Wednesday, 16 March 2016

4 inch Naval Gun and Crew on the Tigris.

A couple of posts ago, I showed images of a scaratchbuilt 4 inch naval gun that is destined to form the main armament of a 1/56 scale Fly Class gunboat that is being built by a much valued patron. Well, here is the gun and crew placed on a grey circular base to mimic the circular steel platform on the bow of the boat onto which the gun will be mounted. Looking at photographs and watching film clips from the Imperial War Museum online archive clearly shows gunners that are not wearing naval rig so the decision was taken to have this gun crewed by Royal Artillery gunners on attachment. The figures began life as the Perry Miniatures WW2 British  25pdr gun crew with headswaps, some minor carving and the addition of greenstuff neck-flaps and spine protectors to give that Mesopotamia feel.

The 4 inch gun crew on HMS Sedgefly. Definitely not in naval rig.

The 6 inch gun crew of an Insect Class gunboat. Not in naval rig but wearing white foreign service helmets. White helmets were issued to the Royal Navy.

The model Fly Class Gunboat, created by The Beast of Bukhara, has just made it's debut on the Lead Adventure Forum. Now The Beast has revealed this to the world I am very pleased to be able to share an image of his excellent work with you:

The crew will follow...with a bit of creative paintwork to represent RN working rig rather than blues or tropical whites. Just like this photo of the Ship's Company of HMS Greenfly:

Here is the test piece:

This nine minute film opens with shots of HMS Caddis Fly. The film then cuts to HMS Moth, a larger class of gunboat characterized by her two 6 inch guns and twin funnels side by side. We then get a lot of footage of the Moth's 6 inch guns in action. The crew are in a motley collection of kit including one scruffy officer wearing his white deck shoes! The same crew fires the 12pdr gun for the camera. At about 6 minutes, the film cuts back to Caddis Fly and we have a super shot of the 4 inch and her crew firing a round for the benefit of the camera, one gunner looking at the camera after the gun has fired as if to say "How was that, Guv? Want another?" It is this crew that inspired the figures above.


Peter Douglas said...

Wonderful gun and crew. Really impressive conversions on the crew. I also really love the old photos.

Michael Awdry said...

Wonderfully impressive work Mark.

Phil said...

Impressive and beautiful!

Admiral Drax said...

Love it!

Ken Reilly said...

They are lovely jubbly! Just what I need for my WW1 Mesopotamian collection.

Regards Ken
The Yarkshire Gamer

Bedford said...

I love it Mark.

The owner is going to be a very proud person indeed!


AJ (Allan) Wright said...

Nice work. Some thin rare-earth magnets counter-sunk into the base and the figure bases would make for good secure mounting of the figures while still allowing casualty removal. I like the Flames of war turret magnets for this purpose. They're strong enough to hold a 28mm figure and thin enough to make embedding them into the bases an easy task.

DeanM said...

Impressive work, Mark. I not only am impressed by your brushwork, but the figures themselves are very nice. I first thought of 1/35th Tamiya kits when I saw the images.


Lovely stuff. Certainly an interesting part of the project

Tom Desmond said...


I’ve been meaning to ask you for some time about the Fly Class Gunboat. I’m heavily into 28mm WW1 in Mesopotamia and would like to provide my British with a suitable Gunboat. Would it be possible to get the rough dimensions of the model (length x width x height). I have a friend who is quite clever and I’d like to see if he could build me something comparable. Many thanks!

Mark Hargreaves said...

Tom, the model of the Fly Class gunboat is not mine. I only painted up the crew and made the 4 inch armament. Adrian made this boat at approx 1/56 which gives a length of about 2 feet and a beam of approx 4 inches. Height from waterline to top of superstructure, also about 4 inches.