Max's Guide to Painting WWII Fallschirmjagers
If you are like me and have a huge affinity for the history and equipment used by the German Fallschirmjagers during WWII and you play miniature wargames, I'm sure you've assembled somekind of Fallschirm unit.
This is but one of many guides out here in the web designed to teach you how to paint your miniatures. This is not THE only way to paint FJ figures but one of MANY ways. I've been comlpimented by many blog visitors and fellow wargammers on how I've painted my Fallschirm. I've been asked by a few to share my colors and techniques so I decided to take a break from my Aufklarungs company and paint a few Fallschirm minis!
The basic guide in Battlefront's “Hell's Highway” is what I tend to follow. It is very informative. Just beware the book states to use a brown color for the boots which, although not incorrect, brown boots where rare during wartime.
There are three different smocks that were used during the war. The Type II, which was a step in style, was worn during 1939-40 exclusively. These were seen worn throughtout the war but were not as common after 1944. You would not see a squad of fallschirm wearing all Type II smocks during or after Normandy.
|Type II Smock aka "Step-In". Most came in Grey Green but some were made in Splinter "B"|
The Type III smock was introduced right before Crete in 1941 and saw service during the operation though most Fallschirm still wore Type II “Green Grey” smocks. The Type III was designed so the legs could be unbuttoned for easier removal. This made it easier to put on and take off. For the purposes of modelling at the 15mm scale one would not know the difference unless the smock was unbuttoned at the legs which would make the miniature look like a overcoat.
|Type III Smock in Splinter "B"|
The Type III smocks came in two colors (some say they were also made in Waffen -SS “Pea Dot”); Luftwaffe Splinter “B” and Water-Tan. Splinter “B” differed from the Heer's Splinter “A” slightly. The patten was similar but the green “rain drops” in the pattern went vertical instead of horizontal in the Luftwaffe “B” pattern.
|Type III Water-Tan (aka Marsh)|
|Splinter "B" Helmet Cover|
STEP 1: Clean and Primer
First step I take is clean the flash as best as possible from the figure, wash in warm soapy water, and let dry. Once dry, I give the figure a wash in rubbing alcohol, let it sit for about 10 minutes and then use my airbrush to primer the miniature with flat black paint (usually Vallejo Flat Black). Any flat black color will do. After this coat has dried for a few minutes I do a light overspray of a light gray primer. Again, any primer will do.
STEP 2: Base Colors
The miniature in this guide is being painted in the tropical scheme. The uniform worn in the mediterranian was usually the tropical pants although "continental" wool jump pants were not uncommon. I elected to paint this miniature without a helmet cover and painted his helmet in a "turtle" shell camo varient that was seen in Italy.
Second step is to lay down you base colors:
Part Vallejo Color
Face and hands “Beige Brown” 875
Helmet (non-helmet cover) “Green Ochre” 914
Helmet Chin Strap, Breadbag “Field Blue” 964
Type II Splinter “B” Smock (Base) ”German Beige” 821
Belt, Pistol Holster, Tornister Straps “Flat Black”
Y-Straps (Cavalry/Light Weight) “Calvary Brown” 982
Tropical Pants “Middletone”
Continental (Jump) Pants “German Grey” 830
MP-40 Magazine Pouch* “US Dark Green” 893
Canteen “German Camo Brown” 825
Canteen Cup* “Middletone”
Note I did NOT paint the green and brown camo on the smock. This is done after step 4.
*- German pouches were originally made of leather but even early on in the was they began being manufactured in cloth. They were made in green, tan, and field blue. Same thing with the breadbags. The canteen cups, as well as mess tins, were often repainted in the field. Originally these came in black or field grey btu troops often repainted them.
STEP 3: Gloss Varnish and Wash
STEP 4: Dry brush/highlights
STEP 5: Camo
Then go to the green. I make my green mix in witht the brown as they tended to overlap each other in the printing process.
More to come.......