Thursday, March 22, 2012

Battleground Weird WWII: Commonwealth Airborne Motorcyles & Scooters

Welbike Scooter

 "Flying Flea" Motorcycle

"Clockwork Mouse" Motorcycle

Notes:  These are the most commonly used airborne motorcycles and scooters used by Commonwealth forces through the war.  All models are either deployed within a drop canister, drop frame or packed within a glider.  These vehicles are used by airborne troops to perform recon duties and used by dispatch riders to deliver orders to units spread over a large drop area.  Be sure to get the Battleground WWII core rule book for use with these rules.
Date Introduced:  Welbike (Mid '42), Flying Flea (Mid '39) & Clockwork Mouse (Mid '39).
Users:  All models were used by Commonwealth airborne forces as well as other British-equipped Allied airborne forces.
Crew:  Due to the small size and limited max weight of these models, only a single individual can ride one at any given time.
Motorcycle Characteristics:  All these models have normal motorcycle characteristics unless noted below.
Mk. 1 & Mk. 2 Welbike Scooter:  The Welbike may move up to 8” per action and only receives an additional 4" of movement for its Road bonus.  The scooter will also be at a +3 to all its Bog Checks due to its limited cross-country capability.  Because of the possibility of damage in a landing or even the unlikelihood of troops searching for and unpacking it, the availability of this vehicle is very low.  The vehicle’s Availability is an 6.
Flying Flea Motorcycle:  The Flying Flea acts like any other motorcycle.  Availability for this motorcycle is a 12.
Clockwork Mouse Motorcycle: The Clockwork Mouse acts like any other motorcycle.  Availability for this motorcycle is a 15.
Sand Tires:  In North Africa, many vehicles were fitted with large balloon-like tires that helped the vehicle move better in the desert sands. If any vehicle is fitted with these tires, they will be able to move at 3/4 their normal movement instead of 1/4 and  receive a -1 bonus when making Bog Checks when moving through sand.  Availability is 10 for units of in Africa and a 5 for any theater.
Snow Chains:  Snow chains were fitted to the tires of vehicles to help them better grip onto icy surfaces.  If a vehicle has snow chains then it will receive a -1 bonus to any Bog Checks made on icy or snowy roads.  Availability is a 10 or less on any front.
Airdropped onto the Field:  All models are capable of being deployed via parachute along with other airborne troops and will land on the tabletop using the normal rules for Bags and Canisters in the Paratrooper rules.  If the canister or parachute frame holding the vehicle is damaged in any way, the vehicle is destroyed or damaged and rendered useless for the remainder of the battle.  It will take a paratrooper 2 actions to detach the vehicle from its canister or drop frame and then assemble it for use.
Glider Deployment:  The Hotspur and Hadrian gliders can carry a single vehicle each, the Horsa glider can carry D4 vehicles and the Hamilcar glider can carry an additional D6 vehicles in addition to their normal compliment.
Wargaming Piece:  I believe Bolt Action Miniatures makes the Welbike and you can get away with normal motorcycle minis for the Flea and Mouse.

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