Monday, March 26, 2012

OP Restrepo: 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team 1/6 scale 12-inch Figure Kitbash

Some posts are worth repeating and this is just one of them :)

This entry was originally posted on Wednesday, April 6, 2011 and has since garnered 2727 views and quite a number of comments, especially from the soldiers who have been there. Let's NOT let the recent insane actions of one man undo what these Americans have been fighting for over there. Thanks to them and the other allied soldiers doing their part in Afghanistan, the world can live in peace and enjoy the freedom to go about more freely without fear of terrorism striking at any moment.

Originally posted on Wednesday, April 6, 2011:
This is my attempt at kitbashing a 1/6 scale OP Restrepo: 173rd Airborne 12-inch figure after watching the documentary on National Geographic (see my previous post). I noticed that these guys weren't loaded to the hilt i.e. they didn't put on that much stuff unlike some of us 1/6 scale military figure collectors who like to dump everything onto our figures. Let's face it: in the real world, the more stuff you put on, the heavier your load gets and that slows you down making it harder and more difficult to move fast when you have to, especially if you are in a firefight.


They didn't bother with elbow pads and kneepads, sidearms or drop-down leg panels. Just the basic combat load that gets the job done. At times when they were receiving fire, they just put on their vest and get on with returning fire and defending their position. Forget dress codes, it's more important to stay alive! And these guys were in the thick of the action. The Korengal Valley was at the time regarded as "the deadliest place on Earth".



I know that this is not a 100% accurate portrayal of the guys in the 173rd Airborne in Afghanistan. First off, the helmet is of the wrong type but we all know how hard it is to find a 1/6 scale ACU helmet. Like I said, just an attempt at kitbashing a 173rd Airborne trooper as seen at OP Restrepo in 2010. I mean no disrespect to the guys who were there, just a simple bash to pay homage to all the people who are putting their lives on the line on a daily basis.


I also added my own patches that are worn by the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team.


Scroll down for more pictures :)



I noticed from the RESTREPO feature-length documentary that there were different types of radios carried. I believe some are meant for ground communications and one was probably used for calling in the air strikes.


I also received a recommendation from "kibitzer" to read the book "War" by Sebastian Junger. He said, "It's based on the documentary itself and details the day-to-day living in the firebase. Also included are the actions in Operation Rock Avalanche, O'Byrne's (who seems to be the book's main character) backstory and Sal Giunta's actions leading up to his MOH. The books contains several details that were not included in the documentary such as their "blood in-blood out" ritual and also some deeper insights including psychological studies discussing the combat environment. Highly recommended."


So that's one book I'll be looking out to grab and hunker down for a good read :) Thanks "kibitzer"




And here are some close-up shots of my OP Restrepo: 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team kitbash




In 2009, I'd posted on this toy blog a picture from the newspapers of just such an incident. You can view the post and read about it HERE

The other 1/6 scale 173rd Airborne trooper 12-inch figure I have is "SGT Jerry Ellis" - see my post HERE. The 173rd participated in the initial invasion of Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003. On March 26, 2003, 954 soldiers of the 173rd Airborne Brigade conducted a combat jump from C-130 and C-17 aircraft onto Bashur Airfield in Northern Iraq, in an assault known as Operation Northern Delay.

21 comments:

JIM said...

173rd patch is missing the airborne tab!

@lex Gen X 1:6 Hardcore said...

thanks JIM, noted and added CHEERS

desmond said...

Bro, this facial sculpt looks a bit like Brad Pitt.

ethan said...

Salute to these guys ...they are the real hero compare to the politicians that only do the talking.

glenda said...

Are these for sale? I would love to buy one to put on top of my daughter's wedding cake as she is marrying a 173rd Airborne Paratrooper in July. This would be perfect!!!!!!

@lex Gen X 1:6 Hardcore said...

hi glenda, I'm glad you like this but this kitbash figure is from my personal collection and unfortunately is not for sale. sorri

Anonymous said...

Alex- Just a heads up, Restrepo is from our deployment in 2007-2008, not 2010. Other than that, though, looks pretty good, and thankfully people understand why minimalism was necessary, instead of citing lack of discipline or failure to uphold uniform standards. -Jake

@lex Gen X 1:6 Hardcore said...

That's just AWESOME Jake :) thanks for leaving the comment. Knowing that you read this is simply mind-blowing. Being able to connect to a real trooper who was there and done it is SURREAL >_< God bless

Anonymous said...

Hey man, that's pretty bad ass. Thought you'd want to know this website is being passed around a bunch of guys from Battle Co, and we're all excited about it. That being said, one inaccuracy I noted is the neck protection, we took it off. Everyone I know stripped all the additional pieces off our IBAs. Besides that, it looks pretty daggone good, except it's a clean uniform, and I don't remember ever having one of those!
Mike

@lex Gen X 1:6 Hardcore said...

Thanks Mike :) Glad to know that you guys appreciate it and thanks for pointing out the inaccuracy with the neck protection, as well as the clean uniform haha Gotta go "weather" it to make it look more authentic. Just want you guys to know that what you are risking your lives for does not go unappreciated. Take Care!

Anonymous said...

Freaking Awesome! To bad its not for sale. I would love to have one for my husband who was with Battle company then. Great job and I know alot of Rock soldiers that are loving this being passed around!

Damn The Valley said...

Dude, this is amazing, haha. Seeing this just made my day. And with what Mike said, this thign is getting passed around Facebook with a quickness. Keep up the solid work.

Anonymous said...

i was in battle co. for all 5 years of my service and the korengal was my first deployment with them. this is pretty cool man. i am amazed that people actually took the time to see the film and or read the book. we always appreciate the support and the replica is pretty damn good...but to add to the clean comment, most of us either had half of our butt hanging out due to sliding down the mountain side and the fabric wearing out, or our crotch seam was totally blown out, lol! i would suggest you put that on a doll but you did a great job, thank you!
-
kevin 1st plt Bco

Anonymous said...

First of all, the uniform's entirely too clean. Secondly, nobody bloused their boots & most of the boots we wore were civillian. Next, he should not be clean-shaven, and should either be smoking a Pine or have a dip in or both. His sleeves should be rolled up to his elbows, he should have this constipated look on his face from eating MRE's and taking orders from KPT Korengal, bipods on M4's are for fags, and his ridiculously over-sized rhino mount should be painted tan so he doesn't get shot in the forehead (that was by far one of the funniest orders of the deployment), the ass isn't ripped out of his pants, nor the crotch, IOTV's are for homos who don't take contact on the firebase every 12 seconds, he's had a haircut in the last couple of weeks which is more than we ever had, his chin strap is around is neck, he doesn't need a SureFire, and what is going on with that RACK?! He does however, look gay enough to be a team leader in 2PLT.

SSG Shadix formerly of 3PLT-B Co-2/503

Battle1Triage (aka Jr. aka Panda) said...

Well done! Saw this on FB, glad I clicked. My feed back is the same as the other Battle Co'ers. I'd roll the sleeves up, and soak the whole figure in reddish brown dirt and a little bit of charcoal. For some reason ACUs turn blackish when REALLY dirty. If you want, you can use Non-ACU gear on the guy. I was with 1st PLT over at FB Vegas, and the "rack" (the vest-thing with molle webbing that goes over the IBA) and assault pack were left up to individual discretion. I personally used a multicam rack, and my aidbag was also multicam. Also, the other guys are right, everyone would laugh their asses off if you were wearing your side plates. I can't tell if the figure has them or not. You could also probably cut the "wings" off that night vision mount, its enormous (I saw that you can't get a correct one). Great job overall! Glad to see we have some fans, haha.

K. Casey former 1st plt. B co. said...

This is pretty awesome! thanks for taking the time to do this. Alot of people just dont appreciate anything anymore and i am glad to see some people still do. This is a cool idea. You should mass produce them! Its an honor to have been apart of such a great group of people. take care.

Jeannette said...

One of soldiers involved in that is a great nephew of mine. I would sure like to have one of these so when I give thanks to these men I can actually talk to something that at least looks a little like him. I am very proud of each of those soldiers and all that is fighting for our safety here at home. God Bless each of them.

Billy Joe said...

These are the best comments I've seen on this blog! Hey Alex, why don't you try to do a kitbash with Battle1Triage's description, it would probably look great!

@lex Gen X 1:6 Hardcore said...

hey Billy Joe, I just might take up what Battle1Triage said and you are right: these are some of the best comments I've received thus far :) CHEERS

One Shot said...

I love all the comments. When I used to show my military buddies all the kitbashes over on the OSW that I thought were cool they would always say "Why the hell these guys put so much damn gear on every figure they make?" In my head I would think "what? shoot these look so cool" then they would point out what you don't need and from there they would all point at the screne and start telling me "take that sh*t off, that sh*t has to go, that can go, remove that now, knee pads? oh hell no (soldiers refer to knee pads as pu**y pads) and they go around the ankles if anything. After five minutes of them pointing stuff out I would tell them "basically your BDU's a helmet and a weapon huh?" they would reply "pretty much". how funny Alex. i used to think about how cool all the OSW guys made these bashes and here all my military buddies tell me "that's only in Call of Duty". ha ha ha!

@lex Gen X 1:6 Hardcore said...

hey george, for us military figure collectors, we love to see our figures loaded to the brink because they look darn impressive that way but in reality, these guys prefer the bare minimum because it makes more practical sense. that's why i posted this because based on the documentary i saw, this is closer to the real deal and these guys are really giving their all for their country :)