US Army Ranger - 1980s

I’m calling the RTO done pending any minor adjustments or updates. I’ll get him and his platoon leader mounted in a vignette and that’ll be the first in my Cold War/Twilight '90 series.

The figure came from the DML Special Forces kit. Hat tip to ReconTL for cluing me into that kit. I didn’t know that DML’s molded figures improved that much by the late 1990’s. In case anyone is wondering, the straight pocket OG-107 jungle fatigues are legitimate. There were OG-107 versions of the 1970’s - 1980’s RDF uniforms which the Rangers used to supplement existing stocks of the standard slant pocket jungles from the Vietnam era.

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That’s a beauty Travis- such a great rendition with plenty of detail.

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Wow that’s an excellent job Travis! Great build and paint job

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Your painting skills are remarkable Travis. I can’t believe this is only 1/35 scale. The uniform shading is excellent, and you have absolutely nailed the facial skintones.

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Thanks for the kind words! I appreciate the interest and support.

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Beautiful shades of green…I really like how the brass buckles stand out on the harness.

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Don’t forget the “Ranger eyes” on the back of his patrol cap. Two vertical strips of reflective tape about an inch tall, to help the man following him at night. Common practice

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They are on there. They’re slightly obscured by the helmet. I have cat’s eyes on the helmet band as well as the top of the rucksack flap.

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Actually there is an SOP on those cat eyes to designate units, of shapes and numbers of those. Triangles or rectangles, oriented in various manners to designate sub units within the battalion. My old LRS unit used a variation of it to designate sub units within the detachment.

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Where did you get that? I scoured for references on unit level cat’s eyes markings and I couldn’t find it. So I went with the most common configuration, the two vertical tapes, knowing that’s the generic and schoolhouse version.

I was going to make them 3rd Batt, but I guess they’ll be B/1-75!

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I found these tiny little glow in the dark stars for my daughter when she was young. They are extremely thin, I made constellations for her on our garage door. Oe day I got the great idea to take an X-Acto blade and cut tiny little slivers for an SF figure I was doing, The effect was amazing. Just t athought,

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Did you cut those into 1/35 slivers? I could see doing that for a 1/16 scale figure…

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A brand new blade, an Optivisor, plus I was sixteen or seventeen yeas younger… they only need to be little less than the width of a scale figure’s finger. I tried thinning them from the back as well. It’s tedious but possible. But instead I gouged out two little troughs and fastened them with a generous amount of CA, which filled everything in perfectly after some slight filing, After paint, it was very convincing, especially with the lights out.

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Wow. That sounds tedious. I suppose, however, I should “never say never” when it comes to 1/35, but at this point I’m pleased with the cat’s eyes I painted and I won’t be changing them.

Given my interest in pursuing 1980’s topics, I invested in some Verlinden 120mm figures and accessories and I’ll eventually modify one of the Vietnam figures into a 1980’s Ranger. I have a roll of luminescent tape and I may try out your idea on him.

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I did an image search “Ranger Battalion cat eyes” and those popped up from some forum. I saved them for future reference.

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Apache, that Ranger looks really good, excellent, actually!

Ojos de los gatos, (cat’s eyes), Gen3, was the usual phrase when catching a group way, way out in the middle of the desert, lol. Used to freak em out, but what fun it was, way back when.

Ruck Over Bby! They run, we Ruck Over, cause everyone knows football is for wimps!

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I remember a friend stationed at Ft Hood (Dental Corps) in the early 80’s mentioning brown boots. He also spent some time at San Antonio (which was the hub for dental services in the area).
I have vague recollection of maybe the same ones being available through civilian channels for a very brief period. Altama or Danner?

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SF medics were sent to San Antonio. As the upper echelons in SF (you know, the guys not on ODA’s) hated anything out of the norm, (in many cases just like their own soldiers) they did not like those brown boots. I believe we were finally told to quit wearing them. Remember, back then SF was not yet its own branch, and would not be until 1984. We had a lot of real by the book types punching their tickets by doing some SF time.
At any rate, the boots might have shown up in surplus stores around San Antonio. We each were issued two pair. I myself kept mine. I wore out my second set in Afghanistan. I hated to toss them. All they needed was to be resoled, but I took so much crap back home with me I thought I wouldn’t have room. I was wrong. I had half an aircraft pallet dedicated to my stuff (two cannons, furniture, boxes of tank parts, etc) I miss those boots. I don’t know the brand. We did wear low top Chippewas in black, which were slightly more accepted.

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Those guys turned out really well, Travis. I look forward to seeing more.

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Here is the completed vignette. It is done, perhaps, pending some touch up work. If I can get some more foliage that matches the photos of Panama I’ve seen I’ll add that in time.

The idea behind this is that it is April, 1987 and WWIII started in 1985. These men are from B Co./1st Bn./75th In (Rgr). They are in Panama supporting elements of the 193rd LIB and the 7th SFG combatting communist insurgents that are being supported by Cuban special operations and Soviet advisors.

The vignette is of a Ranger platoon leader conferring with his RTO following their platoon’s successful raid on a communist command and control center in the mountains east of the Panama Canal. They are standing by at the designated LZ for an extraction.

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