Steven’s Russian Rifle Battalion for Crossfire

I’ve taken the liberty to update my previous post on Steven’s Russian Rifle Battalion for a number of reasons:


Order of Battle

My Russians are a standard Crossfire orbat.

Russian Rifle Battalion

  • 1 x BC (+1)
  • 1 x Heavy Weapons Company:
    • 3 x HMG [4 guns each]
    • 3 x FO for off table 82mm Mortar (12 FM) [4 tubes each]
    • 1 x 45mm ATG with optional tow
  • 3 x Rifle Companies
    • 1 x CC (+1)
    • 1 x HMG
    • 1 x on-table 50mm Mortar (12 FM) [4 tubes each]
    • 3 x Rifle Platoons: PC (+1/0), 4 x Rifle

Battalion HQ

As I mentioned on Base Sizes and Number of Figures in Crossfire I use a non-standard base size for my Battalion Commanders (BC). There can be confusion between a BC and ordinary squads as each have 3 figures on a 30mm x 30mm square base. To avoid that confusion I use three slightly different schemes:

  • large stand (50mm x 50mm) with 3 figures plus a jeep
  • large stand (50mm x 50mm) with 5 figures, and no jeep, but one of the figures has a flag
  • normal stand (30mm x30mm) with 3 figures, but one of the figures has a flag

My Russians got 3 figures and a jeep on a 50mm x 50mm stand.

R-.BC Russian - Battalion Commander 1

R-.BC Russian – Battalion Commander 1

R-.-BC Russian - Battalion Commander 2

R-.-BC Russian – Battalion Commander 2


Rifle Company

There are three rifle companies within the battle but I’ll only focus on 1st Company.

Company HQ

My Commander Commanders (CC) are the standard 3 figures on a 30mm x 30mm base.

R-1-CC Russian - 1st Rifle Company - Company Commander

R-1-CC Russian – 1st Rifle Company – Company Commander

Company Heavy Weapons

Each rifle company has integral heavy weapons. First up is an HMG standard with two crew with a weapon on a 30mm x 30mm stand.

R-1-. Russian - 1st Rifle Company - HMG

R-1-. Russian – 1st Rifle Company – HMG

Unlike their opponents, the Russians used 50mm mortars throughout the war. I field my small mortars on table so they are two crew with a (tiny) weapon on a 30mm x 30mm base. This counts as an FO for all purposes.

R-50-1 Russian - 1st Rifle Company - 50mm Mortar

R-50-1 Russian – 1st Rifle Company – 50mm Mortar

Rifle Platoons

Each rifle company has three rifle platoons. Early Russian rifle platoons have a Platoon Commander (PC) plus four rifle squads. Mid to late war this dropped to three rifle squads per platoon. Rifle squads are 3 figures on a 30mm x 30mm stand.

R-1 Russian - 1st Rifle Company

R-1 Russian – 1st Rifle Company

PCs are 1 figure on a 30mm x 15mm stand.

R-1 Russian - 1st Rifle Company - Platoon Commanders

R-1 Russian – 1st Rifle Company – Platoon Commanders

R-1 Russian - 1st Rifle Company 2

R-1 Russian – 1st Rifle Company 2


Heavy Weapons Company

The Russian Heavy Weapons Company had HMG and mortars.

HMG

Three HMG standards are in the Russian Heavy Weapons Company.

R-.-. Russian - Battalion HMG

R-.-. Russian – Battalion HMG

That gives the battalion six HMG in total, three from the companies and three from battalion level. That is a lot of firepower.

R Russian - Battalion and Company HMG

R Russian – Battalion and Company HMG

82mm Mortars

The Russians get a fairly standard medium mortar (82mm). The Heavy Weapons Company gets three FOs for off table 82mm mortar batteries. As I mentioned on Base Sizes and Number of Figures in Crossfire I use a non-standard base size for my FOs to distinguish them from PCs. My FOs are one figure on a 20mm wide x 25mm deep base.

R-82 Russian - FO for Battalion 82mm Mortars

R-82 Russian – FO for Battalion 82mm Mortars

I’ve also taken the on table option. Three crew with a weapon on a 30mm x 30mm base.

R-82 Russian - Battalion 82mm Mortars

R-82 Russian – Battalion 82mm Mortars

Should I ever field these guys, and I haven’t to date, I’d field them with an FO as well. The FO gives the ability to fire indirect even if the weapon is on table.

R-82 Russian Battalion 82mm Mortars and FO

R-82 Russian Battalion 82mm Mortars and FO

Again, if you combine battalion and company assets that is quite a lot of tubes. Admittedly they are not super powerful being on 50mm (x3) and 82mm (x3)

R Russian - Battalion and Company Mortars

R Russian – Battalion and Company Mortars

45mm Anti-tank Gun

Lastly the battalion gets a single 45mm anti-tank gun with optional tow. The Soviets used these throughout the war, towards the end they were primarily anti-personnel weapons.

R-41-1 Russian - Battalion 45mm Antitank gun

R-41-1 Russian – Battalion 45mm Antitank gun


Unit ID

I have used Battalion Code = “R” for the Unit ID for the “Russian Rifle” battalion.

The photos show the IDs for the 1st Rifle Company with the code “R-1”. First platoon within the company is “R-1-1” etc.

R-1 Russian - 1st Rifle Company - Showing ID

R-1 Russian – 1st Rifle Company – Showing ID

R-1 Russian - 1st Rifle Company - ID Close Up

R-1 Russian – 1st Rifle Company – ID Close Up

The stands with red dots are so I can distinguish which have Infantry Anti-tank Weapons. I don’t bother representing the weapon. Mainly because it would be an anti-tank rifle and such a team takes a lot of space.


Acknowledgements

Roland Davis painted all the figures. Roland uses the Black Undercoat Method of painting.

I based them using Sand, Flat Earth paint, and Dry Brushing on metric versions of the standard Base Sizes and Number of Figures in Crossfire.

The majority of the figures are Battle Front although I’ve filled in some gaps in the figures with Peter Pig.

5 comments to Steven’s Russian Rifle Battalion for Crossfire

  • Andrés F.

    Nice looking Soviets! I especially like the battalion commander (love the jeep!) and the 45mm AT gun.

    I’ve long decided to copy your unit ID scheme, except that I use 1:72 soldiers and I actually model the AT weapons such as AT rifles (or Panzerfausts/schrecks in Germans). I still consider them abstracted “works as infantry with generic AT weapons” suitable for all war periods, but I like seeing an actual representation on table.

    • Steven Thomas

      Andres, regarding infanty anti-tank weapons on the stands …

      (1) For the Soviets this was a decision made 20 years ago. I now have the Soviet anti-tank rifle teams. Unpainted. I could paint and insert them into the formation. But the weapons are so big! And, well, there is the painting thing as well – exhausting. And the formation is complete as is.

      (2) 20 years ago I made the same call for my early to mid war Germans, actually the Spanish Blue Division. I suspect I have also purchase anti-tank riflemen for early war Germans but I have no burning desire to put them on the stands.

      (3) In contrast my late war Germans have panzerfausts and panzershreks on the stands. At the moment this is only the Fallschirmjaeger but I’ll do the same for the 1945 unit ezquerra in Berlin. The anti-tank weapons were pervasive and it seemed right to include them.

      I think, if you boil it down, I an anti anti-tank rifles. They ain’t cool.

  • Brett Simpson

    Truly great, Steven. I especially like the Battalion Command stand.

  • Steven Thomas

    Andres and Brett, thanks re Battalion Commander. I like this way of depicting Battalion Commanders, on a big stand and with a vehicle. I like the mini-diorama aspect and it also makes it impossible to confuse a BC from either a company commander or a rifle squad – which used to happen before I rebased.

    But this approach doesn’t work for everybody. One guy I played with get confused by the vehicle and thought the stand should have special “Jeep” characteristics. Of course in CF infantry is the fastest thing on the table and that player just got more confused when I explained that if I let the stand move like a jeep it would move slower. Mind you he got confused about a lot of aspects of CF (no rulers and unlimited movement for phasing stands) and stopped playing it.

  • Two points –

    (1) You should have a scenario that has the 82 mm mortars on the table – as massed Russian artillery was a feature of the Eastern Front, and also it would be different, hence interesting.

    (2) Just watched the latest Stalingrad movie – well worth a watch.Includes the most novel use of a Russian 37 mm AT gun I have seen. https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1966566/?ref_=fn_al_tt_2

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