Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Alpine's “LAH in the Ardennes Set 2” (Review)

Manufacturer: Alpine Miniatures
Item Code: 35096, 35097, 35098
Medium: Resin
Review Publication Date: July 20th 2010

Waffen-SS troops in the Ardennes offensive displayed an eclectic look in uniforms; an assortment of types of WSS uniforms was worn giving a hotchpotch appearance to the soldiers. There was also a shortage of suitable Waffen-SS winter clothing issued in this campaign – precedence for cold-weather attire went to the Eastern Front.
35098 – “LAH in the Ardennes Set 2” is set of two 1/35th scale resin figures sculpted by Taesung Harmms, the owner of Alpine Miniatures. The set features two Leibstandarte-SS Adolf Hitler (LAH) officers, the first representing SS-Hauptsturmführer Josef Diefenthal while the second depicts a LAH NCO, typifying the many diverse uniform appearances of the WSS during the December 1944 engagement on the Western Front. Released during January 2010, the box-art is painted by regular Alpine box-art painter Calvin Tan.
Both figures are also available individually as figures 35096 Josef Diefenthal in the Ardennes and 35097 LAH Grenadier in the Ardennes.
WWII German, or even Waffen-SS, miniatures are certainly not a unique subject, but what sets Alpine Miniatures’ figures apart from the rest is the manner in which Taesung (and his sculptors) pick up on the very many nuances present in German uniformology. This figure set by Alpine Miniatures is another terrific example of the various aspects of the late war WSS uniform and the manners in which it was worn.
While many armour modellers will without doubt rebuke the pointing and neutral poses of these figures, from a figure modeller point of view these poses serve to display the masterful sculpting and the historical accuracy with all the many fine details of the figures.
For the painter, as with most SS subjects, there are a number of interesting ways in which these figures can be presented due to the great range of Waffen-SS camouflage schemes or even simply revert to Feldgrau. It goes without saying that the character head can be replaced with a generic alternative should the modeller not wish to depict SS-Hauptsturmführer Diefenthal. Add in the masterful sculpting of Taesung Harmms and the high quality casting of Alpine Miniatures and modellers are presented with a really nice set of figures.
As denoted from the title, this is the second “LAH in the Ardennes” set of figures from Alpine Miniatures, the first set depicting Joachim Peiper and a LAH NCO. It would be unsurprising to see these two Ardennes sets released as a numbered limited edition set at some point, much in the same way the Kharkov set was.

Click here for my full review on Historicus Forma