Flames of War M4 Sherman Tank Platoons (Battlefront Miniatures) (June-it ’18)

These ten M4 Sherman models are some of Battlefront’s early product – resin shermans with metal guns. I picked up these two platoons secondhand, and so they lack turret MGs (if these early models even had those). I picked these up as two sets of 5 tanks for £15.00 each back in 2012 – they were old and long OOP even then.

And that’s where this story ended. Or took a rather long intermission until very recently. While I was looking for something else, and had Marouda helping me look through the boxes and tubs of figures in storage, I spied the two sets of Shermans, and then decided to pull them from the shelf, and also grabbed out all the plastic Open Fire! Shermans as well (sadly, they’re the dodgy ones from the first edition of OF!) Thanks to Just Needs Varnish, and his endless stream of cool looking 15mm stuff, I decided it was time to get a few little tanks painted up.

They’re really nothing special. I got two versions of OD spray made up at the local paint store (I’ll need to get a Brown Violet match made as well, but I need to get the Vallejo paint first!). I used the darker as the base, then the lighter as a zenithal shade. I used the Battlefront decals (they’re fucking awful to use – they take forever to lift off the sheet, they’re thin and crinkle and tear easily) as I couldn’t get the PSC ones. I can out of Allied Stars and so found a larger-scale sheet of them from Warlord, and used the smallest ones. I’ll have to buy a bunch more of the Warlord ones, as they were great decals to use.

The ten Shermans have been painted in a rather generic style. I’ve gone for all-Allied Stars to save the ringed stars for later units. I figure I can use the turrets with top-stars on them as Platoon leaders as needed. Not that I’ve played Flames of War in many, many years now. Not since 1st edition, in fact. While I can recognise a lot of WWII armour in it’s basic forms, I don’t know them well enough to know where exactly to place all of the optional markings, or which of the many variants that these Shermans are.

Battlefront Shermans imitate the start of a typical round of World of Tanks.

What will I do with these? Well, I have a few different 15mm armies worth of figures and armour to build and play with one day. There’s obviously Flames of War out there, and plenty of other WW2 rulesets besides for that scale. At one stage I hoped to play Bolt Action with a bunch of 15mm models, using cm for inches, but it never happened. I have a DAK army that’s been in storage for well over a decade now that could probably be a project for both “Finishing Units” months as well as, obviously, Neglected Models. The problem for me is painting 15mm troops. Because as cool as they can look when complete, I find them painfully boring to paint.

I painted the turret ring area to visually represent destroyed/burned tanks.

I’ve been considering picking up that TANKS! game by GF9 as a bit of a light game. It would certainly give me an outlet to use some of these tanks with, not to mention potentially giving me some motivation to paint some additional 15mm armour. I suppose there’s also the Bolt Action side-game, Tank War.

22 thoughts on “Flames of War M4 Sherman Tank Platoons (Battlefront Miniatures) (June-it ’18)

  1. I think they look great! Well done getting ten of ’em done and thank you for the mention, it’s much appreciated! They look like standard 75mm-armed M4A1s from the cast hull fronts, and not from the initial production runs since they have the wider gun mantlet, but that’s about as much as I’d recognise without having to look ’em up in a book. That probably makes them good enough for anywhere, anytime in WW2 US service without getting too picky (that’s how I’d use them), from North Africa to the Pacific. The usual AA weapon on the M4 was the 50-cal, but they could be removed and stowed. I’ve played “Tanks” in a game someone else ran and would say it’s OK if you want a quick tank game with a few tanks per side, but I didn’t think it brought out the elements of tank combat well enough for me! Really nice models!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Most welcome. I realised last night I’d forgotten to add in a link to your blog, but that’s now fixed as well. (late night, tired blogging FTL!) Ten of them wasn’t too bad as they lent themselves to batch painting. The only truly tedious part of it was adding all of those decals.
      Good to hear from someone who knows there stuff better than I that they’re nicely generic as well – just what I’d hoped. I’m looking at “TANKS!” as a simple muckabout game in the vein of playing a small, low-stress game of X-Wing, rather than as a “proper” wargame. The beauty of models like this is that they’re so adaptable.
      And I just remembered the name (finally) of the other ruleset that I’ve played long ago – Crossfire. (well, joining in with a couple of units on other people’s game at a Wargames club rather than “properly” played). I’ll have to have a look for that as well.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I think “Tanks” might fit the bill for you then! Thanks for linking – I had to work out that FTL meant far too late as opposed to faster than light, although the latter sounds more appropriate! And I forgot to say I like the burnt black turret rings – that’s a nice idea!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Actually, I meant “For The Lose” – as opposed to “FTW” which these days means either “For The Win” or sometimes (older use) “Fuck The World”.
          I’ve also already got about 20 kg of Flames of War rulebooks, so that will probably be the (initial at least) “heavy” game. Assuming I ever get around to 20mm WW2 wargaming again as opposed to just painting some models occasionally.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Awesome looking! I always find that smaller scale interesting. For the destroyed tank, I take it the tops pop off or something? Are you keeping them in place with magnets? Just wondering how those work.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah. I should have written about that but obviously was too tired when I wrote it and forgot (it was late and I wanted to get the post up). I drilled into each turret and hull and superglued rare earth magnets into each, so they pop on and off when needed, but turn and stay on easily.

      Liked by 1 person

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