Montag, 6. April 2015

20mm modern Bundeswehr - 1. Fallschirmjägergruppe

Over the last few days I've been working away on some 20mm modern Bundeswehr figures by Elhiem and terrain for a middle eastern, or more probably Afghanistan, setting.
While most of the terrain is still far from presentable my first Fallschirmjägergruppe is ready for combat.


Trupp 1
I've never been particularly interested in doing ANYTHING in 20mm. But it's even harder to find a nice, affordable and comprehensive range of modern Bundeswehr in 28mm out there than for a cock to produce eggs.

So in the end I decided to give 20mm a chance and placed an order with Elhiem. While not really cheap they offer a growing range of Bundeswhehr and KSK figures and truth be told the figures really are quite nice.

Jäger with MG4 and Gruppenführer with G36

Still painting figures in this scale feels rather different to anything I've done so far.
While being only about a head smaller than say for example Foundry (which mostly are on the smaller side of 28mm figures) they certainly lack the heft and bulk of 'proper' wargaming figures.

With the likes of the Perry's or Fife & Drum producing 28mm figures that are significantly more anatomically correct than most other wargaming ranges I know there's a definite trend towards more realistically proportioned miniatures in the 28mm market too. I personally am not that fond of such developments but each to his (or her?) own I guess.

But enough of an old farts ramblings just let us get back to the figures at hand, shall we?
So if I expected to safe on time painting figures in a smaller scale than usual I was to be disapointed. While in 15mm there are certain short cuts one can take and still produce nice figures for the gaming table, in 20mm I felt I had to do all the steps I usually undertake in 28mm. So I ended up spending virtually the same amount of time per figure as normal.

Trupp 2

The figures themselves are pretty nice and well detailed. The only thing I'm missing (yet) are UGL's for some of the G36's. It took me some time to figure out the 'correct' colours for their equipment as well as the desert Flecktarn camo. There was also little in the way of flash or mould lines so I could start painting right away.
Jäger with MG3 and Truppführer

While the Panzergrenadiere probably still are THE iconic image of German soldiers I decided to go with Fallschirmjäger for the time being. A Jägergruppe (be it Fallschirmjäger or Gebirgsjäger) in the Bundeswehr usually consists of two Trupps (Fire teams) and is commanded by a Gruppenführer who also takes command of the first Trupp. There are two MG4 Saw's per Gruppe but it's common practice to replace a MG4 with its relatively weak 5,56mm ammunition with a MG3 which is a direct descendant of the MG42 of WW2 origin. The remaining Jäger are armed with the G36 (two of them with UGL) which is the standard Assault Rifle of the Bundeswehr. Currently there's discussion about phasing out the G36 because there seem to be issues with its accuracy when in prolonged fire fights.
The Gruppe usually is transported by a Tpz. Fuchs (APC) or Dingo I or II.

For ease of recognition both the NCO's were placed on octagonal bases and the MG3/ MG4 gunners on 20mm square bases while the ordinary Jäger are based on 20mm washers.
With the benefit of hindsight I should have gone for hexagonal bases for the NCO's as square and octagonal bases do look too similar. Therefore I gave the NCO's white gloves to make them stand out a bit more.

All in all I'm quite content with the results of this new project of mine and I hope you like 'em too.


  1. Very nice figures :)
    Camo is superbly done.

  2. The camo work is excellent. They appear to be 28mm in the photos; very well sculpted and proportioned. Interesting that some of the guys have what appear to be beards. I think the only US guys who can do that are SOF. Impressive work all around!

  3. Great poaint job and i love the camo.

  4. Very nice work on them! I find 20mm to be the perfect scale for moderns. The minis are still large enough to have decent levels of detail, but small enough to allow for a more realistic looking ground scale. And having a huge selection of vehicle kits from scale model manufacturers that can be used in gaming really helps as well!

  5. They look absolutely flawless! Will you be doing vehicles too, and what rules are you going for - Ambush Alley or something else for the Afghan theater?

  6. Fantastic painting here. The camo is simply superb.

  7. Outstanding work Nick!! Superb work on the camo which I know for fact is no easy task. Looking forward to seeing more.:-)


  8. Wonderful work!
    The camouflage pattern is absolutely gorgeous.

  9. Impressing especially because they´re 20mm...great job with the camo-pattern, the goggles and weapons.

  10. First time I have heard about a problem with the G36. What would they replace it with?

    1. Actually I don't really know. Since the Bundeswehr is in Afghanistan there are reports of the G36's accuracy dropping dramatically when firing more than a few rounds on auto when in a fire fight. First thyey claimed it to be the plastic of the barrels mantlet softening due to the heat. Later Heckler & Koch said it was due to wrong ammunition used and now the Bundeswehr have conducted their own trials and say it's the rifle again.
      As an answer Heckler & Koch now issued a statement the rifle was never intended to fire anything else than single rounds or short bursts as a maximum all according to the Bundeswehr specification for the G3 replacement. If that's really true I don't know why one should want an assault rifle not capable of it's intended use.

    2. Hmmmm, I need to see the report myself. But its sounding like a cause of user or training. No automatic rifle is going to be accurate past the first few rounds. Especially at distance.
      i mean this should have come up in training before their deployment.

    3. As an aside, not trying to insult the Bundeswhehr. And not trying to derail your excellent blog post and painting. Would love to see them painted up in temperate European camo.

  11. Great work, especially the camo's paintjob...

  12. Schnief. Die sind gut. Da schäm ich mich ja fast für meine. Super Arbeit und ganz klasse bemalt!

  13. Great to see you getting into this period and look forward to more of your work on this project. It might have taken you just as long to paint 20mm as 28mm but the result is well worth it.

  14. Wow Moiterei ... simple superb camo work. I love them!

  15. Terrific work sir. I hear nothing but good things about Elheim and I keep liking what I see when it's so well painted. I am not familiar w modern Germany uniform but they look very convincing. I also like the facial hair, as there wasn't much water for shaving when outside the wire in Afghanistan. Very fine work.

  16. Oh my goodness! On you could manage to make something this small look so good!

  17. Lovely! Simply lovely work, Nick. For myself I quite like 20mm as it provides all the spectacle of 28mm but on a smaller footprint AND give access to cheaper 1/72 vehicles from plastics model companies and diecast. Again. terrific work.

  18. Lovely! Simply lovely work, Nick. For myself I quite like 20mm as it provides all the spectacle of 28mm but on a smaller footprint AND give access to cheaper 1/72 vehicles from plastics model companies and diecast. Again. terrific work.