Besides its conventional land units equipped with Montsabert and Garibaldi hover tanks, the European Federation maintains a number of lighter units for rapid deployment to hot spots both on and off planet. These are typically elite units mounted in lighter wheeled vehicles which are easier to transport and maintain. One of the most famous is the Légion Étrangère (French Foreign Legion), but other countries within the Federation have their own crack units such as the Italian Bersaglieri, Spanish Legión Española and the Dynameis Katadromon of Greece.
The primary workhorse of these units is the 10-wheeled Catroux APC in its many variations. The basic APC carries the same turret as the Tassigny MICV variant, and in fact several turrets are common between the two vehicles including the AA and missile-carrier types. One type unique to the Catroux is the Armoured Gun System variant. This carries a heavy railgun in a remote mount controlled by the crew. The APC carries an 8-man squad, whereas the other variants generally have the seating removed to make room for equipment and ammunition.
General liaison and observation duties are undertaken by the Musareigne, a small 2-seat 4×4. The cargo bed can carry small amounts of supplies or 2-3 troops, while larger loads are lifted by the Lievre, a six-wheeled version of the Musareigne.
The armed version of the Musareigne is known as the Javelot, which has a remote turret carrying either twin MGs, a 5-barrel gatling or twin Manta missile pod.
There are lots more photos of each vehicle on their respective pages on the website – click the codes below to go to these.
SF15-406 – Javelot Scout Car with twin MGs – £4.00 SF15-406a – Javelot Scout Car with Gatling – £4.00 SF15-406b – Javelot Scout Car with Twin Missiles – £4.00 SF15-406c – Musareigne Utility Vehicle – £4.00 SF15-408 – Catroux Wheeled APC – £8.00 SF15-408a – Catroux Missile Carrier – £8.00 SF15-408d – Catroux Armoured Gun System – £8.00 SF15-408e – Catroux AA Vehicle – £8.00 SF15-412 – Lievre Pick-up- £4.50
Markings on the vehicles are all from Dom’s Decals – 1/300th Italian aircraft roundels.
These are our final new releases of 2014. Find out why on Monday …
It’s that time of year already – it’s rather crept up on us, due in part to the unseasonally mild weather which doesn’t feel much like November !
Straight from the Royal Mail’s website, these are the last recommended posting dates for Christmas delivery this year (earliest first – overseas dates are all for airmail services):
BFPO (operational units) – 28th November
Far East, New Zealand – 3th December
Australia – 4th December
Africa, Caribbean, Central & South America, Middle East – 5th December
Eastern Europe, Greece – 8th December
Canada, Poland – 9th December
USA, BFPO (static units) – 12th December
Western Europe – 13th December
First Class UK – 20th December
And we obviously need a few days notice to make sure we can prepare your order in time to meet these dates. So orders for anywhere other than Europe, the USA and Canada need to be with us by this coming Sunday (the 30th); ones for other overseas destinations (anywhere in Europe, plus North America) by Sunday 7th; and UK orders by Sunday 13th for us to have the best chance of fulfilling them in time. Obviously we’ll do our best to accommodate any that arrive after these dates and we will do our best to ship everything as fast as we can over this busy period.
Don’t forget that we offer PayPal Gift Vouchers in various denominations which make great Xmas gifts, especially if you have a better half who doesn’t know exactly what to get you 🙂
Something new in the webshop for the start of the week – the recently previewed British Swiftsure class cruiser. This stealth-equipped light cruiser has twin heavy railguns and high speed allowing for fast hit-and-run tactics.
Today sees the release of our remastered French Charlemagne Aeronef models. The new models are larger but sleeker than the old one (which has been retired), with a distinct tumblehome to the hulls. There are three slightly different hull types and three superstructures which all fit each other allowing for nine variations. In keeping with French naval building practices of the time, no two ships are quite the same ! Variants are supplied randomly, if you purchase multiple models at one time we’ll make sure you get different versions. Each model comes with three turrets (although not all variations need three) which again are a random mix of single and double-barrelled ones. Altogether, with the different hulls, superstructures and armament layouts, we reckon there are 48 slightly different models that could be created.
Sneaking into the corner of the bottom photo is an Austro-Hungarian Novara class Heavy Destroyer, obviously on a diplomatic assignment. This model is also available today.
Lots more pictures of the Charlemagne in all her variations are on the website
VAN-401 – Charlemagne Battlecruiser – £8.00 VAN-711 – Novara Heavy Destroyer – £2.00 VAN-7044 – French Single Heavy Turrets (x10) – £1.50 VAN-7045 – French Double Heavy Turrets (x10) – £1.50
Although we still have a few new items lined up this year, we’re starting to look forward to releases for 2015.
Since their debut our Pacific Federation grav vehicles have been one of our more popular 15mm forces, so they are an obvious candidate for expansion. There are a number of 6mm vehicles waiting to be upscaled to 15mm, of which the largest is the Komodo heavy tank. I’ve pretty much done the 3D work for this and thought I’d preview it to whet your appetites. To keep down the cost (and weight !) the hull and skirt will be a one piece resin casting which will become our largest 15mm vehicle, just edging out the Sohei. The turret has gained a four-round point-defence missile launcher at the turret rear and the styling matches that of the existing PacFed vehicles. Release should be sometime in January next year.
I mentioned in the run up to Crisis that Phil has sprung a surprise on me by turning up with two new moulds of 28mm WW1 Belgians – NCOs and Buglers. He’s finished painting and photographing some sample figures so we’re pleased to say that they’ve been added to the website and are available for purchase.
There are eight figures altogether, four each of buglers and NCOs in the various headgear types that differentiated the infantry types.
Following up from last week’s South African release, we have new turret options for the two APC types released today. We have a support turret with a low velocity infantry gun that fires heavy HE or squash-head shells for clearing out enemy strongpoints. To keep the skies clear, there’s an AA turret with a single rapid-fire autocannon coupled with two twin Boomslang light AA missile launchers. The turrets fit both the Buffel and Wildebeest and all four versions are available from our website now.
As well as these four new vehicle options, we also have a new, half-sized version of our cargo container available.
You may remember a while ago I posted about some 15mm resin fireteam bases I made to suit figures based on coins (1 euro-cent and 2p UK coins in particular). We realise (and it has been pointed out to me many times) that, depending on your location, these coins aren’t necessarily easy to obtain – 1 cent coins can be hard to come by even for those living in the eurozone. To rectify this and make the bases more useful wherever you live, we now stock M8 (15mmØ) and 25mmØ penny washers which make excellent alternatives. The one downside of using washers is that the magnets, for which each base has built-in holes, don’t really work any more, but I guess you can’t have everything :-/
The bases have been moved to their own page on the website – I’ve also made some new formats which we’ll be adding to the page soon (as soon as the masters arrive and I make moulds !).
In the last year or so we’ve increased our 15mm range by leaps and bounds, both vehicles and buildings. We’re now casting more and more pieces in resin and learning new lessons about the material, one of which I think it could be very handy to pass on.
At the centre of our Salute stand was the 15mm colony base, a model with which I was extremely pleased. The display model was only finished in the last days leading up to the show. What’s not obvious from the photos is that the top surface of the building modules are a little shiny and somewhat sticky. I’d made the mistake of leaving the model in its box in direct sunlight for several hours and it had got a bit warm – the day was not all that hot, maybe low to mid 20s centrigrade, although the temperature in the corner where the colony base sat probably got into the 30s in the sunshine. This somehow affected the resin and made it ooze through the layers of primer, paint and varnish. The garage module, which I’d painted as a separate piece, suffered really badly, and the paint came off in one or two places when I touched it.
I’d also had a similar problem before when priming some advanced buildings – it was a chilly evening at the workshop so I used a small fan heater to help them dry. This ended up making them ‘sweat’ and some of the primer (Halford’s car primer, which usually sticks to anything) came off.
So the lesson is – don’t let your resin get hot! And especially don’t let resin items sit in direct sunlight for any length of time. They could end up sweating and oozing, even through multiple layers of paint and varnish.
The situation isn’t necessarily fatal, though. In the case of the colony base I gave it a coat of undiluted PVA glue. This dries clear, if a little shiny, so it had to be revarnished, but it looks ok. Obviously the PVA is quite gloopy and is like putting a very thick coat of varnish on, but it did dry clear and, in the end, it’s better than having a sticky, ruined, unusable model. I used a PVA from a DIY store (Wickes) designed for mixing into plaster and also sealing dusty walls, it’s probably a slightly different formulation from the type you buy in hobby shops and so better suited to stopping seepage.
After debuting at Crisis last week, the 15mm Hippo truck and Buffel APC are now on the website and available for purchase.
The Hippo is a six-wheeled flatbed load carrier capable of hauling very heavy loads across rough terrain. Although unarmed, a pintel weapon could be added to the cab hatch if required.
The Buffel is a lighter, four-wheeled counterpart to the larger Wildebeest APC. It comes with a choice of top hatch with MG, light twin MG turret or triple light missile mount (the same turrets as the Wildebeest’s forward mount). Further more heavily-armed variants are on the way in the near future