13 May 2024

US Army Europe and US Marine Corps Data Cards!

 People started asking about US Data Cards years ago when I wasn't the one creating them and the creator at the time was doing it out of the goodness of his heart - and was probably focussed on the nations that excited him the most.  So the US Cards never ended up getting done.

Until today!

US Army Europe Data Cards

USMC Data Cards

Hopefully these will have the access issues sorted right from the start!  As always I'm happy for anyone to point out mistakes or concerns and am perfectly willing to change things where necessary.

A couple of vehicles are out of sync with their compatriots - i.e. on the wrong page, but you'll have to forgive me for that as moving the cards around is not that simple - so they are where they are!

The cards can also be access through the Cards Tab at the top of the page.

In other news, just for the sheer hell of it, I'm working on a 9th Infantry Division (Motorized) List and have already completed the majority of their Data Cards.

After that I'm going to look to doing Swedish and Finnish Army Lists.  Anyone who is happy to share useful information, documents, links etc would be gladly appreciated.  I'm always happy to give kudos to others.

I've also managed to get a bit of painting done so hopefully that will show up here soon as well.

That's all for now.



05 May 2024

A whole new bunch of AFV Data Cards!

 So it's taken a while but today I've added a bunch of new AFV Data Cards for several NATO nations.  I've also updated the Dutch AFV Cards I added back in February - and updated the link in that post.  I'll add it again here for completeness sake.  Here's a little taster

In addition to AFVs, I've also added the soft skin vehicles of each nation as I thought that might prove useful.  Any comments on that would be appreciated.

All the new cards (and the old UK, West Germany and Soviet ones) can be found in the Data Cards tab up above.  I'll also add them all here:

Belgium AFV Data Cards

Canada AFV Data Cards

Denmark AFV Data Cards

Netherlands AFV Data Cards

Norway AFV Data Cards

I've made an adjustment to the gun stats for the 76mm L23A1 found on the Scorpion tank, and other vehicles with the Scorpion tank turret such as the Canadian Cougar FSV.  Originally I had the L23A1 as only being able to fire HE rounds, which had an Armour Penetration of "3" - making it one of the worst performing guns in the game.  I decided this wasn't providing a fair representation of what this gun could achieve with its HESH round, so I gave it stats that were not quite as good as the 76mm gun on the Danish M41DK tank but better that the original 76mm gun from the M41.  I hope that makes sense, and helps give the Scorpion tank back a bit of punch.

Finally, as I was going through the each of the nation's original AFV data tables I found a few missing details, so I've tried to fix all those that I've come across.  Please let me know if you have any issues with decisions that I've made.

Posts like these never seem to garner any comments, but if you look at these and find any errors, please let me know so I can correct them.  Happy for any constructive positive or negative comments.  I think I failed to find 1 or maybe 2 decent side profile pics of vehicles on the cards.  I you have any that match these missing pics, please let me know.

USMC and USAEUR AFV Data Cards are next on the list.



09 February 2024

Brand New Dutch AFV Cards

 In honour of completing my first Dutch unit, I contacted Greg in the UK who originally did the BAOR, West German and Soviet cards to see if I could get non-pdf copies of those cards, so I could create some more for the other nations covered in the game - starting of course with the Dutch.

Unfortunately he has lost all the files with the old cards, but was able to steer me in the right direction with another template - which I was able to use to generate this new set of cards - the first in what I hope will be a whole series of new cards to cover all the nations that don't currently have them.

I may even redo the original cards, as I have found some info missing - and I've made a few updates since Greg so kindly did them for me.

Anyway - here is the link to the new Dutch cards:

Dutch AFV Data Cards

You can also find them in the "Data Cards" Tab at the top of the page.

Any feedback or errors found and pointed out, will be greatly appreciated.  I'm about half way through the Belgians and will probably do Norwegians after them.  Any votes to do another nation first won't be summarily ignored!

Thanks and I hope you find these useful


30 January 2024

Dutch 103rd Reconnaissance Battalion

Hello 2024 - a year I've decided that I will attempt to have a focus, and that focus will be Americans!  I have 3 US WW2 armies that need to be completed (and started!) and various USAEUR forces and a USMC force for the Cold War that need to be completed.

At the same time, I'm also trying to complete some Cold War Recce units for my (completely in my head at the moment) new Cold War game.

So what better way to start 2024, than with a Dutch force!  It all makes perfect sense to me!

So this is both a new project and more importantly, a completed project.  It's a full strength a platoon from the Dutch 103rd Reconnaissance Battalion based at Seedorf in West Germany circa 1985.  I think it has a great mix of vehicles - including a couple (the standard M113 and the M106) that you don't really find much in the Royal Dutch Army.

Here's all the vehicles that make up the unit.

The unit consists of the Platoon Commander in his M113 C&V command and reconnaissance vehicle, armed with a 25mm autocannon (centre front), a reconnaissance group (centre back), a tank group (obvious), a rifle group (in the M113) and a mortar group (in the M109).

Here's a close-up of the Commander in his M113 C&V


The reconnaissance group is made up of 4 x M113 C&V split into 2 teams, each with 2 M113 C&V.

Here's some close-ups of the various M113 C&V's that make up the two reconnaissance teams. Team leaders are shown in the the turret hatch.

All the M113 C&Vs are 3D prints. The Platoon Commanders vehicle has been further modified by drilling out the drivers hatch and making a new open hatch. The commanders are all AB figures and the driver of the Platoon Commander's vehicle is an Airfix figure from their Dakota Skytrain kit, with a green-stuff dodgy headset added.

The tank group is made up of 2 Leopard 2NL


Both Leopards are old Matchbox models, and I've added 3D printed Dutch style smoke launchers and wire reel, plus Elhiem FN MAGs which they used rather than the German MG-3s. The Tank Commander is an Elhiem figure.

The rifle group is mounted in a standard M113

Again the M113 is a 3D print, the M113 commander is an Elhiem NATO driving figure, while all the infantry are also Elhiem NATO figures

The mortar group is mounted in a standard M106

The M106 is a 3D print and the mortar crew are again Elhiem figures

So that's my first completed non-American project for 2024.

Thanks for looking and have a great New Year!


27 November 2023

Norwegian Home Guard

 Very quick post today as I'm trying to get ready for another Cold War game (well 2 more actually) but I just finished this figure and had to post it up straight away.

This all started when I asked what I thought was a simple theoretical question to Matthew Hingley of Elhiem Miniature fame.  I wondered how hard it would be to change a weapon on a figure stl file.  The figure I was thinking of was one of his WW2 German Gebirgjager figures, which he has already converted into stl files.  What I was thinking of was converting one to look something like this:

Rather than simply answer the question, Matt had a crack at it and then sent me the file!

Unfortunately I've recently been having serious, head banging against the wall kind of issues with my 3d printer.  But last week I finally managed to get a print of this figure off it, so I had to paint it straight away.

Here's how it turned out:

OK - my basing is pretty crap, but I just love the figure.  Now I have to work out how to convert at least a squad more!  At least the MG34 gunner is already taken care of, and the MP40 armed NCO is also easily done (as in they already exist in the Gebirgsjager range), I just need the rest of the AG3 armed Home Guard.

Another problem for another day...



11 November 2023

Matchbox M24 Chaffee & Matador Models NM116 Conversion Set Review

Jumping to the next random topic - today I want to take a look at the Matchbox M24 Chaffee and the Matador Models NM116 Conversion Set.

I managed to get a hold of 2 of the Matador Models NM116 conversion sets 3 or 4 years ago, but only snagged a couple of Matchbox M24 Chaffee a couple of years back - so of course it wasn't until this year that I was able to have a crack at these.  Then once I started I was so put off by the whole thing that it probably took me all year to finish the two kits.

First off I love the NM116.  It's the epitome of a teeny weeny tank trying to take on the Soviet war machine - my kind of against all odds weapon system.  Here's a few pics of what it's meant to look like:

Here's a lovely side shot.  Some great stowage ideas as well that I will be stealing!

This is a more widely seen photo of the NM116.  A good view of the muzzle brake.

Not really an "in action" - more of a static display shot - but it does show in some detail the interesting Norwegian hard-edge cam pattern used on their vehicles.  Something I'm looking forward (ha!) to replicating. 

Now onto the models.  These are obviously not painted, and not even a "finished" build.  However I thought this was a good point to stop to show the original Matchbox Chaffee, the Matador Models conversion bits, and my dodgy add-ons.  Here's a couple of photos:

So looking at the 2 photos above, obviously the grey and green tanks are all Matchbox.  The 90mm new main gun barrel, raised engine decks, smoke dischargers and spades (which you can't see) are Matador Models. The white plastic card on the track guards cover the hole created when I cut of the large boxes that come with the Chaffee kit.  I also had to remove the sand guards (?) from these as I've not seen an NM116 photo showing a tank with these.  I added a couple of boxes from my PSC bits box on each side of the track guard - as also seen in lots of photos.

Significantly I also had to add, from plastic card, rod etc, the Simrad LV3 laser rangefinder and what I believe is the passive night vision sight for the gunner.  Before I can call it finished - in terms of converting - I also need to add a small rod in front of the commander's hatch which was an additional attachment for the turret roof mounted .50 cal.

This shot shows the Matador Models engine deck a little better:

You need to clean off any detail on the models engine deck before you can fit these.  I also need to severely trim one of them to get the turret to fit correctly.

This next photo was an attempt to get a closer shot of detail on the turret & main gun:

So I'm happy with the smoke dischargers - which are really pretty basic, but the main gun barrel is a little disappointing and I think the muzzle brake is completely wrong.  They were also very annoying to try and bend the resin barrel back into straight lines and I feel I was only partly successful.  Also I felt a bit let down that I had to make the laser range finder - something I consider to be fairly fundamental in changing the tank from the Chaffee to the NM116.

You do get a bunch of other bits and pieces - mainly WW2 stowage - from Matador Models, but these are really just to spice up the M24 Chaffee - they're not really for the NM116 - and I didn't use them at all.  I did use a big bit of stowage I made on the grey tanks glacis plate.

Final thing to say.  Even though I am a little disappointed overall with the conversion set, I am pretty happy with the overall look of the NM116.  Needless to say, I'll be liberally coving both tanks in cam netting and foliage so they'll end up more like the next photo anyway - so you won't be able to see much of the tank at all!

What tank?

So - that's it for now


07 November 2023

New Project - The HMMWV Horde

 So time for another new project.  This one has been brewing for years but now I'm in a position to actually transition from the plan to reality.  I mean who wouldn't want to field a horde of dinky little HMMWV's up against a swarm of much more heavily armed huge Soviet tanks and other AFVs! 

First up, I needed some kind of plan.  Luckily you get a lot of info in FM 17-98, FM 17-95 and FM 17-97 - which provide some great information on the use of HMMWVs in Cavalry and Scouting operations.  It also led me to be able to draw up this basic plan of what was needed: 

Obviously I won't be getting everything on this TO&E plan - as each Scout Platoon would have operated independent of the other one, and the HQ and Maintenance Sections wouldn't have wanted to spend that much time up in the enemy's face - I think...

So - I decided one Scout Platoon would be the core component of my force.  So 5 of these:
and 5 of these
I'd attach one Antitank Platoon with 4 or these:
And also have the Mortar Platoon available - they use something like this:

The FIST also needs to be available.

I want to add some other HMMWV mounted units to make the force more interesting.  Firstly I think the unit needs some Air Defence, so an Avenger is necessary
I'd also like to have a small squad of engineers attached and I think they would look good if I could make their ride look like this:
As I have the model I'd also like to have an Ambulance:

Finally - I think an imaginary WW3 is the perfect opportunity to introduce some weapons systems that never made it into production, but that have a certain coolness factor and would certainly fit into this unit for a little fire support.  So I need to add a couple of these:
This of course also opens the door - and takes care of some of the vehicles for another project - a Motorised Infantry Company from the 9th  Infantry Division (Motorized) - the High Technology demonstration division for the US Army in the 1980s.  So at least a couple more odd HMMWVs are required for that as well, plus loads of other goodness.

As part of this project I'm also working on a very small army list for a Light Cav Company for my old unofficial Battlegroup: Cold War variant and I'm also hoping to use this force as a starting point for my own unique game.

Hopefully I'll have some progress on all fronts to show off in the next little while.

Thanks all