Ro I’ve quickly painted and based a single squad of German Rifles, and that’s convinced me that moving to 10mm (at least for WW2) is the thing to do. Mounted on the same base-size means that the tactical effect is the same, and these figures are much nicer for me to paint – even though I did a quick & dirty job here. Also, it’s much easier to “see” them and what equipment they are carrying.

Map of the Salerno Landings But wait – do I want to go for the NWE green/grey/brown, or something more tropical? I have been reading Salerno 1943: The Allied Invasion of Italy by Angus Konstam, and I am getting very inspired to be able to build my little scenarios together into some kind of Operation Avalanche/Italy campaign.

The British amphibious assault on the beaches south of Salerno on the 9th September 1943, specifically the chaos around the strongpoint of Magazzeno/Lilienthal gives me an push to thing about the the Littoral version of the board and I’ve got thoughts around my own 2x2’ landing scenario to add into the set too.

That also gives me more details for the forces I’m going to buy. So my Brits will be a company of infantry from the Hampshires, 46th Division, and my Germans will be a company from the 64th Panzergrenadier Regiment of the 16th Panzer Division. The details don’t matter that much, because I’m never going to get accurate insigna on a 10mm figure, but it’s a good frame of reference for me to hold. I’m going to go for the 1st Battalion of the 64th, as they are transported on trucks, rather than the 2nd, which used Sdkfz 251 halftracks (maybe later)!

Volksgrenadier uniform from 1944 I initially was going to shy away from this though, as I’m not a fan of soldiers in shorts and “all tan” might even make the two sides even harder to distinguish! But I did some digging, and found a few inspirational images that I’m going to use as reference. This 1944 Volksgrenadier uniform for the Italian & Greek theatres from Panzermodels isn’t perfect for my needs, but I like the mix of colours and the long trousers. If anybody has more accurate Italian Campaign 64th Panzergrenadier uniform details, I would love to see them!

DAK Camo Helmet Whilst the photo of Bren gunners coming onshore at Salerno is colourised, it shows that rolled-up sleeves and long trousers were the norm. I assume the colourist did their research, and it also matches nicely with the painting of the men on this box of plastic Commonwealth infantry. It is similar to the German uniform above, but hopefully I can push the differences with the actual colours I choose. Especially since I will probably give all my DAK figures a tan coloured helmet to distinguish them from the green helmets of the Brits.

Bren Gunners Disembarking Commonwealth Infantry Box

Ro, to sum up, the colours I’m going for are:

  British Hampshire Rgt. 64th Panzergrenadier Rgt.
Base Colour 70.819 Iraqi Sand or 70.819 Iraqi Sand or
  70.847 Dark Sand 70.978 Dark Yellow or
    70.886 Green Grey
Helmet Colour 70.857 Golden Olive 70.819 Iraqi Sand
Ammo Colour 70.983 Flat Earth 70.862 Black Grey
Pack Colour 70.885 Pastel Green 70.885 Pastel Green
Webbing Colour 70.885 Pastel Green 71.041 Armour Brown

You’ll note that these are a bit lighter than those you might find on the net, but they seem to be written for 15-28mm figures, and not 6-10mm, and brighter colours helps them stand out visually on the table a bit more.

Historical TOE

According to this MicroMark Army List, D Company, 5th Battalion, 128th (Hampshire) Brigade, 46th Division, will be made up of:

  • CHQ:
    • 1x CHQ (CC armed with Pistol)
    • 1x Jeep,
    • 1x Carrier
    • 3x PIATs (issued to the squads)
  • 3 platoons of:
    • 1x PHQ (PC armed with Pistol or Thompson)
    • 1x 2” Mortar
    • 3x Rifle Squads, each equipped with a Bren LMG

Plus I want at least one Vickers MMG team and a rifle/engineer squad from the Support Company so I can fulfil either side of the Crossfire Scenario.

And looking at this Army List suggests that 2. Kompanie, I. Battalion, Panzergrenadier-Regiment 64, 16. Panzer-Division would be be (ignoring transport trucks):

  • CHQ:
    • 1x CHQ (CC armed with MP40)
    • 1x Kubelwagen,
    • 3x GrB39 AT Rifles (issued to the squads)
  • 3 platoons of:
    • 1x PHQ (PC armed with MP40)
    • 3x Rifle Squads, each equipped with a 2x LMG
  • Heavy Platoon of
    • 4x Tripod Mounted MG
    • 2x 81mm Mortars

Plus I want a rifle/engineer squad from the Support Company (which includes a flamethrower by the looks of things) so I can fulfil either side of the Crossfire Scenario. To fit the scenario, the Germans need a 5cm mortar too, but that doesn’t fit the army list, so I’ll buy an 81mm mortar figures but use it as a 5cm for the scenario.

Figures and Basing

Ro how should I translate that into figures?

Assuming that I go for a Rifle Squad being made up of five figures, a PHQ having two (commander & radioman), CHQ having three (commander, radioman, rifleman) + vehicle. Engineer squads would be four to a base (to easily differentiate them from rifle squads).

Assuming I might want to be able to make some additional rifle bases for 1:1 Fireteam options, I’m going to have some bases with 4 Rifles+SMG (so they can be used as the Squad Leader’s element) and others with 4 Rifles+LMG (for the Gun Element). The Brits seem to have issued 1 PIAT per platoon, whilst the German Kompanie seems have given each rifle platoon a GrB39 anti-tank rifle (on average; it seems both were actually Coy. assets and handed out to the platoons as needed). Assuming that the PIAT or GrB39 would have been assigned to one of the squads in the platoon, I’m going to model a platoon as three squads:

A British Platoon will be the PHQ base, one squad base with 4xRifles + 1xThompson gunner, one with 4xRifles + 1xBren gunner, and the third with 3xRifles + 2-man PIAT team (even though in Crossfire terms, they would all be equivalent). The Heer, on the other hand seemed to issue the MP40 to the deputy squad leader as well as the primary squad leader, and the Panzergrenadiers seemed to have have twice as many LMGs as the Brits, so I am going to base them as: PHQ; 2 squads of 2xRifles + MP40 + MG34/42 team; and one squad of 3xRifles + MP40 + GrB39 Anti-tank rifle.

My PHQs are going to be just two figures on a base, the Platoon Commander (who carries an MP40 and a pistol) and a radioman. I’m planning on having my CHQ be three-figures (officer, radio, rifleman) on a squad-sized base, but with a small softskin vehicle to easily spot it on the battlefield. On-board HMG and Mortar Teams will be a single gun and three figures (the crew + riflemen to make up the numbers).

British Bases
CHQ: Commander (Pistol), Radio, Rifleman, Universal Carrier or Jeep
HMG: 1x Tripod Mounted Vickers + 3 Crew
Engineers: 4x Engineers
PHQ1: Commander (Pistol/SMG), Radio (on a half-size base)
R1.1: Thompson, 4xRifle
R1.2: Bren, 4xRifle
R1.3: PIAT Team, 3xRifle
M1: 2” Mortar + 3 Crew
PHQ2: Commander (Pistol/SMG), Radio (on a half-size base)
R2.1: Thompson, 4xRifle
R2.2: Bren, 4xRifle
R2.3: PIAT Team, 3xRifle
M2: 2” Mortar + 3 Crew
PHQ3: Commander (Pistol/SMG), Radio, Rifle (half-size base)
R3.1: Thompson, 4xRifle
R3.2: Bren, 4xRifle
R3.3: PIAT Team, 3xRifle
M3: 2” Mortar + 3 Crew

German Bases
CHQ: Commander (MP40/pistol), Radio, Rifleman, Kubelwagen
Engineers: 4x Engineers
PHQ1: Commander (MP40), Radio (half-size base)
R1.1: MP40, MG34 gunner & loader, 2xRifle
R1.2: MP40, MG34 gunner & loader, 2xRifle
R1.3: MP40, GrB39, 3xRifle
PHQ2: Commander (MP40), Radio (half-size base)
R2.1: MP40, MG34 gunner & loader, 2xRifle
R2.2: MP40, MG34 gunner & loader, 2xRifle
R2.3: MP40, GrB39, 3xRifle
PHQ3: Commander (MP40), Radio (half-size base)
R3.1: MP40, MG34 gunner & loader, 2xRifle
R3.2: MP40, MG34 gunner & loader, 2xRifle
R3.3: MP40, GrB39, 3xRifle
Heavy Platoon: Commander (MP40), Radio (half-size base)
H.1: Tripod-Mounted MG42 + 3 crew
H.2: Tripod-Mounted MG42 + 3 crew
H.3: 81mm Mortar + 3 crew
H.4: 81mm Mortar + 3 crew

Total Figures to Buy

  • 1 Universal Carrier (or Jeep?)
  • 1 Kubelwagen
  • 1 Tripod-mounted Vickers Team (3 men)
  • 1 British Company Commander (Pistol)
  • 1 German Company Commander (MP40 or Pistol)
  • 2 Tripod-mounted MG34/42 Teams (3 men each)
  • 3 British Platoon Commanders (Pistol or Thompson SMG)
  • 3 Thompson Gunners
  • 3 Bren Gunners
  • 3 2” Mortar Section (3 men each)
  • 3 81mm Mortar Teams (3 men each)
  • 3 PIAT Teams (2 men each)
  • 3 GrB39 AT Riflemen
  • 4 British Engineers
  • 4 German Engineers
  • 4 British Radiomen
  • 5 German Radioman
  • 6 MG34/42 gunner & loader teams (2 men each)
  • 13 MP40 Gunners (Including German PCs here)
  • 22 German Riflemen
  • 40 British Riflemen

Plus:

  • 7 30x15mm Bases
  • 29 30x30mm Bases

Time to get the Credit Card out then!