Friday, January 30, 2015

New Toys for Conversion Project

There have been a bunch of groups that have been popping up on Facebook in the last few years. They are becoming a popular alternative to Yahoo! Groups. Keith Armstrong of ArmiesArmy showed plans to make a MN-116 Norwegian light tank in 1/100 (15mm). When I first saw the designation MN-116, I thought it was some sort of upgrade of the M113 APC. Nope, its an up-gunned M24 Chaffee light tank. They replaced the old 75mm gun with a French 90 mm low pressure gun, the same gun found on many armored cars. They also replaced the original engine with that of a M113, which might be the reason for the designation. Cool! A tiny tank with a big gun on it...gotta make a 1/285 version! Here is some drawings of it:
How does it relate to my gaming? In my back history, Southern Chalupastan received a number of surplus WW2 weapons in the late 50s/early 60s . As a result, their armored units were made up of Shermans and Chaffees. These took a beating during the First Chalupastan War, but still were enough of the Chaffees to constitute a battalion. This battalion was relegated to training and to act as an aggressor force for war exercises.  After the war, there was a need to rearm and upgrade their forces. Despite their defeat, the South still viewed Northern Chalupistan as a major treat. What caught my eye and made my decision to include an upgraded Chaffee to my campaign was that Keith stated that it was a relatively cheap upgrade. Presently, the South has some more modern light tanks like the M41 Walker Bulldog  and the Textron Stingray, but these are in small numbers and are relegated to recon companies. 

Many of the TO&Es of my Gambusian armies have weapons only on paper. One of which is this training battalion that I figured would never see combat. Now, if they get upgraded, then they could go to war. I envision brave cadets charging T-55s and T-72s with their pint-sized tanks! 

Today, my order came in from CinC:

Despite the bendy gun barrel, its a very nice model
 I got 20 tanks. 15 will be converted whereas the other five will be left alone to be used for any WW2 games. I will try to finish my river and forest hexes first, before the conversion work on these guys start. Besides, I need to figure out what I am going to use for the conversion.

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