Converting a Hungarian Bofors Gun

Converted Model

With the release of the Hungarians this month you may have noticed that one or two Platoons in the Hungarian briefing need a little modelling to field. One of these is the Hungarian Light Anti-aircraft Platoon armed with the excellent 40mm Bofors gun.

Below: Hungarian Bofors crew in shirts and caps.

Hungarian Bofors

In the few photographs of Hungarian 36M Bofors guns I’ve collected you can see they crew were dressed much like the rest of the Honvéd. In summer you would find them stripped down to their shirts and field caps, but in the cooler months they retained their tunics and the helmet was worn in the front lines.

The Gun itself is little different to the Bofors employed by the other nations, though some did have a gun shield added later, but this seemed to be entirely different to that used by the British.

Right: Some Hungarian Bofors had shields, but these seem to be a later addition and are very different to the ones found on the British versions.

Bofors fitted with shield
Full crew ready for firing Left: A Hungarian Bofors crew in full dress with helmets.

To field the Bofors model for your Hungarians I’ve used the BR540 Bofors Gun with the European dress British crew. I’m going to use the gun in conjunction with some of the Hungarian artillery crew (HSO05 Special Order item available soon) and just convert the seated gunners and the loader.

See assembling the Bofors…

Bofors Crew in Russia Bofors still mounted on wheels
Step 1

For the crew conversion I first cut off the extra pockets on the British crew’s trousers and removed any shoulder straps. As the British are in the short battledress jacket, the cutting off of the shoulder straps allows the crew to be painted in Hungarian shirts.
Step 1
HSO06 These are lighter than the normal uniform colour and I painted mine Sicily Yellow (FWP362), but you could also use Military Khaki (FWP327).

Next removed the heads and replace them with your desired heads, I’ve used the heads from the HU160 Nimrod (which will also be available as HSO06, a Special Order item out soon).

But you could equally use the heads of some spare German or Hungarian miniatures.

Right: Circles mark pockets and straps I removed.

For more details of head swaps see Casey’s article…

Step 1
Step 2 Step 2

I repeated this process for the two gunners.

They were a little easier as they have no shoulder straps and only the one pocket half showing under the gunners hand. 
Alternatively you if you have some spare German FlaK 38, FlaK 36 (88) or Hornisse gunners you could use these without having to do any head swaps. FlaK38 gunner is probably the best as it comes with a cast on seat and would just need a spacer under the seat to fit the gun.

Right: Hornisse (left) and FlaK38 (right) gunners.

Alternative Gunners


The three middle crewmen make great additional Bofors crew (Special Order HSO05)

Once you have converted your models paint you Bofors and you’re ready to blast some enemy aircraft from the sky or knock out some unwary light tanks!

For painting see Hungarian Painting Guide…

Hungarian Bofors Gun Hungarian Bofors Gun
Hungarian Bofors Gun Hungarian Bofors Gun