World at War (WWI, WWII, & Civil Wars) The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

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Thread: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

  1. #1
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    The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    THE LAST DROP: 75TH ANNIVERSARY OF OPERATION VARSITY


    Commemorating the 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity - the largest single-day and last major airborne operation of the Second World War.

    I've been hard at work the past few weeks on this Operation Varsity photoshoot. Running late per usual, I finished set up and photography by dark on the 24th. Editing and organizing the photos took longer than expected - but here they are...


    Special Thanks To:


    Dick (HammerSix) - for letting me borrow some of his FLAK crates and magazine boxes made by Dennis (The Toy Surgeon) and for letting me use his Bobby Dalto telephone pole.

    Jaime ( montañes68 ) - for encouragement, enthusiasm, and support in this endeavor

    Josh (JOSH51st) - for historical and technical support, as well as encouragement and enthusiasm. The medic figure definitely wouldn't have happened without him.

    Zack (panzerzacker) - for encouragement, enthusiasm, and support in this endeavor as well as our shared interest in the operation.





    2ND BATTALION
    507TH PARACHUTE INFANTRY REGIMENT
    17TH AIRBORNE DIVISION


    DROP ZONE W


    DIERSFORDT, GERMANY


    24 MARCH 1945



    HAVING JUST LANDED, PART OF A RIFLE SQUAD OCCUPIES A FLAKVIERLING PIT QUICKLY VACATED BY ITS FORMER LUFTWAFFE OCCUPANTS. THEIR NEXT MOVE IS TO CLEAR THE DIERSFORDTERWALD.


















































































































    CONTINUED IN THE REPLY

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  3. #2
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity


































































































    The Medic:




















  4. #3
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity



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  6. #4
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    You've got them in some good poses there. And that dug out position is really good.

    But the figures look too bright and clean. They've just done a combat drop and been in battle but they are all pristine. I'm not sure what colour the bandage packs are but their very bright in the photos - nice targets. The stitching on the holster and on the soles of their boots needs to be toned down - I suggest liquid shoe polish. If you don't want to make the uniforms, kit and faces permanently dirty you could use the Tamiya weathering kits - water soluble. Otherwise you could dry brush some acrylic paint on the places that get dirty.
    Last edited by climbthathill; 03-25-2020 at 10:14.

  7. #5
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Absolute feast for the eyes !
    I hope you didn't loose any parts during the photoshoot !

  8. #6
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    fantastic job, the troops, the way you set them up, the battle Scene reminds me of the Band of Brothers

  9. #7
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Nice!

  10. #8
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Thank you for the compliments! Much appreciated!

    I'm glad everyone enjoyed the photos!

    climbthathill - I've not learned the dark arts of weathering (yet). Once I do, I'll be unstoppable. And while the Soldier Story airborne first aid kits are perhaps a little light for OD-3, I think it's made worse by a smart phone camera allowing for a better photo than the film cameras available in 1945. That being said, that's how the airborne first aid kits were directed to be worn for the operation and if you look at period photos, they are quite noticeable in them as well.

    apotheosis - I have a feeling I lost one or two spent 1:6th scale .30-06 casings as I picked up everything near dark on Tuesday. I'll be ok, though. I appreciate you asking!

    Again, glad everyone enjoyed the photos!

    Fred
    Last edited by Fred_IV; 03-29-2020 at 09:14.

  11. #9
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    This is just great . i allways enjoy seeing your work.

    fantastic pictures and set up. its visible that you put a lot of work, money and love in this setup. all the small details like the metal end caps on all the straps, corecting the length of them, the helmet straps with the loops, Lift a dot on all canteens, cartrige belts....., buckles on the suspenders, making the helmet fit tight. and the use of alle the nice gears from SS , DID, DML, BGT and newline

    work on us figures can be a pain in the ... and to find the stuff you need, is it also.
    Last edited by kelly; 03-29-2020 at 15:34.

  12. #10
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Bravo Fred for the effort to put together all the stuff in a great outdoor dio.
    Weathering is not a mandatory subject, this is in essence a traditional 1/6 scale setup.
    And the historical accuracy is unquestionable.

    Looking forward for the next one Fred!
    Jaime.

  13. #11
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Bravo!

  14. #12
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Thank you guys for the kind words! Much appreciated!


    kelly - Many thanks! I enjoy seeing your GIs as well! I hope we will see more of them soon!

    Jaime - Thank you very much my friend! I've already started on the next project. Look for it in under a month!


    Thank you again for the kind words! I'm delighted you've enjoyed my photoshoot!

    Fred

  15. #13
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    The best way to learn weathering is to buy some cheap old uniforms that you don't mind trashing and try out the different techniques... dry brushing... sandpaper... etc.

  16. #14
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Found a couple of pics that might help

    Here is one guy with his bandage - definitely more muted Google Image Result for https://i1.wp.com/theimaginativeconservative.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Screen-Shot-2020-03-21-at-2.56.49-PM.png?resize=999%2C529&ssl=1

    Looks like it should be about the same colour as his web gear Google Image Result for https://www.ecomodelismo.com/ECO_imgArt/DRAG/DRAG-6148_3.jpg

    And here's a whole plane load jumping into Varsity without the bandages. Google Image Result for https://i.pinimg.com/originals/33/2c/6e/332c6e4c973e2017268198dd1bf41440.jpg

    Best way to colour them is probably very diluted acrylic paint. If you dip them in for 15 seconds at a time you can control how dark they get by preventing them from soaking up too much colouring. They do appear to be darker when wet but the colour lightens as it dries. So dip, then let it dry, then dip, then dry until you have the right shade.

  17. #15
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    I see you're going to try to teach me how to weather come Hell or high water, climbthathill...


    As I said before, I think that the airborne first aid kits stand out even more in some photos because of the smart phone camera allowing for a better photo than the film cameras available in 1945. Depending on the angle from which I shot, some of the first aid kits appear darker than others.

    Your second link is a cropped photo of the back of the box of the DML 1:35th scale 17th Airborne Operation Varsity set of figures. The suggested OD-3 color is based off of the box art, a nice Ron Volstad color plate. Painting the web gear all one color in 1:35th scale is fine, I guess, but a close study of multiple period photos reveals all sorts of OD-3 and OD-7 web gear mixed together as well as transitional pieces of web gear (OD-3 pieces with OD-7 trim or OD-7 pieces with OD-3 trim). In short, I would not recommend using the suggested colors from the 1:35th scale figure set in this instance. It is a bad reference.

    And in regards to your third link, while there are certainly photos of troopers without helmet netting, the overwhelming majority of photos show 17th Airborne troopers during Operation Varsity wearing the British 1/4" helmet netting with the airborne first aid kit affixed to the front of the helmet in some fashion. Thus how I've chosen to model my figures.


    I have done a bit of my own research on this project over the past two years... I did not just slap the figures above together in five minutes and throw them in a pit...

    Fred

  18. #16
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Fair enough. Learning to weather has been a bit of an obsession for the last few years. My early attempts were laughable and I can still kill an item by weathering it wrong today.

    I'm no expert on WW2 US kit. I was just reacting to the apparent brightness as a sniper magnet (an earlier obsession was, not getting shot at). Maybe it is the camera - black and white is always good for breaking camouflage properties. What colour are those bandages actually?

  19. #17
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    WOW! Just amazing!
    In the fields of observation chance favors only the prepared mind.
    Louis Pasteur

  20. #18
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    Re: The Last Drop: 75th Anniversary of Operation Varsity

    Hispanicgamer - thank you! Much appreciated! Glad you enjoyed the photoshoot!

    climbthathill - Most of the airborne first aid kits were made out of OD-3 colored cloth. Like anything during the war, I'm positive there were manufacturing variations affecting the color, though.

    - Fred

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