|Notice how the dudes don't have the regular 'lip' on their Kraut helmets? That is because they figured they'd get caught in the exit from the plane on stuff, so they produced helmets without them.|
I've currently painted about ~1500 points of German Wermacht infantry, plus a few tanks. They're awesome and plastic and I love using them, but I've set my eyes on other armies to begin collecting and painting. I've collected some US airborne (82nd), some US marines for the Pacific (with tank support), some Japanese infantry and tanks for the Pacific, and now fallschirmjager - German paratroopers.
|From what I understand, the 'cobalt blue' helmets are not correct - they were just 'German gray' or a light black color.|
Fallschirmjager, from the history I've read (mostly Osprey books and 'net articles), were intended to operate like American airborne troops at the start of the war, by dropping in behind enemy lines or at strategic points without support. After Crete in 1941 they apparently didn't do any major combat drops again, instead being Luftwaffe (German Air Force) elite infantry troops on the ground.
Fallschirmjager fought on the Eastern Front, Africa Front, Italy Front, Western Front, and finally in Germany itself. Why do they appeal to me? Well, the thought of doing another German force, but more elite, was pretty cool. They wore different uniforms, used different equipment, and used different tactics. Another outfit to study doesn't hurt, either.
|This is how they would have arrived if they dropped in|
The Italy or Temperate uniforms were more of a 'mustard' color, with yellow helmets and pants. The Europe or Eastern front uniforms changed over time, but mostly included the German fieldgrey for wool and camo for jump smocks or regular smocks. The uniform is another aspect that appeals to me; instead of painting dudes all in fieldgrey, I get to try out my hand at camo. This isn't simple camo, where you just streak on some black and green, rather you paint on camo areas that are angled, and then for some they added 'rain streaks' that break up the camo. It is pretty intense and I hope I do a good job. I'm pretty excited about it.
|The chevrons on their arms are pretty interesting. I found some water transfers I'll try out.|
You can see the jump straps in this picture above. Many of the models I have are modeled with those on there so I'll paint them on. They look super uncomfortable to me :P
A view of their gear they carried. I love finding out the correct colors for each individual piece and doing my best to replicate it.
I'll be using a guide created by Mick Farnworth for Artizan Miniatures. He does some pretty amazing guides for all forces that are applicable for Bolt Action. He's included a way to paint all the different types of camo AND the different Vallejo paints you should use for each piece and part on the model. This grognard is happy as hell.
Some resources I'm using for this project are:
Mick Farnworth Guides
Osprey Warrior Fallschirmjager
British Paratrooper vs Fallschirmjager (the new COMBAT series is amazing)
Jump Into Hell
German Paratroopers Photo Book
As always please provide feedback below. I'm a history buff but WW2 has not yet been my area of expertise so please let me know if you see any inaccuracies or areas you can help. Thanks!