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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
"This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st Inf.

Greetings everyone,

Let me present to you my latest project: The base of fire of a rifle squad during the winter of 1944, spring of 1945 as they engage in house-to-house fighting and maybe even a little "house busting." The 94th Infantry Division, 301st Infantry Regiment arrived in Europe in August of 1944 and, like many of the "green" late war divisions, cut its teeth especially in the winter fighting. Known by some as "Patton's Pawns", the 94th fought against fierce resisting in and around the town of Orscholz and the "Orscholz Switch"--a system of dragon's teeth and defensive positions in the Saar triangle. These men had to deal with being somewhat under-prepared for the cold winter. Still, they were well equipped, dynamic fighting squads capable of outmaneuvering the enemy entrenched in defensive positions. These three men represent an assistant squad leader (staff sergeant), an automatic rifleman and a rifleman. Though slightly deviating from the norm suggested in the handbook--which suggested "Baker" or the base-of-fire team to consist of an automatic rifleman and two assistant riflemen/ammunition bearers--the infantry squad was capable of working with what they had and rearranging as necessary in combat.

The assistant squad leader carries an M1 ammunition belt and garand rifle. He's taking it easy and warming his hands while they move through the village. The "jeep coat" worn was actually used by the 94th a lot during the winter months. There is video footage attributed to the 94th in which the jacket is noticeably worn by a few troops in the same squad. The automatic rifleman in front will provide covering fire while the rifleman in the middle prepares a little homemade treat..."the safe cracker." Here the fins and propellant of a 60mm mortar shell have been unscrewed, and the shell has been fitted into the fragmentation grenade adapter for the M7 grenade launcher. The shell would still detonate on impact, and the TNT charge would be very useful for clearing a few rooms down the street. This configuration would not be the best during a fast paced assault as the rifle required a specialized shell to fire the M7. The gunner would need some time to prepare but the successful party-starter would be well worth it. Firing the M7 was called a "shoulder buster" because of the added kick when using the special shell.

I gave the staff sergeant the newly released jeep coat that came with Paul with a modification. When these jackets had an outward facing collar liner, it was made of a wool blend or the standard US blanket material. The fur collar released with Paul was cool, but inaccurate. Even my workaround isn't great, but I'm happy with the color. I have one other jacket I'm going to fix, and I have a different strategy. Collar aside it's a great piece of gear. Everything else is a combination of soldier story, DML's "Road to Victory" line, some DiD parts and a little BBi. I had to finally use a BBi garand belt and I'm not unhappy with it. I think we're all a little spoiled with the cloth belts by now though, expensive as they are.

These figures are a continuation of my own "Road to Victory" theme in which I try to capture post-Normandy GIs as they would have appeared in the last year of the war. I hope you enjoy them. Photos are edited for a little color correction and fading but I do keep the originals saved as well and I promise nothing's digitally altered ;-).|















orscholz3.jpg

orscholz1.jpg

orscholz4.jpg
 

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wave man TDY staff
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Exceptionally fine GIs, Schmucker! The difference in size of the three men, and the choice of faces, really sell this vignette. Classic dogfaces on the job. The squad leader must be tired, being a bit slack in his apparent readiness, tho that is not beyond comprehension, given their situation. A stunner of a presentation.
 

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Funk Ninja
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Man oh man these guys look great!
Really good write-up too. Great work, Schmucker.
 

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Captain Eyestrain
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Really excellent. I love the whole atmosphere, and your detailing and posing are most impressive.One thing nowadays which has transformed these scenes is the availability of really brilliant commercial heads, which I presume these are.
Perhaps make a bigger base?
 

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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Excellent work and deep research: well done!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Really excellent. I love the whole atmosphere, and your detailing and posing are most impressive.One thing nowadays which has transformed these scenes is the availability of really brilliant commercial heads, which I presume these are.
Perhaps make a bigger base?
Thank you Tony. I agree on the base, and I actually started with a larger one made from a cutting board. All my finished figures are on the same sized square of the same wood and I got caught up in keeping that consistent for display. For more of a show piece I may definitely make a larger base.

They are commercial heads, and they're very good without any repainting. I still practice painting sculpts from time to time, but I avoid total repaints if I can help it.

I appreciate the kind words from all of you. Thanks!
 

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AKA "ChiliDoug"
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Really excellent trio of figures. Weathering, and posing are very well done.
 

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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Very well done! Love the figures especially the Barman!

Jay
 

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Resisting Evil
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Very nice! :thumb

Looks like they've been thru the wringer for awhile....
 

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I'm BACK!!
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

That is really nice, such natural poses.

Top work!

CHEERS!
 

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delusional
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Pro work. You've done a fantastic job on your figures.
 

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i draw pictures.....
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

awesome work bro.

namaste
miguel
 

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Loser 6
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Excellent work, and I learned something new about the mortar round. This is right up my alley, technically and artistically appealing. I appreciate the research you put into this and how you put it all together. Kudos on this project, you made my day with this post, really something to see...........Jim
 

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The Mighty Boosh
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Super work - absolutely top notch.
 

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WWII Guy
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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Top to bottom a real superb piece of work!

Cya
Hankster
 

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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Excellent work indeed! That 'house buster' looks like a fearsome piece of kit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Thanks to everyone. I appreciate the feedback very much. It was my pleasure to put this together and I'm glad there are folks out there with whom I can share it!
 

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Re: "This is Baker" Base of Fire House Busters, 94th Infantry Division, 301st In

Great looking late war GIs! Part of the confusion over the Mackinaw/Jeep coat collar might be due to the very similar Canadian Eaton coat, which did have fur on the collar.

-Nate
 
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