Monday, April 3

Alpine Miniatures finish off their "Ambush at Poteau." big set with two more great looking figures in 35th scale.

Alpine Miniatures has just released the second pair of what is proposed to be a larger set of German soldiers of the LAH in the scene of the "Ambush at Poteau." These two figures have lots of points of interest that we thought we might look at in our preview...

Alpine Miniatures two new figures in three sets for April 2017

SS NCO "KG Hansen" #1
#35229
1/35th scale
This figure features two head choices
Sculpture by Taesung Harmms
Boxart by Toshihiro Sano

SS NCO "KG Hansen" #2.
#35230
1/35th scale
This figure features two head choices
Sculpture by Taesung Harmms
Boxart by Toshihiro Sano

KG Hansen at Poteau Set #2
#35231
1/35th scale
These two figures feature two head choices each.
Sculpture by Taesung Harmms
Boxart by Toshihiro Sano

Alpine Miniatures has released a pair of new figures in 35th scale sold as single figures but also as a pair in this, the second set that captures the group of soldiers who were shot on a movie reel. They are sold as a matching pair as well as by themselves, we thought we would look at them both as singles, and as a set, but first we wanted to show you the history from which both of these soldiers were inspired from.


These soldiers match another set that we have reviewed from this same film reel -  the Amubush at Poteau set #1


These two new sculpts of two soldiers capture a well-known period of the second world war. In 1944 in the Ardennes as the world held their breath as the German units counterattacked to drive towards the coast and split the allies apart. This high profile campaign was Hitler's last gamble in the west and there were several pictures taken of the battle on both sides. It is from some of these images and films that Alpine's first and now second set of the soldiers of SS Kampfgruppe Hansen were inspired.

You can see these two figures pretty easily in the first few seconds of this video

The shots shown here are some of these very well known shots of one squad of soldiers from KG Hansen in a well-known propaganda film
SS Kampfgruppe Hansen participated in the "Battle of the Bulge" or "Ardennes Offensive" In a quiet sector of the Ardennes in the bitter Winter of December 1944. The cream of what was left of Hitler’s armies and whoever else could be conscripted attacked through a narrow corridor in the forests of Belgium trying to strike out and capture the Meuse river bridges to try and cut the Allied US and British forces in two.
The attack ultimately failed after harsh conditions, a strong resistance by the Allies and the basic lack of fuel, ammunition and the reliance on having to capture supplies to advance caused the German's advance to dwindle and fail – it was truly Hitler’s last gamble in the west. Famous pictures like these ones made some of the soldiers in them well known from history books, and now from the internet.
It turns out that the ambushed American vehicles were from the 14th Cavalry Group and that these photos were taken on 18th Dec 1944 by SS propaganda photographers. The soldiers from Kampfgruppe Hansen and Schnellgruppe Knittel of 1st SS Panzer Division "Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler” and the pictures were taken near Poteau, which is roughly NW of St Vith.


SS NCO "KG Hansen" #1
#35229
1/35th scale
This figure features two head choices
Sculpture by Taesung Harmms
Boxart by Toshihiro Sano
This SS NCO from Kampfgruppe Hansen is one of the better-known soldiers from the video of the "Ambush at Poteau" film. A decorated soldier, he wears the Iron cross and the associated ribbon from under his tunic to his button. The figure is sculpted in 35th scale by Taesung Harmms, and in the case of the box art it was painted by Boxart by Toshihiro Sano.
Here is a picture of the soldier from the film reel
There are two head choices with this figure, both are the steel M43 helmet, but one is a covered version with a camo (autumn here) and the other is a bare version. The face is well sculpted and he looks like a northern European gent in this sculpt. Interesting in this sculpt and in keeping with the picture of the original soldier is that he has a scarf around his neck, which would hide any joints at the neck.

The captured large U.S. Army rubber impregnated cloth raincoat the soldier wears covers both of his regular service tunic and his padded camouflage pants tucked into his large boots which were probably rare by this time in the war. He carries a Kar.98 rifle in his right hand as he walks along the road.



SS NCO "KG Hansen" #2.
#35230
1/35th scale
This figure features two head choices
Sculpture by Taesung Harmms
Boxart by Toshihiro Sano

The second figure released this month features another man from the film of the Poteau ambush, a Leibstandarte German soldier from the Kampfgruppe Hansen with his STG44 assault rifle in his arm as he hustles forward into danger. 
You can see the rank on the collars of the boxart, this Rottenführer is a squad leader or maybe equivalent to a Corporal first class. They would usually lead small groups and was sometimes referred to as a "rotten führer" (a rotten leader, a sour joke amongst the troops.) Again he is afforded the choice of a covered M43 helmet or a bare version.
He is wearing a late war camouflage tunic with his thinner wear uniform tunic's collars folding out the top, again with a scarf around the neck, just like the original photo of this soldier. he also wears the thick padded mittens that the Germans adopted after their experiences with the cold on the eastern front.
The Soldier carries the prized StG 44 (abbreviation of Sturmgewehr 44, "assault rifle 44") selective-fire rifle developed during World War II. The pouches for extra ammo are strapped to his webbing and belt, which also bears the NCO/ Officer's map pack on his left hip. On his back, his Zeltbahn camouflaged is also strapped to his shoulder webbing and an entrenching shovel is worn on his left hip on his rear.
This man also posed for the photographer as a squad leader signalling his men to advance. You can see a little more of his uniform and how the sculptor matched his load out in this photo.


KG Hansen at Poteau Set #2
#35231
1/35th scale
These two figures feature two head choices each.
Sculpture by Taesung Harmms
Boxart by Toshihiro Sano
Well here are these two soldiers – they look quite complementary but also pretty different in body language and equipment. Well-chosen by alpine for these differences, they will match into the set of the same scene we have already seen from Alpine quite well.
These releases are now available from the Apine Miniatures Website and also from their distributors worldwide