Friday 8 April 2016

VBCW: Wirral Socialist Canal Workers Battalion boats finished!

 Here are my finished boats for the Wirral Socialist Canal Workers Battalion for the VBCW game tomorrow. I have added crews and Vickers GO MG's to the transports. The Vickers is on an Anti-Aircraft mount and can e used by the boats passengers. The crew are form 1st Corps and Pulp Figures. 

The Transports

The Transports count as having Improvised Armour. They can move at the same pace as infantry. The passengers can fire out through the firing ports (2 per port) and use the Vickers GO MG (counts as an LMG). Because it is only possible to board and disembark via the bow or stern it takes a full turn for a squad to do so. One squad can board or disembark from either door. The hull and roof are not armoured. All indirect fire weapons or submerged obstacles effect the boats as if they were unarmoured. 

 The Dragon

The dragon is a Mobile Rocket Propelled Artillery Platform made from a modified canal barge. It is fitted with an experimental six barrelled Rocket Launcher that is capable of launching a single high explosive rocket propelled warhead or a volley of it's entire payload. The back-blast can set fire to the deck if it is not kept well swabbed, but the recoil in minimal, so the boat will not sink when it is fired (an improvement over the Heavy Mortar Artillery Platform model). The gun crew are reluctant to train with the rocket launcher as the are afraid that it might explode. As a result they count as Inexperienced when firing the rockets. 
The Dragon is also fitted with twin Vickers GO machine guns on an AA Mount. This is operated by the gun crew so it can not fire on the same turn as the Rocket Launcher. The gun crew count as Regular with this weapon and it is counted as a single LMG when shooting. 
The deck is protected by a four an a half foot high wall of plate steel, and the cabin has been further reinforced with plate and sand bags. This counts as Improvised Armour from the sides. Indirect Fire weapons hitting the deck will count it as Unrmoured
The dragon moves at the same pace as infantry. 

Old Ironsides

Old Ironsides is a canal monitor made from an armoured canal barge. The whole boat has been covered with 40-80mm of armour- as much as a heavy tank. It is fitted with a turret off a Matilda II tank, and armed with a 2pdr cannon and an Besa LMG. The 2pdr is only capable of firing AP shells, and not HE. The turret can only fire to the sides- it can to fire directly ahead as the bow turret is too high, and it is incapable of firing behind as the cabbing restricts the arc of fire. 

The monitor has a small turret at the bow, armed with a .50 Vickers MG. This front turret is primarily used for observation- usually the crewman in this turret will have the top open and be scanning the banks and water for signs of ambush or submerged obstacles. He has a direct telephone line to the main turret and to the pilot and will be responsible for directing the pilot at the rear of the boat (who can not see as his cabin is enclosed in armour). This turret is so cramped that the crewman can only enter from the roof hatch and has very limited space to maneuver- as a result the Vicker MG will count as an LMG. 

The monitor can move at the same rate as infantry, and its crew are classed as Regulars (being made up of Royal Navy volunteers.

Here are all the boats together. The platoon also has two assault boats bought in Germany by a dodgy Irish arms dealer and shipped to Liverpool via Dublin. They are used by the platoons reconnaissance elements to range ahead of the convoy to keep an eye out for potential ambushes or submerged obstacles. 


Da Gobbo said...

These look excellent!

Clint said...

I would be tempted to emulate those vessels IF there were any canals in Kent. There are plenty of watercraft but few narrow boats. A delight to see them and I hope they serve you well. More VBCW is always good.

Stuart S said...

Those look great.
Just need a way of getting past those nasty lock keepers.

Evan Hughes said...

Very nice work, though I share Stuart's concerns over locks!

The riveting of the armour is excellently rendered, and the nameplates are great as well - folk art pressed into the service of warfare!

pulpcitizen said...

They very good, excellent work Rob. :)

Michael Awdry said...

Absolutely superb!

Rob Bresnen said...

Thanks for the feed-back guys. The platoon has an assault boat with the platoons petty officer and two runners. They scout ahead while the infantry fan out on either bank to form a perimeter. In the event the lock keeper is unfriendly or absent the Petty Officer is trained to operate the lock (being a former lock keeper himself). Usually they just have to bribe the lock keeper with a 'toll'- a couple of bottles of Russian vodka or bags of Brummie pork scratchin' are usually what it takes.
That and the treat of having you house blown apart by The Dragon.

JamieM said...

Fantastic stuff, the VBCW really is the one "what if" story line that I could see myself getting into..... and pretty stuff like this doesn't help my resistance!