Monday, January 23, 2023

Dutch Army Part 3 - The Black Devils

The Black Devils

Established in 1665 Dutch Marines were the only volunteer regular unit in the Dutch ground forces. On the tenth of May the Marine Regiment was preparing to depart from Rotterdam to the Dutch East Indies and join the other marine units already posted there. About 650 marines were in the barracks in Rotterdam when the invasion began with a further 200 as part of the training and recruit centre. 

 They became famous for their action during the invasion when the marine regiment in Rotterdam consisting of 100 marines, some artillery, Armoured cars and Naval personnel defended the Willemsbrug traffic bridge across the Nieuwe Maas river and prevented the link up for four days against the German Fallschirmjager who had tried to take the bridges by surprise on the 10th of May. 

The name the black devils was thought to be christened by Oberstleutnant Von Choltitz “ die schwarzen Teufel ” when the 6 marines who were still alive defending the Willemsbrug bridge surrendered. 

I have decided to build a complete battalion for the regiment, structured at full strength like a infantry regiment with support elements, a 81mm mortar, MG section, AT rifle and RHQ and recon coy. The miniatures are all SHQ. 

Regimental Head Quarters 

Co plus 7, AT rifle, reconnaissance platoon cycles. 

RHQ command element, radio trailer and car to be added

Reece platoon

AT rifle platoon 

Battalion Head Qauters

BHQ OC plus 4

1st company
10 figures, Lewis lmg

2nd Company 
10 figs Lewis lmg 

3rd Company 
10 figs Lewis lmg

Support Heavy weapons

81mm mortar 4 crew

MMG 3 crew

Australian Cavalry M113, Fire Support, RAEME & RAE tracks in Vietnam

Australian M113s in Vietnam .

The Australian Armoured units had elements serving in South Vietnam for nearly six years. Between 1966 and 1972 the men served in every major operation conducted by the 1st Australian Task Force (1ATF), including the Tet Offensive, the 1968 battles for Fire Support Bases Coral and Balmoral, and the battle of Binh Ba in 1969. Using Armoured Personal Carriers (APCs), the regiment's squadron was a highly mobile force that served throughout Phuoc Tuy province.

Australian APCs had been serving in Vietnam since 1965: initially with the 1st Troop, A Squadron, 4th/19th Prince of Wales Light Horse Regiment, subsequently re-named the 1st APC Troop; and then with 1st APC Squadron. In January 1967 1st APC Squadron was split one half  became A Squadron, 3rd Cavalry Regiment the other 2nd Cavalry Regiment, with the 2nd remaining in Australia for training and rotation. A squadron's 3rd Cavalry regiment strength in South Vietnam at the time was 117: ten officers, 14 warrant officers/sergeants, and 93 other ranks. The squadron's strength increased over time and by August 1971 had grown to 169 men: 15 officers, 22 warrant officers/sergeants, and 132 other ranks. The scorpion symbol though was not adopted until after 1971, originally designed by the mortar troop as the “sting in the tail” of the squadron. 

I have collected the track (M113) in troop order, as much as I can

A Squadron 3rd Cavalry regiment 

“& Tears” call sign three one Alpha 31 ARN 134738

1 Troop

“Blood” call sign three one 31
“Sweat” call sign three one Bravo 31B ARN ……55
“& Tears” call sign three one Alpha 31A ARN 134738
“Tene - Nui” Call sign one one Alpha 11A ARN 134357 two 30 cals 74c turret
“UBEAUT” call sign one two Bravo 12B

2 troop

“Miss carriage” call sign 
“The Pig” call sign two two Bravo 22B

3 troop

"the Good" call sign eight six 86 ARN 84343
"The Bad" call sign eight six Alpha 86A (two 30 cals 74c turret)
"The Ugly" call sign eight six Bravo

Fire Support troop

In mid-1971 the squadron received six M113A1 Fire Support Vehicles (FSVs), a M113 carrier mounted with a Saladin turret and armed with a 76 mm gun. The majority of the FSVs crew were seconded from the 2nd Cavalry Regiment and posted on strength to the 3rd Cavalry Regiments. More heavily armed, the FSVs were still only lightly armoured and were not intended to replace Centurion tanks in offensive tasks. It was felt however, they could relive the Centurions from their role in protecting the fire support bases, thereby allowing the tanks a greater role in supporting 1ATF's operations.

1971 first four vehicles
“SANDGROPER” call sign four two (42)
“DENISE” call sign 42A
“COMALCO” call sign 42B
“TINY TEDDY” call sign four two Charlie 42C

Late 1971 a further two were delivered
“BEWITCHED” call sign 41
“BEAST BOTHERED” call sign four one Alpha 41A ARN 134711 (on display in Australia)

I have found one other, not sure if it a rename or new vehicle

B Sqaudron 3rd Cavalry Regiment 

1 troop

“The Glen” call sign one three 13  ( T50 Turret fitted )
"The Nympho" ( T 50 turret) one three alpha (13A), ARN 134305

2 troop

“Snoopy” call sign two zero (fitted with T50 turret)
“Bronwyn ” call sign two one Alpha 21A
“Dehydrated” call sign 29 M later renamed in 1972 “Irish Power”

3 troop 

“Z” call sign three zero Alpha 30A
"Cherryboy" call sign three nine M 39M ARN134266
"Gaylord" call sign three three Bravo 33B

Unplaced M113A1s with T50 turrets.
"Foul Boy"

Support Troops 

106 Field Workshops Royal Australian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (RAEME)

M113A1 Fitters vehicles

“White Winged Warrior” call sign nine eight Alpha 98A
"Puff the magic dragon"(ARN) 134377
“Miss Hellfinger” call sign 98B

Royal Australian Engineers

The 1st Regiment Royal Australian Engineers modified three carriers for anti personnel mine clearance operations, extra armour was fitted to the belly and the sides. Various contraptions were manufactured by RAEME workshops.

Her Majesty’s Armoured Personnel Carrier Flint RAE

1 Troop Royal Australian Engineers

HMAPC Flint ARN134226
HMAPC Steel call sign nine two S 92S was fitted with a small blade
HMAPC George call sign one two Alpha 12A


Thursday, January 12, 2023

Touchy business ordonance disposal

 Touchy business

A figure that I found while cleaning up was a part finished Ordinance technician, he was painted and based but had nothing to disarm so I added a missile head I had in spares and some guidance fins so it looked like a guided 230mm rocket assisted round, then made some green stuff sand bags. Not sure if he will ever be used in a game but you never know. The miniatures is from Wartime miniatures Australian army range. 


Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Vozdushno-Desantnye voyska Rossii - VDV Russian Airborne part 3

 VDV Russian Airborne part 3

I plan to complete my VDV airborne dibpvision this year and with that in mind done another S&S miniatures order to buy a few support pieces for my plastics, some trucks and I could not resist though and also picked up some metal figures too! I really like the new seated tank riders/ truck crew

VDV late Christmas present 

VDV vehicle riders

Gaz 66 fuel truck

Gaz 66 command version 

Cleaned up and ready to undercoat tomorrow, hopefully have some paint on them next week. 


Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Mercenary Toyota technical


 Toyota technical 

A 20mm Toyota technical for my modern mercenaries. The miniatures is matchbox and I plan to also add a MG gunner to the rear. Another entry for the analogue painting challenge. 

Toyota technical 


Friday, January 6, 2023

Visit to Musée de l’Air et espace

 I had a change to visit with one of my Australian mates several museums in Paris. One museum that I had never visited before is the musee de l’air. 

Some great displays of ww2, Cold War and modern aircraft and helicopters. Enjoy the pics guys

The best display by far was for ww2 was the Régiment de Chasse Normandie-Niémen, flying Yak3,5 and 9. The squadron, which served on the Eastern Front of the European theatre of World War II with the 1st Air Army, is notable as one of only three units from Western Allied countries to see combat on the Eastern Front during the war and was the only Western Allied unit which fought with Soviet forces until the end of the war in Europe.

Yak3 of the Normandie Niemen squadron

Tail of the Yak 3

Roundel Normandie Niemen 

Ww2 Hall

A nice number of aircraft in the hall the majority serving in the French armee d’Air or flown by French pilots. Only the one German aircraft there, would loved to have seen a French bomber but not to be….

Cold War beauties 

Lots of Cold War French, German, Warpac and Swedish aircraft on display