Or Alvis Saladin in the service of the Federal German Border Guards, if you prefer!
After the unmitigated disaster that was the Sheridan, I decided to
try and calm myself down by building something a bit more
straight-forward (and with a far simpler paint scheme...)
raiding the stash, my eyes lighted on a long-forgotten JB Models
Saladin armoured car. Bought yonks ago for about three quid, I'd
intended on doing a diorama feauring this, a Saracen APC, a Diamond-T
and a civvy motor having a Mexican stand-off at a T-junction somewhere
in Wales in the 50s... However, having accepted that that's never ever
going to get done, I decided it would make an ideal addition to the
1970s US force in the guise of a Sonderwagen 3 of the
BGS, and so I set about throwing it together.
JB kits (now Airfix) are very simple little kits (to the point of
crudity in the case of some of the earlier ones, such as this one!) but
with a little care and thought, they can be made into pretty convincing
little items. I the case of the Saladin, the most obvious omission are
the tie-downs surrounding the turret. I fabricated some out of stretched
sprue; they're horrendously over scale, but they give the impression
nicely. Next up, I drilled out the barrels of the smoke dischargers
(madness, but improves the look to no end) and the main armament, and
added a canvas sleeve to same. The co-ax .30 was replaced with an
S&S piece, and the AA .30 (which is just downright offensive) was
similarly skipped and replaced with a Sgts Mess item. Intending to leave
the hatched open, I duffed up some basic hatch interiors from stock and
more stretched sprue, and with the addition of some stowage from
various sources, I was left with this-
nice coat of what Humbrol had sold me claiming to bronze green soon
followed, (nothing like bronze green, but perfect for this scheme!), and
it was starting to come together...
WWII panzer crewmen in field caps were sourced from Foundry
(conveniently also featuring winter parkas on some of the sculpts. Might
see about doing another one of these!) Some git came up with the great
idea of doing Sumpfmuster in 20mm...
viola. One finished BGS Sonderwagen 3. Looks totally out of place in
it's bright green paint scheme against the snowbound base, but suitably
eye-catching on the table...! The registration plate came out far too
large, despite careful measuring. This will probably be replaced at some
point, but will be left in place for now.