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In-Box Review
135
Australian SAS - Best wishes
Australian SAS - Best wishes- Vietnam 68
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by: Engin Kayral [ GRAYWOLF ]


Originally published on:
Historicus Forma

introduction

After the US Infantry and opposing Viet Cong local forces figures, BRAVO-6 keeps releasing very nice figures of the Vietnam War which can be displayed alone or used together to make vignettes and dioramas. The company now started to release some US Allies who served in Vietnam War. The owner and sculptor of BRAVO-6, Vladimir Demchenko ,inspired by the real photos of the conflict, lately sculpted very nice figures of Australian SAS members.

The kit B6-35018 Australian SAS “Best wishes” – Vietnam 68 includes one figure representing an Australian 2 Sqn SASR patrol member in Vietnam 1968.


about the figure

The ultimate exponents of the art of silent patrolling were the Australian SAS Squadrons. These specalists called as the Jungle Ghosts were unquestionably among the finest professional soldiers in theatre,and their mastery on jungle warfare were absolute. The SAS patrols had such an impact on the VC that one report stated that the VC had placed a bounty of 5,000 USD for dead or alive on the head of each Ma Rung- Phantoms of the Jungle.

Though the members of the Australian SAS Squadrons had already been in Vietnam since 1962 as advisers; the regiment arrived in South Vietnam on the 15th June 1966. Three fighting Squadrons served in rotation in the Phouc Tuy Province 70 kilometers south east of Saigon. On the 26 June 3 Squadron commenced operations from its base at Nui Dat. Their role was intelligence gathering and recon. Specifically, they were to find the whereabouts, movements and habits of the two main force enemy units in Phuoc Tuy province.
box

The figure comes well packed in standard BRAVO-6 light brown 50x80x25 mm cardboard box . The front part of the box shows a photo of the assembled and painted figure which can serve as a painting guide. On the other side of the box; e-mail address and website of the company is noted.

The parts are represented with the casting blocks. The main part-body and other parts of the figure like arms and accessories are seperately inserted in a small plastic zip-lock bags to avoid unexpected damages during transfer.
parts

The figure is sculpted by Vladimir Demchenko and comes in 11 (3 body parts, 8 pieces of personal gear) medium grey resin parts. The resin quality is very good and details are crisp. No air bubbles, excess resin or any casting mistakes on the figure. The junctions between figure parts and casting blocks are well placed and the parts can be easily removed from the blocks with no damage. There will be no need for a cleanwork , this is another wash and paint figure from BRAVO-6.

  • The main part is Body with head and legs. Some parts of personal gear is cast on the body. The figure shows nice facial details, hair and head band also well sculpted. He wears ERDL Camouflage Tropical Combat uniform , developed by US Army Engineer Research and Development Laboratory. The combat uniform consists of jacket with 4 flip-top cover pockets and trousers with 2 flip-top cover cargo pockets on the sides. Cloth folds and pocket details of the uniform are well defined.

    Though a small number of Tiger-stripe uniforms were worn, ERDL quickly emerged as standard SAS operational dress in Vietnam. Australians called the uniform as “Seal suit” possibly because of its use by US Navy Seals with whom SAS sometimes worked together. Its pattern was considered ideal for most environments, and its multiple pockets suited the amount of gear carried in SAS operations. The basic ERDL pattern comprised of four basic colours, Yellow Green army shade 354, Dark Green army shade 355, Brown army shade 356 and Black army shade 357. But during Vietnam war; ERDL was produced in two distinctive variations, Brown dominant for use in the Highlands of Vietnam and green (lime) dominant for the lowland jungle areas. These brown and lime green variants of ERDL camouflage by the mid 1970’s combined into a transitional pattern and eventually became what is now called today ‘Woodland’ pattern used by the US Army from the late 1970’s right into the nineties.

    He carries M1956 ILCE – individual load carrying equipment of utility belt and suspenders. A M-16 ammo pouch is cast on the left side of the figure and an m-60 ammo link in cloth cover is carried on the chest crossed on the right shoulder. Details of the ammo belt and sweat towel on the neck are well represented. He wears leather-canvas jungle boots. As for the backpack ; he carries an Australian Bergan Rucksack, based on that used by British army and had changed a little from its World War II design. It is a simple canvas bag carried on a steel A-frame , it has 3 external pockets and different than the British type the straps are changed to than from olive drab and buckles are blackened metal. The details of the rucksack are well defined.

  • Right arm : Posed to carry a modified M-60. It shows nice cloth folds and weapon details. The handguards and bipod of the M-60 are removed, the barrel is shortened, the flash supressor is replaced further back and a SLR pistol grip is added halfway along the barrel. A sling is added to allow firing the weapon from the hip. Note that the sling is not included in the kit but can be easily done with aluminium foil.

  • Left arm : Posed to show the famous gesture- the finger.

    Other parts are;
  • M1956 First aid case or compass pouch
  • M-1956 One quart plastic canteen in canvas cover - 3 pieces
  • K-BAR Knife
  • M18 smoke grenade - 2 pieces
  • M-60 ammo belt
    reference

  • Osprey Publishing - Vietnam ANZACs Australian & New Zealand Troops in Vietnam 1962–72 by Kevin Lyles
  • Vietnamgear.com
  • David Brubakers Vietnam Equipment and uniforms
    conclusion

    Very nice subject, very nice sculpt and high quality casting in crisp details . Another great figure to paint for all Nam modelers and especially for Australian SAS fans.

    Very Highly Recommended

  • SUMMARY
    Highs: Rare figure representing a Aussie SAS in Vietnam, very nice sculpt and high quality casting.
    Lows: No low point I could find in that figure.
    Verdict: Great figure to paint alone or combine with the other SAS kit of BRAVO-6 to make a diorama.
      SUBJECT:95%
      SCULPTING-CASTING:95%
      DETAILS:95%
    Percentage Rating
    95%
      Scale: 1:35
      Mfg. ID: B6-35018
      Suggested Retail: ~18 USD
      Related Link: 
      PUBLISHED: Sep 12, 2009
      NATIONALITY: Australia
    NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
      THIS REVIEWER: 92.05%
      MAKER/PUBLISHER: 95.03%

    Our Thanks to BRAVO-6!
    This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.
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    About Engin Kayral (Graywolf)
    FROM: IZMIR, TURKEY / TüRKçE

    Born in 1962,married and having 2 sons. I started modelling about 8 years old building USS Fletcher with mom. It was a model dad brought from USA., I think in those days only a few people in Turkey had info on scale model kits. Grown as an AF officer son , I built many aircraft models in years. Som...

    Copyright ©2017 text by Engin Kayral [ GRAYWOLF ]. All rights reserved.


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    Comments

    Great review of a wonderful figure, bro. I enjoyed reading about the historical stuff as well... Are you working on another Bravo6 Aussie figures review as well? Mario
    SEP 12, 2009 - 07:39 AM
    Thanks and Yes my bro. I am working on the other kit now and it is also a very good kit with different weapons and all. It will be added on Monday. Keep safe
    SEP 12, 2009 - 12:11 PM
    Personally I'd buy this figure just based on the figgie's gesture alone. There's a nice piratical look about this chappie. Thanks Engin for the nicely detailed writeup.
    SEP 13, 2009 - 10:18 PM
    Although a good figure, I don't think it captures the spirit of the photo very well. The figure doesn't look rugged enough i.e sleeves buttoned up, pack slung too high, equipment arranged too neatly on his webbing, silly bandanna on his head (makes him look too American). Other things ; his finger is on the trigger and the gun position makes him look far too Rambo. Perhaps the worst aspect is that his eyes don't line up with his finger and his arm looks contorted. Nice subject, but a poor interpretation of the photo. Thanks for the review though Engin. Chas
    SEP 26, 2009 - 02:41 AM
    That's because it's inspired by the picture, and not a replication of the photo - as noted in the review. Thanks for the review, Engin.
    OCT 20, 2009 - 08:15 PM
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