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Wednesday, February 8, 2017

B1MP My Ride: Getting the Most Out of the BMP Kit for Team Yankee

"Cross check over wrecks?  Nyet!"

With Volks-Armee now out, and with Red Thunder coming, I thought I would showcase some ways to make your BMP kits go a little further, ie be able to make both variants.   In Volks-Armee in particular, you can only have one Motor Rifle Co. in BMP-2s, so you will need some BMP-1s

The humble sprues.   If you are just starting to assemble your force, so long as you don't glue the upper deck to the main hull, you can easily swap BMP-1s and BMP-2s, you just have to paint both upper hulls, turrets, etc.

On the left are the parts for the lower hull, on the right the BMP 1 and BMP 2 upper hulls.   Right after you glue the lower section with plastic glue (so there is a few moments of 'give') dry-fit both hull sections to make sure they will fit.

If you've already built BMP-1s and want to get the better BMP-2 stats, you can simply assemble the BMP-2 turret and assuming magnet polarity is the same, hot-swap turrets.  In this pic, the larger turret ring of the BMP-2 upper hull matches the BMP-2 turret.  While the BMP-2 turret fits over the BMP-1 turret ring, you could shave it down a bit, and trim 2 of the vision ports as well for a better fit.

I went for a more elegant solution:   The BMP-1P.       Per Wikipedia:

BMP-1P (Ob'yekt 765Sp4) – The first serious modernization of the BMP-1; it was developed in the middle of the 1970s after an analysis of BMP-1 combat use during the 1973 Yom Kippur War and during the Angolan Civil War three years later. Firepower was enhanced by adding the pintle-mounted 9P135M launcher with a semi-automatic control capable of firing SACLOS guided 9M113 "Konkurs" (AT-5 Spandrel) and 9M113M "Konkurs-M" (AT-5B Spandrel B) ATGMs which increased armor penetration and extended weapon range. Many BMP-1Ps were equipped with an improved pintle-mounted 9P135M-1 ATGM launcher, which was also capable of firing the 9M111 "Fagot" (AT-4 Spigot) or 9M111-2 "Fagot" (AT-4B Spigot B) ATGMs. The new ATGM launchers were somewhat difficult to operate since the gunner had to stand in the open hatch on top of the turret to use the weapons, exposing himself to hostile fire and in NBC conditions destroying whatever value the BMP-1P's NBC protection suite gave. The Malyutka loading hatch was usually welded shut and the mount was removed. A special NBC protection covering was placed on the inside and outside of the turret, the hull, the engine compartment upper access hatch, the commander's and driver's hatches as well as under the driver's station. A new fire-extinguisher system for protection against napalm was installed after an analysis of armored fighting vehicle (AFV) usage during the Vietnam War. There is an additional machine gun firing port on the left side of the hull and at the front of the turret. This increased the number of firing ports from seven to nine. For protection against air attacks, two 9M32M "Strela-2M" (SA-7b "Grail" Mod 1) or 9M313 Igla-1 (SA-16 Gimlet) missiles of corresponding performance were added instead of the previous 9M32 "Strela-2", but sometimes they were replaced by an RPG-7 portable, shoulder-launched, anti-tank rocket propelled grenade launcher. The BMP-1P weighs 13.4 tonnes. It was built from 1979 to 1983. NATO gave it the designation BMP M1981

Completed BMP-1P turret, ready for magnetization.   I have brought out painted examples, I have ten BMP-1Ps built, as well as a BMP-2 company, but they are armed the same way with the Spandrel missile.  I find having the visual cues as to which company each vehicle belongs to easier than trying to see what number sequence is on the sides..

Added commander and stowage.  This will be my Battalion Command BMP, so I guess the correct designation is BMP-1PK.   East-German and presumably Red Thunder Motor Rifle battalions have 1 company that must be BMP-1s as well as the command vehicle.  Now I can use as either-or.

Rare Earth magnets on the rear corners for metal antennas.

All painted

"Стоп Хам!"

Now that my Shilka's are complete, I am finished painting my Team Yankee Soviets!

Here is some video of my work as I progressed:

Matt Varnish AKA Dennis Campbell, plays up in Canada with the lads from Surprisingly, I don't even have a Canadian army............ yet!    Check out some bat-reps on my youtube channel: 

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