Purchase these Items

Products mentioned in this Article



M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
includes two M48A3 Patton Tanks with optional MG & .50 cal Cuploa MG upgrades, eight crew figures, one tank decal sheet & four rare earth magnets.

The M48 Patton tank was completely modernised version of the WWII M26 Pershing heavy tank, designed to fight Soviet tanks on a nuclear battlefield. Oddly, many of the lessons of WWII had been forgotten and the M48 lacked
a stabiliser and was likely to catch fire when penetrated. Its impressive anti-tank capability was of little use in Vietnam.

Much more useful was the M336 canister round, popularly known as ‘beehive’, filled with 1281 steel pellets that turned the tank’s main gun into a giant shotgun. The crews often moved the commander’s machine-gun from inside the cupola to on top of it, added another for the loader.

Check out the M48A3 Patton in the online store here...
Tour Of Duty
The Vietnam War defined a generation, whether it was through service in Vietnam or opposition to the war. The war in Vietnam remains one the bloodiest wars since the Second World War.

Learn more about Tour Of Duty here... 
Tour Of Duty
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) The M48A3 tanks went just about anywhere in just about any season, and their firepower proved decisive in battles like the relief of Fire Support Base Gold. There the tanks led a relief column through dense jungle and arrived, guns blazing, ‘just like the late show on TV, the US Cavalry came riding to the rescue’.

Designed by Evan Allen
Painted by Mark Hazell

Below: The M48A3 decal sheet (shown at 150%).

M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
The M48A4 Patton in Flames Of War Vietnam
Side Top
M48A3 Patton
Standard Tank
.50 cal Cupola MG, Co-ax MG, Infrared Searchlight, Tank telephone, Wide tracks.
M41 90mm gun
Beehive, Rangefinder.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Infrared Searchlights
Tank searchlights operate in either the infrared or white light spectrum, making them very useful in night combats.

A platoon with Infrared Searchlights rolls two dice and takes the best result when rolling on the Night Visibility Table (see page 272 of the rulebook). Vehicles with Infrared Searchlights do not need to re-roll Bogging Checks when crossing Rough Terrain at Night.

Tanks using Infrared Searchlights do not count as Concealed by either night or terrain when shot at by other tanks equipped with Infrared Searchlights, even if the other tanks do not use their searchlights.

The platoon may illuminate the platoon they are firing at with their white-light searchlights, allowing other platoons to shoot at that platoon as if they had rolled a 6 on the Night Visibility Table. If they illuminate the target, the platoon using the searchlights does not count as Concealed by either night or terrain.

M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Tank Telephones
The American M48A3 Patton and Australian Centurion tanks were fitted with armoured boxes at the back mounting an infantry telephone. This allowed their supporting infantry to communicate with the tanks and point out targets.

If a Tank team with a Tank Telephone and an adjacent Infantry team did not move in the Movement Step and
are not Pinned Down, the Infantry team can use the Eyes and Ears rule (see page 195 of the rulebook) to Reveal one Gone to Ground enemy team to that Tank team as if the Infantry team was a Recce team. If other tanks in the platoon fire, they must either have their own Infantry team pointing out the target, or continue to treat the target as Gone to Ground.

M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Wide Tracks
Some excellent tank designs have successfully utilised wider tracks, allowing them to cross almost any terrain.

If a vehicle with Wide Tracks becomes Bogged Down while attempting to cross Rough Terrain, roll again. On a roll of 4+ the vehicle immediately frees itself and continues moving.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Beehive Ammunition
A vital round for tanks and artillery in Vietnam was the devastating, ‘beehive’ canister round, named for the sound of more than a thousand pellets whizzing past.

A gun equipped with Beehive ammunition may fire this instead of normal ammunition. A tank firing Beehive ammunition with its main gun can still fire its machine-guns as it would if the main gun fired any other sort of ammunition. In addition, it can fire any Cupola MG when firing Beehive ammunition as no sophisticated aiming is needed.

Beehive ammunition has the characteristics listed below. Unlike normal ammunition, the ROF of Beehive is not reduced when the firing team moves or is Pinned Down. Instead it suffers a +1 penalty on its To Hit rolls.

Firing Beehive
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
The M48A3 Patton had a stereoscopic rangefinder with telescopes on either side of the turret, allowing it to determine the precise range to the target.

Guns with a Rangefinder that did not move do not suffer the +1 to hit penalty when shooting at a platoon with all visible teams more than 16”/40cm away.

The M48A3 Patton in Action
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
The Contents of the M48A3 Patton Box Set
Contact the customer service team at [email protected] if you have any issues with any of the components.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Description of Components
a. 2x Tank commander figures Type A.
2x Tank commander figures Type B.
c. 2x
Tank commander figures Type C.
d. 2x Tank commander figures Type D.
e. 2x .30 cal MGs.
f. 2x .50 cal AA MGs
2x Cupola MGs.
h. 2x Hatch sprues.
i. 2x Searchlight / vision ring sprues.
j. 4x Rare earth magnets.
k. 2x M41 90mm main guns.
l. 2x Right-hand side tracks.
m. 2x Left-hand side tracks.
n. 2x Resin M48A3 turrets & hulls.
Decal Sheet
Also included in the M48A3 box set is one M48 tank decal sheet.

Right: An example of the M48 decal sheet included in the box set.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Assembling The M48A3 Patton
Step 1. Begin assembly with the tracks.

Each track is stamped with the letter 'R' or 'L'  and an arrow to indicate correct orientation.
Below: The correct alignment for the left-hand and right-hand side tracks.

Tip: When referring to left or right-hand side in regards to a Flames Of War miniature, the orientation is determined as if looking at the vehicle from the rear.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Below: The left-hand side track attached to the hull. Below: The right-hand side track attached to the hull. Step 2. Attach the main gun to the front of the turret.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Below: The main gun attached to the turret.
Step 3. Next, attach the infrared searchlight to the top of the main gun.

Tip: There is a contoured section on the base of the searchlight that attached to the top of the gun.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Step 4. Attach the loader's hatch to the top of the turret.
Step 5. Next, add the cupola MG to the top of the turret.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Below: The cupola MG in place.
Step 6. Attach the hatch to the rear of the cupola MG.
Note: Later versions of the M48A3 added a ring of version blocks below the cupola MG.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Below: The ring of vision blocks attached below the cupola MG. Tip: A loader's hatch MG can be added to the M48A3 at a small points cost.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Below: The .30 cal MG attached to the top of the turret for +5 per tank.
Below: The .50 cal AA MG attached to the top turret for +10 points per tank.
Below: With the .50 cal AA MG in place, the M48A3 is ready for painting.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Adding Tank Commanders
Step 1. Attach the hatch at the rear of the cupola MG in an open position. Step 2. Add the tank commander figure of choice inside the open hatch.
Step 3. Repeat the process if you wish to add a commander figure in the loader's hatch.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Below: The loader's hatch attached in the open position.
Below: The commander figure attached to the inside of the open hatch.
Below: With the tank commander's in place, the M48A3 is ready to hit the painting table.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
Adding Rare Earth Magnets

Evan has created a recess for a rare earth magnet in the hull of the tanks included in the box set.

Read Chris' guide to Rare Earth Magnets here for more tips and tricks...

Below: The magnet recess complete with magnet.

Below: Simply glue a rare earth magnet to the bottom of the turret and you have a safe and secure way of attaching the turret to the hull.
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05) M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)
US Tank Painting Guide
M48A3 Patton (VUSBX05)

Last Updated On Thursday, April 4, 2013 by Blake at Battlefront