Last time I introduced the core platoon of my 15mm Chain of Command force. Today we shall have a look at the more colourful toys from the support list.
To many this is where all the fun lies. The support lists feature all this extra assets you get granted by battalion command as support for your platoon to achieve their set goals. This includes things like two man teams with anti-tank rifles , single explosive charges, fortifications, mine fields, engineers with mine-clearing equipment, flame thrower teams, armoured cars, heavy machine gun teams, anti-tank guns, forward observer teams right up to battle tanks.
So Chain of Command lets you collect all these shiny toys, but you will never need more than about one of each. To be honest, I have yet to play a regular game of Chain of Command with more than maybe one tank on the table. Of course prospects such as these have never stopped anyone from going out and buying more tank models than they could ever need.
All these vehicles I’m displaying in this article were painted very fast so I would have them battle-ready as soon as possible so pardon the painting quality.
In the prior article you could already get a peek at a few of my support units, amongst them three Bren carriers…
…a bunch of trucks and some armored cars. In the following I will get into details a little and introduce the rest of my vehicle park.
From left to right: Zvezda Matador trucks, Zvezda Matilda II, Battlefront Cruiser MkIV A13, Zvezda Matilda II, Battlefront 2pdr Portée, Battlefront Morris CS9 armoured car
Here you can see the Matador trucks. Just like my other trucks, they don’t have much of an “in-game purpose”, but are very, very handy for either terrain, objectives or of course for convoy ambush scenarios. In the desert you just have to have some trucks. The matadors are full plastic kits by Zvezda, available for about three or four pounds each. I got them at Salute for cheap, so I thought why not. Just be cautious about their wheels. These plastic axles are very prone to snapping.
At the same occasion I also got myself two Zvezda Matilda IIs which I will talk about in detail at a later point in time. Wedged in between the Matildas we got a huge Cruiser tank. Pretty model. In the right we got a 2pdr anti-tank gun mounted on a truck chassis to make it mobile. The guns were occasionally fired from the backs of these vehicles, but it was not advised. They are not on the support list for 1941 desert British, but oh well.
It’s a fun model and some more anti-tank capability. I magnetized the gun to the back of the truck so I could remove or turn it. Last in the picture we see a Morris CS9 armoured car. At this point in time (1941) the vehicle already was outdated and the armour was much inferior to the more modern German equivalents, but the vehicle still served with the 11th Hussars.
The Colour Scheme
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Here we see both of the Morris armoured cars along with a Matilda II. Now for the colour scheme. Some of you will recognize the very characteristic ‘Caunter Scheme’ as it was christened later on. People who know this will also know that there was no blue in that colour scheme. There are reports of the lighter colour (I think it was described as slate coloured), as all colour really, tended to bleach out/fade a little under the sun and got brighter.
But in the end this is just me justifying this really fun and characterful look. Yes, the colour is more on the blue-ish grey side than the green-ish grey should be. And yes, the Caunter Scheme was pretty much done away with after early 1941, so my force is a few months late with their look. However, I really like the colour scheme and what use is there in playing early desert Brits if you can’t Caunter?
If I was playing something like a 1942/1943 sort of force I would use the plain sand or some other camouflage scheme. And I plan to add some later vehicles like Honeys and such. They will feature the plain sand look. Well, maybe. There were various localized variants of the horizontal stripe disruption scheme around after early 1941.
Nicknames and Markings
Here we got the Cruiser again, two Light Mk.VI tanks (one B, one C. I really like those little fellas), and the second Matilda II again. In these pictures you can see how I gave a nickname to each vehicle. These are actual historical nicknames vehicles of these types had in Northern Africa in 1941. I based them on this amazing pdf file I found a while ago. It really is very useful if you’re looking for nicknames for your WW2 British vehicles.
All vehicles sport the white-red-white stripe markings British armoured vehicles carried for Operation Crusader.
So much for the vehicles. In my next article about my 15mm British platoon I will show you some big guns and other odds and ends. Hope you enjoyed this one!