Milk Carton Creation No. 1 – Cheap Landing Craft

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My previous post showed these clever recycling craft kits (stickers?) from Flying Tiger with ideas for reusing cartons.

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/cheap-flying-tiger-canal-boat-landing-craft/

This is the day and this is the hour …

My first Milk Carton Creation is a simple Landing Craft for 54mm figures down to 40mm or even 32mm figures.

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I sketched out an idea of the shape of the Landing Craft on the side of the carton with a permanent marker Sharpie pen, before cutting with sharp scissors.

Folds and cuts are first secured by staples. Later on I used a hot glue gun to fix flaps and wooden coffee stirrers for rigidity and strength.

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The end cap section was removed and reinserted elsewhere as the machine gun cupola.
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Staples can be seen along with a cocktail stick radio mast.

Next time I make one of these, I will not lose the thin screw on ring that was attached or sealed to the cap. It might make the cupola tidier to insert and secure.

I used Revell Aquacolour Acrylic (Stone Grey) which binds to the shiny waxy carton both inside and out  well enough. I shall give this a further coat or two of Stone Grey paint. A final tough gloss varnish spray should protect some of the paintwork.

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I tested the landing craft in the water and it does still float, thanks mostly to not having an opening front door flap section.
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The back splash and bullet  guard is made of a plastic card  iTunes voucher.

The back splash and bullet guard is made of a cut up plastic card iTunes voucher, the flaps or hatches from thin wooden crafting Scrabble squares and cardboard – all secured with a hot glue gun.

I can add more detail such as fenders and life rings and lettering after a few more coats of paint.

Inspiration for the Landing Craft came  partly from the Flying Tiger catalogue page and partly from the back and review pages of Toy Soldier and Model Figure or TSMF Magazine this month.

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My Landing Craft (Carton)  –  A fraction of the price and tough enough to game with in the garden,  compared to the more delicate King and Country model version.  
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The machine gunner’s Cupola / gun shield was partly inspired by these Vietnam War APCs.

In keeping with my Pound Store Plastic Warriors blog ethos of cheap and cheerful, recycling and reusing scrap and plastic tat, here are some suitably Pound Store Plastic figures to give me an idea how the Landing Craft works.

The plastic figures are mostly unpainted and Pound Store clone or pirate copies of Matchbox,  Airfix or BMC US marines.

First off, a Normandy D-Day type Landing with mostly pirate Pound Store copies of Matchbox German infantry and US infantry. Barbed wire, sand bags and beach obstacles from Elite Corps (space marines) playset.

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The Grey Defenders – Mostly Matchbox figure German Infantry or Africa Korps 54mm-ish copies atop the granite cliffs.

The same scenes in grainy black and white:

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Hit the beach, fellas!

Meanwhile somewhere in the Pacific …

Several tubs of what I later discovered were Pound Store copies of BMC Marines also had the odd Japanese lying figures, to bolster the defences of mostly Pound Store Matchbox and Airfix Japanese on this more tropical but strangely familiar shoreline.

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I bought about 5 drums or tubs of these BMC Marines copies at  the seaside for 50p a tub!

Those well-defended  tropical beaches in grainy black and white:

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I thought I would also try the Landing Craft out with some lead hollowcast  figures of US infantry from the family on Fathers Day:

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The cupola Navy machine gunner is a copy of a plastic Tim Mee infantry machine gunner.

Finally I tried the Landing craft out with smaller scale 32mm pound Store figures and similar size toy jeep.

Switching figure scales, the machine gunner in the lid appears too large for the smaller scales. This is not always so important with plastic toy soldiers. Just look at the weird scale mix in Pound Store Soldier bags.

In future however on my next Landing Craft (Carton) I shall try keeping the milk carton round lid and cutting down and sticking on the suitable size machine gunner figure, so that with a couple of spare carton lids, I can have an easy swap or switch of figures.

Hopefully I can add some suitably Pound Store type scrap details like fenders and life ring along with some Letraset style letters and numbers.

A few less cartons to landfill if you have no carton recycling nearby. All I need now is dozens more and I can invade (a pound Store version of) France …

Blogposted by Mark ‘Man of TIN’ and Carton, 21 July 2019

Author: 26soldiersoftin

Hello I'm Mark Mr MIN, Man of TIN. Based in S.W. Britain, I'm a lifelong collector of "tiny men" and old toy soldiers, whether tin, lead or childhood vintage 1960s and 1970s plastic figures. I randomly collect all scales and periods and "imagi-nations" as well as lead civilians, farm and zoo animals. I enjoy the paint possibilities of cheap poundstore plastic figures as much as the patina of vintage metal figures. Befuddled by the maths of complex boardgames and wargames, I prefer the small scale skirmish simplicity of very early Donald Featherstone rules. To relax, I usually play solo games, often using hex boards. Gaming takes second place to making or convert my own gaming figures from polymer clay (Fimo), home-cast metal figures of many scales or plastic paint conversions. I also collect and game with vintage Peter Laing 15mm metal figures, wishing like many others that I had bought more in the 1980s ...

6 thoughts on “Milk Carton Creation No. 1 – Cheap Landing Craft”

  1. Mark you have produced a splendid landing craft,well done. It will be interesting to see how the next one works. I really like the out door pictures which remind me of photos in wargaming magazines of the chap who had his whole garden set up all the time for ongoing gaming in 54mm. I think the photos were in the Miniature Wargames occasional holiday special magazines. I have them somewhere and will look later.
    Your cartons would paint up well as space shuttles or buildings as l have done with my Breakfast biscuit cartons.

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    1. “These are the droids you are looking for”-
      I know the photos of the garden Wargames article that you mean as well as the inspiration of FE Perry First and Second Book of Wargames and Brian Carrick’s Big Wars article (a friend of FE Perry) https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/06/30/brian-carricks-big-wars/….

      http://wargamingmiscellany.blogspot.com/2010/11/more-about-john-ruddle-and-garden.html

      https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2016/09/14/garden-wargames-1/

      http://vintagewargaming.blogspot.com/2011/01/unidentified-john-ruddle-article.html

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  2. Mark. Well done. I very much like the black and white pictures, very authentic. How about trying this idea with a plastic milk carton, you might not need the coffee stirrers. The plastic might be easier to form too, especially with a bit of heat carefully applied. Tony.

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    1. Thanks Tony. Sounds intriguing. I shall play around with the paper type cartons first, as I find I always make mess and unwelcome stinks with plastic, heated scalpels and candle flames. Hot water to soften plastic milk cartons works.

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