Tet Offensive series of BRAVO-6
keeps growing. The third kit of the series B6-35029 U.S.M.C.(3) Machine Gun Team, Tet ‘68
includes two Marine figures representing a M-60 Team with a gunner and an assistant gunner or ammo bearer.
nicknamed as Pig
during Vietnam War is a family of general purpose machine gun that was designed in the United States. The M60 is designed for use with the 7.62x51 mm cartridge type and can fire ball, tracer and armour piercing ammunition. The gun was introduced in the year 1957 and continues to be in service till date with the US military and many other operators.
The M60’s design is based on many concepts of that period such as stamped steel parts, quick barrel replacement and the belt-feed mechanism. The operating system of the M60 is also based on the German MG42. However, the gas mechanism is unique in many ways. At the same time, it is also simpler and this easier to clean and maintain.
The M60 is a gas-operated machine gun that fires from an open-bolt. It is fed by a belt of metallic M13 links. Most variants of the M60 come with a foldable bipod. However, it can also be mounted on some fixed mounts such as the M122 tripod. The gun has an effective range of up to 1,100 meters depending on how it is mounted and fired.
The M60 is designed to be operated by a crew of two or three. The gun weighs around 10.5 Kg and consumes a large amount of ammunition—this makes firing the weapon difficult for a single soldier.
The M60 machine gun was very effective in the field. However, it did have some drawbacks in some field conditions. During its deployment in Vietnam, the common complaint was that it would jam frequently, especially in muddy conditions. Maintenance needed to be meticulous as fine sand and dust entering into the gun mechanism would cause it to get jammed.
The kit 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 figures 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 parts-bodies and other parts of the figures like arms and accessories are seperately inserted in small plastic zip-lock bags to avoid unexpected damages during transfer.
The figures are sculpted by Vladimir Demchenko
and comes in 21 medium grey resin parts. The resin quality is very good and details are very crisp. No air bubbles, excess resin or any casting mistakes on the figure. The parts can be easily removed from the blocks with no damage as the junctions between figure parts and casting blocks are well placed. There will be no need for a cleanwork.
Figure #1 – Gunner : Posed to fire his M-60,the figure shows very nice facial details and facial expression like aiming his gun. He wears combat trousers with cargo pockets, canvas/leather combined jungle boots and M1955 Fragmentation vest also known as Flak diaper. Details of the vest are well defined and torn part on the left back is a nice touch. Inside his vest, he has a Navy Pull Over Wet Weather Parka which the hood can be seen on the back side of the figure. As in all BRAVO-6 figures, most of the personal gear are cast on the figure. He carries a canvas first aid kit pouch on the right side and a M17 gasmask case on the left hip. A M-60 ammo bag is crossed on his right shoulder. It is a cotton bag containing a waxed cardboard box, which could contain 100 rounds of M60 ammunition. The bag has a cotton sling for carrying over the shoulder. Details of the personal gear are all very well represented.
Figure #2 – Assistant Gunner : Posed to feed the M-60 holding the ammo link, he wears the typical Marine uniform of flak vest, cargo trousers and jungle boots. He carries 2 M-16 ammo pouches on both sides, jungle first aid kit on back and M17 gasmask case on the left side. Facial details of the figure, details of the uniform and personal gear are all well represented.
Other parts are ;
Right arm of the Gunner ; It is cast with the machine gun. M-60 shows very nice details and left hand is cast on it.
Left arm of the Gunner ; Posed to hold the M-60 and makes a good fit to the hand on M-60.
Right arm of the Assistant Gunner ; Posed to hold the ammo link, it shows nice cloth folds.
Left arm of the Assistant Gunner ; Posed to put his hand on the ground, it shows nice cloth folds.
M-16 rifle ; It will be displayed next to the ass.gunner and shows nice details.
Colt holster ; Scabbard of the K-BAR knife is cast together with the holster to attach to the rşght hip of the gunner.
M-60 ammo bag ; It will be displayed on the ground near the gunner.
M-1956 one quart canteen - 3 pieces
M7 bayonet in M8A1 scabbard
M1 helmets Helmet with lubricant oil bottle for the gunner and helmet with M-16 magazine attached to the helmet band are given in the kit. Torn effect on the canvas helmet cover is a nice touch.
Bipod of M-60
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 perfect kit sculpted in great details and cast in high quality. This M-60 team can be a very good Tet Offensive vignette or a part of a huge Vietnam diorama.
Very Highly Recommended