For this theme round, and the challenge theme, I present a little diorama I've been feverishly working on. It depicts a downed Spanish Civil War Republican fighter, whose pilot managed to nursed his beloved "Mosca" into a crash-landing.
The Republican pilots of the SCW were doubtless daredevils, gamblers and risk-takers. Outnumbered, they started the war with obsolete planes and were quickly up agains the German Condor Legion and Italian Legionary Air Force supplied by the Rebel's allies. The Rebels superior air power, and innovative use of it contributed to many of their successes, and to Republican defeats.
The plane is a Polikarpov I-16 Type 10 fighter, nicknamed the "Mosca" (Fly) by the Republicans and "Ratta" by the Rebels. More than 250 I-16s were supplied but the Soviets to the Republican Air Force. This is a 1:48 scale kit from Czech company Eduard. I was originally looking to build a reconnaisance or light bomber, intending to do a larger plane but under-scale in 1:76. But the SCW is less well served by kits compared to WWII, so I went for this larger I-16 in quick-build 'weekend edition'. It's got a pleasingly Soviet functional look, it's snub nose making it look a bit like an oil-drum with wings. I was really chuffed to snag one for a mere £9 with delivery too! Unfortunately, the decals weren't usable, but I've covered off the main markings.
I built the kit as is, as Google-fu'd pictures of crashed I-16s seemed to be impressively whole - they must be pretty sturdy! So I just knocked some bullet holes in and had fun doing some mangled landing gear and a shrub that had been clipped as debris:
The embryo for this idea was a quickly aborted idea for my Curtgeld - A thought to do a SCW pilot as 'daredevil' for Curt discarded once I remembered that Curt had already put on such a scenario! - http://analogue-hobbies.blogspot.co.uk/2014/09/worst-case-scenario-12-condor-down.html
Filed away for future reference, but resurrected once I got the pilot miniature from the SCW edition of Painting War magazine.
A really neat miniature, though much skinnier and more finely detailed than the main 28mm SCW ranges. Mine also had weird casting issue of horizontal lines all the way down the front, it looked almost like 3D printed minis do. I got most of them off eventually.
Lastly the theme entry was a gamble for myself - I only got the pilot at Hammerhead last weekend, and ordered the I-16 last Sunday. Very fortunate it arrived by Thursday to build and paint, and that I could find enough time to get it and the pilot done at ponderous pace!