with a few notes on parts.

First up Platoon command and the only metal figure just because I think its lovely and full of character.

Pl Comd with Signaller and Pl Sgt

Mix of old and new sprues with 1 section gun group, Eight Army arms on the Bren

1 Section Rifle Group again a mix of old and new. As ever ( curse photography) I can see more bits that need attention before I put brush to figure!

2 Section Gun Group- my favourite Bren team so far, this illustrates what I mean about the opposed legs. This will allow a range of posing on crew weapons so plastic Vickers crew here we come!

2 Section Rifle Group

3 Section Gun Group this was the first that I did before getting the new box. The Whole of 3 section is made up of Old Sprue and Eight Army arms with converted rifles. so rolled sleeves. Normandy can be 'SCORCHIO!' and I say that having grown up in the south and France. So for me it was logical to portray that on at least some of my troops. For anyone interested in doing actions in Italy, this will work very well.

I had stared painting these in the same scheme as i had used previously, however I will be going for Vallejo English Uniform shortly.

Flamethrower team- I cut the Lifeboy Flame thrower off the metal figure ( again scale issue) and stuck it on a plastic. Arms were from a British Para with a Mk 5 Sten however I cut away the Sten and replaced with plastic rod.

2 Inch Mortar- one of the things that annoys me with BA is that it ignores that 2 Inch mortars were a standard issue item with any British platoon ( and continued to be until Afghanistan when the issue of 2 40mm grenade launches per section kind of replaced it- personally still think that's a mistake close support Mortar is good!)

Yes I have made a plastic Prone PIAT. I am tired of the lazy ' lets just carry the thing right across Europe' sculpting of the PIAT. It is meant to be fired so show it being fired. ( ok I'll get off my box now)

And finally a sniper team. this one made with British Para Figures to give the snipers camouflaged Denison smocks.

To finish this time this is how these guys are going to be based

This is a Mad Bob Miniatures 4.2 Heavy British mortar. The ammo box mortar pit ammo box revetment I created on Greyboard with my Laser engraver/cutter. But its the base that I draw your attention to. this s a simplified version of basing from the two You Tube Lukes. Luke from Geek Gaming Scenics and Luke from Boulder Creek Railroad- check them out- and I'm really happy with the result so much so that I keep looking back on my older method, thinking 'Amateur that's going to have to be replaced.

OK, enough already this is a bit of biggie. I will be returning to this soon with 5 and 6 platoons and I'm really looking forward to doing crewed weapons in plastic along with FOO teams and of course Sappers!!!

See you soon



6, 5 out.

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