Thursday, July 22, 2021

Pass in Review: Cruel Seas Quick Pic Collage

(Image from The Military Channel)

Last week's topic focused on my Blood & Plunder vessels.  

This week, we "fast forward" to World War II and highlight my Cruel Seas collection.

First up are the vessels from the British Royal Navy.

1. Mark III Landing Craft Gun (Large):

Because of this vessel's ungainly looking appearance, looking like a floating bathtub armed with cannons, I named it "HMS Gun Tub."  The closest historical entry I could find was of the Landing Craft Gun.

My paint job turned out a bit more green than the professional painters did.  So far this is the only sub in my Cruel Seas collection, and the only surfaced boat currently made by Warlord Games. Construction of these subs began in the mid-1930s and a total of 53 saw service during the war, and some were in service until the 1970s.

Now for the Americans...

This was part of the US Navy Fleet package, which also contains some smaller LCM3s that I painted as a "warm-up" exercise before working on the larger boats.  

4. US Navy PT Boat Flotilla:

So far I've only built four out of the 10 PT boats I currently have:  2 x Higgins boats, and 2 x Elco boats, pictured below.

Somehow I missed taking pics of the Higgins versions of my completed PT boats.

Based on historical photos, these boats were painted a wide variety of colors from dark blue, grey, green and even Dazzle Camouflage--which I'm not going to even attempt. But once I get around to painting the rest of the flotilla, I'll try to individualize each boat. 

The SC-497 Class Subchasers were one of the smallest vessels the US Navy classified as "ships" instead of "boats."

I found these vessels appealing. So much so, that I ended up with 5 of them.  But instead of having them all as part of the US Navy, I "lend leased" the first three I painted.

My favorite is the vessel I converted to be one of three used as Norway's "Shetland Buses:" HNoMS HitraHNoMS Vigra, or HNoMS Hessa

Since the Cruel Seas line contains tiny ship flags only for the major combatants, I had to make my own Norwegian flag.

The second subchaser I decided to make into one of the 50 the US gave to Free France

Once again, I had to make up my own Free French Flag.

The last subchaser I converted into one of the 78 the US sent to the Soviet_Union.

At least with this ship I didn't have to hand-make a flag.

And speaking of the Soviet Union, here's the ships I've completed so far...

This was one of the hardest ship models for me to assemble, because I don't have a dremel tool or any other gadget to drill tiny holes.  I couldn't get the lifeboat cranes through the upper deck holes they were suppose to fit through.  So I just bent them around the upper deck and super-glued them in place.

7. Three out of my four MO-4 Patrol Boats:

The MO Class guard ships were the most common small vessels built and used by the Soviets during WWII

8. Three out of my four D-3 Motor Torpedo Boats (MTBs):

Now on to the Axis vessels, starting with the Japanese...

9. Imperial Japanese Navy No. 103 or 101 Class Landing Ship:

This class of landing ships looks like it inspired a lot of science fiction anime, like Star Blazers
I bought this because I wanted a large transport to serve as an objective for allied players to attack, and for Japanese players to protect.  This is what I call an "Objective Ship."

10. Imperial Japanese Navy No. 1 Class T-6 Fast Transport

Believe it or not, this converted destroyer is the longest vessel in my Cruel Seas collection.  It comes with 4 empty Daihatsu landing craft, that I already painted but didn't glue to the deck.  I also have four, loaded landing craft I painted several months ago.  My intent is to make this vessel as versatile as possible, displaying:  an empty deck, a deck loaded with empty landing craft, or a deck loaded with loaded landing craft. 
And finally, the Germans...

11. Kriegsmarine S-Boat Flotilla:

My latest contribution to #Miniature Monday," is my "wolfpack" of S-38 & S-100 type torpedo boats (called "E-Boats" by the allies).

While I'm not about to attempt full-razzle dazzle, this was my first try at applying naval camouflage.  I merely painted 5 diagonal-ish lines of a different shade along both sides of the vessels' hulls.  I also painted each boat in a slightly different color scheme in order to individualize their appearance. 

This almost completes my Kriegsmarine faction, and makes me all caught up with photos of my current Cruel Seas painting project--for now.  

I currently have the following to start--
--Regia Marina starter pack
--the British Royal Navy starter pack
--6 x USN PT boats

The following vessels are currently "in the slipways," and near completion:  2 x US subchasers, 2 x Japanese subchasers and 2 x Soviet gunboats.

The other day, I received several new products from Warlord Games as reinforcements--
--2 x USN "barge buster" PT Boats
--1 x Fairmile H Gunboat
--8 x Kriegsmarine sturmboots
--12 x IJN small sampans
--1 x Kriegsmarine F-Lighter

Stay tuned!

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