Saving Private Ryan – Pfc Reibens (Edward Burns)

Thankfully, not too much time was spent in realising the Pfc Reiben's character, save for some heavy weathering to the clothes, a 2 Bn Ranger diamond decal to the back of the helmet, a surplus herringbone shirt and a slight touch-up to the headsculpt's eyes. The pouches were all loaded with surplus BAR magazines as Dragon only supplied 3 magazines.

Dragon/CyberHobby’s US Ranger BAR Gunner – Richie – certainly makes for a remarkable realisation of the outspoken Private Richard Reiben (Edward Burns) in Steven Speilberg’s war movie, Saving Private Ryan. I felt a sense of instant gratification (or perhaps relief that I wouldn’t have to do much) when I took delivery of the figure which boasts of some new moldings and patterns to the M1 helmet, combat boots and jacket.

Although scribbling words on the back of the jacket appears easy, it actually was quite a nerve-racking experience for me. Without any preplanning, the letters could end up slantied or off-centered. The way to do is is to get all your letter positions done with reference to the image like the one I provided below. You might wish to try using a soft 6B pencil to mark out the letterings or even create a 'cookie-cutter' paper template denoting the positioning of the three levels of lettering (cut out the whole block of text, not each letter!). I got this done by getting the jacket's centerline, then the positioning of each block of lettering. This was followed by inking in waterproof black ink the letters 'O' and 'K' and then the subsequent letters 'BRO' and 'LYN'. Of interest is the fact that the character B is a 'serif' typeface - this is a letter with the upper and lower ends 'indented'. The other letters are 'sans serif' - without any indentations on the upper and lower ends.

As the squad’s support gunner, PFC Richard Reiben potrayed by actor Edward Burns carries a Browning Automatic Rifle M1918A2 or “B.A.R.” as his main weapon. The B.A.R. that Reiben carries and uses in the movie is not his originally issued one, which he claims he lost during the start of the D-Day landing to keep from drowning. The automatic rifle has the bipod removed, making it more into an assault rifle instead of a Light Machine Gun. Further supporting this theory is how he fires it on the faster of the B.A.R.’s two full-auto fire modes, instead of the more efficient slow auto-fire used for support. Reports have said like the M1 Garands in the film, this B.A.R. was lightened for easier use by the actors, making it far easier to shoulder fire the weapon as an assault rifle. (Periods have been added to the B.A.R. abbreviations to make sure no one refers to the weapon incorrectly as a “Bar”.)

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