Sunday, January 27, 2013

From Curt: 28mm Spanish Civil War 'Talleres Mina De RioTinto' Improvised Armoured Truck (15 points)

This odd looking vehicle is a Talleres Mina De RioTinto armoured truck which was built and operated by Republican forces during the Spanish Civil War.

The war in Spain saw a bewildering number of improvised armoured vehicles, mostly created by the Republicans as they were continually hard pressed for arms and equipment. 

To be honest, I couldn't find much information about this vehicle. It seems to be a modification of a large civilian truck, or perhaps a bus, with a huge amount of armoured plate bolted/welded on. I came across a reference indicating that it could carry a crew of 14, which makes sense as there is that number of firing ports along its side and rear. The photo below shows a Tallares captured by Carlist forces. Note the CNT/FAI/UGT acronyms painted on the front. Knowing that many of the steel/automotive trades came from Barcelona I'm thinking it may have been stationed in or near that city.

From what I undersand many of these vehicles would have gone into service with no body paint, just raw slab steel, perhaps with a few patriotic slogans hand-painted on here and there. So this is pretty much how I approached this model. As it was almost entirely clad in unadorned steel I weathered it quite heavily, having a bit of fun fiddling with pigment powders, washes and rust coloured paint. 

As a bit of tongue-in-cheek I painted the popular Republican slogan 'No Pasaran!' (They Shall Not Pass!) on the back of the truck. 

I also mounted an aluminum tube along the side so I could swap in Republican flags for some additional colour. (I didn't have a CNT/FAI flag so it's shown here with the colours of the Major Attlee Company of the British Battalion, XV International Brigade.)

Originally created for Anglian Miniatures by Ian Crouch, this resin model is now available through Empress Miniatures. Though I really like the model I must say that I'm now being drawn into the camp which believes that 1/56 scale is just too small for 28mm figures (yes, you Greg). This model seems much better scaled to 20mm and just seems a little too weedy next to 28mm figures. Oh well, I still love the brutal look of the thing and it'll great to put it out on the table for some shenanigans.

This ugly beast will give me 15 points.


  1. Impressive! A 1930's version of a 'technical'!

  2. Now that is 'quite interesting'. Really like the bare metal and weathering.

  3. Style points for that one, it looks great got to be the oddest entry


  4. Lovely stuff Curt. A predecessor of the Vietnam war "gun truck" perhaps?

  5. Great work Curt!!! It looks like something out of the Mad Max films!?!?!

  6. Stunning job Curt, love the weathering effects particularly.

  7. Nice piece. There is something about this period and the ability to cobble stuff together that I am finding strangly attractive. I can feel some Very British Civil War stuff coming on

    Have you tried the Mig Productions products?

  8. Thanks everyone for your kind words!

    @Dave: I've been using Tamiya powders but I'd like to try the stuff from Mig as I've heard quite good things about it.

  9. Nice Curt:
    It looks like a very pugnacious rhinoceros from the front. Definitely a fine people's Battlewagon.

  10. In the first months of the War, almost every city in Spain had its own armoured truck or "tiznao" (smudgy). I think this is the one captured by the Nationalist forces of Queipo de LLano in Aracena (Sevilla).
    A fantastic painting work, Curt. As you have said, the models in 1/56 are too small for the figures!

    1. Excellent information Juan, thank you. I suspected that it would be based in or near a city (from the union/militia markings) but could only guess from there. I love the word 'tiznao/smudgey' to describe these! Perfect.

  11. Fantastic painting job ! Congratulations !

  12. Great paint job Curt. Glad to welcome you to the "1/56 Frustration" club :)

  13. You want a different scale, then make them yourselves, not that difficult really.!!
    I had to make my own vehicle masters when i ran Anglian, I come from a scale modelling background and the height of the figures equates to 1/56th scale, so its the scale used, unfortunately thats about the only consistent measure for wargames figures, the rest of the figure is all over the place as regards to scale. Not helped by the fact that gamers will shove a figure onto a slottabase, that adds to the height!!
    Fortunately for me, I build for myself these days, far too many critics having a pop at the work that I did for Bolt Action and Anglian, shame really as I have some neat stuff on the go :-)

    This model is not one of mine BTW, its was built for Anglian by Ian Crouch.

    Perhaps you could try to persuade the chap at Minairons to adopt a bigger scale for his vehicle range.

    Nice paint job BTW, all the SCW stuff on here looks very nice.
    Sorry to be a scale Nazi :-))))))

    1. Thanks so much for commenting Nigel! I really appreciate hearing from you as I'm a big fan of your work.

      Don't apologize for being a scale nazi - we certainly don't :). Also, I hope you don't think that I'm taking 'a pop' at your work as I love the models that came from Anglian (well those that I know the proper provenance anyway). That reminds me I'll amend my post to reflect the origins of this vehicle based on your information.

      I certainly sympathise with you: I'm not sure what to make of the whole scale thing. Some manufacturers say their products are 'true scale' to 28mm figures and even taking the base height into consideration they are just too small. Precise scale aside, due to the relative 'bulk' of wargames figures I'm wondering if an corresponding amplification of vehicles would seem to work better for them. When looking at Tamiya's 1/48 scale stuff their figures are realistically slim so that their relationship with the equipment and vehicles seems to work better than the 1/56 relationship between wargames figures and vehicles.

      All this aside, as I said in my original post, the scale of the model is not going to deter my overall enjoyment of seeing it on the table - its lovely model in it own brutal way!

      Can you tell me what you've been working on yourself these days? Do you have a website or blog so folks can take a look at it? Love to see it.

      Thanks again Nigel for taking the time to comment, and thank you for providing such great figures for this period - its provided me countless hours of enjoyment (and education).



  14. Curt
    Cheers mate, the scale issue is always been a bugbear, and its difficult to decide whats best to use. I think the safest option is to go with what looks best in your own mind!!! You hit the nail on the head with regards to the Tamiya stuff, because they have more realistic proportions, they do look nice wth the models.

    I stumbled across your blog purely by accident, and was really impressed with your painted stuff, you have managed to capture the period really well.

    These days, I'm back on the SCW stuff, having flirted with a few other things, lack of funds has curtailed my activity somewhat, and in a way, it has been a blessing in disguise, as it has made me go back to scratchbuilding, and converting. Fortunately, I kept hold of a lot of stuf when I sold Anglian, so I can keep myself busy with that!!

    I do have a blog, and its stuffed full of complete and utter nonsense

    I shall be watching this blog with interest.

    many thanks


    1. Thanks for the kind words Nigel. I checked out your blog and really enjoyed myself (I left a couple comments on some of the posts). I look forward to chatting in the future.




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