March 18 2009 – I commented on Italeri releasing some WWII German motorcycles & motorcyclists. I mentioned in that blog post that the wonderful Plastic Soldier Review had reviewed the kit, too. I titled my blog post “Something new to buy for later”.

I realised that for this Recon game Peter and I will have soon, I need a base of motorcycles. The rulebook list for ‘(German) Armored Reconnaissance Battalion 1943-1945’ states that my company HQ must include a motorcycle base. Then, checking the ‘Softskin vehicles introduction’ section of the rulebook, I find the statement “Motorcycles list how many you need to base on an infantry team sized base”. Jumping back to my army list, the preceding section ‘German softskins’ section description for the BMW R35 & the NSU 251 OSL says “Motorcycle x2”.

I needed two motorcycles. I didn’t want to go with Armourfast. I obtained last week two kits of Italeri #6121 – so I finally bought them and, to justify the expenditure, needed them urgently too!Better than buying them and then adding them to the piles of boxes of “stuff to do when I’ve got time”.

I’ve spent the last 48 hours cutting the parts from their sprues, cutting off the flash and preparing them for a wash/degreasing. Well, cutting off the flash is misleading – there’s very little of it, and if you were in a hurry you could just cut them from the sprue, wash ’em and then paint ’em. I’m an occasional perfectionist, so with a surgical scalpel I cut off the minute amounts of flashing.

The detail is really excellent, particularly the treads on the tyres and on the mufflers/exhausts. Such fine work! With good painting and drybrushing, the detail should look superb. I was a little concerned about the sidecar machinegunner and his machinegun sitting in its allocated rest/peghole, but I guess I can always cut the pegs off and do some melting to make sure everything lines up properly. Some of the figures are in warm-weather uniforms, some are an standard uniforms. Since mine will be tearing about the Soviet Union, I’m going to use both but make sure each motorcycle’s occupants are in matching kit. I’m going to do my summer uniforms in Reed Green, as per my historical sources. They could just as easily be painted up as DAK (Deutsches Afrikakorps) but I’ll leave that for the Monty & Desert Fox enthusiasts.