Over the last couple of weeks I have been spending my paint and chat time (as it seems most nights I am painting I am also on a hangout...) working on finishing off my Anti-tank M10C battery along with my last Churchill Crocodile - and a couple of Sherman I's.
I managed to more or less finish these guys all off, bar a couple little fixes, over the weekend.
Things still to do include a little bit of soot here and there, a base for the Croc's fuel trailer and the magnetic sheeting for under the bases.
So, first up, my Self-Propelled 17 Pounder 'Achilles' M10C's. These guys are representing the 6th Canadian Anti Tank Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery. Specifically vehicles of "B" Troop, 33 Battery, who advanced during the night attack along with 7 Argyle and Sutherland Highlanders during their attack towards Crasmesnil. The troop took no casualties during the night advance, although one of the vehicle commanders apparently shot up some German infantry with a Sten! During the 8th August the Regiment lost 1 Officer Killed, 1 Wounded, 6 'Other Ranks' killed, 12 wounded and 3 Missing.
This regiment was a Corps asset of 2nd Canadian Corps, 1st Canadian Army in Normandy. This was one of three possible M10 units I could have added - the others being those of the 1st Polish Armoured and 4th Canadian Armoured Divisions. However as they were in action during phase 2 of the Totalise operation, I went with the unit present during the night attack. For those interested, the Canadian Government has made digital copies of a huge number of their countries war diaries free online.
The diary relating to the operation I am covering for this unit is located here. I have to say that it just shows how such records should be treated and makes the UK Governments efforts seem rather miserly and money grubbing.
Interestingly, prior to finding this dairy I had no idea that this unit was involved in the Highland Division part of the attack. Neither, it seems, were many modern authors. The main reference book I have for Totalise (written by a Canadian) makes no mention of these vehicles being present in the assault columns. Another interesting fact from the war diary was the line:-
"7 Aug 1944 - Attack to go in tonight at 2330 hrs. The C.O. moved Tac HQ to CCRA's report centre at MR063678 for period of "push". Welding of turret tops on M10s as protection against mortars and shrapnel completed today." (Emphasis mine!)
I don't have turret tops on these chaps, but I can see it being an option in the future. If anyone has any they are not using (they can be found in the American 4 vehicle box set) I would be interested in hearing from you. Failing that, I may buy some more to build as 3" armed M10's and do some weapon swaps on these guys. Time will tell! Also corrected after these pics were taken were the crew members beret's. For Artillery units these should be Khaki rather than black, and so have been re-painted!!!
I've also discovered that my source giving these units M10C's at this point was incorrect, and that it looks like the unit did not receive these vehicles until late August - so it looks like the 3" armed armoured roof versions might be on the cards!
I also finished two more Sherman I's for my Squadron of 144RAC, tanks '83' and '84' of #3 Troop. my 14th and 15th Sherman (that I currently own, anyway!).
And finally the last (number 6!) of my Churchill Crocodiles. I still have the trailer to base and I forgot to update some of the decals, but I may just weather them a bit more heavily and forget about that! This Churchill has some of the great stowage from the Battlefront Churchill pack (as do many of these vehicles) but I love the use of the Churchill track links instead of the Sherman ones I had used previously.
And that, more or less, is that!