After the Tet Offensive Marines with M-16 rifles and M-60 Machine Gun team, BRAVO-6
released another Marine with a legendary weapon of the Vietnam War. The kit B6-35030 U.S.M.C.(4) Blooper, Tet ‘68
includes a running posed Marine figure carrying a M-79 grenade launcher and holding his helmet.
The M79 grenade launcher
is a single-shot, shoulder-fired, break-action grenade launcher which fires a 40x46mm grenade. The barrel is hinged to the receiver and is locked closed by the rotating the lever at the tang of the receiver. 40mm cartridges of various types are loaded from the breech, then barrel is closed. Internal hammer is cocked automatically upon reloading. There is a manual safety, which automatically switches on when gun is reloaded. The trigger guard can be hinged sideways, so the gun can be fired in the thick gloves. The stock is made from wood, and the butt is fitted with the rubber recoil pad. Open sights consist of a hooded front sight and an adjustable ladder-type rear (and is graduated from 75 to 375 meters in 25 m increments.
First widely used in Vietnam, the M79 turned to be a complete success.Because of its distinctive report, it earned the nicknames of Blooper
among American soldiers. Australian units referred to it as the Wombat Gun
. The M79 can fire a wide variety of 40 mm rounds, including explosive, anti-personnel, smoke, buckshot, flechette, and illumination. Reliable and quite accurate in the hands of a trained operators, it provided extremely mobile firepower to smallest of the infantry units. Following the successful development of the M406 HE-FRAG round, several other types of 40mm ammunition were rapidly developed, including smoke and illumination rounds, HE-DP (dual purpose, fragmentation/antitank), incendiary, buckshot canister (for close-combat and self-defense). The key downside to the M79 was that it required the grenadier to carry an additional personal defense weapon, such as pistol or a submachine gun.
The figure comes well packed in standard BRAVO-6 light brown 50x80x25 mm cardboard box . The front part of the box shows a photo of the assembled and painted figure which can serve as a painting guide. On the other side of the box; e-mail address and website of the company is noted.
The parts are represented with the casting blocks. The main part-body and other parts of the figure like arms and accessories are seperately inserted in small plastic zip-lock bags to avoid unexpected damages during transfer.
The figure is sculpted by Vladimir Demchenko
and comes in 8 medium grey resin parts. As in all other BRAVO-6 figures, sculpting and casting quality is very high. There were no casting mistakes, air bubbles or excess resin on the figure. The figure will not need a serious cleanwork. The parts can be easily removed from the casting blocks.
The main part is Body with head and legs. The figure represents a black soldier , facial details and fuzz hair are well defined. Hair on the front of head is slightly carved for the easy fit of the helmet. He wears a M1955 Flak jacket over his uniform. Details of the vest like zip front closure, integral cartridge belt holder for attaching equipment and rifle guard over the right shoulder are well defined. Over the vest; he carries three M79 bandoliers on both shoulders crossed on his chest. M79 cotton bandolier has two triple-pockets to carry 40 mm cartridges. Cloth folds of the vest, cargo pocket trousers and canvas/leather combined boots are well defined. Some of the personal gear are cast on the figure. He carries a canvas first aid kit pouchon his back attached to his utility belt, a M17 gasmask case on the left hip and a M16 ammo pouch on the left front.Details of the personal gear are all nicely represented.
Other parts are;
Right arm : Posed to carry a M79 Grenade launcher. It shows nice details. Do not forget to open a hole on the barrel of the grenade launcher.
Left arm : Posed to hold his helmet when running. Cloth folds and buttoned sleeve are well defined.
M1911A1 Colt pistol in leather holster
M1956 one quart canteen - 2 pieces
KABAR knife in leather scabbard
M1 helmet with Mitchell pattern canvas cover. A 40 mm grenade is attached to the helmet band.
The following books and websites can be useful when painting this figure.
Osprey Publishing – Warrior 023 – Marine Corps in Vietnam by Charles D. Melson & Ramiro Bujeiro
Osprey Publishing – Campaign 004 – Tet Offensive 1968 Turning Point in by James R. Arnold
David Brubaker’s Vietnam Uniforms and Equipment website
Another nice posing figure with nice facial details of a black soldier, sculpted in great details and cast in high quality. The figure can be displayed alone or together with other figures of the BRAVO-6 Tet’68 series.
Very Highly Recommended