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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Bolt Action - Modeling German Tank Commanders with Wargames Factory Germans

 Life is settling into the inevitable winter her in the northern most reaches of America.  With fewer house and more nip to the air I took it upon myself to make some much needed command figures for my sprawling German tank force.  Previously I had been using German markers Allies and Axis from to identify my German command tanks, but this looked tacky.  I try to keep a plastic box of German and Soviet infantry laying around for needed odds and and ends or the occasion conversion binge.  I got the itch to convert and went to town on a whole mess of vehicles.

I had a German Infantry plastic kit from Wargames Factory in the pile of shame.  I don't care must for how they look mixed into my squads of Germans from Black Tree and Warlord because of scale differences, but they work great for converting into crew.  I used them to make passengers for a Hanomag a while back and really liked how they looked.   So I used the officer heads and bodies to make two tank commanders for my Germans.  You want to use the officer bodies because they don't have field kits and straps.  I also scraped off the front pockets of the uniform as best I could since the German tanker uniform didn't have these pockets in the front.  I then reposed arms and hands and removed any weapons they were holding.  This was tricky because these figures are true scale and thinner that Warlord Games plastics, making reassembly frustrating at times.

For my Panzer thee officer I had to trim the arm sockets so the flared out and rotate the hands down to make it look like he was holding the hatch.

For the Panther commander I used the hand that was holding a stick grenade (which was removed) to make it look like he was telling his column of armor to halt and put the other arm down by the commanders side holding the copula. 

Instead of trying to get fancy and paint one or both figures in SS tankers camouflage, I took the easy way out and went for the all black tanker uniform.  I am happy with how they turned out.  I wish there were more officer figures in the box set so I had more commander converting opportunities, but understand that would make no sense for the purposes of a 30 man box set.  I guess I am lucky there were four to begin with.  What are you using to mark command tanks?  Markers, models, flags?  Let every know what your plans are on the forum.


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