Modelling Modern South African Armour (BOK)
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The first in this all new series 'Conflict 100: A Century of Warfare Remembered through Military Modelling', exclusively published by GG Books and Helion & Company, showcases modern South African Armour. Through a series of step-by-step builds by leading modellers, which are accompanied by detailed walk-arounds, a selection of vehicles and weapon systems are explored by serving South African Army Officer William Marshall, for military modellers and students of military history alike. During the South African Border War of 1966-1989, the South African Defence Force circumvented an international arms embargo to build a robust capability which reflected the nature of the conflict in hand; counter-insurgency operations against SWAPO in northern southwest Africa (Namibia) and offensive war fighting into Angola. The South African Defence Force found itself commissioning a range of mine protected platforms which were designed to counter the prevalent use of landmines and IEDs. Vehicles such as the Casspir and Buffel were purposefully designed to protect infantrymen from the threat of reinforced mines - many of which were fabricated from unexploded ordnance or from multiple anti-tank mines initiated by a trigger anti personnel mine. With its sturdy V-shaped hull, the Casspir was well able to survive mine blasts as was the Buffel which afforded protection whilst allowing a high degree of mobility. Here, modeller Steve Crump assembles the BaxMod 1/35th Casspir as a Koevoet vehicle - the elite South West African Police counter-insurgency team whereas BaxMod founder Chris Baxter builds his own 1/35th Buffel kit. Both the Casspir and Buffel have become icons of the Border War, these builds show just why...The Ratel series of Infantry Fighting Vehicle was also designed to protect its crew from landmines and IEDs, whilst also giving commanders a highly mobile and kinetic offensive capability. Equipped with a 20mm gun, the Ratel 20 is able to deliver an astonishing rate of fire. The Ratel 90 has proved itself an exceptional 'bunker buster' in operations against SWAPO in southern Angola and in a number of instances, readily saw off T-55 tanks. Tamiya's Marcus Nicholls here takes us through his stunning Ratel 20 build, whereas Australian modeller, Stuart Ransley, does the same for his Ratel 90. South Africa's main battle tank during the Border Was a derivative of the British Centurion. Equipped with a powerful diesel engine and up-gunned with a 105mm system, the Olifant was well suited for operating in the bush. Deployed during the 1987/8 battle of Cuito Cuanavale, the Olifants of 61 Mechanised Infantry Battalion proved themselves a formidable adversary for Angolan and Cuban forces. Steve Crump's Olifant build is based on the AFV Club Centurion kit and depicts an Olifant during the Cuito battle. German modeller Ralf Stein takes us through his Olifant build too - an amazing work that truly captures the shape and features of a battle-worn Olifant. BaxMod's latest 1/35th resin release is the G6 Self Propelled Gun. Modeller David Rowe gives this huge kit the full treatment to render a build of this weapon system which is stunning to behold. Now operationally deployed with the post-apartheid South African National Defence Force, the G6 is an incredible example of South African military engineering and a triumph of production for Armscor - the Armaments Corporation of South Africa. South Africa's 44 Para Brigade was one of the SADF's elite fighting units. Showcasing its airborne offensive capability, it saw action during the 1978 Cassinga battle where a force of ParaBats led by the legendary Colonel Jan Breytenbach, assaulted and destroyed a large insurgent headquarters. The Pathfinder Company of 44 Para Brigade interestingly comprised a significant number of British and American 'contract soldiers'. These individuals adapted and improvised the issue Unimog carriers to be light patrol vehicles. Heavily armed with a combination of 7.62mm FN MAGS and .50 Cal Browning guns, these patrol vehicles were striking to say the least. Ralf Stein's build takes us through the assembly of one of these 'Mad Max' machines. Different it is! Modelling Modern South African Armour is a unique and compelling work. The origin and history of each weapon system is covered in detail; step-by-step builds in full colour give important 'how-to' tips; walk-around feature images that have never been seen before; colour profiles illustrate camouflage markings and the volume cites extensive references, a bibliography and more. 'Conflict 100: A Century of Warfare Remembered through Military Modelling' is a new series concept, allowing military modellers to focus on a specific area or genre that is of interest to them. From Modern South African Armour to Cold War British Jet Fighters; the Rhodesian Conflict through to French Foreign Legion Operations in Mali; S-Boat Operations in the Aegean to modern Bundeswehr armour...all these and more will be given the Conflict 100 treatment - quality builds by leading modellers; historical contexts from acknowledged sources, colour profiles of vehicles and weapon systems; detailed walk-arounds which take you to the heart of the subject. With individual builds and profiles available to buy as downloadable PDFs, this series will grow and grow.
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