Sunday, March 24, 2019

Final Painting Challenge Submission - IDF Tiran 5 MBTs

Tiran 5 MBTs in 15mm - models from Battlefront.
The ninth edition of Curt's Analogue Hobbies Painting Challenge has concluded! As the hours count down, participants try to get a bunch of submissions in at the last minute in order to boost their total productivity, and I was no exception.  For the last submission, I did something a little different - some Israeli Tiran 5 tanks in 15mm.  The models are from Battlefront, part of their "Fate of A Nation" range.

The silhouette of these tanks may seem oddly familiar to cold war gamers...well the Tiran-5 is actually a Soviet T-55 tank.  The IDF captured a large number of T-55s during the Six Day War in 1967, and they were not going to waste these assets.  They took the captured tanks and replaced the engine, switched out the main gun (to a 105mm gun) and made other changes, and put them into the battle line, for use against their previous owners.

T-55 MBT with new engine, new main gun.
During the Yom Kippur War in 1973, an armoured brigade equipped with Tiran tanks fought in the Sinai against the Egyptian assault across the Suez Canal.  Later I believe Tiran tanks saw service in Lebanon.

I love the decals from Battlefront...
When I was first diving into gaming the Yom Kippur War many years ago, I learned of the Tirans and I thought it would be really cool to do a unit of these tanks.  Old Glory had a model available in 15mm, but the quality of the casting was poor, so I only painted one of the vehicles.  Once Battlefront came into the period with T-55s, I wrote them asking to see if I could order some bits separately to create these tanks myself...I was told I couldn't get the bits! Well then...

Notorious for their cramped interiors, the IDF added extra storage on the exterior for the crew to use.
Fast forward to 2018, and I see that "Fate Of A Nation" has been re-issued (to match up with the newer "Team Yankee" rules), and that a model has been released of the Tiran-5s! I couldn't wait to get a company of them painted up to clash with Dallas' Egyptians in some games set in the Sinai in 1973.

Lots of MGs on the cupola...
Trying to paint a company of these things is exactly the sort of project I would slot in my mind for Curt's Painting Challenge. I had planned to paint 10 of these during this edition...and yet...well, again, you can see why I don't try to "plan" too much with my painting, particularly during the Painting Challenge.  I didn't finish the company, but I did finish these first three test models, enough to get the unit started, to refresh the memory on painting IDF vehicles. 

And the Painting Challenge has concluded - I exceeded my "points target", which I was pleased about.  While it is a "Challenge", you are really only racing against yourself, as you get to set your own target. The motivation you get participating with others in different parts of the world is very helpful. I hope you have an opportunity to check out some of the submissions - including a number from Byron and MikeF. 

Thanks for visiting - have a great day!

6 comments:

Stanley Martens said...

Nicely done Greg! They look great...

Dallas said...

Those look fantastic - I love the aerials. How'd you do those?

Greg B said...

Thanks guys!
Dallas - the aerials are just the fibres from a synthetic paint brush...although the system works the best when you don't lose the brush...

Dallas said...

Cool. I've been doing that too but maybe your brush has finer hairs that mine. Looks great!

Don M said...

They look great! Thanks for the info on Fate Of The Nation update...I had no idea!

Curt said...

Terrific work dude. Love seeing these oddball vehicles.