Here he is - Action Man (The British equivalent to GI Joe) - dressed up as a Commando Marine from the French Indochine war. This is an eagle-eye Action Man complete with lobster claw (gripping) hands. I've painted his face and hands a darker tone - the original colour was quite pasty. This particular body come from the VR Vision set which had a slightly broader face than most other Action Man figures.
He is temporarilyequipped with a Lee-Enfield carbine. The British were using these contemporaneously, so it is conceivable that some ended up with the French forces in Indochine. Although I can't find any evidence for it, I have seen photos of other British weapons from the same period that aren't on the official lists but made it there in small quantities. Its a moot point - I have a Lee-Enfield Mk 3 arriving soon and will equip him with this which is definitely authentic. The Mk5 carbine he has at the moment is from Cotswold but I've repainted to make it look more field-worn.
If you look at the photos you can see he is using a hasty sling wrapped around his left hand then around his left elbow to brace the rifle. I would have liked to give him a deeper V at his left elbow, but I'm at the limits of articulation of his skeleton here. I've made the sling myself from some webbing plus a couple of buckles (from Armorpax) then blancoed it khaki green. When he gets his Lee-Enfield Mk 3 it will go in exactly the same position.
His uniform and boots are US, but he still has his British webbing, pouches, pack and helmet.
His web-kit is a mix from various manufacturers picked up on EBay and all blancoed (actually a mix of tarrago shoe cream and citadel green paint). This had the advantage of bringing everything to the same colour (in natural light the belt is the same colour but for some reason in the photos it looks a slightly different shade).
You can see some raw canvas peeking through in places - it's time to for him renew the blanco - although his ammo sling is freshly done. I've added lead weights inside all the pouches, his ammo sling and the pack to get everything to hang correctly (otherwise the straps tended to float instead of being pulled down)
The uniform and boots came from Captain Sam. I've dry-brushed it to make it pretty dusty, and sandpapered his knees, elbows and butt to add some wear. I've also added some light mud to the same areas - but you'll have to look closely. His cuffs and jacket hem have been given a frayed/worn appearance with a combination of chalk and earth yellow paint. I've also added sweat - you can see it underneath his belt and along the front of his tunic and under his armpits (and on his back but hidden by his pack). Several shirt buttons are deliberately left undone - it's hot don't you know.
The scarf is real silk - coloured scarves were in use for unit recognition. I happened to have a silk sample to hand but I've no idea if this particular colour was used.
His beret comes from flags and patches on Ebay. I've added ribbons hanging down the back of his neck and faded it a bit (soaked it in a chalk solution) to reflect it's being washed in soapy water then I've repainted the band black. Its worn tipped back on his head in the style seen in many of the photos from the period.
He's also carrying a German shelter half (from Battlegear) tucked under the top flap of his pack.
You'll notice he has a plastic stand under one foot (painted dustbowl brown). With all the lead weight in his gear he is top heavy so without the stand he will topple over.
I would love some comments?
Last edited by climbthathill; 03-19-2020 at 08:53.
Reason: Added more pics
Looking at the photo's I see I've forgotten to deal with the sheath of his knife - that stitching is far too bright. A little shoe polish will help. And I think I will add another coat of blanco to his belt while I'm doing that.
Last edited by climbthathill; 03-15-2020 at 09:34.
Added more pics today. Some close-ups of his equipment so you can see the various brass fittings - webbing tab ends, etc. and see the effect of putting blanco on all the different pieces of web gear. You can see his sweaty waist not, too.