woensdag 4 maart 2015

Two Minute Tutorial - Making Tiny Trash Bags

Two Minute Tutorial - Making Tiny Trash Bags  (for some reason I can't get the video to show in my Blogpost, so forgive me for linking to Youtube)

I tried this tonight, having watched the video yesterday and thinking "Gosh, this looks so easy!"

Well, I tried the 2 types of trashbag we use at home and created a big molten mess every time, it melted quicker then I could react and not a straight seam in sight. So my Gf comes in and hands me some plastic trash from our recylcing bag, some old plastic bags of various colours, a empty pack of huggies babytissues, more of that stuff, all thicker plastic. One of them was a black plastic shopping bag, so I tried a piece of that. But again, it melted very irregularly. Dammit. What to do?

Eureka moment. What if I use a pair of tweezers to protect most of the plastic and only leave 1 tiny sliver available to melt? Tried it, and it works brilliantly every time sofar, it is even quicker then the method shown, so I'm now sitting here processing plastic bags ready to be filled.

My GF actually kirred and found it to be "so damn cute!" :D

I'm tying them down with a piece of string as I simply don't have wire thin enough for it (well, I do, but it is solder and it keeps breaking) and it looks just fine. I've made a few 28mm scaled ones now, and I think I will start doing a few 20mm ones tomorrow, as this is just so damn easy! (now that I know how)

Top tip, this one :)

maandag 2 maart 2015

My trip to Poldercon

With a bit of a delay, it seemed everything was more importantly then this for some reason....but here it is.

I had been looking forward to Poldercon for quite some time, as the concept gripped me from the onset. I only go to a few cons each year (Crisis is a must, and Impact because it is local (sadly it won't be done this year) and Figz because it is all about the figures. I pass on Ducosim as it is not really a show but more of a get together to game) and most are about planning purchases and meeting friends. So usually by 12 I've met everyone and I'm out of money. Granted, the Crisis show has changed for me since Will from PSC lets me work for him as Sales so he can take a breather and talk to other companies and customers, limiting my Crisis time to one hour off, but I actually like that as I can make a run past the shops I have pre orders with, make a single trip past the Bring and Buy and eye all of the tables once, which stops my impulse buys dead in the water. Will is responsible for saving me so much money! And all my mates and people who know me visit me at the shop at their own leasure. But back to Poldercon....

Planning is what I must do a lot, so to have a convention with 4 slots to plan plus some time for lunch is ideal for me in more then 1 way. I have my day planned (pro), I know what to expect (big pro) and I can play the games I'm actually interested in and not worry about rushing them or playing them with 4-6 new players at the same time (which my brain just cannot compute, I'm a 1 on 1 kind of guy)(again pro). Cost seemed a bit high from the onset, 17.50 euro for a convention while my expensive one to date (Crisis) is 10 euros, but look at it this way:

4 games/workshops at 2,50 euro each plus a 7,50 euro lunch

Really, try beating those prices if you eat at a convention (ok, you can bring your own lunch but let's pretend you don't) and then still complain "it is too expensive". There, I said it.

So I had 4 games/workshops planned,
  1. Chain of Command
  2. Speech by Clarke How to do a Demo
  3. Saga
  4. Pijlie's Scenery Workshop
 This was the plan up to a week till the convention, when I was eyeing Facebook and a small notice passed by mentioning Pulp Alley had a opening in the first slot. As I have been eyeing the game for possible use with Inquistor I jumped at the chance and was very happy when I got it. For my WW2 needs I'll stick to Battlegroup.

Convention day! I picked up a mate of mine in Tilburg and went to the location. I found it very easy to get to, directions from Tom Tom were spot on. There was plenty of parking at the venue and the venue looked excellent from the outside. Upon entering we said our names and were marked off the list, and got a counter for the lunch. Twas still early so we had a stroll to look at the tables. This was some high quality stuff, in a well lit room, and even a couple of shops (not that I had any money other then 5 euros my mate gave me for gas). Since my day was booked and my mates wasn't we went around looking for slots for him to fill, and after a while I said goodbye and went to my first table.

First date: Pulp Alley

Wow, I have not had so much fun at a game I never played from the start, it was dead easy to pick up, the host was excellent, the scenery lovely and the figures well painted. We, the players, even got a goodybag with a card, 2 dice, a special grenade template and free Pulp Alley figure, and the mentioned card was actually usable in the game.

Malebolgia drew up a excellent battlereport you can find here, Game 1

And yes, I lost. Hey, I played Nazi's, of course I lost :P But I had so much fun!

By the end of the gameI shook hands and when I got up I felt really drained, I had been paying attention for almost 90 minutes and it had left me drained. Not having breakfast (I overslept) didn't help either and I felt a huge headache coming on. Because so, I emptied my waterbottle, refilled it, and emptied it again, and then wondered what to do. Next up was Clark with his How to do a Demo but I wasn't sure if I was up to the task of listening again for 90 minutes, so I passed. I hope no one was upset with me passing up the event.

So...do nothing for 90 minutes or find a open slot at something simple? Well, as it was, the styrodur tutorial had a set open and I set myself down to see if it would be interesting. Well, the guy leading it alternated time between mee and other chap, making sure we did it step by step. And you know what? This is dead simple to do! It just takes some time, a sharp and blunt pencil and a ruler, plus a sharp knife. I looked at this stuff before, during my first stint with Mordheim when it came out, but back then I could not afford the cutting machine. Now I can (but I don't have any money). I did spend my 5 euros on a starter kit of foam so I can experiment some more at home, and that was another 90 minutes well spent.

Lunch. Not much I can say about it, it was very good, but due to a misunderstanding (the drinks were labeled as 1,50 each) me and many others took no drinks. But they were included! As lunch was 1 hour, I went back to the Styrpor/dur table to do some more work and learn more tricks.

My 2nd game of the day was Saga, the Crusades edition. I was curious for this game as quite a few people I know play it. I'm interested in the periods. But I never really got how it worked from reading all of those batreports. Due to the fact my headache was really bad right now Ican't tell you too much about it, other then that my Crusaders won combat by a landslide, then won again with massive casualties, and then got impaled on Saracen infantry. I didnt have the idea I was able to command an army with the dice given me (something I don't mind in Battlegroup cause I'm used to it)'cause you could do all of those funny combos with your dice or get fatigued, and while fatigues you couldn't do much. Sort of. For my troubles, I got a free miniature to choose from a lot, and I chose a Norman with a spear, neat!

Anyway, game over in under an hour (later I heard in all 4 games the Crusaders lost big time!) so back to the styropor table. More cutting ensued, now with added glazing.

Next up was Pijlie's Workshop, Making simple and cheap scenery. Pijl explained things very well, and I found that it all came back to me so went along with great ease, and made a nice ruin for Mordheim, only to have my headache do a number on me, causing me to reverse 2 wall and ruining the top floor....bloody typical. It did teach me that I can get some extra mileage from my glue gun and the stack of foamboard I still got lying around! Double bonus! With that finished, time had come for me to leave. I still had to drive for almost 2 hours with a massive headache so could not sit around for the final bit of prizes handed over to best table, game and what not.

But not so quickly, we got a goodybag at the exit! A very nice gesture, it netted me the following: A 15% off coupon from Sally 4th (if anyone wants it, let me know, it is valid till the 8th of this month), a 10% off coupn from www.sceneryworkshop.nl/ (valid till 2 days ago, bugger...), a Subcultures discount card (again, if anyone wants it, let me know, I'll mail it to you), a 10% discount at http://www.statuesqueminiatures.co.uk/ who do some interesting models as well as a free Early War German soldier sprue (28mm) and a 28mm plastic Roman sprue, both from Warlord Games. Edit: I know for sure there was also a discount coupon for Pulp Alley included, but I seem to have lost it? Damn, I want that game.

Quite nice of them to include these.

Then I took the long drive home, kissed my wife and crashed in bed only to wake up again at noon the next day, I was that beat.

So, would I do this again? Well, if I had a proper breakfast, brought plenty of water and painkillers, and picked the games I'm really interested in in, of course I would. Or even better: Hell yeah! I'm even thinking about possibly doing 20mm Battlegroup as a demo (though I am a little insecure about my own skills to build a board and demo the game right now) though that would mean not being able to see so many interesting demos myself. Dilemma :) Even though I know this would strain me to the max, I would not want to miss it!

Oh, and it was great fun meeting Malebolgia and Pijlie, 2 great gamers all round. It was nice to finally put faces to screennames I know from the LAF

woensdag 25 februari 2015

Putting things into perspective

All this doodling is fun, and I have no problem putting it into 3D in my head, but explaining my plans to my other half is a different matter, so, why not use one of the readily available online roomplanners? And so I did. I used floorplanner.com to create mine, it could be useful for you too? You have to sign up using your email, and it is a bit limited, but it lets you change quite a lot of the basic items in regards to height, width and depth. Scale wise the drawing is 100% accurate in dimensions now, so it is much easier to see how it fits in relation to each other. This made it pretty easy to drag the gaming table across the room to find the best place to park it. Anyway, see for yourself.

Looking North, the 3 sets of drawers in the left corner, and the 80cm and 40cm Billy side by side (this is the only bookcase the program has so visually it is off, but sizewise it is correct. My hobbydesk is visible in the top right corner.

Looking South-West the 2 80cm Billys are in the corner with the 80 cm moveable table base parked next to the door. There is space above it, maybe for a nice flat railway display case as those are very useful for displaying miniatures. Whiteboard in the left corner with the PC desk. There is room for a small cabinet for Kim, and possibly we can put the printer on top of that, or we'll put it on the desk and put in a slightly taller cabinet.

Top view. It is roomier then I had imagined from my earlier sketches. Btw, both table are easy to lower or raise so Kim and I can change both easily to our needs. Ours desks arent black btw, I changed the colour 3 times to beachwood but it stays black. Oh well. The 3 sets of drawers have plenty of headspace to put some boxes of scenery on and my miniatures cases.

So, how does it look with a table deployed?

Well, like this! I moved the table around and there are 2 places that give easy acces to 3 sides and use of chairs. 1. What you see here, and 2. Slided against the 2 bookcases on the South wall. There is even enough room to build the table in advance, slide it against the hobbydesk and still have easy entry and acces to the pc.

Well, those are my thoughts for today. Let me know if you like the idea, I doubt the table will be made up more then a dozen times a year, and yes, it is sort of blocking 1 bookcase, but that one will be for mutual paperwork and we won't open that very often. And even if so, the wheels should roll pretty freely as a combined set of 4 wheels can take 220 kilo's, and if my math is right it won't even come close to that (65 for the combined kitchen cabinets and around 5-10 kilo's for the 3 sheets of wood needed.)

And yes, I'm very happy with this :)

On the miniatures front no news. I'm really keen to start painting again but selling to get rid of the mess I've made in the last month is a tad higher on the priority ladder. If that means missing the end of March deadline on the Guild, so be it. I have lots more to photograph and list in the coming weeks.

Hmm, 01:30 again? I blog like a turtle, I do.

maandag 23 februari 2015

Planning ahead

Sometimes I'm not able to see the elephant in the middle of the room. A blessing or a curse, depending on mthe moment, my autism grants me the power to notice things that are off. Whether theyb are off cause I think they are off, or are genrrally off, I'll leave in the middle, but a side effect of this is that I sometimes miss the bloody obvious. Like a door swinging the opposite way.

Or, as I noticed last friday when I put the kids to bed, read them a story and sat there looking at the room, I had managed to miss the light switch. Right next to the door, on the right when entering, and in my drawings it had a big set of drawers right in front of it. Oops! Or Doh! might be more apt.

But as it turns out, this is a blessing in disguise (please see the new map below)

Left side will now be 3 sets of 70cm drawers stacked, then a 80cm and a 40cm bookcase. Right side has remained the same, but where the sets of drawers were before is now the 80x80 table, leaving easy acces to the light switch. I've also had a run to the local DIY and it looks wood costs for the top and bottom will be roughly 50 euros with wood left over if I go for 12mm multiplex, which means I will most likely get it cut at my favorite place in Tilburg and hop over to see Rob or Erik at the same time. Tables for on top can wait for now, first things first.

I'm not sorted yet on making it two 40x80 stands or 1 big 80x80 stand, both have merits, but the split version has increased costs as I need a pair of latches (or 2 pairs) and 4 additional wheels which means a additional 50 euros minimum.

Also, I'm looking at what needs to be done to raise the table to a level where I do not need to bend down so much all the time. It would add another 80x80 (or two 40x80 plus 4 or 8 wooden blocks to the costs but the added height creates more storage space for scenery and other things. I've openend a topic for it on the Lead Adventure Forum link

Hobby wise not too much news, some more packages on route, mostly trades with other gamers to get the models I want for my collection, and 2 purchases, 1 bag of miniatures, most for resale, and a used box of Necromunda that came with 3 gangs. And more envelopes with single models are leaving my house tomorrow, now if only someone would buy my box of Scavvies, that would help alot.

donderdag 12 februari 2015

The Great Escape

Well folks, I've become the prime example of what NOT to do in the hobby. I wanted to get stuff so badly, I managed to redline my account. To the max. Oy vey....Never hand a autistisc person like me a credit card when he's got blinkers on. Tunnel vision, but with no light at the end of the tunnel. I've been a very, very bad man.

When I noticed my spending had gone out of control and with a few euros left in my bankaccount, I confessed my sins to my gf. Who suddenly turned into the most understanding gf I ever had. I handed over my ATM and creditcards so she would be in control of my finances and explained my dire situation. She admitted I had been very stupid, but she also said she was sure I would be able to rectify the situation by doubling my efforts in selling stuff. And that was a week ago. (in the meantime I got the ATM cards back cause without I can't tank for gas and doing last minute groceries ordered by her have to be done with family account anyway)

In the week since then I have posted a ton of stuff for sale on various podia, scanned every invoice for medication and docters visists and dumped them at my healthcare provider all at once to be reimbursed for all of the things I paid in advance for, and cut down my spending to 5 euro (at Poldercon, more about that in another post). And I'm still looking for more things to sell.

And as a added bonus I haven't snacked or had a soda for over a week now, as I'm flatout refusing to spend money till I'm in the clear and all the money that I owe to people (yes, you too Sander) has been paid back in full. And trading is still ok, as long as more figures go out then come back, but that is very low priority right now.

So I'm on the mend and things look brighter alrady. I've even sold a few things :) And gotten quite a few replies from people who want to trade even though I'm clearly saying in the topic that I'm not trading right now.....I've just gone back and put that line in bold and bigger font just to be sure. <sigh>

Right, thats the current situation adressed, now the future. I'll be moving from the current all purpose room a to a 3x3 metre room by the end of the year, and I want to make it more useful compared to the way we use our current room. I have 5 cabinets (4x 80cm ones and 1x 40cm one) and 3 drawers (stacked, 70 wide) in the current room, the gf has 2 cabinets (60 wide each) and a small 60cm drawers. We both have a PC and we both have a printer/scanner. We both have a table, mine slightly larger then hers (160x80 vs 120x80). I've got a big ass whiteboard (95 x 120 cm). And then I have a teensy 40cm cabinet I keep project stuff in. And that is it (if we ignore the big white elephant that is the stored hobby mess in the attic....).

See pic of current situation :) Well, more of a, not to scale, quick sketch.....

The new (current babies) room is in the opposite side of the house, facing West. So no enjoying long hours of daylight I'm afraid. We have quite a few things double that we really don't need, like in as in each has his own pc, extra harddisk, printer. Bit of a waste of space. As her pc is fast becoming an old clapper and mine is good for another 4 years, my suggestion would be that I make another account on this PC so we can share this one, or she gets a laptop. I'm behind the PC daily, she maybe once a week, usually less. 1 of my cabinets is devoted to scenery, and 1 cabinet is half empty. She has 2 cabinets full of Stephen King books, pictures from her youth, and some fianacial stuff. Other then the financial stuff, I've never seen her use anything from those cabinets. She does use the small drawers often so that stays. If I get rid of 2 cabinets by culling stuff and putting all of my scenery in black transport boxes in the attic, she culls both cabinets of all of the unneeded stuff (old school stuff and Stephen Kingbooks) and we combine our fiancial stuff and pictures in one cabinet, we can drop 3 cabinets right now. How's that for saving space. And it would look a little like this:

2 desks up against the window, there will be about 20cm worth of space between then, plenty of space for the recycling bins. Left one will be the hobby station, right one for the desktop pc with space for the laptop would she choose that option. On the left/North wall would be 2x 80cm cabinet and 1x 40cm cabinet. Parts in the first, spares and projects in the 2nd and the smaller one holds all of my paint and tools. The small cabinet currently at my side can go into the recycling bin or in the girls new bedroom. On the right/South wall I've retained Kims small drawers, but after measuring it has to go as it is 70cm and that is 10cm too wide., so the printer goes on the table. 2 more cabinets, 1 for both of us, 1 I'm leaving off the books for now as that might be the cabinet for my special plan. My sets of drawers go next to the door as they leave enough room to swing the door on the cabinet.

My gf, who was just hovering over my shoulder, was kind enough to point out the door in the room actually swings the other way....doh! But that is even better, as this means I have more room for plan P

Plan P you say?

It has been a dream of me to have my own gaming table. Just before I moved in with my gf I had made one, 200 x 300 in 200x100 boards. They have been in storage ever since. As the table did make it across during the move, but is current;y occupied most of the time by the kids and us having dinner, leaving a game up overnight is not an option. Also, smaller is better cause my love lies with skirmishing, and for that a 120 by 120 (4x4) is sufficient.

So I've been thinking (Danger! Danger!) and looking at the Ikea catalog again, and I have come up with a plan. I feel there is room for a 120 x 120 gaming table in this room, albeit not a permanent one. If I drop 1 cabinet, I have a 80cm slot. 80cm is a good size to support a 120cm table with. A 80 x 80 cm table would be ideal as a support. A mobile table with storage space would be perfection on a small scale. Now, back up a few months. We installed a kitchen a few months ago and it has very wide drawers for pots and pans and stuff. And it has a drawer inside a drawer to maximise space. I wondered then, what if you mounted a gaming table on top of this?

So out comes the Ikea catalog. I've looked at either 40x40 blocks times 4 andn 80x40 blocks times 2. (Also I must not forget to get 4 big wheels, and 2 80x80cm slabs of MDF as the base and the table top). Looking at the low end of the budget, 4 blocks of 40, just planks and a door is 172 euros for the set (excluding wheels and 2x 80 square). So these:

 If I want sets of drawers, what I prefer as I have to store miniatures, I'm looking at two 80 x 37cm blocks, with the following options:

One for each side. The lower one would be handy for storing my toolchests for the airbush and other tools plus the airbrush itself, the upper one has easy space for miniatures, dice, rulers, more paints etc. The 80x80 top would be handy for taking photographs on while not in use. The minimum height of these cabinets is 80. This would be raised by two 12mm thick MDF base and top, plus the size of the wheels meaning a height of at least 90cm should be ok. Which is higher then most tables I ever gamed on :)

So, I think this is a great idea. It adds storage space, it doesn't take up too much space in the room (the location to put this would be behind my desk, in between the 40cm bookcase and the 80 cm bookcase), is strong and sturdy enough to be the base of a 120 x 120 cm gaming table. And the gaming table can be made in 2 parts and stored in the attic when not in use. The only problem I see right now is the finances cause I'm guessing a budget of 500 euros for this should suffice, and I don't have that kind of money at the moment (well duh). But, if my sales go well, and use part or all of my Crisis 2015 budget for this, all of this isn't as far fetched as it seems right now.

But am I missing something? Ok, I need to solve the problem how to connect the 2 120x60 boards, but I'm sure there will be ideas for it online. But other then that....well, let me know what you think about it, k?

dinsdag 3 februari 2015


A short review of my Kromlech order.

I searched the website, ordered a few items on the 16th and after that it became pretty silent, no confirmation or anything.. And sometime last week the box dropped on my mat. This weekend I managed to unpack it.

Again, no smelly resin here. Everything neatly packed in a small letterbox box, so sturdier then a bubblewrap envelope. I ordered a set of claws, and 2 different sets of bionic arms, plus a pilot. Also included was a thank you card and a Ork/Orc head wearing a Fez.

Other then some light flash here and there, I only had 2 airbubbles. Sadly both were on the tips of the bionic drill arm so I will have to redo these in Milliput, and then sand it back up again.

For my purposes I'm quite pleased with the shears, pretty brutal looking, and the small bionic arms (drill,saw and chainsword). I'm over the moon with the pilot, he will fit nicely in my Xenos retinue. I'm less enthousiastic about the bigger set of bionic arms, as those are clearly meant for something with the bulk of an Ork or bigger. I must have somehow missed that in the pictures. Those will go into the sparesbox for now.

Since Kromlech is so Ork oriented, I don't think I will be ordering from them again, unlike Zinge Industries. I just have no need for Orks nright now.

zondag 1 februari 2015

Sanders Lamentations, Part 2

So tonight we move on to Inquisitor. Or Inq28. Or Inquisimunda. (though I'm actually contemplating using the excellent Pulp Alley rules for this). Or as we should call it, the Game with Many Names :P

Inquisitor is a game I never played, but I owned a dozen of the 54mm models. Sold em all for 7,50 each or less cause no one wanted them. <sigh> That wasn't a great start. But I loved the idea, back then I had just given up on DMing, I had done it for years but I was a bit burned out. And then GW brings this game out. It never caught on though, the models were too big, you had to remake all of your scenery for it, and I never saw anyone play it. But the ideas and stories are just fine. And in 28mm there is still a hardcore community for it.

Anyway, Inquisitor. A game about a Inquisitor and his troupe. The sky is the limit conversion wise, you can stat just about anything. Which means practically every 40K miniature ever made can be useful. Since the box is so brimming with stuff right now I won't bother taking a shot of it. Most of it is primed black so you would not see anything anyway.

So, what am I going to do? Well, I have collected enough stuff to make 2 opposites of the Inquisitorial universe, namely a Ordo Xenos Radical and a Ordo Hereticus Puritan.

I want the Xenos Radical to be a brawler, someone who gets into the thick of it. I want a troupe of diverse characters, mixing Aliens with humans, weapons from all over the place. My main Alien focus will lie with the Kroot (and to a lesser extent, the Tau) as I managed to get 2 boxes of Kroot for a very low price and the first Inq28mm conversion I ever made years ago was a Kroot. I really like Kroot. I have not selected on a Inquisitor yet, as I have several of the old ones in Power Armour that I like, but I'm still hunting for more. I\ve also managed to find a Greenskin pilot that oozes character and will fit in perfectly. I will be browsing other games ranges for interesting Aliens. Lot's of conversions, very diverse, and when the Kroot are done they can function as a advisary Warband on the table too.

The Hereticus Puritan will be unarmed (seemingly) cause I like the model that way and I want him to be a leader of men that dictates from a distance. This doens't mean he's weak though!. There will be no aliens here, only (ab)humans, Imperial (storm)troops, Deathwatch and light to medium military equipment. Faceless black armoured masses, bring out the gloss varnish for these guys. And the press mould, for there will be =I= markings everywhere. This force will be the closest I'll ever get to making a 40K army.. I managed to crounge quite a few unbuilt Cadians, a few armoured sentinels ready to be rebuilt and magnetised, a unbuilt Rhino and a direct link to Pig Iron for new heads.

This leaves me with 1/3 of the box left, namely some Forgeworld Rogue Psykers and 60 odd Chaos Cultists and whole lotta bits and pieces ready to be converted into devices, plotpoints and anything else I can imagine. Or someone else imagined, as I will be copying what others have done before me (I don't mind reinventing the wheel but other people think differently then I do and I've found quite a few items that made me go: WANT!. 9 out of 10 they are plastic conversions too...that should help keep the costs down :)

I'm going to start small with this. First the Xenos side of things, Kroot 50/50 in HtH and Ranged weapons, a basic Inquisitor for starters, nothing fancy. No new purchases for a while. Later in the year when (if?) I have money again I can look for add on bits for the rest.

Thats the plan and I'm sticking to it, dammit.

And in other news, I won the Orlocks I was hoping on so my Orlock gang is set for fighting in the hive. Quite complete too, I'll try and find a few damaged or incomplete models to convert, but that is about it for now. And as Erik was kind enough to point out, what about scenery? Ah, yess.....maybe later. And for Mordheim I got offered a Sisters of Sigmar box that I just bought even though I have no real interest in the sisters. (<shock>,<gasp>, yes, I said it) but it would make nice trade fodder.

That is it. I have a Kromlech review to type now.