"FNGs" Camp Bearcat, Vietnam 1967

Thanks, Ski. You don’t have to wait long. Next reply is the beginning of the painting process for the figures.

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Painting has begun on one of the FNGs for this diorama. He looks a bit rough right now as there is still a lot to do in terms of outlining, shading, and highlighting. Since the uniform is new and needs to be darker than those of the Platoon Sergeant and Squad Leader and even that of the Admin clerk, I will be approaching the highlights a bit differently than I normally do them. I thought I would give the OG 107 Dark Shade color from the Lifecolor Vietnam Uniform Paint set a try. The color is pretty darn close to that of some of my less worn sets of jungle fatigues, so I was pleased with that. However, I think I need to work on obtaining a better consistency of the paint by putting some on my wet pallet instead of using it from straight out of the bottle. I will probably also use some Reaper Anti Shine Additive as it was kind of on the shiny side. I used some AK Interactive Dark Green as a light wash to darken the color a bit and then used it for the first shadows in parts of the shirt. For the first highlights on the left front of the shirt I used Scale 75 Ardennes Green which I had been using for my base color for the past year or so. I applied AK Interactive’s Ultra Matte varnish to eliminate the shine so I can see what I am doing better. So far, I think he is off to a good start.






I will try to work on him some more tomorrow.

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The results of today’s painting session is the completion of the first figure for this diorama. Based on his new-looking uniform and shined boots, I think he would pass for a new guy fresh from the World.









And a couple photos with the building facade.

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Hello!
I like it a lot, the uniform definitely looks freshly issued!
Good luck with the next ones and have a nice day
Paweł

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Beauty, as always, James, bottle cap as well :rofl: :laughing: :wink:

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Just stopped in, saw your latest…you nailed it! Compared your figure to a photo a buddy took of me in my first week or so in country. The uniform colors, the brand new boots, all just spot on! Also really impressed with the 9th ID patch…
Great job!

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Thanks, guys. I am glad that you like what you see and that you all can tell it’s a new uniform based on how the figure is painted. I am glad that I was actually able to pull it off. Now to try to replicate it with the other new guy’s uniform…

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No worries, James, you got it, Brotha!

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I did not get much done in terms of painting today, just the face of the other new guy. My intent is to have him look fairly young, fresh from the States, and with a stateside white wall haircut. I hope I have convincingly achieved that “look”. After I took these photos I noticed that I needed to touch up the area under the left eye and did so a few minutes ago.



Since I needed some duffle bags for this diorama, I figured I would try the WW2 Duffle Bag set from Legend since they looked good in the photo if the product and because the kit comes with 10 of them. While well detailed, I was disappointed that they are too thin and too small when situated near the figures. The duffle bag that I have that is closest to being the right size is the one from the old Verlinden US Marine Vietnam kit, but even that one is a tad too small and some of the details need to be reworked. In this photo, the Verlinden duffle bag is between the two guys, then one that is going to be stowage inside a M113 model, and then one of the Legend duffle bags for size comparison. It looks like I will end up going with the Verlinden one or will sculpt my own.

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After reading your post, I ran downstairs to look at my duffle bag (issued October 1967). I know you’re a detail master, so in case you are thinking of stenciled names & s/n’s on the bags, remember in '67 we still had RA and US serial numbers, not SSAN’s. Just a thought.

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Thanks for the reminder. I was tracking about the RA and US prefix to serial numbers, but I don’t remember how many digits long the number portion was. How many digits is the number? Also, if you wouldn’t mind, how many lines and what info was stamped onto the duffle bag? I imagine it would be something like:

DOE, JOHN Q.
RA ---------

Our bags from the late 80s until I retired in 2016 had name and SSN on the side and the bottoms were painted and included Unit, Roster Number, and something else that I do not recall in addition to our name and SSN.

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Nice to see some paint on these figs :+1:!

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Tonight I completed the 2d new guy for this diorama. Since supply didn’t have jungle boots in his size, he is stuck with the all leather boots until they are available.







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Hello!
Looking at the FNGs I can’t help but think about this piece of dialogue:
-You twins?
-No, we are not relations Sir!

I sure hope he can get a pair of jungle boots and break them in before he gets to humpin’ the boonies!

Good luck with your project and have a nice day
Paweł

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Don’t know how I missed this one. Great work. :+1::+1:

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James your painting skills are remarkable. Not only are the uniforms shaded perfectly, but these guys actually have the scared puppy facial expressions of FNG’s.

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Beautiful paint work on those figures. Really outstanding job!

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They look like Jeeps to me, Spot on!

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Not sure when the rank pins came into use, but it’s probable newbies would have their rank on until the oldtimers squared them away about not wearing rank, at least in the field. Just a thought, looking great. Just checked and after Dec 67. Wayne

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Hey, Wayne!
Pin on rank the way we know it today was authorized Army wide in 1968, but sew on sleeve chevrons were still seen into the early 1970s. However, pin on rank that was locally produced was first utilized by elements of the 1st Infantry Division as early as 1966. The 9th Infantry Division started using them in 1967 which is the time period of this diorama, but insignia on the sleeves were sometimes used. In the photos of my friend Bill Rambow when he was an FNG at Bearcat, he and the other guys were not wearing any rank at all. He was a SPC when he arrived in Vietnam, so he should have had rank insignia. However, I am thinking that I may end up painting sleeve insignia on one of them and pin on insignia on the other to show that both were used at that time.

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