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WIP Critique South Saskatchewan Rifles 1942

Discussion in 'vBench (Works in Progress)' started by ChaosCossack, Oct 8, 2013.

  1. ChaosCossack A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    Hey all
    This what I was working towards with the previously posted Canadian Infantry man.
    I am putting together a diorama representing the Allied raid on the the town of Dieppe and surrounding areas. Specifically, the landing of C company of the South Saskatchewan Rifles on Green Beach at Pourville, 4km west of Dieppe proper. My Grandfather was L/Sgt of C company during the raid. He was wounded twice while aiding wounded comrades during the evacuation (after the raid stalled) and was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his actions.
    Dieppe medal.jpg Dieppe map.jpg

    The SSR landed and penatrated deep inland, taking the causeway beyond Pourville (where Col. Merritt recieved the Victoria Cross) and occupied objective radar stations and gun batteries. In other areas, the attack was repulsed with heavy casualties. The SSR were able to remove themselves from their position because Merritt covered the evac... Unfortunately, he and the rearguard were captured after using up their ammo. The rest, under heavy fire, made it back to the landing craft and the Navy flotilla.

    All in all, the raid was a bust... a costly bust. Whether it was a snatch and grab operation t aquire and Enigma machine (failed) or as a probe of the german beach defences, the Canadians suffered huge losses... better than 60% did not return to England, either casualties or captured.

    The dio depicts C company of the SSR advancing up Green beach towards Pourville. They are about halfway up the gravel beach, there will be two concrete tank obstacles that are being used as cover and perhaps a girder type tank trap in the foreground with some barbed wire. the figures are 1:35 scale from Dragon and Masterbox. There was some arm swapping and one fig was reworked some... the man on the right falling forward, shot. The foamboard is roughly shaped as the gently rising beash and will be covered in putty and then gravel. The foam blocks representing tank stops will be replaced with slightly larger putty versions. The positioning of the figs is rough at best... they will probably move a few times before I'm happy.
    IMGP0624.jpg IMGP0625.jpg IMGP0626.jpg IMGP0627.jpg IMGP0628.jpg IMGP0629.jpg IMGP0630.jpg
    Any thoughts or advice are welcome.
    Thanx

    Colin
  2. ACCOUNT_DELETED A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    Looks like a great idea Colin....this one will be special. I was going to ask why SSR when you could be portraying RRofC at Dieppe but when I read on I decided to forgive you.....and a DCM.......that's a nice gong to be awarded! How nice to be able to portray your granddad's unit in such an important action. He must have had some stories......was he captured or did he get off the beach?.....I recall Hitler ordered the Canadian prisoners cuffed for hours a day in retribution for the tying up of German prisoners. Which figure will rep your grandfather?

    I will watch this carefully.

    Colin
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  3. ChaosCossack A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    C coy. oversaw the evac to the LC. He made it back to England and brought back a German bullet in his lower back and a golfball sized chunk of shrapnel from a mortar burst in his calf. The DCM was for going back to the seawall twice to carry buddies to the LC... that's when he picked up the keepsakes. Spent the next 18 months recovering in England and missed the Normandy landings where the SSR took part. Silver lining, he met my Grandmother there, she was a WAC working the hospital ward.
    I think the figs will all be generic troopers from C coy. Sort of a memorial to the entire Regiment with a specific emotional connection.

    Thanx

    Colin
  4. ACCOUNT_DELETED A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    Nice to have notable ancestors to look up to :)

    Colin
    tiberius57 and ChaosCossack like this.
  5. ChaosCossack A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    That's my Mom's Father.
    If you have a box of beer I'll tell you my other Grandfather's warstories of the Red Army on the Eastern Front... they'll make your hair stand up
  6. billyturnip A Fixture

    Country:
    England
    I'll be following Colin it's a great idea to depict your Grandfathers regt. A brave man indeed.

    Roger.
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  7. ChaosCossack A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    Thanx Roger
    Brave, grumpy, stubborn and hardheaded right up to the last... I pitied the poor nurses at the Sunnybrook Veterans Resisdence where he spent his last. He kept them hopping.
    A man of few words, in all the years I knew him (I saw him daily) he only ever spoke of this day to me, maybe 5 or 6 times. Piece that together with what Grandmother added and what I've read about the raid and I don't blame him. The plainest truth is it was a bloodbath where thousands of Canadians were sacrificed to no real gain.

    I hope old "Gus" like the dio

    Colin
    Funky50 and Richie like this.
  8. Funky50 Guest

    Hello Colin have read and followed this with interest....modelling always has more interest to me when it's personal to the modeller and your Grandads story is fascinating I have read a lot about the Dieppe raid and it always seemed it came at a time when we were struggling to hit back effectively at the Nazis and it certainly was a desperate undertaking ....historians say that what we learnt at Dieppe was used to good effect at the beach landings in Normandy and saved many allied lives at that time just a pity so many men were sacrificed to learn that lesson...all the best with this and look forward to seeing the end product...
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  9. Richie A Fixture

    Country:
    United-Kingdom
    Hi Colin,
    Now we know were you are coming from with your previous thread. Brilliant idea mate, looking forward to watching this one and what a tribute to your very brave Grandfather Gus(y). If I ever get the chance, I will bring a few boxes of beers mate;) .
    I don't know if you have ever read "Green Beach" by James Leasor? It is an absolute can't put down book. I might just hunt my copy out now and read it again.

    Good luck mate.
    cheers
    Richie
    Sturm Grenadier and ChaosCossack like this.
  10. DEL A Fixture

    Country:
    Scotland
    You can't get a better reason for doing a piece, it becomes part of the family legacy.
    IMO you've got the figure placement spot on, great sense of movement and the figures are nicely placed on an appropriately sized base.
    Have to say I smiled when I read your description of your Grandfather and the name of the care home :)
    Looking forward to seeing this one progress Colin.
    Cheers
    Derek
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  11. Helm A Fixture

    Country:
    England
    Great stuff Colin excellent way to remember these blokes (y)
    Steve
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  12. thegoodsgt Active Member

    Country:
    United-States
    What a wonderful project that captures a moment of your family's history!

    The best feedback I can offer at this early is about the size of the vignette. There's a lot of empty space. I think you could effectively reduce the size of the base by 50 percent and the impact will be much greater. I think there's a tendency to want to show the expanse of the beach, but ultimately the focus is about the soldiers, so smaller is generally better.

    Look at this vignette to see just how much impact a small base can provide.

    Steven Brown
    Scale Model Soup
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  13. NickM Well-Known Member

    Country:
    Australia
    Hi Colin, the composition of your dio is great and I love the pose on the stumbling casualty with his dropped rifle.
    Great work so far mate, it'll be a wonderful tribute to your brave Grandad and his regiment.
    Cheers
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  14. ChaosCossack A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    Thanx for the input.
    As far as the layout, nothing is carved in stone. That's why I posted this phase to get some fresh eyes on placement and balance and such. I want to get this rolling asap. I have a solid twenty days before one of the bigger shows in southern Ontario... I don't want to rush it though. If it's not done by then, it's not done.
    @Dell, Are you familiar with Sunnybrook? It's one of the largest hospitals in Canada and the largest veterans residence. Gramps went for treatment there weekly from the time he returned home until he died, for blood poisoning from the shrapnel in his calf. Then he spent his last 6 weeks there. Now I work there as an electrician. I deal with all the other "Gramps" on a daily basis. Can be quite entertaining at times... the old boys can be a giggle sometimes.

    Thanx all

    Colin
    tiberius57 likes this.
  15. tiberius57 A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    This is something special, Colin! To work this dio with your Grandfather in mind and heart is special! In your heart, he will live forever!
    The display is looking very good. Grouping is making sense and the use of space is fine.
    Are you going to simulate water on the beach?
    Will follow with great interest.
    Cheers,
    Zeno
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  16. Sturm Grenadier Well-Known Member

    Country:
    United-States
    S_Sask_R_Cap_Badge.jpg Hello Colin, I like the idea for your dio/vignette, a great tribute to your grandfather. Not to change the subject on this project, but, have you considered of ever doing a bust/figure of your grandfather? I have also read Green Beach that Richie mentioned, excellent book. It makes you wonder about the questions of the radar objectives in the raid. Your preliminary layout looks good to me, perhaps, as a suggestion, a few more beach obstacles to fill some empty spots might look good. Looking forward to its development, best of luck Colin. Here is a photo of beach obstacles: Normandy-p154b.jpg Regards, SG:)(y)
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  17. ChaosCossack A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    Thanx Zeno and SG... I picked up some tank traps and barbed wire frames today. Trap or two to the front and barbed wire to close off the back of the dio.

    Thoughts?

    Colin
    Sturm Grenadier likes this.
  18. pgarri27 Well-Known Member

    Country:
    United-States
    Always check your composition, and steer the viewers eye to the main objective, using whatever props are necessary, but don't over do it. Everything in the dio should have a purpose.
    ChaosCossack likes this.
  19. ChaosCossack A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    Good advice. Like I said earier, there will probably be a few rough set ups before I am happy and lock it in. I feel it does need something like a tank trap to give the scene context or they are just running up a shale beach.
    Tank trap= Military landing.
    Towels and beach ball= Summer vacation
    :LOL:
  20. ChaosCossack A Fixture

    Country:
    Canada
    I picked up the Tamiya barricade set today. I added one of the girder type tank traps to the right foreground. I think it gives location context along with the concrete pylons at the back the troopers are using for cover. I don't think it obstructs the view, being so thin, but does it distract the eye? Or would it be better at the back or center of the scene.
    IMGP0631.jpg IMGP0632.jpg IMGP0633.jpg IMGP0634.jpg IMGP0635.jpg IMGP0636.jpg
    I kinda like the scene but I'm certainly not married to it yet... Anyone have any thoughts?

    Colin
    Ray Welshman and Aveleira like this.

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