Bolt Action! 28mm T-34/85 Tank Platoon

Well, I finished my first official Bolt Action models – a platoon of three Soviet T-34/85s. It took a little longer than I’d originally planned/hoped, since I wanted to get the markings more-or-less right, while still making the models look good. I found some information that the red star was used sparingly, (and that a white star was even used at times) and that individual unit markings were often left up to the company commanders, so after a fair bit of looking around, I decided that the red star added an attractive bit of spot colour to the models, as did the Guards Tank badge. I also added some freehand slogans, which was a lot of fun.

Now, LOTS of pics.

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 321 “Crush the Fascists!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 321 “Crush the Fascists!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 321 “Crush the Fascists!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 321 “Crush the Fascists!”

The commander is removable, he’s blu-taced into the hatch for a bit of variety, and for use in games where the “lead” tank might matter – to keep it obvious for the players.

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 322 “For Moscow!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 322 “For Moscow!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 322 “For Moscow!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 322 “For Moscow!”

One thing that really got me going with these tanks was their simple assembly. I often find myself getting distracted when working on models that have overly-complex assembly, as my favourite part of the hobby is really painting – and specifically completing painting – the detail work. Followed by gaming (which I don’t get to do nearly as often as I’d like). Modelling and assembly can be fun, but as much as I love multi-part HIPs figures and so forth, I’d be just as happy to have almost all figures come pre-assembled so I can just get to the painting. These really are very simple kits, so the assembly for all three was done in a day so I could get onto the fun of painting them.

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 322 “For the Motherland!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 322 “For the Motherland!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 322 “For the Motherland!”

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

T-34/85 322 “For the Motherland!”

These kits aren’t super-detailed, and won’t win any prizes in any modelling shows – nor will this paint work – but for the purposes of gaming they’re just fine. I found I enjoyed painting these up with their military greens, rough damage and weathering more than I’ve enjoyed painting any 40k tanks ever as well.

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85 Tank Platoon

The T-34/85 platoon shows off their freehand slogans.

I chose to use freehand for the slogans because I wanted to have something a little more unique than the decals provided, and because I really enjoy doing things like that. I also freehanded the ID numbers on the obverse side of the turrets (but not the diamonds). I did those in freehand because I’ve seen many images where they were clearly painted on by the crew as well. I felt making them deliberately a little wonky also works well for what they are. I can paint more uniform than that – though not nearly as perfect as a stencil, obviously!

And now – some action shots!

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

A glorious unit of Soviet tanks retakes the ground tainted by the fascists just a couple of years ago!

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

The sun shines on our glorious boys as they heroically push back the opressors! За Родину!

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

Commander of the unit, Starshina Yarik, beckons to his platoon to look beyond the dusty dragon’s teeth at their destination.

Warlord Games Bolt Action T-34/85

A ruined building provides no obstacle for the Heroic Liberators!

So yeah, I had a little bit of fun here. It also shows off some of the terrain I finished recently to provide some sense of their scale with the Bolt Action armour.

I guess now I need to get hold of a platoon worth of German Armour, so these guys have someone to fight. Panthers? PzIV? Both? Hmm…

8 thoughts on “Bolt Action! 28mm T-34/85 Tank Platoon

  1. Great work on those. They look exactly like I – someone with mainly a Hollywood level of “knowledge” of the Eastern Front – think they should look.

    I agree about complex kits: they give plenty of options for people who want to spend all their time cutting things up and sticking them back together again, but my main motivator is to get them painted and on the table. Simple kits for me too please.

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  2. Thanks! The wide variety of Soviet markings means that while the above tank deco would not have been common at all, it’s still very feasable. And let’s face it, there were a LOT of Soviet tanks out there. I’ve had a look at some other kits and have an eye on some of Warlord’s other plastics. It’ll depend on price and simplicity. I simply can’t be arsed with resin/metal tanks for the most part. Some of them look like they’re sculpted out of chewing gum…

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    • It’d be a combination of them being real tanks, with suspension and tracks that look like they could work (because they did!), easier to paint if you’re keepingit simple but with the ability to put just as much work into the weathering, and the fact that they look and feel much more enjoyable to work on, research and paint than a tank painted bright blue or red. Don’t get me wrong, I still think 40k tanks are cool, just real ones are cooler. I mean, these ones helped to defeat the Nazis!

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