Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Friday, March 08, 2013

This is off the 2HW site and includes all ideas on Babylon 5 Space Navy Combat using 2HW STAR NAVY rules.
 B5 in STAR NAVY test rules
 For the Narns:
G’Quan – Class 5, 6 guns (forward arc only), 12 guns, 1 AA and 1 hangar
Ka’Toc – Class 4, 4 guns (forward arc only), 4 light guns
 For the Centauri:
Vorchan – Class 3, 12 light guns (forward arc only)
Altarian – Class 4, 4 guns (forward arc only), 8 light guns, 2 AA
 I used the Hishen QRS for the Centauri and gave them a long range scanning rating of 5 for both contesting and controlling. For the Narn I used the Star Navy QRS and gave them a long range scan of 4 for each category. The final change was to the ground scale. The Fleet Action miniatures I’m using are quite small, with the G’Quan being the largest at 4 cm long. Because of this, and the small number of ships involved, I used centimetres instead of inches for all measurements.
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Monday, April 02, 2012

The Plastic Soldier Panther - making different versions


The PLASTIC SOLDIER PANTHER.
I finally pulled out my Plastic Soldiers' box of Panther tanks along with my Thomas Jentz' book PANTHER TANK-the Quest for Combat Supremacy on the Panther tank.  Did a little searching on the web as well since I had purchased the box to make 2-3 German Panther very late war vehicles with IR equipment.  The Panther G would get the Type A and 1-2 Panther D would get Type B IR equipment.  Reference Panther by Concord Publications, Thomas Anderson & Vincent Wai pages 37, 38, and 63-66.  However, research on the web indicates that only the Type A1 was available and used by the Germans - so no Panther D needed.  So, (the Panther G with IR Type A will be a later message) what actually is in the box.  First of all look at the Panther D article on this kit linked to this blog.
KURSK Panther.  Organized as Panzer Rgt Staff had 8 Panthers.  Panzer Battalion 51 had 96 Panthers (3 BN HQ, 5 BN HQ Recon, 4 Coy each 2 Coy HQ, 4 PLT of 5 Panther each.  The kit does NOT include the correct parts to do an early production (i.e. Kursk) vehicle without some rework.  One thing you need to do is drill out the MG port and two gun sight ports (it is a binocular sight) in the gun mantle.  You can also drill out the 75mmL70 gun barrel and muzzle brake ports.  Missing (and the three "sample" Panthers provided in the 'usual' directions are not correct either)  parts and added components on the turret need corrections.  First, on the turret roof  you have to remove the loader's observation periscope (behind the turret exhaust vent); then behind that the smaller circular plate with 4 bolts and an opening (the Close Defense Weapon), and behind that the FuG 5 radio antenna base (the tiny piece)., then  the two handles on the rear of the turret, one above and one on the rear turret escape hatch, and the remove the small catch/circle in the center of  the rear escape hatch.  Changes to the turret that need to be added.  Add the smoke dischargers on the turret.  Add a pistol port on each side of the turret and behind the TC position in the rear turret plate (drill a small hole, take a thin plastic rod, add some glue to the end and place in the hole.  Let it dry and then snip it off as close to the turret armor as you can).  Add a communications port to the left rear side of the turret.  Missing from the turret will be two covered apertures in the turret armor near the rear edge of the side plate bent around the turret at the rear - these are almost flush but do show in all the drawings.  Additionally the Panther D turret and the Panther A turret have a different shape interlocking armor piece to that helped lock the front turret armor plate to the side plates - there is no visible welding on the model.  Use the twin thin exhausts for the Model D.  This completes the changes to make a KURSK version of the Panther. Additionally, the engine deck has the late D left (facing forward) engine fan cover instead of the early version, which I don't recommend changing. 
Late Model D (ending in September 1943 with assembly of 37 units) - this can be built from the kit.  Use the same hull and exhaust as the Model D.  Cut the right hand (facing forward from above) headlight off.  Remove all of the turret roof and rear parts listed for the KURSK Panther.  Add the turret pistol ports but do not add the communications port.
Early Model A .  (3 Aug 43, 149 Sep43) Use the D gun mantle (Binocular (2)) gun sight with the late cupola (with the periscopes and AA MG cover).  Cut off the Close Defense Weapon port, the handle on the turret rear escape hatch, and add the side and rear turret pistol ports.  Leave the loader periscope.
Mid-Model A.  (Dec 43-Jan 45)  Use the D gun mantle but don't drill out the outer gun sight port.  The sight has been changed to a single (monocular) sight and the outer hole has been plugged.  Don't add the pistol ports.  Cut off all other turret parts (not the periscope on the roof) as for the Early Model A.  Cut off the MG cover on the front of the hull and replace with the MG Kugelblende.
Late-Model A.  (June 44).  Use either gun mantle, with the early one fill and sand off the outer gun sight hole so the mantle looks like the included late G mantle with the single sight hole.  Add the MG Kugelblende to the hull front.  Do not take anything off of the turret - it is now correct.  Remove the right headlight. Use the multiple exhaust pipes (4 tubes).  Note there were two variations we skipped - one moved the jack between the two exhaust pipes and one added Bergepanzer type tow coupling to the bottom of the rear plate.  The first can be attempted by removing the jack from the twin exhausts and using a jack from one of the other exhausts, placed vertically between them with the smaller end up and just at the level of the rear deck.  The tow coupling was only applied  for about 30 days in Nov/Dec 43 - it was dropped as it decreased the ground clearance.
Early Panther G - Deliveries start in Oct 44.  You use the straight sided hull sides and hull rear with vertical jack plus the top hull with the  square driver/radio operator hatches.  This hull moves the single headlight on the left  directly above the front fender.  This vehicle was made with the twin exhausts with the large pipes with metal covers around them (actually exhaust covers to hide the exhaust pipes at night because they 'glowed'.) although sometimes the covers were lost so it would look like the twin exhaust with vertical jack on the Model A.  The large twin covers included in the kit were introduced into Sep 44 delivers and were an improvement over the sheet metal covers described above (the end of the exhausts sticks out on the earlier version).  The Model G  has the Kugelblende hull MG.  Use the turret as is with either gun mantle modified as for the Late Model A (monocular gun sight with the excess hole filled and sanded clean).  The chin mantle with the square bottom was introduced in September 44 deliveries but the older version was still in stock and on Production Panther G through to the end of the war.
A major number of changes were internal and can't be seen, or minor so they won't show on the model - like the rings welded on each turret side for attaching tree branches, etc. - or are too difficult to model such as a Panther G without the vehicle heater on the hull rear deck - it is the large boxy thing on top of one of the fans.  Additionally, the Panther as well as other German tanks and SP guns, had the paste called Zimmerit coated on the vehicles at the assembly plants.  This can be modeled, but like the IR Type A equipment may be covered in another article or looked up on the web.
Other CHANGES.
1.  The boxy covers for the two rear square engine deck louvers are made from pieces of Schuerzen steel and welded on to protect the engine from strafing aircraft.  These were over the rear two louvers as modeled and square ones were also placed over the round fan louvers.  They weren't placed over the louvers nearest the turret because the turret would hit them.
2.  The troops also modified the Panther "officially" by welding the handle to the escape hatch, adding some rain guards for various periscopes and ports, adding a debris guard for the front turret roof, and adding a wiper for the gun sight.  The only one of these modification that affect the model is the handle on the rear turret escape hatch.  You can leave that on as a "field modification" rather than cutting it off.  Eventually, it was added to the production vehicle turrets with the handle above the hatch added in production.
3.  Unofficial modifications was hanging extra road wheels off the turret or hull sides, added spare track to the side of the hull or turret, and moving the gun cleaning rod container (the round tube shown placed on the side of the model) from the left side of the hull and mounting it across the end of the rear deck.

Mike Reese

Saturday, February 25, 2012



















Hostage Rescue in Africa

French Paratroops (2nd French Foreign Legionaire Regiment) have rescued a half dozen hostages somewhere in Africa.  A rapidly moving dust cloud shows that unfriendlies are on the way.  The pick-up helicopter is also coming.  The FFL have blocked most of the entrances to the village and taken up a 360 degree defense.  One Paratrooper is in the building with the rescued hostages.

There are nine Paratroops, six hostages, and thirty Militia in trucks with two Technicals (pick-ups with a HMG in the truck bed) on the way.

Game set-up.  Rules ARC OF FIRE 1900-2000 (modified).  Using experimental Anton card sequence for activation.  Any woods is considered jungle except the plastic rows of trees which are an orchard (rubber plantation).
1.   Arrival point road is determined by a d8 roll.  Helicopter will arrive on a turn equal to a d6 roll (rolled a 4) which will require a d10 roll of 1.  Chance increases by 1 per turn (i.e. Turn 4 a "1" is needed and Turn 6 a "1-3" on a d10 for the helicopter to arrive) and the table edge the helicopter arrives from will be determined by a d8 roll.
2.   Paratroops are TAC 4 Morale 5 with +1 to shoot.  Each 4-man Team has 1 SAW, 3 assault rifles., grenades, and 1 man in each Team 2 rifle grenades.  The regular team also has one AT4 rocket. A Sniper is attached with a bolt-action 7.62mm scoped sniper rifle.
3.   The Militia are Leader TAC 7, Morale 6; 2 bodyguards TAC 5, Morale 8; and the Militia TAC 7 Morale 7 with -1 to shoot. Militia with machete have hand to hand of 4.   Militia weapons.  Technicals have an unarmed  driver and a 12.7mm HMG with a gunner in the back.  Mercenaries have Assault Rifles.  Other body guard have a shotgun, a fire bomb (Molotov cocktail) thrower, two men with machetes ('n' = 4 in hand to hand), and one assault rife.  The other two groups both have an RPG 7; one group a LMG; one group a fire bomb thrower, and the rest of the figures assault rifles.
4.   For NUTS or FNG2:   FFL = TAC 5 (Sniper +1 to hit), Militia TAC 4 leader, TAC 5 Mercenary bodyguards, and TAC 3 Militia.).  Weapons can be whatever your figures have.

____________________________________________ THE GAME______________
The Militia arrive on the main road with a Technical leading the convoy.  It explodes as the French use their only AT4 to destroy it and block the road.  The second truck takes small arms fire and the driver is killed when it stops for the men in back to jump out.  Two trucks block the road.  The remaining technical uses the edge of a dry creek bed to get around the thick jungle while one truck load of Militia work their way to the edge of the rubber trees on their left (plastic trees in neat rows) to lay down fire.  The Militia leader in his suit and with his cell phone, accompanied by two mercenary bodyguards and his personal body guards moves through the jungle to his right.  The other Militia unload out of sight and start to move forward through the thick undergrowth and trees,  hampered by the jungle, trying to catch up to their leader.

The French move troops covering the rear of the village to firing positions facing the Militia (sounds good but this is a total of 2 men with assault rifles) while the trooper with the hostages moves to a door to cover the approaches to the building.  It is the only building in the town with no windows or doors in the back.

The covering Militia open fire, with six of the figures able to fire from the edge of the rubber trees.  Their fire is ineffective but does drive back one of the defending Paras.  The other, realizing that the SAW gunner has fallen back, becomes determined not to flinch and returns fire (rolls a HERO result on his morale check meaning he no longer takes morale checks).  The French sniper fires a round at the second Technical taking out the gunner and scaring the driver who promptly strips the gears and gets his vehicle stuck.  The driver bails out.  (AOF - soft skins are considered hard targets for target purposes but provide NO protection to passengers.  If a passenger is killed you roll a d10.  On a '10' result the soft skin is knocked out.  The single sniper shot killed the machinegunner and knocked out the truck.)

The French have all moved into firing positions.  The Militia concentrate their fire on the SAW gunner over the main entrance to the village.  That entrance isn't blocked with rubbish or mealy bags.  The fire continuously forces the paratrooper to duck back.  However, the other Paratrooper starts to take out the Militia covering force, one man at a time.  The French sniper joins him and picks off the covering froce RPG gunner, then the LMG gunner.  The Militia Covering force becomes confused and their fire even less effective.  They have lost five of their ten men.

The Militia leader tries to get his two machete wielding fighters into the compound but the French HQ SAW and rifle fire take out both of them as they rush forward.  However, covering fire by the two Mercenaries wounds the French radioman and he takes cover away from the window.  Their fire also hits the French sniper who is killed.  The chopper is heard coming. The covering force is too far away but keeps the SAW gunner on the roof pinned down.  The Militia leader leads the charge.  If they can close in a fire bomb should take care of the Frenchmen.

The Militia leader and his men boil out of the woods trying to get to the passageway through the building to their front.  They reach the building.  A grenade comes out of the passageway from the Paratrooper guarding it.  The Militia leader is left standing, still holding his cell phone and pistol but the two men closest to him go down.  A Paratrooper leans out of the window and fires a burst from a SAW joined by the LT leader.  Both Mercenaries go down along with the man carrying the fire bombs.  The leader is left as well as one man with a shotgun.  Stunned, they stand there as the Puma helicopter comes in to hover over the building holding the hostages as the hostages start to make their way to the roof.  The Militia fall back.

Mission accomplished.  The cost is one dead and one wounded.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

DaKa Afrika Skirmish

DaKa TW&T Feb 12 01DaKa TW&T Feb 12 02DaKa TW&T Feb 12 03DaKa TW&T Feb 12 04DaKa TW&T Feb 12 05DaKa TW&T Feb 12 06
DaKa TW&T Feb 12 07DaKa TW&T Feb 12 08DaKa TW&T Feb 12 09DaKa TW&T Feb 12 10DaKa TW&T Feb 12 11DaKa TW&T Feb 12 12
DaKa TW&T Feb 12 13DaKa TW&T Feb 12 14DaKa TW&T Feb 12 15DaKa TW&T Feb 12 16DaKa TW&T Feb 12 17DaKa TW&T Feb 12 18
DaKa TW&T Feb 12 19DaKa TW&T Feb 12 20DaKa TW&T Feb 12 21DaKa TW&T Feb 12 22DaKa TW&T Feb 12 23DaKa TW&T Feb 12 24

DaKa Afrika Skirmish, a set on Flickr.

TW&T game run by SHAG. Darkest Africa. Two Warlords clash over a diamond mine.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011