I recently purchased a box of Airfix modern infantry with the idea of using them with my Green forces. On paper, this seemed like a good idea as my few 1/48 HLBS modern infantry figures (a range now sadly defunct) match pretty well with the other figures I have. The back of the box image sold me on the purchase. The poses are fairly static in patrolling mode but there looked to be some useful guys in the box.
The raw materials. The figures aren't multi-part in the sense of having a lot of options right out of the box, although not doubt some customization can be done. Things fit well enough together (except for the scrawny necks), although the arms aren't clearly defined as to what angle they need to be mounted in order to grasp the spindly assault rifles. Using plastic model glue there's time to make adjustments before it sets, super glue is a lot more problematic in that respect.
As soon as I saw the size of the parts, I knew I had a problem. From left to right, Airfix, HLBS, plastic army guy:
The Airfix soldier measures 33mm from the boots to the eyes, HLBS is 38mm. Seems hard to believe a major model company could muff the scale, so we can say then that the HLBS were "heroic" 1/48, a virtual 40mm. Still, I'm curious how the Airfix might scale up against the Tamiya 1/48 WW2 figures, although I'm not about to purchase a box purely in the interest of research.
|Despite his deformity, Private Pencil Neck somehow passed the army's physical exam.|
Oh err, they aren't much cop! What a pity.ReplyDelete
You're right, Simon. At least for my purpose. Probably they'd serve well enough in a modeling diorama.Delete
Rather disappointing... any idea if Afghan 'opposition' is on the cards? Otherwise they are of no use at all.ReplyDelete
No idea, Pete. But I rather doubt it.Delete
These are not really designed as minis for gaming. Airfix makes some 1/48 vehicle kits such as a Warrior, Land Rovers, Supacats and so on for "Operation Herrick". So I suppose the soldiers exist to complement the hardware (the other set are crew figures).
I've had a Tamiya 1/48 Universal Carrier in the cupboard for years. A standing crew figure is still on the sprue but appesrs to match the Airfix in height and bulk. A Corgi 1/50 die cast figure is shorter but heftiet.ReplyDelete
Most 40mm figures are about 1/43 to match a railway scale but of course many wargam3 ones have added girth and sometimes height.
Thanks, Ross. That's informative, I appreciate the information.Delete
The Airfix figures seem to me roughly true to scale. I am supposing 33mmm bootsoles to eyes translates as roughly 158.4cm at 1:48. Add on an extra 11th to account for the height above the eyes gives us 172.8 cm overall, or very close to 5' 8". I don't know what the recruiting standard is for British Infantry, but 5' 8" seems pretty reasonable.ReplyDelete
I have to agree, though: Nearly Headless Nick, here, does seem to have been short changed in the neck regions...
Thanks, Ion. Good calculations.Delete
The weirdly long, thin necks and small heads seem to be an issue with these figures. No doubt it can all be made right with some filing and putty but I have assembled many Tamiya, Dragon and Zvezda 1/35 figures over the years which never needed any extra help.
Thanks for the comparisons - I was wondering much the same about the potential for using hlbs and airfix together. Could I beg a couple more comparison shots between the hlbs and the 'green plastic army men' as they look like they have potential...ReplyDelete
Glad you liked the comparisons, Xander.Delete
The green figure on the right is actually at the upper limit of the sizes I'm using, most match up better with the HLBS, at least in terms of heighth. Of course stylistically they're not a great match but can serve together in the same army without over-stretching credibility. I think I actually have enough HLBS Delta Force/Ranger style guys to make an Elite squad of them.
Yes, I can post more comparisons but it will probably have to wait at least until I get a few of the M60 gunner and three of his mates done. They're in the painting queue.