I've been working on my 15mm Mogadishu project and became frustrated that there were no good gunner figures out there. I also wanted them to be able to swival to face any direction to properly represent the action. After some experimentation, I finally figured out a good way to make movable gunners for both my Humvees and my Somali technicals. Thought I would do a little blog writeup on how I went about it.
First of all I am using QRF Humvee's. I'm sure this method won't work for all 15mm humvee's but it will work for any humvees with a the top hatch molded as an open round hole.
Step 1: Build Humvee
Step 2: Find a dowel slightly smaller than the gunners hatch hole for your humvee\
Step 3: Use green stuff to make a flat surface inside the humvee: I did this by putting a small ball of greenstuff on the end of the dowel and inserting it thorugh the top of the humvee and pressing down. you want this to be level and ready to act as a good base for your gunner.
Step 4: Cut pireces of your dowel that when sitting in the top of the humvee will be flush with the humvee top.
Step 5: Attach gunner torso to dowel piece
Making gunners: Here are the piec4es I used to make my gunners. Obviously, you can use what you like.
50 Cal Gunners - Old Glory Tank Commander torso manning 50 cal, Peter Pig modern Head with goggles
Mk 19 Gunner - Same as above I just customized the 50 to look like a MK 19
M240/M60 - Peter Pig Vietnam helicopter crew gunner, Peter Pig modern Head with Goggles
Humvee Gunners Removed
Gunner Facing Away
Humvee Gunner Closeup
Somali Technical Gunners:
For the Somali's I wanted the same sort of thing but obviously couldn't use the dowel trick since the gunners are exposed in the back of pickups, land rovers, or jeeps.
Instead I decided to use rare earth magnets. These I countersank into the vehicle models now I just needed a way to build a gunner so that he could attach to the magnet.
I once again went back to the Old Glory US Tank Commander figure manning the 50 Cal. I removed the head of this figure and added a head and legs from some Peter Pig Crew figures. The legs I used were from the mortar crewman holding his ears since they were close together and in a standing position. This gave me a standing gunner firing a 50 cal machine gun.
I then removed the post from the bottom of the machine gun and replaced it with a cut off nail of the appropriate length. Done right this has the gunner figure standing on the head ot the nail with the shaft of the nail now acting as the machine gun mount.
The head of the nail is perfect for attachment to the rare earth magnet and allows the gunners to be removed and or pivoted in whatever direction you like. Although all of my gunners currently have the 50 cal I will be turning some of them into DSHK machine guns by customizing the 50 cals.
3 Technicals with gunners
Technicals Gunners removed
I left the nail on this gunner unpainted so that you could see how it was positioned.
I may try something similar to this for recoiless rifles and other light vehicle weapons.