quarta-feira, 29 de dezembro de 2010

The Mahdist War & Locomotives Series nº 1 - By Carlos Briz

My guess is that Carlos is trying to figure out if some of you really know the first thing about locomotives, since the pics he sent us this time do not reveal any information about that.

Therefore, it is up to you to guess the identification (Class) of the locomotives involved is both dioramas.

And this is a World Wide Challenge, meaning that even the guys in the North Pole are allowed to try their luck.

If nobody gets this right, I think it will be proper to give Carlos the title of World Wide Web Locomotive Expert of the year 2010!


terça-feira, 28 de dezembro de 2010

Second Anglo-Boer War & Locomotives Series nº 1 - by Carlos Briz

(Flat car with 6 inch gun)

Who would think this could be possible?
Where in the Blogosphere would it be possible to find a post with a brand new locomotive Series this late at night?
You really do not have to reply to this, since I naturally already know the answer.

(Carriage with canopy and 1 pdr gun)

Even with all the heavy guns at their disposal, the British had a really hard time dealing with the Boers, who, up to a point, sucessfuly developed efective guerrilla tactics that demanded new counter insurgency tecniques.

(Armoured carriage with 12 pdr gun)

This conflict also resulted in huge losses among the civilian population.
The "empire on which the sun never sets" was forced to make considerable changes in organization and policies after this particular war.


segunda-feira, 27 de dezembro de 2010

WWI War & Locomotives Series nº 7 - by Carlos Briz

We are back to WWI, to see the sort of "horse power" that the Portuguese took with them to Flandres during the war.

The FT-17 light tanks are unloaded and ready for action!


domingo, 26 de dezembro de 2010

Second Sino-Japanese War & Locomotives Series nº 1 - by Carlos Briz

(Class C50 locomotive - Japanese National Railways)

What is this? Another brand new locomotive Series?
Yes, I know it is hard to believe but here you have it. Carlos does not know the meaning of the word "idle"  and has been working very hard in the last few days in order to deliver you yet another outstanding Series. 
And can you think of a better time to remember the largest Asian war of the XX century than precisely this time of year?

The "Marco Polo Bridge Incident" (7 July 1937) marked the beginning of this dreadful high intensity conflict in Asia, than affected huge numbers of the civilian population. 


quinta-feira, 23 de dezembro de 2010

Yugoslav Wars & Locomotives Series nº 1 - by Carlos Briz

(Class BR218 locomotive - German Railways - UNPROFOR)

Right now you can see that this locomotive Series is entering the 90's!

(Class D-66 locomotive - Yoguslav State Railways)

The Yugoslav wars brought conventional armed conflict back to Europe, after more than 40 years of peace after WWII.


quarta-feira, 22 de dezembro de 2010

Algerian War & Locomotives Series nº 1 - by Carlos Briz

(Class  BB8100 locomotive - French Railways in Algeria)

Once again, nobody can say the Brigada Tripeira guys do not deliver on their promises!
And here you have a new and outstanding Series of Carlos's dioramas, involving French Railways locomotives.

(Class BB63000 locomotive - French Railways in Algeria)

The Algerian war took on very extreme and violent dimensions during it's course, but followed the familiar pattern of African independence movements. 


terça-feira, 21 de dezembro de 2010

The "Best General" poll (6)

(J.E.B. Stuart)

I want to file a formal complaint among our followers, regarding the number of votes J.E.B. Stuart has been given until now in the current poll!
What is not to like about this guy? He seldom followed orders sent by his superiors; went with his friends on joy rides wherever it pleased him; all the girls liked him. 
Maybe his only hope in winning this poll lies in a sudden and unexpected (not to say improbable...) increase in the number of our female following.

(George G. Meade)

Meade was a solid and reliable career officer. His performance was above average in several battles during the ACW (South Mountain, Antietam, Fredericksburg, just to mention a few).
The battle of Gettysburg, where he defeated Lee, is his best known accomplishment.


segunda-feira, 20 de dezembro de 2010

WWII Locomotives & War Series nº 16 - by Carlos Briz

(Class SU 1-3-1 locomotive - Russian State Railways)

We have been hearing a lot about the really bad weather that is going on up north.
I hope you guys out there are able to cope as best you can.
Over here in Portugal we are also having some trouble with the weather, since we have days when the clear blue sky and the sun force us to wear sunglasses and drive in a hurry to the nearest seaside coffee shop.
Oh well, we just have to endure it.

(Class BR 52 locomotive - German State Railways)

JF has been working overtime (something he is not able to do on his daily job...) and in the next few days several brand new locomotive Series will appear around here.
Therefore, buy your pop corn and reserve your seat in advance!

(Class SU 131 18 locomotive - German State Railways)

I sincerely believe I gave the New Yorkers every chance to win the current challenge (see post from 11 December), but it was simply too much for them to handle.
The correct answer would be: Hans von Luck, leading Panzer Reconnaissance Battalion 37, under the eye of Rommel himself.
You guys should not take this too hard on yourself. My 4 year old kid also had some trouble guessing this.

But there is another challenge coming up and this time it is directed to Londoners!

This one is also easy as pie: give us the name of the pilot that flew the Horsa glider that carried the first platoon that landed on Pegasus Bridge, on 5 June 1944.


domingo, 19 de dezembro de 2010

Vietnam War & Locomotives Series nº 2 - by Carlos Briz

(Class RS-1 locomotive - South Vietnamese Railways)

On a Holy Day (Sunday), nothing like a post related to war.
(Class SW-2 locomotive - U.S. Army Transportation Corps)

The M113 is my favourite APC of all time.


sábado, 18 de dezembro de 2010

The "Best General" poll (5)

(Ulysses S. Grant)

I received several complaints from our huge following from the North Pole related to my last post, hinting that it was not fair to only promote generals from the "South", concerning the current poll.
And since over here we want to give everybody a fair chance to win, here is a post related to a couple of generals from the "North".
Now I know why Grant has few votes - I typed his name incorrectly in the poll (Ulisses instead of Ulysses), and people have not been able to identify him because of that.
At a time when everything look hopeless for the Union, since it's superiority in men and materiel was not reflected in favourable results, from 1863 onwards Grant gave the North new hope by providing the essence of war: Victory.  

(William T. Sherman)

When you look at Sherman you cannot make a mistake: he looked like a tough customer and he was a tough customer.
His "March to the Sea" was a good example of one of the things that get the job done in war: merciless destruction of your enemy's resources and hability to fight. 
"War is cruelty and you cannot refine it" - these wise words of his should be remembered before starting any war.


sexta-feira, 17 de dezembro de 2010

The "Best General" poll (4)

(Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson)

"There is Jackson standing like a stone wall" - are these inspiring words or what?
They were first heared on July 21, 1861, during the battle of First Bull Run or First Manassas, earning Jackson his well deserved nickname.
And now, while reading these words again, you have a chance to make a difference and prove if Jackson was really the best general of the ACW, by voting in the outstanding new poll we recently started!

(Robert E. Lee)

Behind the mild mannered gentleman outlook existed a strong willed and daring tactician.
With his tough, although often outnumbered and under equipped, Army of Northern Virginia Lee managed time and again to outmaneuver the Union Army and win against all odds.
However, will he be tough enough to win this poll?


Vietnam War & Locomotives Series nº 1 - by Carlos Briz

(Class GP-20 locomotive - U.S. Army Transportation Corps)

Did you really think the guys in Vietnam had no use for some good old locomotives?
Did you really think all they need was a few Huey choppers for transport?
Well, think again, since Carlos is about to prove you wrong!

(Class GP-30 locomotive - U.S. Army Transportation Corps)

As you can see, there was some heavy duty stuff that needed to be moved around Vietnam.
There were hundreds of M48 (Patton) tanks deployed in this operational theater, not to mention the thousands of armoured cavalry assault vehicles (ACAV's) used by the U.S. Army as it's primary work horse.


quinta-feira, 16 de dezembro de 2010

Portuguese Colonial Wars & Locomotives Series nº 1 - by Carlos Briz

(Class 11 locomotive - Portuguese Mozambique Railways)

And here you have another brand new Series, as promised, this time related to the Portuguese Colonial Wars,  which occurred between 1961 and 1974, in Africa, and during a brief period in India (Goa, Damão and Diu).

(Class 11 locomotive - Portuguese Benguela Railways)

During a period of 13 years the Portuguese sustained a war in 4 different operational theaters (Guinea, Angola, Mozambique and India), thousands of miles distant from Portugal, and from each other.
No mean feat, considering the size of the country and the overall population at the time (just under 9 million, in 1960).


quarta-feira, 15 de dezembro de 2010

The Arab-Israeli Wars & Locomotives Series nº 1

(Class S-2 locomotive - Israel Railways)

And here comes another brand new Locomotive Series!
Tell me the truth: you thought Carlos had run out of ideas in this regard, didn't you?
Well, guess again, since in the next few days not one, but TWO more brand new Series are likely to appear around here.
You just wait and see!

(Class GP-9 locomotive - Israel Railways)
Leftovers from WWII?
The famous Israeli ingenuity could transform just about any piece of scrap metal into a operational fighting vehicle.

I have been thinking to myself and my guess is that Santa Claus is not the only guy that has a bunch of elves giving him a hand.
Carlos is sure to have at least a couple of them around his work bench - how else can a guy explain this kind of modelling output?


terça-feira, 14 de dezembro de 2010

The "Best General" poll (3)

That's right folks, we have a WINNER!
The "Desert Fox" did it again!

As I predicted (...), your votes gave this guy a narrow win over some pretty tough opponents. Right until the last days, there was no telling if the final victory would be his or Manstein's. One of these days Rommel will be portrayed in the (wonderful...) Character Series posts, as it is only deserving.

My next poll will be about the generals from the American Civil War. We will see if there is someone with half a chance at snatching the victory trophy from Robert E. Lee's hands - not that I have any particular favorite on that regard, mind you.

Speaking of challenges: it seems the guys from New York will not be able to cut it. 
The challenge made in my post from 11 December is still unanswered. Will victory belong, once again, to the Brigada Tripeira guys?
In order to avoid that, I will "open" this challenge to other parts of the World, in order to provide the New Yorkers with some (needed...) assistance.
Therefore, our followers from the North Pole will also be able to place answers in the current challenge (do not tell me later that I was not helpful).


segunda-feira, 13 de dezembro de 2010

WWII Locomotives & War Series nº 15 - by Carlos Briz

(Class BR 01 locomotive - German State Railways)

Those Nashorns over there seem to be just lying and waiting...
That 88 mm Pak 43 (L/71) gun would be bad news for just about any allied armour in it's sight.

(Class BR 61 locomotive - German State Railways)

Will you just take a good long look at this locomotive over here!
Is this a locomotive from the 1940's or from the XXI century?

(Clas BR 41 locomotive - German State Railways)

The bocage could be a tough opponent for even a AFV to cross.
However, it was negligible for a locomotive...


domingo, 12 de dezembro de 2010

WWII Locomotives & War Series nº 14 - by Carlos Briz

(Class E 95 locomotive - German State Railways)

This Maus must be fresh out from the factory - maybe the only one that made it out...

Class E 63 - locomotive - German State Railways)

Are these Elephants of Ferdinands?

The lair of the Panther: an allied air force dream come true!

Carlos: you should have placed the tag with the locomotive identification on the roof of that building this time...


sábado, 11 de dezembro de 2010

WWII Locomotives & War Series nº 13 - by Carlos Briz

(Class BR 08 locomotive - German State Railways)

Back to WWII we come now, to bring you another set of Carlos's dioramas.

(Class BR 80 locomotive - German State Railways)

Even the highly mobile Afrika Corps could use some help from a good German locomotive. 

(Class E 94 locomotive - German State Railways)

(Class E 44 locomotive - German State Railways)

As you all know, we had a semi-winner from the USA (but still in time to become a full-winner...) in our previous challenge.

However, my inspiration is on the move and I sense another challenge coming up!
And this one is really easy:
Give us the name of the leader of the German Reece unit that captured the French village of Fécamp, on the 10th of June 1940, in the process of spearheading the Wehrmacht effort to reach the sea.
This particular challenge is directed to the guys from New York, USA, since someone told me there were a lot of military history experts around those parts.
Besides answering this very simple question, you should also mention something only a New Yorker would know, to "prove" your origin.


sexta-feira, 10 de dezembro de 2010

Character Series nº 7 - Nuno Álvares Pereira

(Part II)

Well, it seems we have a potential winner for the current challenge! (mentioned in our post from 5 December).

Peter guessed correctly the names of 3 scientists that worked of the V1 and V2 rocket projects.
However, there is one thing missing before the winner can be declared for all legal purposes. Peter has to prove he is from California, since that was one of the conditions for participation in this particular challenge.
Peter: you can do it in any way you see fit, since we will take your word on that.
My suggestion for a sure way to prove it would be for you to send a few California girls to participate in our already famous Christmas lunch!

And now we must go on with NAP’s story!

(The crisis of 1383-1385)
Most sensible people do not start a war when they do not have a fair chance at winning it.
If we take this for granted, then we will have to conclude that the Portuguese King D. Fernando (the First) was not a sensible guy. From 1369 onwards, D. Fernando picked several fights with Castile (1369-1370; 1372-1373 and 1381-1382) and pretty much lost them all. At one time, he had to promise, in the formal Treaty of Alcoutim ( in 1371) to marry a Castilian princess in order to get rid of the Castilian threat. 
However, in his usual fickle way, he forgot all about that the moment he set his eyes on Leonor Teles, as I mentioned in my last post. And that, sure enough, brought about a new war with Castile, since King Enrique (the Second) did not take that deception lightly.

The main problem with D. Fernando was that he was a lover, not a fighter. The kind of guy that (as I imagine) said to his soldiers: “go on and kill those Castilians! I will join you as soon as possible!” (and never did) does not exactly inspire uncommon bravery among his troops. We have a popular saying over here in Portugal that goes more or less like this: “a weak King weakens the strongest people” (it sounds better in Portuguese…), and D. Fernando was not a man for medieval times, where the rule of Force was more important than the rule of Law. Because of that and as a rule, in his time the Portuguese medieval levies were usually defeated in battle. I say “because of that” with intent, since a couple of years after his death those same levies, while outnumbered, performed wonders of valour under different leaders, as you will notice latter on.

When D. Fernando died, on 22 October 1383, the Kingdom was more or less in shambles and with his death ended the rule of the dynasty of Burgundy in Portugal, since he did not leave any offspring.
Queen Leonor was appointed regent on behalf of the daughter of King D. Juan (the First) of Castile, and set her mind, with the help of her Galician lover Count Andeiro, to deliver the Portuguese throne on a silver platter to Castile.
Maybe she thought this would be the only way to guarantee her own survival, since she was very much hated throughout the Realm – and she was right about that.
However, there were guys over here that did not quite agree with the way things were going and decided to do something about it.
NAP was one of them.

And now the stage is set.
In my next post (scheduled for the near, but not quite defined, future) of this wonderful Series, NAP will set his foot in it.


quinta-feira, 9 de dezembro de 2010

Korean War Locomotives & War Series nº 2 - by Carlos Briz

(Class F7 locomotive - U.S. Army Transportation Corps)

And here we have another P-80 in the "hunting mode". 
The Shooting Star was the first operational jet fighter deployed in a combat situation, and it's debut was made in the Korean war. 
However, the Mig-15 soviet built fighter proved superior in air combat manouvering, and that led to the replacement of the P-80 by the F-86 Sabre for that purpose.

(Class 2-8-2 locomotive - U.S. Army Transportation Corps)

The "Long Tom" is one of my favourite field guns. 
I am not sure if placed on the wrong side of it, I would continue to say the same...

The Korean war was also the first time helicopters were used in major combat operations.

The Sikorsky H-19 over there is looking good.